Hello, my name is Alyssa and I'm going to share with you how to create some cute macrame owls! Now, I have sort of looked online for instructions, and have made several different patterns of owls. There were bits and pieces from each ones that I enjoyed, so I figured, why not make it with all of my favorite attributes? Thus, this specific style was born.
Beads (two resembling eyes, and one to resemble the beak.)
Step 2:Getting Started:
Obviously, from your selected strings you are going to need to pick out some colors; that's all up to you! You will have to get them ready so you are able to start the head, and also pin it to the corkboard. Cut however many strings you would like, if you want thick fluffy ears for your owl, then use more, if not, then use less; it doesn't matter what colors you use, just remember they will be its ears. Also, you don't need to make them too long, around a 12” should be good. Take all of your strings you just cut, holding them together so they all line up as if it were just one huge strand. Tie a knot at either end and lay it flat on your corkboard. Pin down one knot end so it stays in the same spot and won't move. Pull on the other end so that the string is taut, and pin down the other side so it is horizontal. This will leave you with the strings pinned to the corkboard in a way so you can start hanging other strings off of it.
Step 3:Attaching the Strings:
Now you will be starting to attach the strings so you can start knotting the owl's head and body. You will need 8 strings, each about 30 inches in length (just to make sure you'll have enough string.) Take one string, and attach it by using a Lark's Head knot.
You'll do this by folding the string in half, taking the end where it is folded, underneath the horizontal strings attached to the corkboard. From there, take the ends from the folded strand, and pull them through the loop you created from the folded end, but over the horizontal corkboard strings. This should be done so that the string is now attached to the horizontal ones. You will do this repeatedly so that the other 7 strings will be attached as well.
Step 4:First Row:
So now you have 8 strings attached on the horizontal strings, but since they are folded in half, it looks as if you have a total of 16. For right now, you will be getting ready to make a full row of square knots.
To make a square knot, section off the first 4 strands, making sure they don't tangle. The string that is farthest to the left, will go over the 2nd and 3rd strings, but underneath the 4th (don't hold the string too tightly, so you can see the loop it made when you went to lay it on the middle strings.) You will then take the 4th string, underneath the middle strings, and up through the loop you made originally on the left side (you essentially made two loops and took the two strings on either side and knotted them but just with strings in the middle.) Pull tightly so the knot goes to the top by the horizontal strings and isn't loose, (hold onto the middle strands as well so it is easier to position the tying correctly.) Then you will use the same strings again, keeping them separated 1-4. Using the 4th string, put it over the middle two and under the 1st. Take the 1st string underneath the two middle strands and up through the loop on the right side that you made when you laid the 4th string on the middle strands. This is basically what you just did, just in reverse, to complete the square knot. Tighten the knot so it is completed.
You will do this for every single group of four strings for the first row of knots. So once you made the first square knot, take the first four strings and lay them to the side out of the way so you can then work on strings 5-8 to make the next one the same exact way; then 9-12 and 13-16. This will create one row of four square knots.
Step 5:Finishing the Square Knots:
Now we are on to the second row. This time, you will lay the two outer strands out of the way on either side so you will be using four less strands in total. Then, you will make another row of square knots; except there will be only three square knots since you didn't use the first and last two strands.
From here, you will move the next two outer strands out of the way on either side, repeating the last step, except you will now have only two square knots.
Lastly, you will move the next two outer strands out of the way on either side, repeating the last step, except it will be only one square knot because you will be using the last four strands, but they will be in the middle. Creating the square knots in this manner will give you an upside down triangular pattern.
Step 6:Double Half Hitch knots:
Arrange your strings so that they are all laid out in order and untangled. Section off the first 8 strands, keeping the last 8 out of the way. You will be creating a line of double half hitch knots. Take the 1st strand, and lay it over the other 7, this will be your holding cord so it will NOT move while tying the knots onto it. Take string 2 up and around the holding cord, and through the loop you just made, making a counter-clockwise loop and tighten. Using the same string, repeat the same exact step, to create the other half hitch in the knot, When you are finished put that strand to the side, keeping the holding cord still on top of the other strands. You will continue making double half hitch knots for each strand until you go through each strand once. Move all of the strands to the side when you are finished so that they are out of the way so you can do the other side. You will then do the other side, the same way, but it will just be backwards. Still starting with the outer strand, lay it over the other 7 so that you can visually see the “V” of knots that you are creating. You will then make the same row of double half hitch knots but working from the right side to the left. By the time you are finished with both sides, you will see a “V” but the center will not be connected. Take the two center strands (which are both holding cords,) and tie them into a knot; like you were making a square knot but without the middle strands.
Step 7:Adding on the Beads:
From here, we are now going to string the beads on! The easiest is the beak because it involves the two middle strands. Put the bead on one string, and put the other string through the other side, so that when you pull them, the bead is able to be pulled up towards the knots. The eye beads will go on the fourth string in from the left, and fourth string in from the right.
Step 8:Finishing the Head:
To make sure the beads stay on, you will now make another row of double half hitch knots for each half of the owl. Take the first 8 strands and using the strand with the beak bead will be your holding cord, and you'll be working from the right to the left this time; so creating your double half hitches, will be from inward out. Take the other 8 strands for the other side and do the same thing, but backwards. So the other beak bead strand will be the other holding cord, going left to right, which will be inward to outward. When finished, you will have a line of double half hitches underneath the eye beads in either a straight line, or a slightly angled line making an upside-down “V,” coming from the beak.
Step 9:Making the Body:
Now, I do the body a very specific way, and remember to keep your knots tight; I sometimes pin it for this because it keeps the size more consistent when you try this out for the first few times. Take the outer two strings from either side and set them so they aren't in your way, since you'll be using the middle 12 strands. Section the middle 12 strands into three groups of 4. For each set of four strands you will make one square knot; so you technically have a “row” of three square knots. Next, move the outer 2 strands of either side out of the way so now you are working with 8 strands. Section these strands into two sets of 4, making one square knot with the first 4 strands so that it's evenly spaced in between the knots above them. Do the same thing with the other set of 4 strands so now you have a new row of 2 square knots, but they will be in between the knots that are above them. You will then bring down the two strands on either side you just moved out of your way that created the first row of square knots for the body. Use those strands to create a row of three new square knots, keeping them in between the square knots above them. Take the outer two strands on either side and move them out of the way again, making two square knots in between the three you made above them. Again, bring those outer strands back down, so you can create one more row of three square knots that are in between the knots above them. This time, move the outer two strands on either side out of the way, and make a row of two tighter square knots so that they are right next to each other in the row. Lastly, move the next outer two strands on either side out of the way, and create one square knot so that it is in the middle.
Step 10:Making the Wings:
So now you have a body made, and a set of 2 strings on either side hanging from the head. These sets of strings will be used to make the wings! Starting on the left side, you will be creating a series of 25 alternating knots starting with the strand on the left. Using this strand lay it over the right strand but create a 4 so that you can loop around the right strand and go up through the hole you created in the 4; that is one knot. Then, you will start with the right strand, creating a backwards 4, by laying in on top of the left strand and loop around it, bringing it up through the hole you created in the backwards 4; that will be knot number 2. Using this concept, create the 25 knots for the left wing. Once the left wing is finished lay those strands to the side and then go to the other set of 2 strings on the right side. Create the 25 knots again on the right side, but this time start off using the right strand (making the backwards 4, knot it, then make the regular 4, knot it, and alternate.)
Step 11:Attaching the Wings to the Body:
You should have both wings and the body. Now we are going to connect the wings to the body by creating a row of double half hitch knots. Lay all of the strings out so you have all 16 again. Section them in half so you have the first 8 and second 8 strands. Starting with the first 8, you will take the first strand and lay it over the other 7, as it will be the holding cord; you will then create double half hitches from left to right. You can then move those 8 strands out of your way, and then get the second group of 8 strands to work with. Taking the last strand, you will lay it over the other 7 for your holding cord, working from right to left. This should create the “V” shape again (as the body should be longest in the middle and the wings will be the shortest. You will then tie the two middle knots to finish the “V” (like a square knot without the center strings. Arrange your strings in order again, and section them in half, repeating the very last step you just did, so that it will be another row of double half hitch knots creating a “V.”
Step 12:Finishing Your Owl:
Now, we are almost done! Take the middle four strands, and create a square knot; and then tie a knot on top of it (so that the knot is directly below the middle of the “V” you created.” Trim the end so that it's the tail. For the rest of the strands, you will tie them in sets of 2 working from outward to inward. You will then trim the strands, but they will be super short; just a little bit after the knots you just created. You can then take a needle to the tail and fray it to give it some texture, but that is optional.
Before you're finished, take your owl off the corkboard, unpinning it where you had it down. Tie knots on either side of the head as close as you can without overlapping the knot on it, (where the ears will be,) that way the owl won't fall off the strings he's hanging off of in the first place! Trim the ends of the ears to the desired length (fray them too, if you'd like!)
Step 13:Enjoy Your Owl!
I hope you enjoyed my specific version of a macrame owl. I find these to be super cute and easy to remember after doing it a few times. They will stay around the same size.
Sorry, liked already!
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