Who would have thought that macrame and fiber art would become so beloved all over again? I love seeing the chunky textures reinterpreted with a punchy modern aesthetic, using more color and minimal lines. I made this plant hanging shelf to snugly cradle one of my plant pots, and here’s how you can make one like it.
Materials you’ll need for the hanging plant shelf:
- Jute or hemp twine (in two colors, if you want colorblock accents)
- 5″ plant pot
- 6″ square piece of plywood, 19mm (3/4″) thick
- Drill, 1/2″ spade bit and 8mm (5/16″) timber drill bit
- 120-grit sandpaper and danish oil (optional)
Step by step instruction to build the plant shelf:
For the wood surround:
Step 1: Drawing process
Draw a 4 1/2″ circle onto the timber. Use a compass or (if you’re lucky) a round object that fits those dimensions.
Step 2: Drill
Drill a few holes around the inside perimeter of the circle. This will make it easier for the jigsaw to follow the path of the circle.
Step 3: Cutting process
Use the jigsaw to cut out the remainder of the circle. (If it’s not perfect along the edge, that’s okay – the lip of the plant pot will hide it.)
Step 4: Drilling
Using the 5/16″ timber drill bit, drill a hole near all four corners.
Step 5: Sanding
Sand and seal the timber as desired.
For the macrame hanger:
Step 1: Prepare jute
Cut eight strands of jute, each one 5m (16 ft) long. If you want a colored accent like the pink: make one of the strands a different color.
Step 2: Fold
Fold the strands in half and loop them around themselves in the middle. This will be the top, or the section that hangs on the hook.
Step 3: Group
Separate the resulting 16 strands into groups of four. Each set of four = one corner, and you will work with one set at a time.
Step 4: Knots
Start doing half-knots, or spiral knots. These knots naturally wrap around in a spiral pattern. Two strands – the outer strands – knot around each other, while the other two – the inner strands – remain stationary in the middle. Follow the first two photos above to see how the outer strands wrap around each other, then pull them tightly.
Step 5: Thread
Keep knotting until you’ve done 18 inches’ worth, then switch the inner with the outer strands and keep going for another 18 inches. When the coloured accent thread is one of the two outer threads, the coloration will become apparent.
Step 6: Knot six
At the 36-inch mark, make a regular knot six inches from the spiral knots.
Step 7: Thread each cord
Thread each of the four cords through the wooden base, knot them underneath to hold them in place, and trim the excess thread. The shelf is ready! Load it up with a potted plant, ideally one that’ll like the conditions of its environment.
This shelf looks super cute in my entryway, and I love the splash of pink in the macrame. I’ve looked through old magazines at the plant hangers and macrame weavings that were the height of cool in 1974, and the best ones were obviously handmade and one-of-a-kind. I’d like to think that spirit lives on.