How to Make a Rosary

How to make a
Mission Beaded Cord Rosary

No. 9 nylon cord, available in either ΒΌ lb. or 1lb. tubes, white only. Plastic crucifixes or base metal crucifixes, plastic beads (60 needed for each Rosary), and tool for making knot.

You will also need a pair of very sharp scissors and, we recommend, a bottle of clear nail polish or a jar of clear shellac with which to dip or brush the ends of the cord to make them stiff to easily go through the beads. This also eliminates any raveled ends.

Use 60 inches of cord. Mark one end of cord at 8 inches for starting position. Dip or brush ends of cord with nail polish or clear shellac, if desired. Bonded cord gives least chance of raveling, and you may decide there is no need to coat ends.

rm1Make first knot at 8 inch starting position. Read Instructions on page 36 then refer to STEP 1. It is important to keep these 8 inches free on end. Place tool in left hand (reverse all instructions for left handed person) and hold in a horizontal position as shown. Lay cord over grooved end of tool with grooved side facing towards you. Left thumb holds cord against the tool as right hand wraps cord around the back of tool and brings it in front and crosses over the cord held by the left thumb to form an X. Remember this X is at the 8 inch starting position. Keep X in center of tool. With right hand, wrap two more loops around tool, one next to the other, working from right to left toward the handle of tool. To secure knot, hold the loops with the left index finger; turn the tool from the horizontal position to a vertical position and with the right hand bring the
long end of the cord all the way through, but do not pull too tightly at this time. Remove knot from tool by taking hold of knot with index finger and thumb of right hand and pulling knot off the tool. Be sure each loop is kept one next to the other for a neat knot. Pull both ends of cord to tighten knot.

Put ten beads on cord for first decade. Always add beads on long erm2nd of cord. As you begin next knot, hang beads on cord down and in front of tool. Make knot same as before, but allow a bit of cord space so that when knot is tightened it may be positioned about the distance of one bead away from the last bead to allow movement between beads as they are prayed. Before knot is tightened, it can be rolled into position.

Rosaries made without this extra space, so the beads can move slightly, do not have the necessary flexibility to allow the Rosary to be folded and carried in pocket or purse. A good handmade cord Rosary is never stiff. Put on one bead for the “Our Father”. Make knot, but be certain to roll knot down tightly against bead-leave no space between the knot and the bead. This bead is between two knots which are tightly against it.

Repeat for the next four decades.

After the five decades have been made, bring the two end knots together (the one at the beginning of the 1st decade and the one at the end of the fifth decade). You will then be holding a double cord. Refer to STEP 2. Check to see if decades are even-knots can be moved slightly to make any adjustments if necessary. Plastic centers are not used; instead we will make a large knot using this double cord to join these cord ends.RM3

Using the longest cord only, put one bead on cord for therm3 “Our Father” bead. Make knot close to bead. Put on three beads. Make a knot, leaving about 1/4 inch space between the bead and the knot. Put on another bead, but do not make the knot. Put on the Crucifix and reverse your work. Work from the Crucifix down to the beads. Leave a space between the Crucifix and the bead. Make a knot, wrapping the cord around the stay from the bead toward the Crucifix. Bring the cord up through the groove in the stay from the Crucifix to the bead.

Work the knot off the stay, pulling tight against the bead instead of the Crucifix.

Cut off remaining cord close to the bead.


How to make a
Chain Rosary
The first step in making Rosaries is, of course, the assembling of the necessary parts.

Parts and Tools List
o 59 Beads
o 3 Small Rings
o 1 Center Piece
o 59 “Eye” Pins
o 1 Crucifix (with ring)
o 8 Inches of Chain
o Deluxe Rosary Round Nose Pliers with Cutter (item 1515, page 24)
o Slim Round Nose Pliers and Sharp Scissors

Pick up orm8ne of the eye pins and insert it as far as it will go through one of the beads. Then with your fingers or pliers (whichever is handiest), bend the straight portion of the wire over at right angles as shown in the sketch.

Note that the bend must be as close to the bead as you can make it and it is made at right angles to the eye on the opposite end of the pin.

This bend you have just made is the beginning of the new eye. The two eyes should be at right angles to each other to avoid “kinking” of the finished chain of beads.

Step 2rm9
With the pliers in the right hand, grip the bent over section of the pin (nowpointing to your right), near the nose of the pliers and near the end of the pin. Circle your thumb toward you and put a little bend in the end of the pin.

Since the human wrist is not constructed so that it will make a complete circular turn, it is now necessary that you take two grips or “bites” of the work. The rm10little bend mentioned above is the beginning of the “Eye” you are making. To complete the “Eye” and make it into a perfect circle, you now grasp the jaws of the pliers with your LEFT HAND. This will keep them tight on the Eye Pin. Then circle your RIGHT HAND to the right as far as it will go and take a fresh grip of the pliers. Now when you turn the pliers toward yourself, you will form an almost complete circle in the wire like the one already formed on the other end. This eye should not be quite closed. Leave it open a little so that you can later on close it around the next pin in the chain.

This is the basic process in making a Rosary. It should be practiced until you can form an eye on one end of the pin almost identical in size and roundness with the original one. Now, put the pins through all 59 of the beads and form eyes on each one as above, leaving the new eyes not quite closed.


Step 3
Pick up two of the beads and hook the new eye of the one through the original eye of the other. This is the first step in assembling the Rosary. Grasping the pin with your pliers in the manner shown by the sketch, close the eye. DO NOT squeeze the eye closed by pressing on the sides – doing this is sure to spoil the roundness of the eye. Also do not press on your pliers any tighter than necessary. It is very easy to mar the pins.

Using the method described above, assemble the five groups of ten and the group of three which you need.

Step 4
Cutting the chain is next. Fourteen pieces are required, each four or five links long as you prefer. These are easily snipped off with a pair of scissors, but incutting the chain be careful to have exactly the same number of links in each of your fourteen pieces.

Step 5
Open one of the small “jump” rings by bending the prongs sideways. Opening the ring in this manner makes it easy to close without losing its shape. Slip the ring through one of the upper openings in the centerpiece and a piece of the chain and close it.

Step 6
The final assembly consists of joining together the various parts in the approved manner as shown in the picture. In connecting, it is necessary to slightly open the closed end of the last eye pin of each decade, in order to attach the chain.

Before making the final assembly of the long string of beads and the centerpiece, hold the string up by one end and let it dangle freely. Then when you attach the free end of the centerpiece, see that there is no “twist” in the string. Even a slight twist will cause the Rosary to kink -something easily avoided with a little care.

CAUTION: Use as little pressure on the pliers as you can when forming and closing the eyes.The wire is delicate and too much pressure will make marks which cannot be removed. Be sure when you are assembling that EVERY eye is completely closed. No one wants a Rosary which comes apart.