A few motifs for this lampshade chandelier: the shapes that I think are elegant in this lampshade are the flower of life and infinity shapes. The flower of life shape can be achieved by a closely woven together double half hitch. It looks like circles layered over each other. The infinity shape comes from a double josephine knot.
DIY Macrame Hanging Chandelier Materials
DIY Macrame Hanging Chandelier Tutorial
Prep materials – cut 45 strands of rope three full arms widths long (from hand to hand). There are 9 diamonds in this pattern, and each diamond requires 5 strands of rope, folded in half. The barrel should have a 28 inch diameter, 24 inches high. The circumference is 87.92 inches.
To get started making the macrame chandelier, you’ll need to hang your ring so you can work in the round. I hung mine from a planter hook in the ceiling. You could also hang it from a standing rack or weave it in the round at it’s final hanging destination – just keep in mind that you’ll be weaving for a while, so make sure it’s a comfortable setup! You only need 3 points of contact for the ring to hang level. I did this with 3 equidistant loops in a bit of spare rope, and later moved it to a 3-point planter chain.
Once it’s hanging, take one of the 45 rope strands and fold it in half. Drape the fold over the ring from outside to inside. Thread the two strands through the folded loop, to create a half knot hanging off the ring. Repeat this with the rest of the rope strands.
Making a macrame lampshade is beautiful, let’s take a moment to appreciate the cast shadows on the wall 🙂
Double Half Hitch Macrame Stitch – Blue
The first stitch is a row of double half hitch in a blue rope strand cut to two arms length. I did mine in blue as an accent color. This stitch basically anchors the row of hanging ropes together and starts to create the shape of the lampshade cylinder.
Follow the photo below for reference: Take the blue rope and weave it behind two separate white strands. Cross the right blue end across the front and over the left blue strand, threading it behind the two white ropes again to create a loop as in the photo below. Shift this loop up to the top of the project and tighten it.
Make a second loop knot below the first – bring the right blue rope across the front and over the left blue rope, weaving it behind the two white ropes and out the right side again. Tighten this blue loop to the top of the project. Now you should have two blue loops anchored on top of each other.
Move to the next set of white ropes and repeat all the way around the project.
Great start to the circle! Clip the rope ends at 3 inches or so – we’ll crochet the rope through the back of the lampshade later during finishing.
Square Stitch Macrame Knot – 3 Rows
The Square Stitch is my favorite macrame stitch, because it looks like the flower of life. This stitch essentially creates a net, so Indra’s Net is another fun metaphor to think about while weaving it. This will be the net of the lampshade – the primary shaping stitch.
Pick up a set of two strands that fall together from the double half hitch, along with the outer strand from the rope sets to the right and left. You should have four ropes total.
See the photos below for reference – Cross the left rope over the two middle ropes and under the outer right rope, bringing the outer right rope behind the two middle ropes and out to the left. Then loop that rope through the space just created by crossing the first rope, to make what’s basically a loose square knot with two ropes hanging down the middle.
To finish the stitch, do the same stitch with the opposite strands. Bring the outer left rope behind the top middle ropes and in front of the outer right rope, crossing the outer right rope in front of the two middle ropes and looping it through the new loop created by the outer left rope.
To tighten the rope and settle it, shift both knots up a little. I think about making the space between the knots about the shape of a semicircle. Otherwise the lampshade can droop a little, but really this is up to you and there is no wrong way to do it.
Repeat this stitch until you go around the whole row. Then do 3 more rows. As I complete each row of stitches, I like to go through the chandelier in the round and make adjustments as needed to develop a tidy cylinder shape with the rounder looking flower of life shape. A steamer helps to settle the rope.
Double Half Hitch Macrame Stitch – White Rope
With a length of white rope two arms width length, repeat the double half hitch stitch that we already did with the blue rope. This row anchors the net we just made, so we can set up for the decorative diamond stitches in the middle of the lampshade. Since we already went over how to do this stitch, here’s a tip for a looser faster way to make it once you get the hang of the mechanics.
Take two outer ropes from the last square stitch row, and loop the two arms width length white rope from left to right behind the back and across the front as shown in the photos below. The working side of the rope (long edge) should end pointing up and over the starting end of the rope (which is about 3-4 inches). Holding this little loop in place between your middle and ring finger, bring the long end of the rope behind the two hanging strands and to the right, making a little loop behind the two hanging ropes held together with your thumb. This next part feels gorgeous – just press the two hanging rope strands through the loop with your thumb and weave them through. This way of knotting goes with the direction of the twist of the rope, so the material falls into it naturally. Repeat until the row is complete, steam and adjust until even.
Great start, steam the lampshade and adjust as needed. We’re about to start the fun part – the diamond infinity knot in the center.
Double Half Hitch Diamond – Top Row
This one is very similar to the previous row, only we’re making a diamond shape for the infinity knot to sit in. This stitch needs 10 hanging ropes total. It starts in the middle and weaves out to the left first, then to the right. You’ll thank me later – the diamond pattern flows prettier when you do it like this, think of it like a chain link bracelet laying flat.
Double Josephine Macrame Knot
I love this knot because it looks like an infinity symbol, winding and twisting for eternity like an ouroboros, and it’s also pretty and feminine looking. Plus 8 is my lucky number and it looks like a sideways 8.
Reference the photos below – Each Josephine Knot requires 8 ropes, the same width as a full half diamond.
Take the two outer left ropes and make a loop with the tail in the back. Align the looped ropes so they lay flat and do not twist. Bring the outer two right ropes – laying flat – over this loop and under the tail. Send it up and over the top of the outer left two ropes, and draw it through the back of the first loop. The next step closes the pretzel shape with a similarly method to the second variation on double half hitch above – press your thumb into the two rope ends to send them over the outer right ropes and through the bottom of the original loop. That’s it! There should be 4 ropes hanging at the back of the knot. Carefully tighten the ropes up to align the Josephine Knot in the center of each half diamond. Steam the project to let the ropes settle.
Repeat around the width of the lampshade.
Double Half Hitch Diamond Stitch – Bottom Half
Start with the two ropes at the bottom of the last half diamond you made. Working to the left first, bring the left rope under the right rope, across the front, and over itself to make a little loop. Tighten this up to the top of the last loop. Repeat so there are two loops hitched on top of each other. Release this rope down, and pick up the next rope on the outer left to work another set of two loops on the same diagonal right rope. Work this pattern all the way down the ropes until you get to the center bottom of the diamond. To keep the diamond row in a straight line, it can help to loop the rope you are working the knots on a little further down the project, in line with the work.
Work the half diamond on the other side. Work around the whole project. Steam and adjust the knots.
Work the left bottom side of the bottom of the double half hitch diamond after the right bottom side is complete. The end result will look like the diamond is woven like a braid or a line of chain links laying flat. Follow the same steps as the first arm to create a double loop on each rope. When you reach the bottom of the diamond, you should have two tails left to weave together – the right and left diamond arms. Tighten and steam your piece.
As shown in the photo below – cross the right rope under and over the left rope to create a loop. Bring the rope under the top of its first loop, so it’s back on the right side. Repeat this loop – bring the right rope over the left and under the left, then over itself to create a second loop. Tighten and steam.
Repeat around the lampshade until all diamonds are complete!
Gorgeous! As you can see from the photo above, the angle of the diamond arms creates a woven pattern around the lampshade.
Double Half Hitch Row – White
Congrats! You’re officially more than halfway through the project. The rest will be repeating steps we have already covered. A fast way to start this stitch is to make a horizontal loop with the short end on the bottom, and fold it in half backwards. Press your thumb in the middle of the loop to create enough space to draw the two starting ropes through it. Tighten and position the starting loop.
Excellent! Continue working the double half hitch in the round as shown above and below.
Steam and tighten the piece.
Square Stitch – 3 Rows
Next up, do 3 rows in square stitch per the instructions above. Steam and tighten the piece as you go.
Double Half Hitch Stitch – 1 Blue Row
The very last row is another set of double half hitch with a piece of blue rope two arms width length. Follow the instructions above and the photo below. Steam and straighten the piece.
For finishing, I went through with a 8mm crochet hook and wove the double half hitch rope ends into 4-5 stitches through the back of the piece, then snipped the edges. This will hide the ends.
It may take the piece a bit to settle, but continuously steaming and straightening it should help ready it for hanging.
There it is! Hanging in all it’s glory. It’s difficult, the slow peel away from a life crafted with care between two people, real or imagined. I do like this lampshade though, and it’s still hanging in the house.
This macrame hanging lampshade took longer to post than intended. Why? It’s not that long of a story, but one long enough to live through. This lovely macrame project was designed for the house I wanted to be our forever house, right as I was moving out. Now it’s just the cat and I in a little apartment. On the plus side, all of this transition occured pre-COVID, so that at least is a blessing. It’s been quite the labor of love – sketches included here!