When is a bracelet more than a bracelet? It becomes so when it is a “Mrs. Smith,” a low-profile paracord survival tool by Ravenscraft‘s Chris Champion. It is a length of knotted paracord, with or without wax coating, that has handle loops at either end and traction knots throughout.
Chris refers to it as a “garrotte bracelet,” though, truth be told, I don’t know anyone who isn’t a globetrotting freelance assassin who’d actually need to be able to garrotte someone on short notice. It’s unlikely there would ever be a legal (or even moral) reason to carry such a tool; to garrotte someone is by definition not a defensive action, as it requires stealth and is likely an act of initiated force (rather than an action take in defense against an attack). So what is the Mrs. Smith bracelet good for?
There is first, the obvious reason: It’s a length of paracord. Few things are as useful as paracord across multiple survival and utility scenarios. If you carried a Swiss Army Knife, a bandanna, and one of these bracelets, you’d be better equipped to Macguyver your way out of emergencies than the vast majority of the human population. Just having a length of cord with loops on the end is something that might come in handy for the most random of tasks. I’ve used mine as an improvised leash for the family dog when nothing else was available, as a lure for the family cats (granted, not an emergency situation), and even to secure (temporarily) a door whose chain was missing.
As a weapon, the Mrs. Smith would be most logical as a flexible trapping/deflecting tool, used in the manner of an Indonesian sarong. In dire situations you could also use it as the handle of a slungshot by affixing it to something heavy. (The loops on the end, for example, make it perfect for attaching to a heavy padlock.) Obviously, you’ve got to take your local laws into account, but if your life is in danger, having these options available would be very comforting. I’m not sure how a security checkpoint would view the bracelet but, given that it has no metal signature, I imagine it could pass through most security barriers.
Paracord is light and strong and can be gutted to provide smaller lengths of lighter string. It has as many uses as your imagination can conceive. It would be weird to carry a scarf for sarong-type work in warmer weather, but no one would look twice at a bracelet of this type.
Chris says each bracelet is ten feet of continuous 550 cord. My samples included one waxed version and one plain version. I preferred the feeling of the unwaxed when worn, but ended up wearing the black, waxed bracelet just as often. Eventually, the wax seeped in or evened out to the degree that I didn’t even notice it.
One of my bracelets fit perfectly when I put it on. The other was either too long or too short, depending on how many times I coiled it. I mentioned this to Chris and he suggested I stretch it, as paracord is reasonably flexible. I did this by using a pair of rattan escrima. I looped the cord through one stick and stood on it, while using the other cord as a handle to sort of bicep-curl the cord upward with all my strength. Sure enough, when I looped it on my wrist again, it was longer and fit well.
These are a nicely made item. The Mrs. Smith has several applications and can be worn discreetly, without discomfort, all day long. Chris uses high-quality paracord and really knows his knotwork. You can contact him about ordering a Mrs. Smith through Facebook or by emailing him at chrischampion90 (at) yahoo dot com. Tell him The Martialist sent you.