How It's Made

Our Inspiration


Most Kaden & Kai bracelets were inspired by nature and art - specifically vines, flowers, and American and Japanese calligraphy.

Negative space is key to creating a good design when working with bicycle tubes. When I begin a design, I am often thinking about it as a 2D illustration. Then I make changes depending on how it looks on the human body. My prototypes are made from paper. Once I have settled on a design concept, I can spend hours, days and weeks changing, testing and tweaking the design until I feel I have gotten it completely right.

OUR Materials


The good news about working with used bicycle tubes is the material is free so you can make as many mistakes as you want. There are always more tubes. Our goal is to get really good at so we can prevent tubes from going to the landfill.

The bad news is used bicycle tubes have a lot of variability. Before we can do anything with them, they need to be cut and sorted by the tube width and by the thickness of the tube. Once that is done, we can prep them for cutting.



Once the tubes have been cleaned, cut and sorted by thickness, we are now ready to cut the designs into them. We currently use a few different processes depending on the design, but all are based on cutting the design into the tube. Knife cutting creates a lot of fails, but is good for prototyping. Laser cutting creates dust during the cutting process that is not safe to breathe. So we use die cutting to make our jewelry once the designs are final.

Although die cutting works well, the last step in cutting is to manually clean-up every piece one at a time to ensure we have super clean lines.

This bracelet extender is .5 wide and 9 inches long. It is a series of holes from top to bottom. It has a t-shaped clasp. This image shows an extender cut to have only four holes. The fourth hole is connected to the t-shape clasp of the bracelet.



The next step is to strengthen the clasp. After significant field testing, we realized the anchor shape design was great at keeping the bracelet secure, but it was not enough to keep the bracelet on if pulled. In order to make the clasp strong enough to withstand a hard tug, we needed to add an industrial strength hardener to the anchor portion of the clasp to prevent it from slipping through the hole. This is done one by one on every bracelet. Once the glue is completely dry, it is ready for the final step.

Adding THE


The key to a great looking bicycle tube jewelry is that deep black color. After several months of trial and error, I stumbled on a rubber moisturizer/protectant that literally makes the tubes look like new. We add the moisturizer as the last step before packaging. It can be reapplied at any time using a store bought rubber protectant or by combining one part lime juice and 3 parts olive oil. Just spread it across the bracelet and let it dry.

How It's Made Video

1 minute, 16 seconds