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Overhand Knot

Overhand Knot

Description: The Overhand knot (OH) is the easiest of all the Macrame knots, and is found in most patterns. In Vintage Macrame books it is sometimes referred to as a hard knot.

Several knots used in this craft are related to this one, and often start with this basic knot. Some of them are described below, after the tying instructions.

This knot can loosen over time, so you need to apply glue while you are tightening it.



When tied at the end of a cord, the OH knot will prevent the fibers from separating (unraveling).

This is often the easiest way to prepare cords.

Click on the image or link to visit Cord Preparation, if you want more details.


The OH knot can be used to secure beads, connect two cords, or to finish them off at the end of a Macrame project.

Click on the image or link to learn more about Finishing Techniques.


Tying Option #1

The Overhand knot can be tied anywhere on a cord.  This first option is used when you are tying the knot near the center of the cord.

Make a loop at the center of the cord, crossing the two halves right over left.

You can secure it on a board, or hold it in your hands.


Right Half

Move the right half of the cord through the loop from below, which is under - over.


Tighten the knot by pulling on both halves of the cord evenly.

Adjust the placement as needed for your project.

Tying Option #2

This next method for tying the OH knot is used when you have only one end of the cord to work with because other knots are present. 

This technique is also used when placing OH knots near the tips of the cords, like you do with a beaded fringe. 

In the instructions below, the loop is made clockwise.  You can do the same thing counter-clockwise, if a direction change is necessary.

  Step 2:  Secure one end of the cord to your board vertically, so it mimics a situation where you have other knots and only one end to make the OH knot. 

Make a clockwise loop with the working end.

Thru Loop
  Pass the working end through the loop from below, which is under - over.



Tighten the OH knot by pulling on the working end. 

Make adjustments to the placement as needed for the project you are making.


Related Knots and Projects


Several knotting techniques use the OH knot as part of their design, so I've listed a few below.

There are also two very easy projects that feature the OH knot.

Click on the link or image to view the instructions for the knot or technique described below:


Linked OH Knots

Be sure to visit the Linked Overhand Knots

You will learn how to connect two cords using several different techniques.  The one shown here is the Shamrock Knot.

  The Slipknot is related to the OH knot.

It is sometimes called the Overhand Noose. 

Venetian Picot Mount

The Venetian Picot Mount shows you three ways to use the OH knot to mount cords at the beginning of a Macrame project.

Matthew Walker Knot

The Matthew Walker Knot is made with four or more OH knots linked together.

That page was recently updated and improved, so please visit!


Hanger Knot

The Hanger Knot is a combination of two linked Overhand knots made with one cord.

An example for using it is shown below.



The Satin Dragonfly is made with the Hanger knot for the body and wings, and the OH knot for the tail and head.



The Butterfly Bookmark is an easy project featuring the OH knot.


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