Procedures for How to Make a Square Knot

by Alyssa Ideboen

A square knot, also known as a reef knot, works as a binding knot for everything from shoelaces to boat rigging. Easy to execute, this knot secures two pieces of cord to form a tight bond. While the square knot occasionally becomes undone, adding half-hitches and other knots on top of the basic knot will help keep it place. Learn how to use this quick knot to temporarily secure cording, laces or rope.

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Step 1

Hold one end of a piece of cord or shoelace in each hand. Make a single knot by passing the right cord over and then under the left cord. The right and left ends should now be switched. You should be holding one end in each hand.

Step 2

Cross the right cord over the left cord. Wrap the right cord under the left cord.

Step 3

Pull both ends tight to secure the knot.

Tips & Warnings

  • Tie another basic knot over the top of the square knot to form a half-hitch. Pass the left cord over and then under the right cord and pull tight.
  • Use caution when using this knot as it loosen easily. Add half-hitches to make the knot more secure.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/ Images