The macrame tools and materials you need are easily accessible and affordable; some you can even find in your sewing kit. However, you don't want to waste time putting the items together before you even start crafting. Whether you're still practicing a few basic macrame knots or already taking the hobby to the next level, have your macrame storage basket ready and fill it with the macrame tools we list below!
What Do You Need to Macrame: The 4 Essentials
What do you need to macrame? Your tools can be divided into 5 main categories:
- Hanging Tools
- Holding Tools
- Measuring Tools
- Cutting Tools
- Macrame Cords
1. Hanging Macrame Tools and Materials
You will need a vertical workstation when taking on flat, long, larger projects, such as bath towels, shawls, and wall hangings. This way, your macrame cord will hang freely, allowing you to create knots easily.
These hanging macrame tools will come in handy:
- Wooden Dowel
- Clothes Rail
- Wooden or Metal Hoop or Ring
- Large S-hook
This macrame tool is a worthy investment because it allows you to make small to large macrame items with a clean finish. After all, it's straight and lengthy so you won't have to adjust your cords each time.
Although you can also use a tree branch, you won't be able to keep them for a long time because they rot. Hence, it's only ideal for those who'll only be making macrame items once in a while.
Another hanging tool you might want to consider is an adjustable, movable clothes rail. While it might seem impractical, especially if you don't plan on using it for hanging your laundry, there are many benefits to using a clothes rail.
One is its height adjustability. You can work sitting on a chair or the floor or standing. You can even shift from sitting to standing or vice versa anytime you want, allowing you to have some form of exercise.
This adjustable feature also makes it more convenient for you to create long macrame items, such as wall hangings. That's because you can simply adjust the height when the lengths of the cord start to reach a certain point (i.e., floor) that's hard to reach.
Another advantage to using a clothes rail is that you can make various macrame items at a time, thanks to its length. Also, remember that large projects will take some time to finish.
The clothes rail ensures you can leave your unfinished work without damaging it or the possibility of tangles. You can simply move the rail to a secure place while the cords hang freely.
Wooden or Metal Hoop or Ring
Being circular, metal or wooden rings or hoops will be your best bet when making plant hangers or holders, lamp shade covers, cookie jar covers, and anything requiring a similar shape.
With these macrame tools, creating the opening you need to place your plant pot or any item you plan on using in your finished project would be easier and quicker.
Available in different sizes, you can choose the right diameter that you need. You can even buy multiple sizes since they're affordable. They're even available in sets!
The S-hook is handy when making long but small and thin projects such as belts. You can simply hook it up to your clothing rack, door handles, or even on chair backs and start knotting.
Besides allowing you to have a vertical macrame station anywhere around your home, these affordable tools can act as support for your dowel (or tree branch). If you can't find a suitable area to hang your dowel, you can hook two to three S-hooks to your door and then hang the dowel on the other ends.
2. Holding Macrame Tools
What if you want to create smaller macramé projects, such as purses, bookmarks, friendship bracelets, necklaces, and other jewelry items?
Your vertical workstation will be just fine, but a horizontal one is highly advisable. It allows you to finish your project without feeling too overwhelmed. It's best to have a small working surface when making small items.
That said, here are our top macrame tool recommendations that will secure your cord strands in place:
- Macrame Board
- Corkboard and T-Pins
Definitely, the best tool for your horizontal macrame workstation is this specially designed flat, lightweight board. You can find one made of pressed cardboard, foam, and particleboard.
These macrame tools have notches or pegs on their sides that will hold your cords in place. The surface also has grids in centimeter or inch increments that beginners can use to ensure they achieve the correct size for their projects. Even better, some boards have basic knot diagrams to guide new macrame makers.
Corkboard and T-Pins
An alternative to a macrame board is a corkboard and a set of pins. Make sure you wrap your board with plastic or refrain from removing its original plastic wrap. The plastic will protect your cords (and the final project) from cork residue.
In terms of pins, you can actually use any type. However, T-pins are highly recommended because they're easy to grip, thanks to their small handles.
Another one of the best macrame tools for your horizontal workstation is a clipboard. Not only is it cheap, but you no longer need to purchase any other accessories, as the inbuilt clip can securely hold your cord pieces.
3. Measuring Macrame Tools
In any craft and art project, a handy measuring tool is essential to create pieces with accurate and precise sizes. With these measuring tools, you can do away with the time-consuming and frustrating guessing game:
- Tape Measure
You'll always find recommended cord lengths when following a tutorial on how to macrame. Tape measures won't just come in handy when measuring your cords. You can also easily measure your wall space, plant pots, containers, lamp shades, and any area or item where you'll use your macrame project.
If you won't be making large macrame pieces, a ruler is a more convenient option for a measuring tool. After all, you would only need to measure your cords.
4. Cutting Macrame Tools and Materials
It's no secret that among the most basic tools in arts and crafts are cutting tools. And what is better than a pair of razor-sharp scissors, right?
In macrame, not only will you use your scissors for cutting and trimming your cords. You also need them for shaping your macrame feathers or fringes.
That's why although regular scissors can work just fine, it's best to invest in craft scissors because they're sharper, giving you nicer, cleaner edges or lines.
You can also use sharp cutters and craft knives for cutting your cords or threads. However, you have to be careful when using them to ensure you create neat edges.
5. Macrame Cord
One of the most important macrame tools is the cord you will use. Macrame cord is usually made from cotton or hemp. These low fluff cords show the knots and details in your macrame beautifully and will last for years.
The best size cord for beginners is 4-6 mm. This is suitable for various projects, including wall hangings, plant holders, placemats, rugs, coasters, and more.
While natural colors of macrame cords are the most popular, there is nothing to stop you from using bright colors that make your projects pop. Cotton cords will also take dye easily if you can't find your perfect color shade.
Macrame Tools: The Nice-to-Haves
While you can't do without at least one tool from each category of basic tools above, the following tools won't affect the entire macrame process. Nonetheless, they can enhance the final look of your project.
- Crochet Hook
You can always accessorize your macrame project with feathers, flowers, beads, sequins, crystals, and other items you can think of that will work for it. You can also use plastic or wooden beads to create special locks for your macrame bracelets. You would also need earring hooks, posts, jump rings, or findings for your macrame earrings.
Tangles are common, especially if you still need a little bit of practice and you make fringes or feathers. In this case, a durable comb you'll only use for your macrame will be beneficial.
We highly recommend purchasing a pet comb because it will untangle your cords easily and quickly. Nonetheless, any big metal or steel comb will work just fine.
Another one of the macrame tools you may want to include in your arsenal is a crochet hook, especially if you're having trouble with making small knots. With this tool, you can easily pull the cord out from the tiny loops.
Crochet hooks will also come in handy when you suddenly fall short of cords and need to extend them, as it's one of the ways to do so. You can also use them to close your work, aside from tying a knot or braiding.
Start Completing Your Macrame Tools!
Now that you have a good idea of what do you need to macrame for your arts and crafts, it's time to start buying them. After all, they wouldn't cost you an arm and a leg. Also, don't forget to invest in the best macrame cords whether you plan on selling your crafts on Etsy, Instagram, or any marketplace, give them as gifts or use them in your own home or office.