Textile production has advanced, meaning that manufacturing and buying stronger, softer, higher-quality macrame cord is easier and cheaper than ever.
You still need to make sure you have the best possible cord for the job, though as not all cord is suitable for macrame.
We’ve gone exploring through the vast array of macrame cords available on the market and come up with a list of the 5 best cords for macrame right now.
For beginners, we’ve also created a buyer’s guide and FAQ section for more in-depth advice on choosing macrame cord.
In a hurry? Don’t tie yourself in knots - take a look at our top choice:
- Pure cotton cord
- Strong and wear-resistant
- Soft and pleasant to work with
- 3 - 6 mm thicknesses
- Available in 109 - 328 yards
- Nice color range
- Macrame guide book included
The Best 3 Cords For Macrame
OUR TOP PICK
This natural cotton macrame cord from XKDOUS is definitely one of the strongest, softest, most versatile macrame cords money can buy!
Each length is made out of 100% pure cotton fibers, twisted into a 3-strand cord.
These strands can easily be separated as needed, although users should be careful not to let the skein unravel too far as the strands can tangle easily.
Aside from the potential for tangling, this cord is a dream to work with.
It feels silky and soft but is surprisingly strong - some users have reported being able to make shelves and plant hangers out of it.
Others go as far as to declare this their favorite macrame cord to work with, and we have to say, we agree!
Available lengths range from 109 yards to 328 yards, and you can choose from a range of thicknesses starting at 3 mm and going up to 6mm.
Not all lengths and colors are available as combinations, however.
This cord is also available in a stunning range of neutral and earth-toned colors, perfect for channeling the simple beauty of macrame art.
You can choose between navy, green, orange, yellow, brown, burgundy, and many more, so you won’t be stuck for choice when it comes to your projects!
If you weren’t already sold on this cord, we should mention that each length of the XKDOUS macrame cord comes with a macrame guide book, complete with illustrations.
This makes this cord perfect for macrame beginners as well as for experienced crafters who want to brush up on their skills.
- 100% pure cotton so it feels good to touch and it's durable.
- 3-strand so it's durable.
- Very strong and won't break mid project.
- Silky soft to touch.
- Available in 3 - 6 mm depending on your needs
- 109 - 328 yd lengths so good for most jobs.
- Beautiful range of colors to suit any project.
- Includes macrame guide book
- Tangles easily
Macrame Supplies is one of the go-to manufacturers of macrame cord, with one of its most popular products being this Natural Cotton Macrame Cord.
This cord is made from 100% cotton, so it’s natural and dermatologically healthy.
You can purchase this macrame cord in 3 different lengths and thicknesses.
However, the lengths and thicknesses are incrementally fixed so that the longer cord you get, the thinner it will be.
The 2 mm thickness comes in a huge length of 656 yards, while the 3 mm is shorter at 328 yards.
The thickest 4 mm option is the shortest of all at 240 yards.
One of the reasons why this macrame cord is so popular is that it really does tick almost all the boxes.
It’s a 3-stranded cord, so it’s more durable than most single-stranded ‘string’ macrame cords.
However, these strands can also easily be unraveled if you want to make tassels or anything else requiring a single strand.
As well as being durable, this cord is also very supple and soft to the touch, so it won’t hurt or blister your hands while you work with it.
It also doesn’t require too much effort to manipulate this cord into knots, unlike some of the stiffer cords out there.
We do wish that this cord came in a range of colors, although the cream is very neutral and works well with almost anything.
The lack of coloring also means that no chemical dyes have been applied to the cord, so it’s all-natural and won’t cause skin irritation during crafting or when worn against the skin.
Besides, you could always color the cord yourself at home if you wanted to!
- 100% cotton so durable yet feels good.
- 3-strand for extra durability.
- Durable for most projects.
- Very soft to the touch.
- 240 yds, 328 yds, or 656 yds
- Available in 2 mm, 3 mm, and 4 mm
- Just 1 color option
We’re so impressed with this organic hemp cord from 23 Bees!
For those crafters who suffer from skin sensitivity or allergies, this cord is a perfect choice.
It’s made of 100% organic hemp that hasn’t been waxed, dyed, or otherwise chemically treated.
Despite not being treated, however, this cord feels soft to work with and to wear, so you don’t have to compromise your comfort for the cord’s natural status.
The construction of this hemp cord is based around individual twisted fibers, which have been intertwined in-house under the highest levels of scrutiny to ensure perfect quality.
The twines can be unraveled from one another, although some users have found that this happens too easily for their liking.
This cord comes in different lengths and weights, so you can select a skein that’s perfect for the project you’re working on.
You can buy this cord in lengths ranging from 200 ft to 5,000 ft and weights between 10 and 48 lbs.
Weight and length availability may vary in certain combinations.
- 100% organic hemp
- Environmentally friendly
- High levels of quality control
- Wide range of cord lengths
- Weights between 10 and 48 lbs
- Unravels easily
So far, we’ve been showcasing natural macrame cords, but there are plenty of synthetic options available, too.
We’ll go further into the differences between natural and synthetic cords in our buyer’s guide (see below).
For now, though, we can confirm that this macrame craft cord from Pepperell is one of the best on the market.
The Bonnie macrame craft cord from Pepperell is made from 100% polyolefin, so it’s very durable thanks to the material’s strong and chemical-resistant properties.
The strands of this cord are braided together, as opposed to twisted like the other cords we’ve reviewed so far.
This means it won’t unravel as easily as some other products, which can be a blessing for those who don’t want to use any individual strands in their work.
However, it may not be the best choice for those who want to easily unravel single strands.
In terms of texture and ease of use, this cord is nice and soft but still quite firm.
Therefore, the cord is easy enough to work with without compromising on toughness, which is ideal in macrame cord.
This cord comes in 29 lovely colors, some of our favorites being ‘wine,’ ‘rust,’ and ‘forest.’
Most of the basic color spectrum is represented in some way in this color range, though, so you’ll soon find your own favorites!
Unfortunately, this cord only comes in 1 length and thickness: 6 mm and 100 yards.
This means that, while this is a thick cord ideal for bigger projects, you won’t get a huge amount out of a single skein.
- Durable polyolefin
- Soft but firm
- Broad color range
- Only 1 length and thickness
Finally, we come to yet another synthetic cord: McFanBe’s Braided Nylon Twine Cord.
This cord is great for a variety of macrame projects because it comes in several different lengths, thicknesses, and colors.
The quality of nylon material this cord is made of ensures that it’s impressively strong, yet so soft that it’ll glide through your fingers effortlessly and painlessly.
The available lengths and thicknesses of the McFanBe cord are 2 mm x 98 ft, 2.8 mm x 65 ft, and 3.5 mm x 45 ft.
This means that you can tailor your selection to the length or width you want for your project, but you can’t be flexible on both variables.
Some users have reported receiving skeins of inexact lengths, though, so watch out for this.
The color range includes fun shades of yellow, pink, and purple, as well as more muted tones like khaki, coffee, and army green.
Whether you’re making a colorful wall hanging or something more subtle, there’s a color for you in this range.
- High-quality nylon
- Soft but durable
- Available in 2 mm x 98 ft, 2.8 mm x 65 ft, and 3.5 mm x 45 ft
- 14 available colors
- Length may not be exact
Best Cord for Macrame Buying Guide
Any of the cords we’ve reviewed today would make an excellent foundation for a macrame project. However, just because a macrame cord is of great quality doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for your project.
To get a better idea of what you should be looking for, keep reading - there’s a lot to consider!
First, you’ll have to think about what kind of material you want your macrame cord to be made from.
Macrame cord can either be natural, meaning it’s made of natural, plant-based fibers or synthetic, meaning man-made. There’s no objective rule stating which kind of cord is better, so this one’s entirely up to you.
However, there are some reasons why you may want to choose one type over the other.
If you have sensitive skin or allergies to any chemicals, we’d recommend a 100% natural cord made of either cotton or hemp. Ideally, you should look for a cord that is unwaxed, undyed, and untreated.
If you don’t have any limits to the types of materials you can handle or wear, you could go either way.
Many crafters prefer the texture and authenticity of natural fibers, although many also prefer the added durability found in synthetic cords such as nylon and other poly fabrics.
So, it’s really all about what your priorities are, as well as the nature of your project.
You can find macrame cords in so many different lengths that you should always be able to buy them in sufficient quantities for most projects.
However, you’ll need to know how much cord your project will require beforehand so you can buy the right sized skein.
Look at your pattern first and determine how long it measures from one end to the other. Whatever this length is, you should quadruple it to find your estimated ideal length.
The extra 3 lengths will allow for knotting to take place.
Obviously, this will vary for different techniques and different types of knots, but it’s a good rule of thumb to follow.
If you’re doubling up your cord for thickness, you’ll need double the normal length, so your estimate would come to 8 times the length of your creation.
Be aware that not all skein lengths will come in the thickness or weight you want, however. For example, you may find a skein in your desired length that only comes in 2 mm thickness, where you wanted 3 mm.
In this case, you may need to either go with the thinner cord or choose your preferred weight in a shorter length and purchase 2 skeins instead.
Something you definitely shouldn’t forget about is the thickness or weight of your cord. Not only will this have an impact on what your finished project looks like, but it will also influence how easy the cord is to work with.
Some macrame patterns are designed to be executed with a thicker cord, while some are more intricate and will require something thinner. Make sure you know what you’re going for before you make your purchase.
If you’re considering adding beads to your macrame, measure the holes in the beads first to ensure your chosen cord is thin enough to pass through them.
Generally, macrame cord comes in thicknesses of 2 to 6 mm. Anything thinner than 2 mm is likely to come under the category of string rather than cord - although you could use string if you wanted.
Sometimes, the thickness of a cord can also be expressed as a weight, although this is less common.
The basic definition of a cord is a thick string that is made of multiple entwined strands. Therefore, any macrame cord you use is likely to consist of several strands either twisted or braided together.
The more stands make up your cord, the thicker it is likely to be, and the more singular strands you’ll get out of it.
If you want to make your own tassels to hang from your macrame, for example, we’d recommend buying a cord with at least 3 strands.
We’d also recommend a twisted cord in this case because they’re easier to unravel. Watch out for tangling, though!
If you don’t want your cord to unravel, we’d recommend a braided cord instead. The individual stands won’t come apart so easily in a braid.
Braided cords also tend to be a bit stiffer than twisted ones, though, so keep this in mind when you’re making your decision.
Of course, you can’t start a macrame project without knowing what color(s) you want to use!
Luckily, whether you’re a minimalist who likes to work with neutral tones or a lover of vibrant hues, you’ll be spoilt for choice thanks to the incredible range of macrame cords available right now.
Be careful of chemical dyes if you’re choosing natural material, though, since these may compromise the dermatological safety of the cord.
Also, be wary of using heavily dyed cord for any project that may need to be laundered unless the product guidelines specifically state that it is colorfast or safe to wash.
If you’re a macrame beginner, we would encourage you to buy a macrame cord that comes with a guide book. This way, you can get some free guidance on the best tips and techniques as well as one or more free patterns!
Our top pick comes with a free macrame guide, so if the opportunity to learn new skills as part of your purchase interests you, go ahead and scroll back up!
Frequently Asked Questions
What can I use instead of macrame cord?
A cord doesn’t have to be specifically advertised as a macrame cord for it to work great in a macrame project! In fact, you don’t actually have to use cord at all - you could use basic string, yarn, wool… Almost anything you like!
Basically, as long as it’s long enough and you can tie solid knots in it, you can probably use it to make macrame.
However, your results will look slightly different for the same kind of knot depending on what material you use, so if you’re feeling adventurous, just be prepared for your work not to look exactly like the pattern.
Last update on 2021-06-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API