Attached is a pic of a paddle I finally finished... It's a walnut shaft, white cedar strips leftover from building my solo canoe (might be a red cedar one in there...), with maple outer edge strips. The grip has maple accent strips next to the shaft, and walnut outer parts. I tried the light rope (1/4") wrap around the edges, but didn't like the way it looked, even before I 'glassed the blade, so it came off, & I used a lighter (1/8") rope. I mixed a bit of epoxy, put the rope into it, worked it a bit to get the epoxy into the rope, then taped in into position. The finished product doesn't look nearly as bad as I'd feared -- in fact, I don't find it all that bad. Might be that the lighter-colored blade parts blend in with the rope? I'll guess that, for a walnut blade, I'd want to darken the rope, with walnut sawdust in the epoxy. Hopefully, I wouldn't put enough sawdust into it to make it too viscous to saturate the rope... probably a fine line to walk. Maybe get the epoxy into the rope, then dust the rope with the sawdust, then stick it on the paddle... ? It's R&D... gotta love it.