(K)not That ’70s Macramé: Interview with Chantel Conlon

by | Dec 15, 2021 | Art & Craft, Profiles

Macramé, a knot-tying technique introduced to the western world by 13th century Arab weavers and sailors, is perhaps best known for the iconic, decade-defining plant hangers of the 1970s. But as the heady days of free love and bell-bottomed jeans faded, so too did this once-popular art form, and, despite a few false-start comebacks, its popularity seemed doomed to become a trope of a bygone era.

But while we weren’t looking, macramé has begun to experience a quiet transformation. Artists like Kitchener, Ontario-based Chantel Conlon have reimagined the art of macramé, incorporating wildly different fibres in unexpected ways, all while staying true to the practical roots of this age-old technique. Chantel is the owner of Lots of Knots Canada, and in addition to creating her own blend of macramé and weaving, she is also the owner of a retail supply business and author of the book Mixed Fibre Macrame, and she nurtures a thriving global macramé community on social media, with over two hundred thousand  subscribers to her YouTube channel, three hundred thousand followers on Instagram and thirteen thousand members in her Facebook community group. The following email interview with Chantel was edited for length and clarity.

Try your hand at macramé by making Chantel Conlon’s beginner-friendly wall-hanging project, Cascading Diamonds. Included are notes on how to use yarn instead of rope, if you prefer.

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image description: a macrame wallhanging, light coloured rope with wooden beads

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