Category Archives: Rainbow Loom Tips

EXCLUSIVE Rainbow Loom band colors at Michaels

Starting in December, Michaels has been selling some exclusive new Rainbow Loom rubber band packs in new color/style combinations.  These are licensed by Rainbow Loom but made specifically for Michaels so you can’t get these exact colors anywhere else.

First there are four different band packages that contain a specific mix of bands.

Rainbow Loom exclusive multi-color rubber band packs at Michaels, metallic, gold, camo, tie-dye, glitter
Multi-color Rainbow Loom bands at Michaels

1. Tie dye – each band contains 2 alternating colors.  There are several color combinations in the pack: yellow/green, blue/green, pink/blue, and yellow/orange.

2. Camouflage – a mix of shiny black, dark green, and a light brown.

3. Pastel sparkle – a ‘jelly’ mix of light pastel pink, orange, blue, and greenish yellow with tiny silver sparkles.

4. Metallic – a mix of shiny gold, silver, blue, green, purple, burgandy, and pink.

neon rainbow loom rubber bands exclusively at Michaels
Neon Rainbow Loom bands at Michaels

Next there are 4 separate single-color packs in new neon colors: blue, orange, yellow, pink.

pearlized rainbow loom rubber band colors - hot pink and maroon - exclusively at Michaels

Pearlized Rainbow Loom bands at Michaels

Lastly there are a couple of ‘pearlized’ shiny single-color packs – they are hot pink and maroon.  This is more true maroon – more purple than the original burgandy color.

Happy Looming!

 

Rainbow Loom details from an Occupational Therapist

You may be wondering what is so special about the Rainbow Loom.  Although it may seem like just the latest kids’ fad, it is actually a toy with amazing educational aspects.  Read this interview with Shannon Samples, an Occupational Therapist from Texas, to learn what skills are developed through using the Rainbow Loom.

1. What is your job title and your experience?

Shannon Samples

Shannon Samples, Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant

I am a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant. I hold an Associates degree and practice Occupational Therapy under the supervision of Master’s level Occupational Therapists. I have worked mainly as a pediatric therapist serving children from infants up to the age of 21 in their homes and also in school. I am currently a pediatric therapist working in home care for Children’s Medical Center of Dallas full time and also serve as an adjunct instructor for the Navarro College Occupational Therapy Assistant program.

2. What types of skills do you help kids improve when you work with them?

I see a wide variety of medical conditions in my job, from basic developmental delay to severe conditions. My job is to increase the ability of these children to engage in every day activities. Many times, these activities can be as basic as feeding themselves and other times it may be as complex as completing a homework assignment. Specific skills Occupational Therapy practitioners focus on include fine motor, gross motor, visual motor, sensory motor, behavior, attention span, one to one interaction and many more.

3. What skills are exercised in using the Rainbow Loom (for kids in general, not necessarily those needing therapy)?

Rainbow Loom addresses as many skills sets as I can think of. To begin with, fine motor skills are challenged including fine motor manipulation, pinch patterns and grip patterns. Visual motor skills are also challenged greatly as well as the integration of fine motor and visual motor skills. The ability to follow a pattern visually and to visually fixate on the items being placed on the loom is challenged. Attention span is greatly challenged as this task takes quite some time just to master the art of, as well as learning new patterns. Emotional regulation is challenged again as learning new patterns can be quite challenging, even frustrating at times. Gross motor skills are challenged for younger age groups just to complete the task, however, if a child is placed in various other positions to complete a bracelet then gross motor skills could be challenged at an increasing level (ex: child placed on stomach to increase upper body strength). Social skills are challenged when this activity is completed in a group setting or even when completed when more than one person is together. I truly cannot think of one area of skill that is not addressedwhen completing an activity with the Rainbow Loom! I personally used this product with my patients aged 3-13 and was able to adapt it for each of their use while addressing many of their therapy goals. They enjoyed it and each one asked when I would bring it again!!!!

4. At a regular price of $16.99 (for the basic kit with the loom, hook, and bands), would Rainbow Loom be a good item to buy for a child and why?

Yes, the current price of $16.99 makes Rainbow Loom a great item to buy for a child. In fact, several of my patient’s parents asked where to buy a kit! The price point of under $20 makes is reasonable and even a great gift item and provides many hours of fun!

5. Why do you think kids like using the Rainbow Loom?

In my experience, children like a challenge and Rainbow Loom offers a challenge. I was able to adapt this product to each child by completing portions of the activity for them as needed so that they were not overly challenged and overly frustrated, yet still challenged enough to increase their skills. The best part of an activity that is challenging is that is provides a reward and this product has a reward built in…the bracelet that they get to personalize and take home!

6. What ages do you think are ideal for using the Rainbow Loom?

The box says ages 8 and up. Unsupervised I would have to agree due to the small rubber bands, however, with supervision I believe this product can be utilized with children as young as 3 years old. As a matter of a fact, I personally used it with my patient’s from ages 3-13 and they all loved it and had success with it.

7. Anything else you would want moms or potential buyers to know about the Rainbow Loom?

This item takes a few minutes to master and may take a few minutes of adult supervision to get started, but once the kids get the hang of it, they will be off on their own!

Rainbow Loom fun

Get your Rainbow Loom at Michaels!  Learn more about Rainbow Loom here:  michaels.com/Rainbow-Loom

 

Add Pony Beads to Rainbow Loom

Pony Beads with Rainbow LoomHere is another way to incorporate metallic gold and silver colors into your Rainbow Loom creations – pony beads!  You can find this type of bead in the kids beading section at Michaels.  This type of bead is actually very easy to work into just about any type of Rainbow Loom creation.  Simply thread a rubber band through a bead BEFORE you put it onto the loom pegs.   In the picture you can see two charms which can be strung onto a necklace cord.  The bracelet on the left is a triple single with some beads added into the middle strand.  The bracelet on the right is also a triple single but with a starbust in the middle.

The links below will provide all the information you need to make these designs:

Incorporating beads: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=iHhDN5pnB_4

Triple single: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Xa8WQdPEXq0

Starbust:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=RI7AkI5dJzo

Beaded flower charm: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=TopePUys6BM

Here I am with Rainbow Loom creations with beadsthe beaded Rainbow Loom flower charm and beaded Rainbow Loom bracelet.

All About the Hook

hook2

hold the Rainbow Loom hook like a pencil

Who knew that a simple hook could do so much? The most important thing you need to know about the Rainbow Loom hook is how best to hold it. It will be much easier to use the Rainbow Loom if you hold the hook just like a pencil.  This is one reason the RL is a great item for young kids, because it helps them develop and improve their pencil grasp.

hook4

pull the hook up through the center/inside of the pin

The next thing you need to know is how to best utilize the curved pegs (or pins) on the loom.  In most patterns, it is easiest to bring the hook up through the ‘inside’ of the curve, like shown here.  The unique shape of the pins is what makes the Rainbow Loom much easier to use than some of the ‘knock-off’ products.

hook4

Rainbow Loom hook and ordinary crochet hook

Rainbow Loom hook parking spot

Rainbow Loom hook parking spot

The third thing to know about the Rainbow Loom hook is how awesome it is! This is not just an ordinary crochet hook, it is a four-in-one marvel. Here are the key features of the hook:

    1. The hook part is what you use to actually grab the rubber bands (yes, that one is obvious).
      2. The tapered wider part lets you temporarily ‘park’ a partially completed Rainbow Loom creation until you can either put on your C clip or attach to the next part of your creation.  Notice how it is shaped with an edge toward the hook side so that the bands will stay on more easily.
hook with mini loom cover

hook with mini loom cover

3. The larger end is perfectly shaped to help you take apart the loom itself.  Check out my other post at rainbow-loom-square-position/  to see what I’m talking about.

4. The wider end of the tapered part has an edge that helps it fit perfectly and solidly into the blue cover.  This cover even has multiple purposes.  It helps keep your hook from getting broken or from poking someone, and it can be used on its own to create Rainbow Loom bracelets.

3-Pin Fishtail Necklace Pendant

Here is my latest creation. This pattern is called a 3 Pin Fishtail. I made the bracelet first using black and 2 colors of purple. Then I wanted a necklace to match, but I didn’t want to make that long of a Rainbow Loom fishtail. So, I got the idea to just make a short fishtail and loop it into a pendant. I put the mini-fishtail onto a basic black cord and knotted that to a ‘lobster clasp’.
3 pin fishtail rainbow loom pendant necklace

 

You can learn how to make the 3 Pin Fishtail pattern here:

You can buy the cord and lobster clasp at Michaels in the jewelry making section. Michaels has cords with the clasps already attached or you can buy the specific type of cord and clasps you want. Here’s a quick definition of a lobster clasp: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lobster_clasp

Have a great DIY day!

Colors of the Rainbow Loom

OK, maybe I have some obsessive tendencies. I have made the standard bracelet in over 20 different colors – almost every color of Rainbow Loom band that Michaels sells now.  If you are wondering what all the colors are, check this out:

colors of Rainbow Loom bands
colors of Rainbow Loom bands

From left to right the colors are:

  1. Grey
  2. Glow-in-the-Dark white
  3. Burgandy / Maroon
  4. Fuchsia
  5. Red
  6. Pink
  7. Orange
  8. Caramel
  9. Yellow
  10. Transparent Yellow (see-through)
  11. Olive Green
  12. Neon Green
  13. Dark Green
  14. Teal
  15. Transparent Teal (see-through)
  16. Ocean Blue
  17. Transparent Blue (see-through)
  18. Navy Blue
  19. Transparent Purple (see-through)
  20. Purple
  21. White
  22. Black

I think I am missing  lime green, turquoise, neon orange, and maybe a transparent green. I hereby challenge you to make 20+ bracelets, each in a different color.  Do you accept the Rainbow Loom color challenge?

You may be wondering, “Did she spell #4 correctly?”.   I did my research on this one.  http://petscribbles.blogspot.com/2012/02/is-it-fuchsia-or-fuschia.html

      Rainbow Loom square position
standard

Standard loom position

When you get a Rainbow Loom, it comes in the ‘standard’ configuration.  In this position the middle column of pegs is shifted so it sticks down one notch at the end with the red arrow.  The basic pattern is made using this configuration.
There is another way to set up your loom which will allow you to make other patterns.

 

Use the other end of the hook to take loom apart

Use other end of hook to help take loom apart

To change the loom position, first turn it over and use the other end of the hook (yes – it is multi-purpose!) to help loosen the blue sections from the clear peg sections.  You don’t need to take the blue parts completely out, just loosen them a bit so that you can lift out the middle column of pegs.  Shift the middle column of pegs so that it is in line with the outer columns.

 

Rainbow Loom square position

Rainbow Loom square position

Look at the 3rd picture to see what the Rainbow Loom should look like in the square configuration.  Notice that the columns are evenly alligned so the overall shape is square.  The pegs all face the same direction – that is, the peg grooves all are turned the same way.

 

Rainbow Loom parts

Rainbow Loom parts

You can completely take apart the loom, and you will end up with 6 parts.  There are the 3 columns of pegs, 2 small blue pieces, and 1 big blue piece.  For certain types of patterns, if you want to make them very long they can be made more easily by connecting two looms end to end.  You can use the big blue piece to bridge two sets of peg columns together.

Happy Looming!