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Tree Decoration


Tree Decoration

Description:  The Tree Decoration is a great project for practicing the Wrapped Knot. 

Cotton is used to wrap the ring, and to form the inner core of the branches and fringe.  

To make it completely brown, use Hemp or Jute for those areas.


Wrapped Knots can be challenging to tie, especially when the knots are long.  Beginners should practice before attempting this project.



2017 Update:  This pattern has been completely changed to make it look more like a tree. 

Contact me if you need the original page.



Supplies Needed:
  • 2mm Hemp or Jute -- for branches (100 yards) 
  • 3mm Cotton, Jute, or Hemp material for core and ring (100 yards)
  • One 15-inch ring
  • One 2-inch ring
  • Artificial vines with leaves or flowers
  • Surgical clamps or pliers
  • Project Board and pins
  • Craft wire (12 inches)
 

Knots Used:





Preparation



Wire

Step 1: Attach the 2-inch ring to the 15-inch ring by wrapping the wire around both several times.

Make sure the connection is tight, so the small ring doesn't slide around.



Wrap

Step 2:  Cut one 3mm size cord, 10 yards long.  Place the center of it on top of the wire connecting the two rings. 

Use each half to wrap the 15-inch ring, moving in opposite directions.   Wrap tightly, and make sure the coils don't overlap.




Step 2, continued:  Push the coils close together as you progress, so there are no gaps.  The two ends should meet at the bottom of the ring, straight down from where you started (center).

Finish by tying one or two Half Hitches around the ring with each half of the cord.  Apply glue before tightening.




Branches


Now it's time to make the first branch for your Tree Decoration.  You start by attaching the cords that form the CORE (inside) of the branch. 

In the example shown, the ring was wrapped with Cotton cable cord, so the core of the branches will be made with the same material.  The brown material is Jute, which is wrapped around the core.


Step 3:  Cut two 3mm size cords, each at least 60 inches long.  Prepare the tips with Overhand knots, or use tape. 



Fold

Step 4:  Fold one cord in half and place it on top of the 15-inch ring, near the area where the 2-inch ring is attached.

The fold should be heading towards the inside of the ring.



Larks Head

To complete the Larks Head knot, pass the ends under the ring and over the folded area of the cord.

Move the knot close to the 2-inch ring, then pull the ends to tighten it.



2 Cords

Step 5:  Repeat step 4 with the other cord, placing it beside the first.

Both cords are used to make the first branch for the Tree Decoration. 



Step 6:  Cut one 2mm working cord, 4 yards long (Jute or Hemp).   

Place the large ring on your project board so the 2-inch ring is at the top. 

Tie an Overhand knot at one end of the working cord.  Place the knot on the outside of the 15-inch ring, next to the holding cords. 

Secure the knot to the board with a pin.



Measure


Step 7:  Measure from the ring down 7.5 inches, then place a pin at that spot.



Fold

Bring the working cord down to the pin, then fold it around and move it back up to the ring.

Take the long portion of the cord (working end) and roll it around your hand several times. Remove it and secure the bundle with a rubber band.



Wrap

Step 8: Wrap the working end around the core, as well as the secured portion of the working cord. 

Wrap firmly but NOT TIGHTLY, and push the coils close together, so there are no gaps.  



Designer's Tip:  To successfully create the Tree Decoration, the tightness of the working cords (brown material) is very important. 

When you are wrapping the original set of branches, you need to be careful not to wrap too tightly, so the secured portion can slide.  The working cord should fit snugly around the core, without compressing those cords.

When you attach the branches to each other, and create the trunk, you must wrap tightly so the coils are neat.



End

Stop wrapping when you are close to the folded area of the working cord (approximately 7 inches).

Pass the end through the folded portion, which looks like a loop.



Pull

Step 9: Go up to the ring and remove the pin from the secured end.

Use the surgical clamp (or pliers) to pull it gradually.  



Inside

The folded portion and working end will be pulled inside the Wrapped knot.

Important:  Pull firmly on each of the cords making up the CORE of the branch.  This will cause the branch to bend, making the Tree Decoration look more authentic.



Step 9, continued:    Cut off the secured end of the working cord, so it is flush with the top of the branch (near the ring).  Tuck the stub inside the wrapped portion.

Do not cut off the excess material at the bottom. 



Branches

Step 10:  Make at least 10 more branches for your Tree Decoration, by repeating steps 3 - 9.

There should be 1/2-inch of space between the branches.

Continued Below



When you make branch 6, at the center where the small ring is attached, use either 3 or 4 holding cords for the CORE.

This will make the branch thicker than the others. The brown working cord should be at least 5 yards long, so the branch is 7 - 8 inches long. 

Do the same when you make branches 1 and 11, which are furthest to the right and left.  It helps if one branch is longer.

The remaining small branches for your Tree Decoration should be different lengths.  Cut the brown working cords to the lengths below, when changing sizes. 

  • 4 yards = 7 inches
  • 4.5 yards = 7.5 inches
  • 5 yards = 8 inches


When measuring in step 7, add 1/2-inch to the finished size of the branch you are making, then place the second pin at that point.  

So for an 8-inch branch, the pin should be placed 8.5 inches from the ring.





Connecting the Branches


Now you begin the process of constructing the Tree Decoration by connecting the branches.   Mentally number them 1 - 11. 

Locate branches 1, 6, and 11.  These are the thick branches made with 3 - 4 cords for the core.   These three branches should be mentally labeled "group 1".



Step 11:  Cut 1 working cord, at least 2 yards long. 

Bring branches 6 and 11 together, bending them so they look natural.

You can connect them side-by-side or with one above the other.



Link

Fold the working cord 3.5 inches from one end as you begin making the Wrapped knot. 

Start the knot in the wrapped area of the branches, at least 1/4-inch above the end of it.



Connect

Wrap for 1-inch, making sure the coils are TIGHTLY attached to both branches, so they are as neat as possible.

Take plenty of time to connect the branches, since neatness is so important. 




Important: You won't be able to push the coils close together when connecting the branches for the Tree Decoration.  

So wrap slowly, placing each coil below the previous one, fitting them close together.  Eliminate any gaps, so the cotton cords don't show.



Third Branch

Step 12:  Place branch 1 on top (or beside) the two you just connected.

Make sure the bottom of branch 1 is at least 1/2-inch below the point where you stopped wrapping in the previous step.



Wrap

Continue wrapping for 2 inches, around all three branches. 

Complete the knot by passing the end through the folded area (as in step 8). 

Pull on the secured end (as in step 9).



Step 13:  Repeat steps 11 - 12 to make GROUP 2, connecting four branches.  Cut the working cord at least 2.5 yards long, since you have an extra branch.  The Wrapped knot should be around 3.5 inches long.


Important:  Make sure you take the branches from different areas on the ring, and intertwine them so the Tree Decoration looks as natural as possible.


Repeat the same process again to make GROUP 3, but cut the working cord at least 3 yards long.  This Wrapped knot should be longer than the other two groups (at least 4 inches).




The Trunk


Now it's time to connect all three groups of cords, making the trunk for your Tree Decoration.  They are connected with one Wrapped knot, which needs to be long enough to reach the bottom center area of the ring.

Step 14:  Locate group 1, which is the first set of branches you connected.   Measure the distance between the lower edge of the Wrapped Knot and the bottom of the ring. 

Then cut the working cord to the appropriate length:
  • For 7 inches or less, the working cord should be 10 yards long.
  • For more than 7 inches, the working cord should be 12 yards long.



On Top

Step 15:  Place group 1 on top of group 2.

Secure the working cord beside (or behind) the two groups.  Bring it down past the bottom of the ring, then back up to where you plan to start wrapping.



Step 15, continued:  Start wrapping in the brown area, for at least 1-inch.   Before you reach the end of the knot connecting GROUP 1, place group 3 under the other two, then wrap for another 3 inches. 

The reason you place the groups on top of each other is to make sure the trunk of the Tree Decoration is thicker front to back, rather than side-to-side.  This is optional, if you prefer a wider trunk.



Step 16:  Divide the Cotton cords (core) into two equal groups. Place one group beneath the ring. 



DHH

Choose a cord from the middle of the group, and attach it to the bottom of the ring with a Double Half Hitch. 

It should rest to the left of the Half Hitches you tied with the cord used to wrap the ring.

The image shows a single Half Hitch. Make sure you tie two.



Step 16, continued:  Place the other half of the cords on top of the ring.  Choose one cord from that group, and attach it to the ring with a DHH. 

Place it to the right of the knots made with the cord used to wrap the ring.


Step 17:  Resume tying the Wrapped knot, making sure the two groups of Cotton cords stay in place.   Stop wrapping when you reach the bottom of the ring. 

Complete the knot by passing the working end through the folded area.  Pull on the opposite end to secure the knot.




Finishing Touches


Hang up your Tree Decoration by the small ring at the top, so you can work on the fringe.

You can make a two-layer fringe as described below, or make the front and back cords all the same length. 

These represent the "roots", and you can make them any length.  In the image at the top of the page, the fringe was 3 inches.



Fringe

Locate the cords resting behind the ring, and trim them 10 - 15 inches below the ring.

The fringe should be shorter for the cords in front of the ring (6 - 8 inches long).

Unravel each cord completely (usually 3 - 4 strands).



An artificial vine with leaves or flowers can be wrapped with the brown material so it blends in with the branches of the Tree Decoration.   Secure it in several places on the ring, and intertwine it around some of the branches.





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Have any comments about the Tree Decoration? Contact Me.



 
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