How to Make Your Very Own Hammock Chair
Happy Hammock Day! Grab a cocktail and your favorite book, and kick back for some leisure time to celebrate hanging lounge chairs. Whoever created hammocks: Hats off to you! There’s really no better way to relax (or accidentally fall asleep with your book on your face) than sinking into a floating bed. As it turns out, hammocks are a great DIY project, so today we’re going to get out our tools and make one that is perfect for your yard, porch or even your living room. We took inspiration from Angie Diersman and The Merry Thought, and sprinkled in some skills from our Acrylic E-Class. Check out the tutorial below, and then get swingin’.
– 3 1¼-inch dowels, 30 inches long
– 2 ⅝-inch hardwood dowels, 36 inches long
– 8+ yards ½-inch rope (weight bearing 300 pounds)
– 4 1-inch wood screws
– canvas cloth
– fabric paint
– drill with ⅝-inch drill bit, a ½-inch drill bit and a Phillips head drill bit
– tape measure
– fabric scissors
– sewing machine
– paint brushes
– drill press or dowel jig (optional but highly recommended)
First, measure and cut a piece of canvas 23 x 48 inches. You can make it a little bit longer if you want a deeper seat.
- Measure and cut a piece of canvas 23 x 48 inches.
- Wrap the ends of the canvas over your 1 ¼-inch dowel to create a sleeve that fits, remove the dowel and sew in place.
- Paint your canvas as if it were a piece of art for your wall!
- Grab two of your 1¼-inch dowels, then measure and mark 2 inches and 3½ inches on both ends. On the third 1¼-inch dowel, only mark at 3½ inches.
- Using the ⅝-inch drill bit, drill holes at the 2-inch marks on both dowels.
- Switch over to the ½-inch drill bit, and drill holes at the 3½-inch marks on all three dowels.
- Slip your canvas onto the 1¼-inch dowels (the ones with two holes on each end).
- Slide your ⅝-inch dowels into the ⅝-inch holes to create a frame. Drill a 1-inch wood screw through the intersection of each dowel to secure the frame. Make sure they are even!
- The length of your rope will depend on the location you are hanging your hammock. We cut a 12-foot piece of rope to hang from a 9-foot ceiling. Fold the rope in half and create a knot at the fold.
- File the rope through the holes of the remaining 1¼-inch dowel (the one with one hole on each end). Make sure the top knot is lined up with the middle of the dowel with about 1½ feet of rope on each side (from the top to the dowel). Then tie knots in the section of rope that you put through the holes. Next, send the rope through the holes on the top of your frame and tie knots to secure.
- Hang your hammock up on a hook that will hold 300 pounds. Adjust the knots to even out the hammock. Then take a length of rope and file it through the hole in the bottom dowel of the frame. Wrap that piece of rope around the solitary dowel up top and tie a knot. Repeat the process on the other side.
- Step back to make sure the hammock is hanging evenly.
Take one of your 1¼-inch dowels and place it at the long end of the fabric. Wrap the end over the top to create a sleeve, leaving a bit of space so that it is not a tight fit. Then remove the dowel and sew the fabric in place. Do this to both ends.
We’re using canvas, so we figured we might as well paint it :) Either plan out your design or create abstract shapes and paint splatters to create a design that wows. Not sure about your painting skills? Grab our Acrylic E-Class for some tips and tricks. Once you’ve finished your painting, let it dry completely.
Forget the hammock — we might just hang this on the wall!
Time to construct your frame. Grab two of your 1¼-inch dowels, then measure and mark 2 inches and 3½ inches on both ends. On the third 1¼-inch dowel, only mark at 3½ inches. Using the ⅝-inch drill bit, drill holes at the 2-inch marks. Switch over to the ½-inch drill bit, and drill holes at the 3½-inch marks. Slip your canvas onto the 1¼-inch dowels (with two holes). Slide your ⅝-inch dowels into the ⅝-inch holes to create a frame. Drill a 1-inch wood screw through the intersection of the dowels on all four corners to secure the frame.
Pro Tip: It is very hard to drill even holes through the dowels. If they are off, your frame will not be square, so it’s really important that you get this part right. The easiest way to make even holes is to use a drill press or a dowel jig. The drill press will make perfectly straight holes; the dowel jig will do the same thing, but it also will keep them level if you don’t twist the dowel and move the jig down to the other end. That all said, we made ours without the help of these tools and it turned out fine!
For this part, you’ll need to figure out your own measurements. Buying eight or more yards of rope should be enough unless you are hanging your hammock chair from a very high tree branch. We cut a 12-foot piece of rope to hang from a 9-foot ceiling. Whatever the length, fold the rope in half and create a knot at the fold. File the rope through the holes of the 1¼-inch dowel that is not part of the frame. Make sure the top knot is lined up with the middle of the dowel with about 1½ feet of rope on each side (from the top to the dowel). Then tie knots in the section of rope that you put through the holes. Then send the rope through the holes on the top of your frame and tie knots to secure.
Hang your hammock up on a hook that will hold 300 pounds. Adjust the knots to even out the hammock. Then take a length of rope and file it through the hole in the bottom dowel of the frame. Wrap that piece of rope around the solitary dowel up top and tie a knot. Repeat the process on the other side. Step back to make sure the hammock is hanging evenly.
Now go sit on your artwork!
Ready to give this a try? Make your own and then share your photos with us using the hashtags #britstagram and #iamcreative. As always, if you have questions, leave them in the comments below.
Getting the word out about your brand takes time, drive, and ingenuity. And it doesn't come easy for many entrepreneurs. As part of our collaboration with Office Depot, we're chatting with Selfmade alum Taylor Morgan McPherson, founder of Sustainable Sparkle Bar, about ways in which she scored press as a solo startup brand and what she learned from Selfmade to take her brand marketing up a notch.
B + C: How did you know Sustainable Sparkle Bar was your business to start?
Glitter has always been my thing, so when I started my event company I decided to make it my niche. I started telling people I threw glitter-themed parties where people would get sparkled with glitter body art and makeup. Six months after that I applied to my first festival and to work with SUR restaurant in West Hollywood.
B + C: What's one strategy that's helped you start your business?
I honestly can't say that I've had a specific strategy that I've followed when it comes to getting my business off the ground. I have a PR background so I was just constantly pitching new business and posting on social media.
B + C: What's the biggest challenge you face as a small business owner?
I would say creating a stable income and revenue stream. With a seasonal, event-based business it can be very up and down.
B + C: What was your most valuable takeaway from Selfmade?
The relationships I made and the push to start an email database.
B + C: How do you stay motivated?
I love what I do and I believe in myself 100%. Staying motivated isn't the hard part. Pushing myself to do the work and staying accountable is the hard part.
B + C: What's your best organizational tip? Do you use any apps that help you manage your business?
I keep multiple to-do lists, hand-written and digital. I also tell clients and partners that I will have something to them by a certain time or day so I have to stick to it.
B + C: What's one piece of advice you would give to female entrepreneurs on the brink of starting?
Just do it, take the leap. And don't worry about what anyone else says to thinks.
B + C: Who inspires you in the entrepreneurial space?
Issa Rae, I'm so inspired by everything that she's created being a creative and a black woman. It's my dream to have my own show one day based on my life and where I give advice and talk about the world. She's doing it and making people laugh and giving people joy. And it's based in LA. Watching Insecure only further cemented my dreams of wanting to live in LA.
B + C: How did you hear about the Office Depot scholarship?
One of my friends that I met through Camp No Counselors saw an IG ad for it and nominated me.
B + C: What has receiving the scholarship to Selfmade done to help you start/grow your business?
It's completely helped me level up and take my business to another level. Selfmade helped me host my first virtual event and taught me how to set up my website to sell tickets to events and get RSVPs.
B + C: How have Office Depot services or products helped you accomplish more in your business?
I got new cards to send in all of my orders with my discount code on them. I also bought a really cool 4K camera that I now use for my social media.
Let Office Depot OfficeMax help you stand out in the crowd. From signs, posters & banners to promote your business, to marketing materials to keep your customers informed, Office Depot OfficeMax offers a full suite of business services & solutions to help you & your business get noticed.
Head to Office Depot's Selfmade page to check out even more amazing business resources (and discounts!) to help you accomplish more on your entrepreneurial journey. These offers are available for a limited time only, so be sure to take advantage of all this goodness while supplies last. Want to join the next Selfmade cohort this summer? Check out all of the scholarship details right here.