Monday, 29 September 2008

A cornucopia of key rings.

I thought it might be nice to do a batch of monkey fist key rings in all of the new colours I have. I think they look rather nice. I've put them in the same order as in the picture of the cord a couple of posts back. Each one uses about 1.5 metres of cord. You can get these down to around 20 minutes a piece once you get rolling. I wonder if my son will notice 10 marbles missing....

Saturday, 27 September 2008

Braid Spool

I made this braid spool last year. I've not used it yet as I haven't taken the time to learn how to do it. I'll get around to it some time though. For now it makes a good ornament. I'm not sure my wife would agree. I made it from a section of windfall branch I found. A Turk's Head in black paracord goes around it. I used a fid and white 1mm cord to highlight it. I think it really brings out the flow of it.

One for me.

I liked my wifes torch so much, I decided to do one for myself. This black and white pattern has to be my favourite of all the ones I've done.

Friday, 26 September 2008


The nights are drawing in now in the UK and pretty soon it's going to be dark when my wife and I get home from work. We live in a very rural location with no streetlights so I got this torch for my wife and decorated it suitably. It's an extremely bright LED torch with a push button on the end. Now she can get safely from the car to the house. She seems pleased with it. 2mm purple cord with different coloured flecks in it, in a 16L 3B TH. A bit of purple suede thong and a green bead, to go around the wrist, finishes it off.

First go with new cord.

I've finally got round to starting on my new cord. Just a couple of quick ones I ran off while watching the TV. A Monkey's Fist with Cobra running down from the split ring. This colour is called Camo. The red, white and blue one is a Twist with 3 different cords.

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

New key ring.

I mentioned this in a previous post when it was in the prototype phase but I have now completed one. A 3" length of wooden dowel, tapered at one end with a hole drilled through for the split ring. Continuous hitching in the middle and a Turk's Head at each end.
I forgot to put something in the photo for scale but to give you an idea, the dowel is 8mm or 5/16ths of an inch thick.

New cord!

My new batch of Paracord has arrived! 10 x 100ft lengths in various colors from Happy Camper in the States.

From the top left to the bottom right.

Neon Pink
Neon Turquise
Neon Yellow
Neon Orange
Imperial Red
Neon Electric Blue
Neon Green

I'm very pleased that it's here as I've used all the little left overs of my last batch making squids.

Monday, 22 September 2008

Dog Lead

A while back we were going to adopt a dog. I made this dog lead (leash) in advance. We never did get the dog but I still have this lead. Neon pink and standard purple, I think it looks great. I'm very proud of how I worked out how to turn the bit for your hand back on itself and weave it back in to the lead. I'm not sure I could do it again. :-)

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Knotted Rosary

While surfing for new knotting project ideas I came across this Knotted Rosary over at Now I'm not Catholic and really, I have no use for a Rosary but as a project, it struck me as rather an attractive thing. So, here's my attempt. It's one continues length (4 metres) of bricklayers twine, about 1.5mm thick. The cross is another seperate project. What I like about it, is the whole thing is knotted. No clips, clasps, eyelets or accessories are needed. It took about 4 hours to complete. Mainly because it was my first try but also because a couple of the knots are tricky and when a knot didn't look right I had to undo it and try again. This happened quite a lot. If you want to have a go, check out Rosary Army's video and detailed PDF instructions below it.

I found it very interesting reading through the use and importance of the rosary. There are 60 individual knots on it. These are made up of 3 different knots. They are called the Hail Mary, Our Father and Centrepiece. I think these knots are called something else in knotting books but I can't work out what. Let me know if you do.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Daily pocket knife.

I have this tool knife with me most days. It comes in very handy. I made a length of cobra stitch with a lobster clip on one end. I can clip this to a belt loop and it hangs half way down the inside of my trouser pocket rather than knocking around with all of my loose change at the bottom.


I made this coaster for my wife. It's a round mat in purple paracord.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

More Monkey's Fists

I know I said "no more for a while" but when I put these together I couldn't resist. Can you spot the one that's not a Monkey's Fist. I particularly like the tiny one in the center. The center of it is a bead and it has tiny snake knots running down from the split ring.

Utility Clips

A couple of utility clips for uhh.... clipping on to things.


I call these squids cause they look a little like them. I use the left over bits of cord that aren't really long enough for anything else. They're great for giving away as key rings. They're just a snake knot.

Square Sinnets

These square sinnets are just a small selection of the ones I have done. I seem to keep giving them away. Yes, that middle one does look strange. It wasn't intentional, honest.

Let's twist again!

A selection of twists. The two outside ones are just round sinnets that I turned over and did a second length back on itself. The second from the top left is a twist stitch and the other 3 are the corkscrew twist. The corkscrew twists turn out really chunky. They'd be ideal for those hotel room keyrings. You know, the ones that are so big you can't take them out of the building. OK, so they're not that big but they fit nicely in the hand.

16L 3B Turk's Head

The carabiner in front is sporting my first attempt at this TH since watching Stormdrane's excellent video tutorial. I think I've got the hang of it now. The trouble is I want to do more of them but I don't have many torches etc to put them on. So I came up with a way to get my fix. You can see this behind the carabiner in the photo. I got a length of wood dowelling that I had spare and chopped it into 3" lengths. The one in the photo is very rough but the plan is to flatten off one end and drill a hole through it for a keyring, wack some clear or teak varnish on it then do the TH. I'll post an update when I get one finished.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Box opener.

I picked this little knife up on a market stall for £1. Its got a locking razor type blade. I use it at work for opening boxes and cutting tape and packing material etc. It's so small, it was just asking for something to make it easier to pick up. On it I put this snake knot with a lanyard knot at each end. With the contrasting neon green and orange, it's never hard to find.

Last Monkey's Fist for a while... honest!

I keep my keys on this one all the time. I'm particularly fond of this cord. It's about an 1/8 of an inch or 4mm thick and has colored flecks running through it. A half inch marble for the centre and a snake knot running down from the lobster clip.

Laptop bag accessories.

Here's a Monkey's Fist done in standard orange paracord. Tied around a 1 inch marble, it adorns one side of my laptop bag. A lanyard knot above it keeps the two leads in check.

And... another on on the other side. Also tied around a 1 inch marble but this time has a hangman's noose at the top.

Monday, 8 September 2008

More Monkey's Fists

After making what I thought was a fairly good job of the Big Monkeys Fist Doorstop, I did a couple more. These ones were smaller and I just hung them wherever I could find a place for them. My wife found out there was a chandler a couple of business units down from where she worked and popped in there one day to see if he ever had offcuts of old rope that needed rehoming. She struck lucky and came home with a couple of bits ideal for the two pictured below. The ropes are about a half inch thick. I put a hangman's noose at the top of both of them. The monkeys fist on both contains a golf ball.

Big Monkeys Fist Doorstop

When I first started knotting, I mainly practiced with bits of string or fairly small cords that you can get from the average hardware store. I really wanted to get hold of a really meaty bit of rope, around an inch thick, to try something a bit bigger. I managed to find a Marine Supplies shop in nearby Inverness but the prices of thick rope were astronomical, too much for my pocket money. I was chatting to a neighbour about it. He said he had an old bit of rope in his shed I could have. It was well used and a bit tatty but it was fairly thick so I took it, gratefully. I'd recently seen a large monkeys fist for sale in a souvenir shop and I wanted to try and duplicate it. They were made with thick rope, had something fairly heavy in the middle and were for using as a doorstop. I thought, "I can do that!". The picture below is my effort. I know, it's blue. But what can I say, it was free! I started by tying a plain lanyard knot and left a loop coming out of it which you can see is the handle. I then tied a monkeys fist around the lanyard knot. I think it worked quite well and sits in the corner of our living room. The CD in the picture is for scale.

Friday, 5 September 2008


I bought my first batch of paracord about 2 years ago. I got about 7 colours, all in 100ft lengths. When they arrived, I quickly realised I had a problem. Each colour was coiled loosely in its own bag and once I started to use it, it quickly became tangled and unwieldy. So I had to think of a way to store all of this cord. I got some copper pipe, the type used in plumbing. Its about 14mm or 1/2 inch in diameter. Believe it or not its exactly the same size as the hole in the middle of a CD. I slipped several old CD's that were going to be thrown away, onto the pipe to create several sections, one for each colour and voila. Purpose built paracord storage! My wife kindly provided the clips that hold the end of each colour to the nearest CD. I no longer have any problems with cord getting tangled. I just reel off as much as I need. Ideally, I would have it fitted into the top of a cupboard but I don't have one with room so for now the whole thing slips in between two wardrobes.

I'm getting a bit low on supplies,
but I've got 10 new colours coming anytime soon.


I've been interested in Knots for a number of years now but it wasn't until I saw what others on the Internet were doing, that I really started to take it seriously. Not so much for their practical use but decoratively.

Also recently, my children both became interested in something called Scoubidoo's. They're similar to Boondoggle. Anyway, in the process of helping the children to learn the various knotting techniques used, I learnt to do them myself and wondered how the various projects would look if tied with other materials. I have tried with various ropes, both natural fibres and synthetic or nylon but have had the most success with paracord.

I find paracord very easy to work with, my hands don't hurt after long periods of knot tying like they do with some natural fibres and I get a tremendous sense of achievment when I sit back and look at the end result.

Some will by now be saying, "Not another paracord blog!". Well, yes some terrific work is already being done by the likes of Stormdrane, Tripwire3 and The Paracorder and I don't intend to compete with them. I'd just like to show off some of my work and present it with a view in the UK.
Bight - any curved section, slack part, or loop between the two ends of a rope, string, or yarn.