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Easy Ways to Measure How Much Macrame Cord You Will Need


Are you just starting in macrame? If you are, then this article might help you in many ways. We’ve found that many beginners in macrame have quite some trouble in estimating exactly how much length of macrame cords they need for their various projects.

Often at times, people would end up with too much leftover cord length, or not enough length. This of course could have the potential of ruining the aesthetics of your planned macrame outcome.

Well, worry not! In this article we’re going to cover every way possible, from the easiest to the most precise method of estimating how much macrame cord you will need.

Basic Concept to Estimate Your Macrame Cord’s Length

Estimating length is a mathematical problem. But we know that not all of you are quite fond of doing maths for your leisure passion project. Don’t worry, we’ll tell you the easiest way to do it.

The general method of estimating how much macrame cord you need is by measuring the length of your finished project and multiplying it by four. After that, you can add extra length for fringes.

For example, let’s say you’re crafting a wall hanging of 50 cm in length. Now multiply it by four. 50 x 4 is 200 cm. This is the cord length you’ll need for this project. To be safer, you can multiply it by five as well.

However, you need to note that this method isn’t super accurate. You might end up with extra leftover cords. You can make it more accurate by applying trial and error. For the first try, make it a point to measure how much excess length you got left. And then for the next try, you can subtract that length from your total estimation.

Measuring Macrame Cord’s Length in Square Knots

Measuring macrame cord length

(a macrame square knot | @macrameforbeginners)

If you want a more accurate method, you can try measuring the cord’s length by doing square knots. But before that, you need to also measure the length needed for your lark’s head knot, which you will need to do to attach your cord to a dowel.

larks head knot

(a lark’s head knot | @macrameforbeginners)

After you’ve done a lark’s head knot and attached it to a dowel, make a mark right where the cord comes out of the knot on both ends of the cord. Next, untie it and measure the length. That will be the exact length needed for a lark’s head knot.

Now that you’ve attached the lark’s head knot to a dowel, it’s time to measure it. Do a square knot first, and then, just like with a lark’s head knot, make a mark again on both ends of the square knot. After that, undo them again and measure the length.

Don’t forget to write it down and include information on what cord thickness you are using, since changing macrame cord thickness will produce different results.

How To Measure When Changing Macrame Cord Thickness

How to measure when changing macrame cord thickness

Macrame cords come in many different types and thickness. There are 3mm, 5mm, 7mm, 9mm, and many more. Using different cord thickness affects the required length you need for the macrame project you’re doing.

That is why, as mentioned above, when you’re measuring the length either by square knots or by the easy method, you should always note the cord thickness you’re using.

Thicker macrame cord will usually require more length for the same project compared to smaller ones. You can try to measure each of them individually to know the exact length needed for each cord thickness. But worry not, we’re here to make things easier for you.

Here’s a table to estimate how much macrame cord you will need when changing cord thickness.

macrame cord thickness chart

For more detailed thicker cords estimation, you can refer to macrame for beginner’s guide here.

Now let’s break down the example. Let’s say you’re using 1mm macrame cord for a project that needs 5 metre cord length. Now, you want to create the same project but you want to change using a 3mm cord.

According to the table, we must multiply the length by 3. So, 5 metres times three is 15 metres. That’s how much 3mm cord length you will need to create the same project.

Estimating Macrame Cord for Various Projects

Now that you know how to estimate macrame cord length by many methods including changing cord thickness, let’s discuss the applications. We’ll tell you how much macrame cord you will be needing for a couple of popular macrame projects, such as macrame bracelets, wall hangings, and plant hangers.

1. Macrame Bracelet

macrame bracelet


Since macrame bracelets will have many knots throughout the line, the safest bet is to measure the length of the bracelet and then multiply it by 10.

For example, let’s take the typical length of a hand bracelet, which is around 30 cm. And then multiply it—30 cm x 10 = 300 cm. That’s the cord length you’ll need for a simple macrame bracelet, assuming you’re using 1 mm cord thickness. If you’re using thicker cords, then you’ll need more cord length. You can refer to the table above for cord thickness conversion.

2. Wall Hangings

wall hangings

(made with nook theory blue macrame cords)

To estimate how much cord you will need to create wall hangings, you’ll need to decide how much lark’s head knots you’ll be making, and then multiply it by 10cm (length needed for a lark’s head knot) and multiply it again by two. So let’s say you’re using 12 knots, then that means you’ll be needing 240cm (12 knots x 10 cm x 2) just for the head knots.

After that, add the cord length for your wall hanging project. Let’s say you want it to be 1 metre long (100cm). So, 240 + 100 = 340cm. This is how much cord length you’ll be needing for each piece.

The next step is just to multiply it by how wide you want it, or how many cords. Let’s say you want to create 10 cords. So, 340cm x 10 = 3400cm, or 3.4 metres.

3. Plant Hangers

Plant hanger

(nook theory 4 pack macrame plant hangers)

For plant hangers, it’s safe to assume that you won’t be needing many knots. So the safe bet is to measure the length of the hangers line for your project, and then multiply that by two, and again by four.

For example, let’s say you wanted the hangers line to be 50 cm long. Then you’ll need to multiply—50 cm x 2 x 4 = 400 cm. That’s the cord length you’ll need for a simple macrame plant hanger.

However, if you’re going to use a lot of knots for your macrame plant hangers, it’s better to use the more accurate methods, such as the square knots method..

Now you know how to measure how much macrame cord you will need with various methods and for various projects, browse our top-quality macrame cords in various colours and sizes especially curated for you.



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