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The Half Knot

The half knot (HK) is one of two basic macrame knots most commonly associated with hemp jewelry.  Learn it well!  You'll need it to make almost every hemp or macrame pattern there is.

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There are 2 types of HK's - the LHK, and the RHK.  They are both exactly the same, except the LHK starts with a left knotter, and the RHK starts with the right.

knot abbreviations


These instructions show you how to make a Left HK (LHK).

  1. Start with four strands (or two lengths folded in half to make four strands) of cording or twine.  Strand no. 1 and no. 4 are your working strands, also called "knotters", and strands 2 and 3 are your filler cords. (Fig.1)

    half knot instructions fig. 1
  2. Take the left knotter (strand no. 1 in the diagrams), and bring it over the fillers and the right knotter (strands 2,3, and 4) (Fig. 2)

    half knot instructions fig. 2
  3. Take the right knotter (strand no. 4) , bring it over the left knotter (strand no. 1), under the filler cords (2 and 3), and pass the end of strand no. 4 through the loop made by strand no.1 (Fig. 3)

    half knot instructions fig. 3
  4. Hold strand 1 in your right hand, and strand 4 in your left hand.  At the same time, use your thumb and forefinger of your dominant hand to hold the filler cords still.  Gently but firmly pull strand 1 and strand 4 tight will still holding the filler cords still.  You're done!


  • To make a Right HK, simply follow the instructions above, except start with the right knotter (the red one) instead of the left.

  • A sennit (or sinnet) of HK's produces a spiral length.  If you want your knots to lie flat, make a sennit of square knots.

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Related Books

Can't get enough knot-working?  Here are some books to get you going and teach you everything you need to know about half knots, sliding knots, and just about any of the others!

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