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Kumihimo is a Japanese form of braid-making. Such tools as the marudai and the takadai are used for making these braids. The marudai tool is mostly used to make round braids, while the takadai is used to make flat ones.
Kumihimo was used by samurais in decorative and functional ways to tie their and their horses’ armor. Kumihimo braids are also used to tie up a kimono sash (obi in Japanese).
A modern kumihimo braiding tool is usually made from plastic, or you can make it yourself from cardboard. It can be used as a portable marudai. It has 32 dents. However, this portable tool is not as convenient to use as a marudai. On a marudai you can braid with as many cords as you want, but on a portable tool you can use not more than 16 strings. Apart from that you can make different kinds of kumihimo on a marudai, for example, flat and square ones. There also exist square portable tools for making flat cords.