With so many of us still stuck in-doors and many continuing their stay-in throughout the winter, it might be a good idea to have an arsenal of crafting ideas to spark any new hobbies or gifts that might get us through these unprecedented times.
With that said, there is no time like the present to try your hand at Macramé!
What is Macramé?
Macramé is a form of ornamental furnishing that can be dated back to the Ancient Babylonian era. The seemingly intricate decor creates a textile design, using a Macramé cord, string, or rope. By tying different kinds of knots in a particular order or following a specific pattern, you will eventually find yourself taking part in the ancient art of Macramé.
Who can Do Macramé?
Macramé isn’t just for knot-tying professionals who have years of practice. Anyone with the basic knowledge of tying shoelaces will be able to handle the knots below! Remember to be patient with yourself. Every excellent Macramé artist started at the same exact spot that you’re at right now!
Give these basic knots a try, and with a little practice, you’ll be on your way to Macramé expertise.
- Macramé cord or rope
- Key Ring
- Tape or Safety Pin
The first thing we’ll need to do is anchor our project down. We can do this by taping our key ring to a table or using a safety pin to attach the keyring to the leg of our pants! Now that we’ve got our keyring anchored, we can tie our first knot.
A Lark’s Head Knot also called a Cow Hitch Knot, is one of the most simple and common knots you’ll find in Macramé. We’ve started with this one because of its amazing simplicity and its popularity with beginning Macramé projects.
- First, start by cutting a piece of rope or cord roughly 12″ (about 30.48cm)
- Next, fold your cord or rope in half.
- Now, stick the loop of your cord under and through your key ring.
- Both ends of your cord should be at one end, while your loop should be at the other, sticking through the ‘O’ of your keyring!
- Now pull your ends over your key ring.
- Keep going, and pull your ends through your loop.
- Pull tight!
Just like that, you’ve made your very first Macramé knot!
A Square Knot is another extremely common knot in Macramé. Also called the Reef Knot, The Square Knot is more versatile than it’s Macramé uses. While it’s not as simple as the Lark’s Head Knot, once you master this one, you can practically create whole projects!
For this simple knot, we do not need our keyring.
- Cut two, equal-length lines of cord anywhere from 6″ to 1′. (15.24 cm to 30.48 cm)
- Hold one end of the cord in your left hand, and the other cord’s end in your right hand.
- Cross the right cord OVER the left cord
- Twist the right cord UNDER the left cord
- Now we do the opposite!
- Take the left-handed rope end and cross it OVER your right-handed cord.
- Now twist it under your right-handed cord.
- Pull tight!
You’ve just made your very first Square Knot!
Pro Tip: The first half of the Square Knot (steps 1-4) is a Half Knot. You’ve actually learned two knots in one! Looks like it’s knot as hard as you thought, huh?
The Spiral Knot, or Half Square Knot, is one of the most easily recognizable Macramé knots. It can be found on anything from friendship bracelets and necklaces to wall decor, and guess what? With all the information above, you practically know how to do it already!
Before we begin this knot, you need to remove your previous knot from your keychain!
- Cut 2, 12″ (30.48cm) long cords
- Anchor one cord to your keyring using a Lark’s Head Knot (see above)
- Anchor the other cord to your keyring using a Lark’s Head Knot
- You should now have 4 cords dangling from your key ring.
- Separate your cords, one on the left, one on the right, and two in the middle
- Fold the left cord OVER the two middle cords. Let the tail stick straight out, horizontally, almost creating a 4 with your cord. Make sure the left cord tail is UNDER the right cord.
- Fold the right cord UNDER the middle two cords, to the left, and UP through the left loop.
- Pull tight!
After repeating this knot over, and over, and over, you’ll begin to see the twist it forms as the knots lengthen.
Continuing to practice these three knots will open the Macramé doors to your dreams! Combinations of these knots can lead to so many creative projects, like an all Square Knot Wall hanging textile, that will not only make your mind happy but will make other’s happy to see.