Watch as the beads slip under the previously braided cords all by themselves! Lift the cords slightly, and “jump” the cords into their new positions (photo k).
Continue to add beads on each move and keep braiding until you’ve reached the desired length. As you braid, your cords will get shorter and you’ll need to adjust them as the tama get too close to the mirror. To do so, lift the tama slightly to release the tension on the cord, and rotate the tama toward you a bit (photo l). The slipping hitch will release the cord, giving you more cord to work with. To release more beads onto the working cord, remove the slipping hitch from the tama. Slide more beads toward the mirror, and make a new slipping hitch.
4. When your beaded braid is the desired length, work ½ in. (1.3 cm) with just the cords.
5. Using pliers or a hemostat, grasp the unbeaded end of the braid just under the point of braiding. While securely holding the pliers or hemostat, use your other hand to remove the counterweight. Lift the braid from the marudai, and rest the braid and the tama on your work surface. Bind or seal the ends of the braid (see “Binding or sealing the end of a braid”).