“Rainbow Trout” by Al Canner

Rainbow Trout, 18 x 16 x 8 (1)I woke up this morning to an email from Al Canner showing me photos of his latest knotted sculpture.  I just have to say that creating Macrame Collective is the best decision I have ever made because it has connected us all to the wonders that people create using knots.  Just plain amazing.

We have seen work by Al before and here is his latest:  Rainbow Trout   18″ x 16″ x 8″

Rainbow Trout, detail 2








Rainbow Trout, tail finRainbow Trout, detail 1




See more work by Al Canner at http://www.cannerfiberart.com/



Where there once was none; now there are many

By far the most email requests I have received over the years is for tutorials that teach how to wrap stones in knotting.

Until recently there weren’t any, but not anymore!  I’m going to list them all here right now.  If I forget any, please contact me at soulcandy@macramecollective.com with the information.   There are workshops, one on one teaching, video tutorials and books.  I’ll list them according to categories.

One on One Teaching


Percy Palomino Tomayquispe – just one of many styles of stone wrapping you can learn from him

Percy Palomino Tomayquispe teaches via Skype in group classes and one on one mentoring/teaching.  It’s a great way to learn.  Contact him here via his Facebook page to get started:  https://www.facebook.com/InspirarteMacrame








 Video Tutorials

Coming soon is a 5 part Video Tutorial Series showing how to secure stones in knotting by Coco Paniora Salinas.  You can sign up to be notified via email when the tutorials are ready for purchase.  Word is that there will be more tutorials coming after that to show advanced knotting techniques.


Coco Paniora Salinas

Here you go – http://rumisumaq.com/macrame-tutorials/As








KnotMore.com has a video tutorial that will teach you how to make a knotted bezel around a stone that can then be attached to another object.  So if you want to incorporate a fiber bezel stone into your fiber art you can learn how here:  http://www.knotmore.com/tutorials.html


KnotMore’s Fiber Bezel Around a Stone video tutorial

fyi – you can also get Dawn from KnotMore to teach a workshop on stone setting by contacting her at KnotMore@KnotMore.Com










Marion Hunziker Larsen, from Marion Jewels in Fiber at http://jewelsinfiber.com/index.html teaches this amazing cabochon setting workshop!

cabpearlfWant to set up a workshop?  Contact her here:  marion @ jewelsinfiber.com









New book just out from Raquel Cruz from Micro-Macrame and Something Else:  http://www.amazon.com/Micro-Macram%C3%A9-Basics-Beyond-Knotted/dp/1627000461

She includes a project that teaches setting stones in fiber.











and while you are checking out Raquel’s book, check out her tutorials as well:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Micro-Macrame-Something-Else-by-Raquel/158779050828550



Joan Babcock has a new book out that teaches more advanced micro-macramé techniques.  One of them is a clear tutorial on setting a cabochon in knotting.  You can find it here:  http://www.joanbabcock.com/Shop/MMJ_2.html











Plus if you have never tried her online classes, dvds or books you must try them.  I learned to knot from her book and now there are so many more ways to learn to knot from Joan.  They are quality resources – check them out here:  http://www.joanbabcock.com/Shop/MMJ.html


Viva Macramé!


Meet Alex Luna

There is nothing I love more than waking up to find an email from an macrame artist, especially when it contains photos like these from Alex Luna.  tumblr_nguqkkgOg31ruermjo5_1280
“Art invites us to capture the teachings that nature, animals, life, the sun
and our every day have to offer. Macramé invites us to meditate and build
roots within our Soul. Our Human Nature finds itself far from everyday life,
when in truth we need it amidst our shadows, helping us receive the energies
of the waters that lie before us, from the tree that stands to our right,
and from the sky above. I weave to understand myself and I share the result
of this understanding everywhere I find myself…”

Alex Luna



I asked Alex to tell us about himself and here is what he had to say –

I´m Alex.  I was born in Mexico City and am 25 years old. I’ve been making macramé since 6 years ago and have a degree in graphic design. in UAM-Xochimilco.   I used to travel across the country to learn about macramé. The first time that I saw a bracelet in macramé was in Xilitla seven years ago. I remember the knots which I fell in love with. During the process of making my first sculpture I learned a lot. But I wanted the piece to have more concept. My teachers and friends who have been working in the process helped me see the things that I could create. Today I continue making sculptures and jewelry pieces and am living in Oaxaca De Juarez.

 You may contact Alex at:  alunakan@gmail.com








Al Canner’s New Work

Retirement is surely well spent for Al Canner as he is making incredible new knotted works and we are lucky to get to see them!  You have seen his work on my blog before.  Here are his latest works.  You can see all of his work and find out more by visiting http://www.cannerfiberart.com/.

Three Pears by Al Canner

Three Pears (2) Three Pears, arranged (2) Three Pears, first pear, second view-1 (2) Three Pears, second pear, second view (2) Three Pears, third pear (2)



























And his latest Enwrapped by Al Canner

Enwrapped, detail 3 (2) Enwrapped, lower portion (2)Enwrapped, 15 x 18 x 2.25 inches (2) Enwrapped, side view (2) Enwrapped, upper portion (2)

Knotters Wish List

Here is my wish list for knotters of all levels and interests!  Some new.  Some old.  All great.  Here we go!

New book just out from Raquel Cruz from Micro-Macrame and Something Else:  http://www.amazon.com/Micro-Macram%C3%A9-Basics-Beyond-Knotted/dp/1627000461











and while you are checking out Raquel’s book, check out her tutorials as well:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Micro-Macrame-Something-Else-by-Raquel/158779050828550


Very exciting news from Joan Babcock!  She has a new book with advanced micro-macrame projects coming out this month!!

Here is one project from the new book MicroMacrame II  10846198_10152858132735631_6896150757583630127_n

Stay up to date on releases for the book on her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Joan-Babcock-Designs/316190750630

or of course on my Facebook page



Plus if you have never tried her online classes, dvds or books you must try them.  I learned to knot from her book and now there are so many more ways to learn to knot from Joan.  They are quality resources – check them out here:  http://www.joanbabcock.com/Shop/MMJ.html



Looking for kits?  Marion Jewels in Fiber has a great variety – check them out here:  http://www.store.jewelsinfiber.com/kitstc.html

brac1.5 kit100v1 shambmat1










OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAKnotMore.com has a new video tutorial coming out this month that will teach you how to do a fiber bezel around a stone – stay tuned for that on their Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/KnotMore-Inc/449697008420354 or website:  http://knotmore.com/




You can also get waxed polyester cord and grooved cabochons for wire wrapping and macrame jewelry here:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/KnotMore & here:  http://knotmore.com/

il_570xN.620790078_ejb81063_017 (2)







KnotMore also has video tutorials that teach sculptural knotting – it is the only place to learn these techniques!  Check them out here:

http://knotmore.com/tutorials.html   scrnsht_knotted_sculpture_pt2







Finally there are 2 great workshops in 2015 that everyone should try to attend –

in Jan in Minneapolis at the Textile Center Bernadette Mahfood is teaching a 3 days advanced knotting class!



and in May in Milwaukee Kerrie Sue Miller is teaching at the Bead and Button Show:

Class B151085 for May 29, 8:30 am to 3:30 pm. If you got your Beadshow catalog, see page 27. Online registration begins January 9.

Meet Al Canner

It’s about time I made a new blog post.  And I have a reason why.  I was contacted by Al Canner (I love hearing from artists!) who showed me his knotting which I love both because he loves it and because I’m sure that I would recognize his work if I saw it.  There is so much knotting out there that doesn’t reflect the style of the knotter.   Not Al’s work.  See for yourself.

Here is his artist statement:

Basket (Deconstructed)

Basket (Deconstructed)

Because so much of my life has been lived through the lens of the left brain, indulging in the right-brain creativity of macramé has been a wonderful “crossover” experience – and no doubt one that has helped to keep me sane.

I began tying knots in the early 1970s when I was in my 20s, completely self-taught and at first focusing on the then-ubiquitous jute plant hangers.  During the next several years my work evolved, incorporating increasingly sophisticated design, color, and structure.

On several lucky occasions in those early years of knotting, I came upon hobby shops holding going-out-of-business sales; at very low prices, I was able to fill a trunk with more than 100 spools of twine, offering a nuanced rainbow of colors, materials, gauges, and inspiration.  A half-dozen years later, a gallery fire destroyed all my best pieces (although at the time the insurance payment was welcome).  My response was a decades-long hiatus.

In my early 50s, while enjoying a two-year break between careers, I rediscovered the trunk in which I had stored my collection of twine.  I began knotting again, and in these years since I have averaged one work per year, each piece representing many score of contented hours of “labor.”  Retired since early 2013, I’m thrilled to devote much more time to knotting.


Most of my works are wall hangings, although a few are designed to sit on flat surfaces.  I begin each piece with a fairly well formed idea of the final product.  However, as all knotters know, the work constantly is informed by the individual character of the twine and the dynamism created by combining twines of varying gauges and textures.



South America

South America


Some of my works incorporate found objects, and many are inspired by nature. Color plays a central role in all my pieces, which commonly combine fiber made of cotton, hemp, jute, linen, and rattail.  Rather than rely on an infrastructure for support or shape, most of my pieces depend solely on the robust strength of the knots themselves, almost always the humble double half-hitch.

Southeast Utah

Southeast Utah











I greatly enjoy the feel of the fiber passing through my hands; the “slap” of the twine on my workboard; the constant challenges that present themselves for conquering or instructing; and the satisfaction of looking critically at my finished work, occasionally feeling proud that a particular square inch or two turned out so well.


[See Al’s work at www.cannerfiberart.com.   Contact Al at alan.canner@colorado.edu.]


Finally, a Resource to Learn Sculptural Knotting Techniques

For years I’ve been searching books and the internet in search of resources to learn how to create knotted sculptures.  But I never found anything.   I wanted to knot in 3D!  So I went to California to learn from knotters who know these techniques.

I left CA feeling the privilege and responsibility of preserving and promoting the techniques of sculptural knotting.  It seemed to me that if I didn’t do it, who would?   So I not only learned these techniques, but also recorded them  on video.

And now they are now available to everyone at  http://knotmore.com/tutorials.html.

The teacher in the videos is Norman Sherfield.  Norman has been knotting for over 30 years and was a fabulous teacher.  You can see examples of his work on the below.


There are 4 videos so far. I recommend watching them in order as videos begin at a beginner level and advance to intermediate level.

In the first video Technique for Starting a Knotted Sculpture you will learn circular knotting techniques that allow you to start knotting around objects.








The second video Technique for Attaching Knotting to an Object teaches you how to attach your knotting to an object.








Technique for Creating a Tubular Knotted Core is the first video in the 2nd series.  In this video you will be knotting through a found object, beginning with an inside-out tubular core.








And finally in the last video (so far – there’s more coming!) Technique for Creating & Expanding a Knotted Core Through an Object you will be attaching the inside of a tubular core to an object.








That’s it!  I’m immensely proud of this project and invite you to discover even more possibilities of knotting!




Here is a feast for your eyes of images taken from my trip to California in May, 2013.  I was awarded a Career Development Grant from the McKnight Foundation and Region 2 Arts Council of Minnesota which enabled me to travel to Eureka, CA and Los Angeles, CA for a mentorship with Norman Sherfield and to meet the L.A. Knotters.  I learned techniques for fiber sculpture while there specifically knotted sculpture.  I worked closely with Norman and was lucky to spend a few days working with Leah Danberg as well.

Enough said, let’s look photos!  Here is a brochure featuring knotted sculpture from the LA Knotters.

And here are photos of the wonderful day I spent with this group who have been knotting together for over 20 years. 

Gerri McMillin, Norman Sherfield, Merrill Morrison and Leah Danberg - Knotters I really admire!

While there I managed to see some sights and work on this piece –






It was the chance of a lifetime to work with some of the only fiber sculptors working in knotting.  I am more committed than ever to this art form and invite anyone who would like to learn these techniques to contact me at soulcandy@macramecollective.com and we will work to form groups around the world to learn this amazing art form.

More exciting news!!!  Video tutorials teaching fiber sculpture techniques are coming soon to KnotMore.com.  There is no other resource online or in any books that I am aware of that teach these techniques.  Each video will teach a technique you can use to create your own knotted sculptures!  They will be $5 each.  Stay tuned as this will be coming soon and is amazing, exciting news!

Here are more photos from the L. A. Knotters to inspire you.





I’ve been exploring California for four days with eyes hungry for inspiration.  While I’m hiking trails, beaches and riverbeds I seem to be always thinking, “What would that look like as a fiber sculpture?”  Each rock on the on the beach flirts with me as if to say, “I’d make a great wrapped rock.  Do you see the way my white stripe creates an interesting line?  You could work with that Dawn.  Pick me up, take me with you and see what happens.”  Until pretty soon I have 15 pounds of rocks in my fanny pack and still have a couple miles to hike back to the car!





There is an unrelenting order in the forest and equally unrelenting disorder.  It resembles life.  I’ve tried forcing myself to be tidy and orderly.  I once graphed out the pattern for connecting Fibonacci spirals on actual graph paper and I knotted it.  I was proud to pull it off.  But now I prefer to let the ends be loose.  Let the cord fall where it may.  Watch the patterns emerge as I make them. 






I’m more interested these days in the process of the construction of the piece.  I don’t even care if I finish the piece.  I’m finding the joy in figuring out how to make the cord do that thing I see in my mind.

I started knotting a box yesterday.  I want it to be a box structure with layers of wrapping that envelope each layer so when it opens it unfold in several ways.  It’s a lofty goal and I have a good start but already see design problems.  And that’s the problem with knotting.  It takes a really long time to get to the point that you realize you should have thought of that hours ago and now it’s either too late to fix or you better get real creative real fast to salvage your hours of work.




Tomorrow I start working with Norman.  I’ll bring my faulty rock box and see what he has to say about it.

And that’s why I’m the luckiest girl in the world.  Time to start making all kinds of mistakes so he can fix em.



Knot School – Day One

“Arrange whatever pieces come your way.”  Virginia Woolf said that.  I read it in Ann Lamott’s book on the plane traveling to Eureka, CA.  Today I begin a mentorship in sculptural knotting with artist Norman Sherfield.  I’m grateful I read that because I’ve been trying to frame my mind around how to approach this mentorship and that sums it up for me.


So this morning instead of wondering if I’m good enough or creative enough or if what I make will be interesting or total crap I’m thinking, “I’ll just arrange whatever pieces come my way.


Here are my tools.  Ready, Set, Go.