So the total
number of cords needs to be a
multiple of four (8, 12, 16, etc.)
When using rings as part of the design, you need
to know how many cords each ring can
hold. You may add more cords (or more knots)
to cover a ring, but if you start with too many,
they will overlap and be uneven.
So you need to determine the circumferenceof
each ring, which is the measurement all the way
Your cord measurements must take rings
into consideration, so make the following
calculations (in inches), before moving on:
Measure the diameter
of the ring, which is across the center,
from edge to edge.
of Ringx 3.14 =Circumference
Important: When you use the chart in step
5, make sure you are not cutting too
many cords for the size rings you're using.
Another important part of determining cord
measurements is to know if the cords are folded
during the mounting process.
knots are the most common
knots used for mounting, and the cords are
folded in halfwhen
you tie them.
By folding, you're doubling the amount of
cords available, since you are working with two
So if a knot requires 4 cords, you can use 2
folded cords, or 4 separate ones, depending on
In the image below, the two horizontal cords are
for the necklace. The vertical cords are for the
pendant, and they were folded in half as I
mounted them to the necklace cords.
By folding the 8 vertical
cords, there were a total of 16 cords
to work with.
The finished size was slightly less
than 1.5 inches wide, since I used 1mm
material (see chart below).
Step 5: Use this chart to
determine the number
cut for the Body
of your Macrame project:
2 cords per inch
4 cords per inch
3 cords per inch
6 cords per inch
4 cords per inch
8 cords per inch
6 cords per inch
12 cords per inch
12 cords per inch
24 cords per inch
When using rings, remember that you can always
add more cords if necessary.
sure you do not cut more than each ring can
hold (see step 3).
For knot patterns that require a specific number
of cords, increase or decrease the number of cords
6: Determine if there are any SEPARATE
holding cords, which
are not used as working cords in the
Write these down, separate
from the main cords used for the body,
since the cord measurements for the
length will be different than the
Step 7: Decide how many cords
you need to ADD,
such as to widen an area. Sometimes it's
better to start with a few cords and then add
new ones as you progress.
Write these down, separate from the others,
since they may be a different length than the
Step 8: Some knot designs
require you to cut EXTRA
Write these down on your paper as well,
separate from the others.
Cord Length Calculations
To determine the length
of the cords used in the design, you
must first know the finished
length of the item (see step
A, near top of page).
Certain knots will change the cord
measurements, so be sure you know which
ones are used.
You should have several groups of cords written
down, such as those for the body, holding cords,
you make the calculations for all the groupsseparately.
Filler cords are often cut shorter than working
cords in the older Macrame patterns.
I do not
recommend this, because you may need to
switch working and filler cords somewhere in the
may have material left over at the end of the
project, but it's better than running out!
Step 1: Cutting
Lengths for theBody
For designs that are loosely
knotted, with 1-inch of space
(or more) between the rows of knots:
Length x 3 = length of each cord
When making simple braids or weaving, you can
reduce the length of the cords slightly (Finished Length x
For designs where the rows of knots are
Length x 4 = length of each cord.
the lengthyou came
up with in the previous step, if the
cords are folded
at any point in the design.
You must add extra
length for any button
knots, picots, or
In general, adding 10
inches per knot is a good
idea for projects that are complex, have
picot loops, or have button knots.
Step 2: Cutting
Lengths for Holding
Many patterns require holding cords, which are
usually not used to tie the knots.
When these cords function as working
cordsAT ANY TIME,
they are not considered part of this step.
Use the instructions for Step 1
Separate holding cords
are usually thefinished
length + at least 8 inches.
the length if the cords are folded.
Step 3: Cutting
Lengths for Added
To widen an
area in a design, you sometimes need to
In this image, extra cords were added to
make the body of the Shopping
Bag wider than the upper
edge of it. Some of these cords were
shorter than the original cords mounted,
since they were placed lower down, and
used to tie fewer knots.
Start by determining where
you will be adding the cords (top, middle or
bottom), since the cord measurements will be
different in each area:
If they are added near the starting
point (top), the cords should be the
same length as the primary cords for the body.
When adding close to the middle,
they should be 1/2
the size as the others.
For cords added near the bottom,
use 1/4 the
size of the primary cords.
Step 4: Cutting
Cord measurements also include any extra cords
needed for specific knots, fringe, decorations,
wrapping rings, etc.