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Tools for Ply-split Braiding

New to Ply-split Braiding?  See Getting Started in Ply-split Braiding.  

The basic tools for ply-split braiding are a Cord Maker and a Gripfid hand tool.  

  Gripfid for ply-split braiding

    A 4-Hook Powered Cord Maker                                             Gripfid              

Cord makers

Cords may be made by hand (see Making Cords for Ply-split Braiding for examples), however a cord maker, or cord twister, is more efficient and reliably makes perfect cords. In two easy steps the cord maker applies an initial overtwist and then twists the individual plies into a smooth even cord.  Click here to order a drill-powered cordmaker.  For a beginner wanting to try out Ply-Split Braiding before buying a cord maker, we offer a limited selection of ready-made cords.   


See video "What is a Gripfid" 

The Gripfid is an invention of Stuart Grainger.  A  small knotter's fid has an added "grip", a hollow shaft that ends near the point with a vee that acts as a jamming cleat.  After using the point to separate plies, another cord is tucked onto the Gripfid and pulled back through the split cord. Although a latchhook may be used instead of a Gripfid, the latter is much preferred.  

We have developed an improved gripfid design.  Our gripfids start with a hollow knitting needle rather than a tube. Thus the point is already perfectly formed. We need only make the hollow cord channel and interior vee-groove.  For further discussion on making gripfids, see our Making Gripfids page.  Our Gripfids can be purchased from our ply-splitting tool catalog.

Gripfid for Ply-split Braiding

We offer gripfids in three standard sizes; special sizes may be ordered.

    Standard Sizes  $11.00 each


Fine 3.7 mm Gripfid.  Suitable for 4-ply cords made from 8 strands of 10/2 pearl cotton or equivalent.  (Cord up to about 3/32 inch diameter.)


Medium 4.5 mm Gripfid. Suitable for 4-ply cords made from 16 strands of 10/2 pearl cotton or equivalent or 8 strands of 5/2 pearl cotton or equivalent.  (Cord up to about 3/16 inch diameter.)
We recommend this size for general use and beginners.


Large 6.5 mm Gripfid.  Suitable for 4-ply cords made from 16  strands of 3/2 pearl cotton or equivalent .  (Cord up to about 1/4 inch diameter)

To order Gripfids, 

Click Here to access our secure PayPal shopping cart.

Questions?  E-mail us at PSB-tools @ louisefrench.com



A great place to start Ply-splitting or enhance your skill is Julie Hedges' book:

Play Split Braiding, An Introduction by Juile Hedges
Ply-Split Braiding, An introduction to designs in single course twining; including methods for Waves, Zigzags, Basket Weave Designs and Cordmaking


This wonderful book is published in the UK, but Louise French has a few of these hard-to-find books for sale.    Click Here to order.


Julie Hedges second book with high quality photos of more advanced techniques:

 Julie Hedges Ply-split Braiding Further Techniques

Ply-Split Braidin
g, Further Techniques
Detailed instructions on advanced techniques including Ply-Split Darning, Single Course Oblique Twining, Plain Oblique Twining, and Ply-Split Hexagons.    Click Here to order.



Julie Hedges newest book with with highly illustrated instructions on three-dimensional Ply-split braiding for baskets and sculptures:

Ply-Splitting in 3 Dimensions An Introduction to making vessels and Sculptural forms
64 pages, more than 250 Color Diagrams, Figures and Gallery images, Spiral bound.  . 
  Click Here to order.


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Contact Louise by e-mail at louise @ louisefrench.com               
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