How to measure rope for macrame

Blog, Tips and Advice

If you have the macrame bug and are finding yourself wanting to try lots of new macrame projects, you are probably going to want to speed up the process of measuring and cutting rope. Whether your following a pattern or just free styling a project, you will likely need to be measuring a few meters at a time and you may not even have a meter long ruler. So I am sharing with you how I measure rope quickly and easily every time without needing to reach for a ruler or measuring tape with every cut.

If you are freestyling a project and are looking for advice on how to estimate how much rope you need for these projects, this is another topic I can share some tips and advice that I have picked up along the way with you in a separate post/video.

Using body measures

Using body measures is a great way to measure a lot of rope quickly. You only need to measure it once, maybe a couple of times if you really want to be sure and then rest assured that measurement will be the same everytime you use that body measure.

So what do I mean by body measure, well my Mum’s advice from when she was a tailoress was to measure the length from her extended arm to her nose. Be creative and work with a measure that is easy for you to keep the maths simple.

I am lucky that the measure I use from my fingers to my opposite shoulder, arm fully extended measures exactly 1m (39.3 inches). This is a great round measure as I can fold in half to get 50cm or again for 25cm and do all kinds of simple combinations for common lengths that I measure for projects.

You could try some of these body length measures:

  • Arm extended, fingers to first shoulder
  • Arm extended, fingers to opposite shoulder
  • Arm extended, fingers to the centre of your collar bone
  • Arm extended, fingers to your nose (my mum always turned her head away – maybe it will add a few extra centimetres to make a nice round number for you)
  • Both arms fully extended, I’ve not tried this myself as my limbs are quite long and I think this would measure too much for me. But give it a try if the others are not working out for you.

The best thing is that once you measure these up with a measuring tape once – the length is unlikely to change at all if you are using the same technique every time. It took me a while to trust it with repeat measuring and my workshop and school class students have tested me on it before. It works for me every time.

I’d love to know what you think if you give it a try. Let me know if you have any other suggestions or have any other questions about measuring rope that you would like answered that I could cover in another tips and advice video.

Tips on organising girls accessories

DIY Home Decor

DIY ideas for girls hair bows and accessories storage

Hair bows, clips, hair bands, pins and bangles

If your daughter is anything like mine, you’ll have clips and bows a plenty. Plus the hair bands, bangles, bracelets and any other old jewellery that she claims hers. The problem I kept facing was keeping them all neat and tidy… time and time again after being reorganised.

These were my cute boxed solutions that worked for me, just not for my kids.

I thought it was a good idea to keep them in separate cute boxes. The trouble there is, kids love tipping out the entire contents of any box. I think I’m too being kind when I speculate the mess is made because you can’t see them all in a box to make a selection so emptying them helps to make a more informed decision. But I think it’s just too fun tipping out everything from a box. It’s an invitation. Even when my girl could resist, her brother would do it. And there are so many little bits and bobs that it’s too much for them to tidy up. I love to find a solution to a problem, so I thought about how I could improve.

I took to trusty Pinterest to see how others were overcoming this problem, surely I’m not the only one bothered by this. I found some really cute ideas involving ribbons and frames. But I gave up on that when the frame kept getting knocked over and the ribbons yanked.

Pinterest ideas on bow holders

I decided to tackle her accessories in categories and find my own solutions. I grouped them into 5 categories:

1. Bangles and bracelets

I found a long storage hook that I could screw into an available pre drilled hole for her adjustable shelves in her wardrobe. Accessible for her to choose what to wear and have a simple place to put them back.

2. Hair bows

A little bit of rope goes a long way in my house! Totally obsessed with macramé and love how I can create simple DIY solutions with it. I mainly love being able to DIY a solution with things I have lying around the house. And that’s how I made my own version of a bow hanger with an artificial flower and some rope (see my other post on how I did this).

I later reworked this concept to make a personalised bow holder listed in my Etsy Shop, made from laser cut wooden hutch plywood.

Personalised Bow Holder to keep hair bows and clips tidy and easy to reach. Made with laser cut wooden plaque and 100% cotton rope.

3. Hair bands

I grouped them together and slipped them on a good storage bag clip (I think I picked these up in ikea once). I locked up all her hair bands in neat colour organised rows.

4. Clips and Bobby Pins

I don’t use my cuff links I had for work anymore, so used the cuff link holder box to slide them into the elastic holder.

5. Headbands (she’s lost all of hers so that’s that one sorted)

I love the new set up and my daughter loves it too. Too much clutter makes it hard to find things and she loves the order. She loves her bow hanger the most and will rely on it to grab a matching bow to put on her younger brother or cousin when it’s time for playing dress up!

I’d love to know your thoughts on my solutions and if you’ve tried any of your own. Follow me on social media @craftedbyceri to keep up to date with my latest posts and upcoming macramé workshops if your interested in learning the art. Browse my Etsy Shop if your interested in a personalised hand made bow hanger for yourself. Thanks for reading.


Macramé workshops in St Albans


My first macramé gift from a student…

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Running a trade stall or a workshop at local Arts and Craft fairs allows me to meet those people who are interested in the craft of Macramé. A fair amount of the interested in my trade stalls are from those who appreciate the hand work that goes into making macramé as each knot is handmade.

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I’m repeatedly pleasantly surprised at how many of the young generation are interested in natural based, plastic free products, telling me they love plants and keep and take care of a whole collection at home. I usually have a lot of macramé plant hangers with my own indoor plant collection potted in them at shows so this usually draws in attention of plant lovers.

It goes without saying, there are also a whole generation of visitors/customers who come out the “I remember doing Macramé at school” or “I used to have one of these in the 70’s”. And it sparks their interest to re learn a forgotten craft.

At my last taster workshops I ran at Greenwood Park Community Hub in St Albans I had a very enthusiastic learner. She aced the Square knot and Half Square knot on the Keyring design that she made with me, which wasn’t a surprise considering how keen she was to learn. What blew me away was that she went away with what she learnt and came back with a gift for me.

This is my first Macramé gift as a tutor and I can’t tell you how happy it’s made me. I can’t wait to see you again Chloé and get an update on your latest craft project!

Herts County Show May 2019

Craft Fairs
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I had a great time meeting customers and bringing back memories of the 70’s and 80’s for some! If anyone who was at the Herts County Show has any questions, please feel free to message me and I will follow up as soon as I can.


Hertfordshire Agricultural Society, organisers of the Herts County Show 2019 awarded Crafted by Ceri a certificate of commendation to recognise the excellent quality of the handmade macrame trade stall display.


Hertfordshire Agricultural Society, organisers of the Herts County Show 2019 awarded Crafted by Ceri a certificate of commendation to recognise the excellent quality of the handmade macrame trade stall display.

Now that the Herts Show is over, working on my website will be one of my main priorities so I will keep you informed