Shopping Bag





Description:
The Shopping Bag is very similar to the
net bags used in Europe. It features
widely spaced rows of Alternating Square
Knots, which creates a design similar to a
fish net.
The top edges are formed in such a way
that it's very strong despite its delicate
appearance. In the example shown,
the sack was made with regular cotton cord
and it was able to hold over 15
pounds.
This Macrame project is rated moderate,
because you must know how to tie Square
knots in both
directions.
The finished size is 18 inches
tall. The area at the top is 9
inches wide. The bottom stretches to
15 inches when pulled sideways.
Dawn Kepler inspired me to create this
Macrame pattern. 



Supplies
Needed:
 4mm cord material (125 yards)
 Fabric glue that dries clear
 Small paint brush or stick to apply glue
(optional)



Knots Used in
Design:






Strap for Front



Step 1:
Cut
4 cords, each
4.5 yards long. Cut 2 cords, 3.5 yards long.
Prepare the ends with tape or knots before you
work on the Shopping Bag. 





Secure the
cords to your board at the CENTER,
arranged vertically. They need to be
placed in a specific pattern, as follows:
The 4.5
yard cords should be in the 1, 3,
4, and 6 positions.
The 3.5 yard
cords should be
placed at 2 and 5.





Step 2:
You will be tying both right and left
Square knots for the strap, as well as the
body of the Shopping Bag.
Below are the instructions for tying the knots in
both directions. Make sure you tighten all
the knots firmly. 



Left Square Knot
(LSK)


<<
Move cord
1 to the right, over
the fillers (2 and 3), and under
cord 4.
Move cord
4 under
the fillers and over
cord 1 on the left. >>





The rule to remember when tying Square Knots in
opposite directions is that the head of the knot will
face the direction of the
first
working cord you move.
So a left SK begins by moving the working cord
on the left, which is cord 1 in this
case. When you finish all 4 steps, the
head will face left.





Working
cords 1 and 4 have switched places.
<<
Move cord
1 to the left,
over
the fillers and under
cord 4.
Move cord
4 under
the fillers and over
cord 1 on the right. >>





To create the zigzag pattern for the strap of
your Shopping Bag, you will use cords 3 
6 to tie all the right
Square knots.
Cord 4 and 5 are the fillers.




Right
Square Knot
(RSK)


<<
Move cord
6 to the left, over
the fillers (4 and 5), and under
cord 3 (right
to left).
Move cord
3 under
the fillers and over
cord 6 on the right. >>






Working
cords 3 and 6 have switched places.
<<
Move cord
6 to the right,
over
the fillers and under
cord 3.
Move cord
3 under
the fillers and over
cord 6 on the left. >>







Step
3: To start the first
strap, tie left
Square knots with cords 1  4 and
right
SK with 3  6.
Begin in the center
and work towards one end of the cords.
Stop when the first half is 7
inches long.







Tie one more
Square Knot, using cords
1 and 6.
There should be four
fillers (cords 2  5).
It should face the opposite direction from
the last knot tied, so it follows the same
pattern.






Step
4: Turn
the strap around, and go
back to the center.
Repeat
steps 2 and 3 to create
the second half of the same strap.
The first knot you tie will be a left
SK.





Strap for Back





Step
5: Repeat steps 1
 4
to make a second
strap.
When you get to the second half (step 4),
place it next to the first strap and
compare them.
Make sure both straps for the Shopping Bag
are the same length. 







Mounting Process for Front



Step 6:
Now it's time to mount the working cords for the front portion
of the Shopping Bag. Locate cords
1 and 6 at each end of the strap made for
the front
(total of 4).
These will be holding cords for the top half of
the bag. Apply tape to mark
these cords, so you can easily identify them.
Fold the strap so the ends are vertical, and the
folded area is at the top of your board. Make sure the strap
is face up.
Mentally number each group of cords coming from
the ends of the strap. 




Move
cord
6 from the left group so it's
horizontal, heading right.
Move cord
1 from the right group, heading
left.
The area between
the two halves of the strap is
where the cords are mounted in the
following steps. Secure them so they
have tension.




Design Tip:
A good way to secure holding cords while making
the Shopping Bag is to wrap them around the edges
of the board. The weight helps to hold them
taut.






Cut
6 working cords, each 2.5 yards long.
Prepare the ends to prevent
unraveling.
Step 7:
Fold one in half and place it between the
two ends of the strap, under
cords 1
and 6. The folded area
should be close to you, with the ends
heading towards the back of the board.






Step
8: Tie a Larks Head knot
by moving the ends towards you, over the
holding cords and under
the folded area.
Pull both ends to tighten the knot firmly.




Step 9: Use
the left
end to make another Larks Head knot, as
follows: 





Step
A: Move the left end over
 under the holding cord,
rotating clockwise.
As you pull it down, pass it over
the left end below.
Pull firmly to tighten, so the loop rests
against the left side of the first Larks
Head knot.






Step
B: Move the left end under
 over the holding cord, rotating
clockwise.
As you pull it down, pass it under
the left end.
Pull firmly to tighten.






Step
10: Slide the knots to the left,
so the second one rests against the edge
of the strap.
Repeat
step 9 using the right
end of the cord. The two
loops are made rotating counterclockwise.




Step 11: Repeat steps 7  10,
mounting the remaining 5 working cords to the
holding cords
(same strap).
The space between the two ends of the strap
will be around 6 inches. To make the top
area of the Shopping Bag wider, you can add more
cords in sets of
2.
Important:
You need to end up with an even number that is a
multiple of 4, such as 8, 12, 16, etc.
After all the cords
have been mounted, pull
the holding cords so
the knots rest close to each other,
as shown in the image below.
Adjust the knots as needed so the upper edge
of the Shopping Bag is neat. 




Mounting Process for Back



Step 12:
Repeat
steps 6  11, mounting the same
number of working cords to the strap design for
the back.
Make
sure the strap is face up.
Put
this design aside for now, since it's for the back
half of the Shopping bag, and
won't be used until
step 22. 






Front  Top Area





Step
13: Move the four holding
cords to the sides,
which are
marked with tape.
The remaining 4 cords from each end of the
strap are considered working cords, along
with the six you just mounted. This
gives you a total of 20 cords for the
first row of knots. 



The top area of the Shopping Bag is made with
Alternating Square Knots arranged close
together.
You will be adding
cords after the first row is tied (step
15).





Step
14: Tie the first row of
Square Knots as follows:
Left
SK: Cords 1  4, 5  8, and
9 12
Right
SK: Cords 13  16 and 17 
20
Tighten the knots firmly, so they rest as
close to the Larks Head knots as possible,
and are lined up.






Move the marked
holding cords
behind
the Square Knots tied with the four strap
cords (cords 1  4 and 17  20).
Arrange 2 of them to the left and 2 to the
right, since they will form the upper side
area of the Shopping Bag (see image for
step 16).
Secure them so they are diagonal
and have tension. 



Step 15:
New working cords will now be attached to the
holding cords in the same manner as the ones
mounted previously. That's one Larks Head
knot followed by one with each end (steps 7 
10).
The only difference is that the holding cords will
be diagonal.
Mentally number all the working cords each time
you add new ones.
Do
not include the holding cords when you count.




Cut
4 cords, each
2.5 yards long. Cut 6 cords,
each
2 yards long. Prepare
the ends to prevent unraveling.
These cords will be added to the holding cords on
each side
of the Shopping Bag, before tying the next row of
ASK.
While you are tying the first 6 rows described
below, tighten the knots so they are close to the
ones in the previous row.






Step
16: Add one 2.5
yard cord to each pair of holding
cords with a Larks Head knot, on both
sides.
Use each end to tie another knot, as you
did when you mounted the other cords in step
9.
Push the knots close to the first row of
Square knots, and mentally number all the
working
cords 1  24. 






Step
17: Tie the 2nd row of
Alternating Square Knots as follows:
Left
SK: Cords 1  4, 5  8, and
9  12
Right
SK: Cords 13  16, 17  20,
and 21  24





Step 18:
Add one 2.5
yard cord to the holding cords (both
sides), as you did in the previous step. Mentally
number the cords 1  28, and tie the 3rd row of
ASK as follows:
Left
SK: Cords 1  4, 5  8, 9  12, and 13 
16
Right
SK: Cords 17  20, 21  24, and 25
 28 



Step 19:
Add one 2yard
cord to the holding cords on each
side. Mentally number the cords 1  32, and
tie the 4th row as follows:
Left
SK: Cords 1  4, 5  8, 9  12, 13
 16
Right
SK: Cords 17  20, 21  24, 25 
28, and 29  32




Step 20:
Add one 2yard
cord to the holding cords. Mentally
renumber the cords 1  36. Tie the 5th row
as follows:
Left
SK: Cords 1  4, 5  8, 9  12, 13
 16, and 17  20
Right
SK: Cords 21  24, 25  28, 29 
32, and 33  36 



Step 21:
Add one 2yard
cord to the holding cords. Mentally
renumber the cords 1  40. Tie the 6th row
as follows:
Left
SK:
Cords 1  4, 5  8, 9  12, 13  16, and 17  20
Right
SK: Cords 21  24, 25  28, 29 
32, 33  36, 37  40 




Back  Top Area



Step 22:
Use the other strap design you put aside earlier,
to start the back
portion
of the Shopping Bag.
Repeat
steps 13  21, creating the top
area.







Sides and Body





Step
23: Place the front
of the Shopping Bag on your left,
and the
back
on your right.
The 6th
row of knots on each half should
line up. The diagonal rows where you
added the cords should form a V shape.
Tie a Square Knot with the 4
marked holding cords. This
will connect the front and back.





To connect the
other side, you need to place the front on top
of the back.
Make sure the insides
are touching and the straps are not
twisted.
Tie a Square Knot with the other 4
marked cords. 






Step
24: The remaining
rows of Alternating Square Knots are tied
all the way around the Shopping Bag.
Always start at one side, where the front
and back are connected. Change the
direction of the knots so they match those
in the row above. 



The image above shows the 7th row of ASK, which
was tied all the way around both halves of the
design.
The knots in this row should rest 1inch
below those in row 6.
The remaining rows should be 1.5 inches apart.




Step 25:
Tie more rows of ASK until the Shopping Bag
measures 18
inches from the top edge down to where
you are working.
Hang the bag by the straps while you work, rather
than flat on a board. It will be easier to
make the rows straight.







Finishing Process





Step
26: When you tie
the last
row
of Alternating Square Knots, tighten them
so they rest just below those in the
previous row.
There
should be no extra space between them.
This helps to stabilize and strengthen the
bottom of the Shopping Bag. 




Step 27:
Turn the bag inside out, so the finishing
knots will be on the
inside.
Place the bag on your project board, with the
front resting on
top of the back.






Start at the left edge, and locate the
first knots in both the back and the
front.
Match the knots and secure them together
with a pin. 





Step
28: Organize the cords so
there are 4 pairs of two cords, combining
one from the back with another from the
front.
Tie an Overhand knot with one pair of
cords. Apply glue, and tie a second one.
Repeat this process with the remaining 3
pairs. 





Cut the ends
short after tying the knots, so that you
know which ones have been used.
Step 29:
After all the cords from knot 1 are tied
off, match knot 2 from the back and front.
Repeat
step 28. 



Step 30:
Repeat
step 28 with all the remaining
cords.
It's important to take
your time and match the knots before
tying, since it's easy to lose your place.
By focusing on just 4 pairs of cords at a time,
you ensure that all the cords are tied off and the
bottom is closed. 





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Have
any comments about the Shopping Bag? Contact
Me.












