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Double Half Hitch Patterns

Double Half Hitch Patterns 


Double Half Hitch Patterns are used in many Macrame projects. From angles to flowers, the possible variations are endless, once you understand this basic concept:

  The direction and angle of the holding cord will determine
the shape of the Macrame design

I have listed three examples of how this decorative knot can be used to make different shapes -- Angles, Zigzags, and Leaves.

Make sure you know how to tie a Double Half Hitch before you get started, and that you know the difference between a holding cord and a working cord.


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Making Angles

Double Half Hitch Patterns are often used to make designs featuring angles. 

The instructions below will show you how to create angles in two directions.

Start by mounting 3 cords to a dowel or holding cord with Larks Head Knots.

You could also attach them directly to your board.

Holding Cord Goes Left  

Step 1: Mentally number the cords 1 - 6. 

Move cord 6 to the left, so it rests on top of the other cords.

Secure it so it has tension and is horizontal.  It will be the holding cord for the first row.


Half Hitch With Cord 5  

Step 2: Attach cord 5 to the holding cord with a clockwise Double Half Hitch:

Tie the first Half Hitch by passing the working cord over - under the holding cord. As you pull it down, pass over cord 6.   

Repeat this process to tie the second knot.


Step 3: Attach the remaining working cords to the holding cord (6) in the same manner, moving right to left.

Bring the first holding cord down so it rests to the left of the others. 

It will now be used as a working cord. 

Holding Cord is Now 5  

Use the  cord furthest to the right (5) as the next holding cord.

Attach the remaining cords to it, moving right to left. 

Be sure to include the first holding cord (6).


Step 4:  Continue this process until you have 5 or 6 horizontal rows.

Always use the cord furthest to the right as the new holding cord.

Then attach the remainder, including the ones previously used as holding cords.

Several Rows of DHH  

I labeled this image so you can see where the holding cords start and end.

For only one angle, stop here.

To make your Double Half Hitch patterns with two angles, continue on to the next steps.


Direct Holding Cord Right  

Step 5: Use the same holding cord you ended with (cord 2 in this case). Move it to the right, on top of the other cords. 

Attach the remaining cords to it with counter-clockwise DHH.



Step 6: The rest of the process is the same as in steps 1 - 4, except for the direction.

Design Tip:  Double Half Hitch patterns using angles look great in belt designs.  You start in the center of the cords, and work towards the ends.


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Zig Zag Design

Zigzag Design

Remember that Double Half Hitch patterns depend on the position of the holding cord.   So in this Zigzag design, the holding cord alternates directions.

You can make a variety of shapes, such as letters and numbers, using this technique.

You will need at least 3 cords folded in half and secured to a board.

You could also mount them to a dowel or another cord.

Step 1: The cord furthest to the right (6) will be the holding cord for the entire design.

Move it to the left, on a diagonal slant, and secure it so it's taut.


Half Hitch With Cord 5  

Step 2:  Start with Cord 5, attaching it to the holding cord with a clockwise DHH.

Securing the holding cord at the right corner will help to create a straighter row of knots.


Row 1

Step 3: Attach working cords 4 - 1 to the holding cord with DHH (in that order).

Pull each knot tightly to form a straight, firm bar.


Holding Cord Goes Right  

Step 4: Move  holding cord 6 to the right, after securing the last DHH on the left corner.

Attach the working cords to it with counter-clockwise DHH, moving left to right.


Design Tip:  The gap between the two rows can be any size you wish, simply by changing the angle of the holding cord.

Row 3

Step 5: Move the holding cord back to the left

Attach the working cords with clockwise DHH, moving right to left.

Securing the corner each time you change directions will help keep the holding cord taut.

Zig Zag Design  

With most Double Half Hitch patterns, the design looks best if you repeat the process more than once.


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Leaf Design

Leaf Shaped Design

Double Half Hitch patterns like this one look very complex, but are actually quite easy to make once you know the basics. 

This leaf design was found in a Macrame book written in 1899, and I've seen it in more modern books as well.

Important: Remember that when moving right to left, the DHH are clockwise.

Tie them counter-clockwise when moving left to right.

Step 1:  Fold eight 36-inch cords in half and secure them to your board. 

This gives you 16 cords to work with.  Mentally number them 1 - 16.

Holding Cords Positioned   The first two holding cords will be 1 and 16.

They should curve slightly as you move them towards the center of the design.

First Row

Step 2: Attach cords 2 - 8 to holding cord 1 (left to right).

Attach cords 15 - 9 to holding cord 16 (right to left).


Important:  As you tighten the knots, bend the holding cord upward a bit more so the row of knots curve upward.

All Double Half Hitch patterns are determined by the curve and angle of the holding cords. 

Lower Part of Leaf  

Step 3: Use holding cord 2 for the bottom of the left leaf.

Curve it towards the center, so it has a gentle downward curve.

Attach cords 3 - 8 to it with DHH (left to right). Try to maintain the curve as you progress.


Close the Leaf Shape  

Step 4: Attach holding cord 1 to holding cord 2.

This closes the leaf shape, so pull the knot tightly.


Bottom of Right Leaf  

Step 5: Use holding cord 15 at the lower right, and attach 14 - 9 to it with DHH (right to left).

Close the leaf design by attaching holding cord 16 to holding cord 15 (in use).


Cross Holding Cords  

Step 6: Mentally re-number the cords.

Cords 8 and 9 (closest to the center) are the next set of holding cords. Cross them right over left.


Top Portion of Leaves  

Step 7: Move holding cord 9 to the left, and cord 8 to the right. Secure them so they curve upward slightly.

Attach cords 7 - 1 to holding cord 9 (right to left).

Attach cords 10 - 16 to holding cord 8 (left to right).


Lower Portion of Leaf  

Step 8: Move cord 7 to the left, to be used as the next holding cord at the bottom of the leaf. Do the same with cord 10, moving it right.

Attach cords 6 - 1 to holding cord 7 (right to left).  Attach cords 11 - 16 to holding cord 10 (left to right).


Close the Leaf Shape

Step 9:  Attach the upper  holding cords (8 and 9) to the ones you just used for the lower portion (7 and 10).

This is the same as steps 4 - 5, which closes the leaf shape.

Close the Leaf Shape

Completed Leaf Design   Double Half Hitch Patterns are often repeated, so you can make another set of leaves in the same manner, if you have enough material.

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