It is spring and time to plant some ornamentals in containers... Why not make an Indoor plant hanger from paracord and plant with Purple Hearts (Tradescantia pallida) to commemorate Valentine's Day also...?
A Step-by-step instructable to make a plant hanger from paracord...
Step 1: Material and Tools
- 50 meters of 4 mm thick Paracord. You can choose any color of your choice. Here I have selected a white one.
- Two Plastic rings of about 120 mm outer diameter and 10 mm thick. Color doesn't matter as these rings will be covered. You can use steel rings also.
- Used marker pens. I have used the colorful caps of these pens in the hanger. You can use beads also in which you can be able to insert four strings of 4 mm thick Paracord.
- An ornamental planter
- Potting Soil
- Purple Heart cuttings
- A measuring scale to measure the Paracord
- A craft knife to cut Paracord
- A hacksaw blade to cut the marker pen caps
- A mounting board with a nail on top. You can use any board of about four feet long with one foot width.
- A pair of scisors
Step 2: Paracord Inserts From Marker-pen Caps
Before proceeding, cut half an inch long pieces of different colors from the marker pen caps. You can use a hacksaw blade to cut these pieces. If you can find any other material in which you can insert four strings of 4 mm thick paracord, you can use them.
Step 3: Different Kinds of Knots Used
The knots used in this project are:
- Lark's head and Reverse Lark's head knots
- Regular clove hitch (Left to right)
- Reverse clove hitch (Right to left)
- Square knots
Step 4: Measure and Cut Paracord
You need to cut eight pieces of 5 meter long cords. Using the measuring scale or tape, measure 5 meters and cut with the craft knife. Using this piece you can measure the other cords also. There is no need to seal the ends with flame. Leave them as they are.
After cutting eight 5 meter long pieces from the 50 meter long Paracord, you will be left with about 10 meters of excess cord. Keep this aside as we will need it latter.
Step 5: Mount the Ring and Cords
- Place the mounting board against a wall, so that the nail is located on top
- Mount one plastic ring on the nail
- Take a piece of 5 meter long cord and fold it in two equally
- Tie the cord on the ring using reverse lark's head knot
- You can tie all other cords also in the same way on the ring
Now you have 16 strands of cord hanging down from the plastic ring
Step 6: Organize the Cords
- Fold each cord around your fingers, leaving some length of cord to easily work with
- Use a rubber band to temporarily hold the folds together
- Now it is very easy to work with the cords. You can unfold the required length anytime you need
Step 7: Knots - Step 1
- Count the cords from left to right and hold the eighth cord
- With the remaining seven cords on the left, run clove hitches from center right to left using the eighth cord as holding cord
- Repeat the same steps above from left to right using the remaining eight cords on right side.
- if you keep the tension on the knots equal, they will form a slanting pattern from the center towards each direction.
- Now the holding cords will be the extreme left and right cords.
Step 8: Knots - Step 2
- Repeat the steps of clove hitches as did earlier to left and right using the ninth cords counted from each direction as holding cords
- Now you have two rows of clove hitches running on both directions from the center.
Step 9: Knots - Step 3
- Take the four cords in the center
- Tie a square knot using the two outermost cords around the two center cords
- Begin alternating square knots using one left hand strand with three from the earlier step towards left
- repeat the same steps above to the right
Now you have two rows of clove hitches and one row of square knots
Step 10: Knots - Step 4
- Take the four middle cords
- Make a square knot with the outermost cords around the two inner cords
- Remove the rubber bands from the four center cords
- Insert the two left cords to right and two right cords to left through the plastic piece cut from the marker pens. You can use beads or any other material for this
- Add two more plastic pieces repeating the step above
Step 11: Knots - Step 5
- Using the four cords inserted through the plastic pieces, tie a square knot keeping any two in the center
- Tie two alternating square knots leaving one cord from the center and using one cord from the left. this knots will have some slack to match with the plastic inserts
- With four end cords at both ends, tie two or three square knots, so that they are level with the knots with slack
- Starting from center, tie alternating square knots on both sides towards left and right
- Refer to the picture, how it looks after completing this step. The square knots will form a slanting pattern upwards from center to the edges
Step 12: Knots - Step 6
- Hold the outer left-most cord
- Using this as a holding cord, begin clove hitches from left to center
- repeat the same step from right towards the center
- Tie one more row of clove hitches using the outer most cords on both ends
Step 13: Knots - Step 7
- Take the four middle cords and tie a square knot
- Take next two cords, that is the sixth cord from both ends, and tie a square knot around the four middle cords
- With the fifth cords from both ends, tie a square knot around the middle six cords
- Now you will find four cords at each end hanging separately. With these four cords, tie two square knots around the middle two cords on both the ends, so that the bottom of knotted portion of all the cords are at same level
- Begin alternating square knots using fourth, third, second and first cords around the middle two cords respectively
- These knots will form a triangle at the bottom and will also divide all the sixteen cords into four groups... four cords at left and right & four cords at front and back
Step 14: Knots - Step 8
If you look at the first picture, you can see clearly all the four groups of cords separated in the previous step.
Take each group separately and tie 15 numbers of alternating square knots around the two middle cords. The last picture shows how this will look after completion of this step.
Step 15: Knots - Step 9
- Untie the rubber bands from the cords in each group separately.
- Insert all the four cords through the plastic ring so that the middle two cords are turned out to form the outer cords
- Tie 15 more square knots around the middle cords (they were outer cords in previous step)
- Now all the cords in all four groups will have (almost) equal lengths
Step 16: Knots - Step 10
- Remove rubber bands from all the cords
- Take the remaining plastic ring (same as used at the top)
- Leaving about 12 inches of cord, tie clove hitches around the ring using all the 16 cords
- Move the knots around the ring so that all the 16 cords are placed at equal distance. Also adjust the length of each cord uniformly
- Tie four more clove hitch knots around the ring with all the cords. This number of knots will vary based on the size of the ring
- Leave the leftover cord lengths hanging below the plastic ring
- You can see the finished plant hanger after this step in the last picture
Step 17: Knots - Step 11
- Take any four cords and tie a square knot
- Leave one cord at the left and take one more cord from the right
- Tie a square knot using these four cords
- Repeat this step until you reach the first cord left earlier
- Finish with a square knot with the first cord
Step 18: Trim Away Excess Cord
- Using a piece of cord, tie all the 16 cords together temporarily at the bottom of the ring
- Trim the excess length of cords leaving about six inches from each cord
Step 19: Adjust the Cords and Unravel the Strands
- Place the planter over the bottom plastic ring and adjust all cords
- Tie all cords together firmly at the bottom of the ring
- Unravel each strand separately from all cords
- Trim away excess leaving about six inches of unraveled strands at the bottom
Step 20: Finish the Top Ring
- Remove the plant hanger from the mount and place horizontally over a board
- Trim away the loose strands from one end of the spare cord and tie a knot
- Tie a clove hitch around the plastic ring firmly
- Continue the clove hitch around the ring till it covers the entire ring
- Tie a knot at the end and trim away excess
Step 21: Plant
I have used cuttings of Purple Heart (Tradescantia pallida) to be planted in the Paracord hanger. Purple Heart is an evergreen perennial which bears very beautiful flowers all year round. It is also very easy to grow from cuttings and needs very little amount of water.
- Fill three-fourth of the planter with potting soil
- Collect cuttings of Purple Heart from the mother plant
- Plant the cuttings in the soil
- water lightly
Step 22: Hang the Planter
You can hang the Paracord plant hanger with the Purple Hearts anywhere you like indoors or in the portico, which will be an added attraction to the surroundings. This is also a perfect gift to your loved ones for Valentine's Day...
Though it looks simple, this one is a somewhat difficult project as you have to master the knots before proceeding with the actual work. And working with so many cords hanging around is also confusing at times. However, the finished plant hanger is worth having at your home...