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Holiday Angel

Holiday Angel

Description:  The Holiday Angel features several basic Macrame knots, so this is a good project for beginners. 

It helps if you have some experience before making this decoration.

The design features picots on the wings and a double brushed skirt. 

Where the arms come together you can add one or more bells, artificial flowers or ribbons.

This Macrame pattern is flexible in that you can make it different sizes, depending on the thickness of the material you use. 

In the example shown, 4 mm cord material in two colors was used, and the finished size turned out to be 8 inches tall (medium). 

To use this Angel design as a tree ornament, make it with 2 mm material (small).  For a large wall decoration, use 6 mm material. 

Supplies Needed:
  • 2 mm to 6 mm material - (Small or Medium = 25 yards)   (Large = 30 yards) 
  • One ring (see chart below)
  • Project board and pins
  • Tape
  • Fabric Glue that dries clear
  • Tweezers or small pliers
  • Bells, ribbons, or other decorations

Knots Used:



Use the chart below to determine the lengths to cut the cords for the wings and body of the Holiday Angel, and for the ring size.

Small - 2 mm cords
1.5 inch
50-inch cords x 6
36-inch cords x 6
Medium - 4 mm cords
2 inch
65-inch cords x 6
45-inch cords x 8
Large - 6 mm cords
2.5 inch
80-inch cords x 6
60-inch cords x 8

  • Cut 2 holding cords at least 40 inches long for small and medium sized Angels.  For a large size, they should be at least 45 inches long.
  • Prepare all the cords by applying tape at the tips (or other method).


Halo and Head

Fold Cord
Step 1: Fold one cord for the BODY in half and place it through the ring withe the folded area heading forward.

It should rest under the portion of the ring closest to you.

Larks Head

To complete the Larks Head knot, move both halves toward you over the ring and under the folded area of the cord.

Tighten firmly.

Step 1, continued:  Mount the remaining 5 cords for the body to the ring in the same manner.  Then turn the ring upside down.

Secure it to your board so it's standing upright with the knots flat on the board. 

Mentally number the cords 1 - 12. 


Cords 1 and 2 work together as the left working cords for the Square Knots.

Cords 11 and 12 are the right working cords.

Cords 3 - 10 are the fillers.

Step 2:  The next 4 images show you how to tie the first Square Knot for the head of your Holiday Angel.

Left to Right

Move the left working cords (1 - 2) to the right, passing over the fillers and under the right working cords.

Right to Left

Bring the right working cords (11 - 12) under the fillers and over the left working cords as you pull it out on the left.

Pull all 4 working cords to tighten the first half of the knot.  It should rest against the knots on the ring.

The working cords have switched places.

You now make the second half of the Square knot in the opposite direction:

Right to Left

Move the left working cords over the fillers and under the right working cords, heading right to left.

Left to Right

Bring the right working cords under the fillers and over the left working cords as you pull it out on the right.

Pull all four working cords firmly to tighten the second half of the SK.


Tie 3 more SK next to the one you just made. 

Locate the spaces just below the ring, between the SK and the 1st and 6th Larks Head knots.

That's where the cords will pass through in the next step.

Ends Through Spaces

To create the head for your Holiday Angel, divide the cords into two groups of six.

Pass each group through one of the spaces located in the previous step.

You may need to use pliers or tweezers.

Button Knot

Roll the Square Knots into a button by pulling firmly on all the cords. 

Select the 4 cords furthest to the right and left. Use them as working cords to tie another Square Knot below the button. 

Make sure it's as tight as possible.


 Body and Arms


Three Groups

Step 3:  Divide the cords into three sets of four.  The set in the middle is for the body, which is made with the Spiral Stitch.

The other two are for the arms of the Holiday Angel, which you will be making next with Square Knots.

Right Arm

Using the cords for the right arm, tie a sennit of Square Knots measuring 2 inches for a small or medium size.  It should be 3 inches for a large angel.

There are only two working cords and two fillers, but the process for tying the SK is the same as in step 2.


Lift up the arm so you are working in the back.

Use the two working cords to tie a tight Overhand knot.  Apply glue to the inside as you tighten it.

Do not cut off the extra material.

Step 4:  Repeat step 3 to make the left arm for your Holiday Angel.

Spiral Stitch

Step 5: Use the four cords in the center to create the body (2 working cords + 2 fillers).

Tie a Spiral Stitch, which is the same as tying the first half of a SK several times. Rotate the sennit as needed.

The body should be 1/2-inch longer than the arms. 


Curve the arms in front of the body.  Add a bell or other decoration to one cord.  Tie the arm cords together with tight Overhand knots.

Pull one cord from each arm through the body, so they stay in a rounded position.

Designer's Tip:  There's no need to add another knot to secure the arms.

Just unravel the cords and brush the fibers (see below).


Step 5:  To make the upper skirt for the Holiday Angel, trim the cords and unravel them one at a time.

The easiest way is to pull out one fiber using tweezers.  Do this near the area where the cords are tied together.  Repeat this with several fibers.

Once the fibers are all loose, brush them.

Step 6:  Add small pieces of the trimmings to the head if you want your Holiday Angel to have hair. 

The best way is to work your tweezers under the cords and pull the new one through half way.  They don't need to be knotted because the knots are very tight at the top of the head.

You can use different cord material for the hair if you have scraps of cord or yarn available from other projects. 

Macrame Cord Divider

The Wings

The wings of the Holiday Angel are made with Double Half Hitches (DHH).  You will be tying them in two directions, so pay close attention to the images and instructions. 

Each wing will have 4 working cords for large and medium sized Angels. 

When making small Angel ornaments, each wing will have 3 cords.

Secure one holding cord to your board horizontally, making sure it has tension.

Mark the center of the holding cord with a pin.

Step 7: Fold one working cord for the WING in half and place it under the holding cord to the RIGHT of the center. 

The fold should rest 1/4-inch back from the holding cord, so you end up with a picot loop (see image below).

Half Hitch

Make a Half Hitch with the left half of the working cord, passing over - under the holding cord while rotating clockwise.

Pull it toward you, passing over the working cord to complete the loop.  Tighten firmly.

2nd Knot

Tie the second Half Hitch to the left of the first, making it a Double Half Hitch.

Tighten it firmly.

Right Half

Adjust the size of the picot loop if necessary.

Tie a DHH with the right half of the cord, rotating counter-clockwise.  The second knot should rest to the right of the first.


Step 8:  Repeat step 7 to make the remaining loops, arranging them to the left of the first one.

For a Holiday Angel of medium or large size, each of these loops should be 1/4-inch larger than the one made before it (total of 4).

For a small Angel ornament, there should be only three  loops in 1/4 -- 1/2 -- 3/4 inch sizes.

Step 8, continued:  Before moving on, push the knots to the left so the largest loop is at the center of the holding cord. 

Step 9: In the previous steps, you have been making the lower area of the right wing.  So the wing is upside down at the moment. 

In the next step you create the upper area. 


Curve the holding cord to the right diagonally, resting on top of the working cords.

In the image the working cords are pushed to the side.
The shape of the wings for the Holiday Angel is determined by the angle of the holding cord, so adjust it until you like the shape.

Step 9, continued:  Attach the working cords to it with DHH, moving left to right.  These knots should all be tied in a counter-clockwise direction.

Important:  Make sure the portion of the working cords that rest between the two halves of the holding cord have tension.  The next image shows this more clearly.

Step 10:  Turn the wing so the center curved area of the holding cord is on the right, with the loops heading forward and right (see next image).

Secure both halves of the holding cord.  Make sure they have tension.

Right Wing

Pass the working cord closest to the center curve under the ones waiting to be attached (right to left).

Pass it under the left half of the holding cord. 

Attach it to the holding cord with a clockwise Double Half Hitch. Tighten firmly.

Step 10, continued:  Pass the same working cord under the right half of the holding cord, and attach it with a clockwise Double Half Hitch.

Important:  Make sure the portion of the working cord that rests between the two halves of the holding cord has tension. 

Completed Wing

Step 11:  Repeat step 10 with the remaining working cords. 

Progress from right to left so there are large loops at the top of the wing for the Holiday Angel. 

You can curve the holding cords to shape the wing if necessary.  

Step 12:  The process for making the left wing is similar, but there are details for each step that need to be changed:

Left Lower

Changes, Step 8:  Secure the holding cord so the center is on your right.

Arrange the loops so the largest one is furthest to the right (closest to the center of the holding cord).

Changes, Step 9:  Curve the holding cord diagonally to the LEFT to make the upper portion.  Rotate clockwise when tying the DHH.

Changes, step 10:
Position the wing as shown in the image below, with the  center curved area on the left.  The loops should be forward and left.

Attach the working cords moving left to right, starting with the one closest to the curved area.

Upper Area

Pass each cord under the working cords first, then under the holding cords, before tying the knots.

Attach each cord to the upper half of the holding cord with counter-clockwise DHH.

Bring it left to make the bottom portion. 

Step 13:  Arrange the right and left wings so they are close together. 

Make sure the small picot loops (made in step 7) are heading forward, or closest to you. 

Connect Wings

Tie 2 Overhand knots with the upper holding cords to connect the wings. 

After you tie the first knot, apply glue and tie the second one on top of it.

Do Not Cut Off the Extra Material.


Step 14:  Turn the wings upside down, so you work in the back.

Finish off the working cords by tying very tight Overhand knots using two cords per knot.

Step 14, continued:  Apply glue to the back of the DHH before tightening, so the glue is under the Overhand knots.  The goal is to hide the knots behind the DHH so they are not seen.

When the glue is dry, you can cut off the excess material.  Save the Scraps.


Finishing Touches

Step 15:  To complete the Holiday Angel, turn the body so the front is face down. You will attach the wings to the body near the head.

Important: Make sure you have the front of the wings touching the back of the body. 

Remember that the large loops are considered the top of the wing (step 10). 

The knots you tied in the previous step are at the bottom of the wing.

Pass both upper holding cords through the body near the "neck" of the Holiday AngelThese are the cords you tied together in step 13.

Upper Body

Pass them through to the front of the body, then through a different space to the back again.

Tie an Overhand knot to secure them.  

Add glue and cut off the excess material when dry.

I recommend you attach the wings to the ring so they are more stable. 

You need a short piece of the same material used for the hair.

Select 3 of the large loops from both upper wings closest to the center of the Angel. Fold the short cord around them.  

Pass both halves under one of the SK on the top of the head.  The ends of the short cord should be heading forward, so you can blend them in with the hair. 

There is no need to tie any knots.

Lower Body

Step 16:  Attach the lower holding cords for the wings to the lower part of the body.  

Pass them through to the front of the body, then through a different space to the back again.

Tie an Overhand knot to secure them.  Unravel and brush these cords so they are part of the skirt.

Extra Cords

To make the lower skirt, add extra cords (scraps) l by pulling them through knots in the body.  Don't tie any knots.  Just unravel and brush the fibers.

Trim both parts of the skirt after all the brushing is done.  There should be a short and a long skirt.

Trim and brush the hair of the Holiday Angel.

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Have any comments about the Holiday Angel? Contact Me.