Macrame half hitch knot tutorial: Step-by-step instructions with photos

Written by:

Published:

The half hitch knot in macrame is very easy to learn for beginners, but also extremely versatile for fiber artists at all levels.

The half hitch, double half hitch, horizontal half hitch, and vertical half hitch all share the same basic steps, and we’ll run through all of them in this tutorial.

Here’s how to tie all variations of the macrame half hitch knot, with step-by-step instructions and photos!

Affiliate disclosure: Articles on Tiny Workshops may contain affiliate links.

How to tie a macrame half hitch knot

The macrame half hitch knot is, true to its name, only half of the process you’ll need for most patterns, but it’s still applicable for some projects.

The most common involves repeating a half hitch on the same filler cord, which creates a natural spiral. This is often called a half hitch spiral or forward knot.

For this tutorial, I’m using a braided cord from Bobbiny, but any cord will do. If you want to learn more, check out our guides to macrame cord and macrame supplies we recommend.

Here’s how to tie a macrame half hitch knot.

Macrame half hitch knot step 1

Step 1

For simplicity, start with a folded cord tied to a dowel with a lark’s head knot.

Macrame half hitch knot step 2

Step 2

Take the left (working) cord and bring it over the top of the right (filler) cord.

Macrame half hitch knot step 3

Step 3

Wrap the working cord around the filler cord and through the loop on the left.

Macrame half hitch knot step 4

Step 4

Tighten the cord to complete your half hitch knot.

Macrame half hitch spiral knot

Step 5 (optional)

Continue to tie half hitch knots down the cord to create a forward knot.

You can get the same results by wrapping your working cord behind the filler cord, with the spiral turning the other way.

Again, this is typically only half of the process, so keep reading to learn more applications for this knot.

How to tie a macrame double half hitch knot

Although the name sounds a bit funny, the double half hitch knot is one of the most common knots in macrame, with virtually unlimited design possibilities.

It’s also very easy to learn and master, even for beginners.

I’ve used two colors of cord in this double half hitch knot tutorial for clarity, but typically you’ll be working from the furthest left cord to the right. Here are the steps.

Macrame double half hitch knot step 1

Step 1

Bring your fill cord (yellow) over the top of your working cord (purple).

Macrame double half hitch knot step 2

Step 2

Wrap your working cord around your filler cord and to the left.

Macrame double half hitch knot step 3

Step 3

Tighten your cord, finishing your first half hitch knot. Check vertical placement in your working cord, but don’t worry about excess filler cord at this point.

Macrame double half hitch knot step 4

Step 4

Wrap your working cord around your filler cord and to the left again. Take care to keep your first knot tight.

Macrame double half hitch knot step 5

Step 5

Tighten your working cord to finish your double half hitch knot. You can tighten or loosen your filler cord at any point.

How to tie a horizontal double half hitch knot

Now that you know how to tie a macrame double half hitch knot, we’re going to move on to a few applications for your projects.

The easiest and most useful is the horizontal double half hitch knot. You will find this knot in tons of wall hanging patterns, as well as in bracelets, macrame belts, and more!

Note that although this is called the horizontal double half hitch knot, you can orient your cord at an angle to create diagonal lines, curves, or whatever shape your heart desires!

Here’s how to tie a simple horizontal double half hitch knot for macrame. Again, I’ve used a single yellow cord for better visibility, but typically you’ll use the cord furthest to the left.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 1

Step 1

Place your filler cord (yellow) over your working cords (purple). It can be horizontal, diagonal, or curved.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 2

Step 2

Wrap your first working cord over your filler cord, then to the left.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 3

Step 3

Tighten your cord to create your first half hitch knot. Make sure the vertical spacing, but don’t worry about excess filler cord.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 4

Step 4

Loop your working cord around and to the left of your filler cord again to form a double half hitch knot.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 5

Step 5

Tighten the knot, taking care to keep vertical spacing correct.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 6

Step 6

Using your second working cord, tie another half hitch knot, again watching vertical spacing.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 7

Step 7

Tie another half hitch knot and tighten, keeping things as neat as possible.

Macrame horizontal double half hitch knot tutorial step 8

Step 8

Continue the process across all cords to finish your horizontal double half hitch knot. Tidy up your filler cord by sliding the knots to the left or right.

How to tie a vertical double half hitch knot

The vertical double half hitch knot in macrame is very similar to the steps above, with one exception: it’s additive.

That means that instead of using one of your hanging cords, you will add a new working cord to the piece and using hanging cords as filler. The knots are also oriented the other way.

This technique is the best way to add a pop of color to your wall hangings, and it can be used to create detailed pixel-art style tapestries of all kinds! However, it doesn’t lend itself as well to curved lines.

Here’s how to tie a macrame vertical double half hitch knot.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 1

Step 1

Wrap your working cord (yellow) under and around your first two filler cords (purple), working upward.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 2

Step 2

Tighten your first half hitch knot, keeping things as neat as possible.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 3

Step 3

Tie your second half hitch knot beneath the first, with the remaining cord continuing between the two knots.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 4

Step 4

Tighten the cord, again keeping things neat.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 5

Step 5

Tie another half hitch knot in the second two filler cords, then tighten.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 6

Step 6

Finish your double half hitch knot on the second set of filler cords. Try to keep the space between lines tight and neat.

Macrame vertical double half hitch knot tutorial step 7

Step 7

Continue the process until you reach the end of the line.

To finish your knot, you can either continue to the next line down or tuck your cord behind your piece to secure it.

Although it’s the same basic knot, a vertical double half hitch knot looks quite different from a horizontal double half hitch knot. See the image below for a comparison.

Macrame horizontal vs vertical half hitch knot
Photo via Nick Rowan (Tiny Workshops)

Also note that vertical placement is less important in this knot since you can just slide them up or down the filler cord. Just make sure your horizontal spacing is neat and you’re good to go!


That’s it for our guide on how to tie a macrame half hitch knot! Feel free to drop any questions or tips for beginners in the comments below.

Join our newsletter for the latest tutorials, guides, and more!

* indicates required


Comments

Leave a Reply