macrame

By Alise Munson

Macramé comes from a 13th Century Arabic weavers’ word “migramah” meaning “Fringe” This refers to the decorative fringes on camels and horses which help, amongst other things, to keep the flies off in the hot desert regions of northern Africa…

Another school of thought think that it comes from Turkish “makrama”: “napkin,” or “towel” and was a way to secure the ends of pieces of weaving by using the excess thread and yarn along the top and bottom edges of loomed fabrics.- Thanks, Wikipedia

Has macramé always been a part of our design culture? The craft was huge in the '70s when jute reigned supreme and there was a potted plant in every bathroom. Our owls and bikinis lost favor, but friendship bracelets and surfer-inspired chokers crept back into popular culture in the '80s and '90s.  Even tying shoelaces of fancy sneakers in unique ways is an homage to the knot arts.

So agrees trendsetter Emily Katz, Portland's queen of nomad chic and who's big in Japan and Instagram. Her interest and revival started as a knot to connect to her mom and soon spread into her interior design aesthetic. She now travel the globe teaching the macramé craft and leading the DIY creative movement in Portland.

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Emily shared her vast knot-ledge (yep, went there) recently at a spring WeMake Discovery Workshop.

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With four strands of white cotton rope and a brass claps, DIY fans jumps in to make a new accessory.

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Everyone was encouraged to grab some rope and take her turn at a community art piece.

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The workshop was held at the new Tillamook Station in NE Portland.

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