How to Make a Macrame Necklace

    by Naomi Judd

    About the Author

    Naomi M. Judd is a naturalist, artist and writer. Her work has been published in various literary journals, newspapers and websites. Judd holds a self-designed Bachelor of Arts in adventure writing from Plymouth State University and is earning a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine.


    Macrame takes simple, practical knots and transforms them into wearable art or home decor. There are many knot types and craft projects that can be made with macrame including rugs, place mats, belts, bookmarks, totes and jewelry. If you're new to macrame, build your skills with the square knot, a basic knot you're probably already familiar with, before moving on to more elaborate work.

    Things You'll Need

    • 3 lengths of cord each about 8 to 12 feet
    • Thumbtack
    • Scissors
    • Super glue
    • Pendant or decorations such as beads, shells or glass

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    Cut the three lengths of cord. You can use cotton, wool, silk or hemp cord, synthetic cord such as nylon rayon or polypro, or leather cord.

    Bend the three cords in half and tie them in an overhand knot so you create a loop at one end. You now have six strands to work with.

    Hold the end secure to your work surface with a thumbtack while you begin knotting. Pick one right-hand strand to start with and pass it over the core of cords and under one of the left-hand cords.

    Pass the left-hand cord under the core of cords and up through the loop on the right, leaving a small loop on the left.

    Pull the right-hand cord up through the left loop and pull both cords to tighten around the core cords. This completes a knot.

    Repeat these steps to accumulate knots, ensuring they are tight up against each other.

    Measure where you want to place your decoration or focal point of the necklace, usually halfway through the piece, and slide your bead, pendant or shell onto one or two of the core cords.

    Continue knotting the square knots after the focal bead to complete the other length of necklace.

    Tie the ends in a tight overhand knot when you reach your desired length. Snip off remaining lengths and dab a bit of super glue on the edges of the knot to hold it more securely. The knot should be large enough to fit securely inside the loop to close the necklace.

    • Once you have mastered this, you can learn other knots such as the half- and alternating-half hitch, reverse-double half-hitch knots or the four-ply braid.

    Photo Credits

    • NA/ Images