Scoubidou tying techniques

In this project and any future scoubidou projects, I highly recommend using natural cotton or other macrame threads. You don’t need fancy plastic thread to make scoubi string patterns! While the thread is wasteful, I think the patterns themselves are still worth learning if you’re new to crafts. You can use a lot of these patterns to make simple bracelets or keychains. Personally, I like attaching them to usb sticks, so I don’t lose them. You can also attach them to a zipper if it needs a better handle to grip on to.

This project is definitely something for beginners. However, even if you’ve been crafting for a long time, it’s worth learning how to make them anyway. It’s a “frivolous” craft that has a lot of practical uses.

Give it a go!

If you know someone new to crafts who wants to try something easy, pass the post along to them. If you’re anything like me and these threads plagued your childhood too, then might as well give it that good old nostalgic go!

Two different methods of tying strings that were popularised during the scoubidou trend.


  • String
  • Tools
  • Scissors
  • (Optional) All purpose glue

Box knot

  1. Cut two pieces of string that are 50cm long. When practising, make sure the two strings are of different colours.
  2. Fold both strings in half, and tie one to the middle of the other string. You will have a cross of four equal lengths.
  3. Following the diagram above, begin tying your box shape. Take two opposite strings and pull them across the centre knot.
  4. Next, take one of the unused strings and pull it across too. Make sure to go over the first string and under the second. Repeat with the last string.
  5. Pull all four strings carefully until they form a square.
  6. Repeat steps 3-5 until you reach your desired length.
  7. When you’re done, tie it off. Tie strings that are opposite each other and cut off any excess.
  8. (Optional) Glue down the knots and let it dry. This will help keep them secure so they don’t untie.

Circle knot

  1. Do steps 1-2 of the box knot to prepare your strings.
  2. Tying a circle knot is very similar to the box knot, however, you must be sure to pull your strings diagonally instead of straight ahead. The diagram above will show you how this works.
  3. Take two of the strings, and pull them diagonally across the centre knot.
  4. After that, take an unused string and, much like in the box knot, pull it across too. Make sure to go over the first string and under the second, and repeat with the last string. This step is very similar to the box knot’s step.
  5. Finally, pull all strings carefully to form a square.
  6. Repeat steps 3-5. You should see a rounded pattern forming. If your shape isn’t rounded, then you are not crossing your strings diagonally.
  7. Finish the knot in the same way as you would a box knot.


Scoubidou strings are tougher than regular string, so they make good attachments for keychains. All you need to do is slide a keychain loop through the knot at the beginning of the scoubiou strand.

If you want to tie your scoubidou to a usb or other bits&bobs, then don’t cut the excess string at the end of your project. Instead, use it to tie your scoubidou onto a usb, then cut it!

© Isla

The Confounded Crafter, UK


Isla is an aspiring craftswoman currently working with threads to design simple-but-charming macramé jewellery, as well as other textile and print crafts.

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