So this is a question I get asked A LOT. Macrame in its modern form is often done with a white or cream cotton rope. But which rope you ask? 

Ok so there’s basically all sorts to choose from. I mean, you can pretty much knot any length of cord, twine or rope. Off the top of my head here is a list of materials that can be used for Macrame, with varying results and effects. 

Cotton String

Cotton 3 ply Rope

Sash cord/ Braided Cord

Luxe Cotton String

Cotton String

Jute rope/ twine

Hemp rope/ twine

Sisal

Linen

Waxed Cord

Leather/ Vegan Leather Cord

Suede Cord

T Shirt yarn

Wool

Roving

Nylon Cord

 

For the purpose of this post I’ll just talk about cotton as it’s my favourite for its aethestic look as well as it’s ease of use.  If anyone has any questions about other materials I’ll try and answer them as best as I can. 

 

Sash Cord or Braided Cord

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This is what one of my first wall hangings was made out of. Literally I bought a load of washing line from Ebay, strung them up on a stick and started knotting. I highly recommend this for beginners.

Braided Cord is strong and stiff. It holds well and gives a more structured look if you want to go for a clean, modern feel. The cheap stuff I got from EBay had a polyester middle so if you love the look braided cord gives but want better quality cord there are ones with a cotton core. This also means that if you want to fray the ends, it is possible to do. This takes LOTS of patience but it can give a really nice fringe.

 

3 ply Cotton Rope 

This is another great cord for beginners. 3 ply basically has 3 individual single twist groups of cotton that all twist together to form a more traditional looking rope. Like what you see on a lot of ships and sailing boats.

This cord is softer to work with than the braided cord but strong enough to hold structure when required. It’s a good alrounder macrame cord that’s suitable for all sorts of projects. Great for plant hangers due to the structure it has. Beautiful for wall hangings too.

When you finish a piece, the three strands can be unravelled to give a wavy fringe effect. This can be further combed out or left in wavy sections depending on the style preferred. 

 

Cotton String 

So with cotton string instead of three sections of string, it’s just one single twist that makes the whole cord.  One of the main benefits with this material is that it easily unravels at the end to produce a wonderful fringe. It is also softer to work with than the braided and three ply cords.  With any single twist string it’s important to give the string a little twist every now and again which stops the individual threads bunching up and ensures a smoother more consistent look.

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 Luxe Single Twist Cotton String

This luxurious string has the ability to create beautiful soft fine fringe. It was designed to be the best by industry experts using only the finest quality cotton.

Once you feel how wonderfully soft it is to work with you won’t believe it. No rope burn here!  

The twist is super gentle which makes fringe much easier to comb out. When working with this gorgeous medium, it’s essential to retwist the stands every now and again to ensure the individual strands don’t get bunched up.  The finish is so high quality and smooth, it really makes work stand out and is worth spending the time to master this one. The knot lines appear to blend together and the overall appearance given to the piece is one of pure luxury. This makes it perfect for wall art. The ability that this Luxe Cotton has to fringe and the softness of the strands after fringing make this such a stunning medium to work with. 

From left to right: Luxe Cotton String, Cotton String, 3 ply Rope, Braided Rope

From left to right: Luxe Cotton String, Cotton String, 3 ply Rope, Braided Rope