Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Winter Pinterst Challenge - Monkey Fist

I did it! I completed my very first Pinterest Challenge. The Pinterest Challenge is a seasonal event that was created by Katie Bower of Bower Power Blog and Sherry Petersik of Young House Love. Katie decided that we all needed to stop pinning and start doing the projects that we pin on Pinterest. The challenge is in no way sponsored by Pinterest. Its just a fun little event for everyone to take part in.

So for my first Pinterest Challenge I needed to find something I could complete over the weekend and preferably with something that I didn't need to buy any supplies for. I scrolled through my crafts board on Pinterest and found a tutorial on how to make a Monkey Fist Rope Ball. Many people use them for Nautical decoration but I had another plan in mind .......

Creative In Chicago

The image I had pinned was from However, it looks like the tutorial was actually posted on YouTube by a user named Stormdrane. Watching the tutorial it makes tying these knots look really simple, which in some ways they are but it can take a little practice. It took me 3 tries to get it right. Here is the YouTube video with the tutorial.

I took a few photos of my process but I'm sure the video is a bit more complete. The tutorial uses a 1 inch metal ball bearing but I wanted something larger so I used an old golf ball. I didn't measure out the length of rope exactly. Instead I just estimated it by wrapping the rope loosely around my 3 fingers three times and then took that times 3. I worked out pretty well. The tutorial shows you to wrap it around each direction 3 times but when I did that my golf ball showed through. So I redid it and did it 4 times each direction. Here is the Sisal rope and golf ball I used.

And of course you will need an audience to watch you complete this awesome project. Brady was willing to comply and considered attacking the rope the whole time.

First wrap it 3 to 4 times (depending on the size center ball you plan on using) around your three fingers. and place the last line between your middle finger and ring finger.

Then feed the other end of the twine around the lines that you already wrapped and through the middle and ring finger and feed it through to the front. Do this the same number of times you wrapped it around your fingers.

Place your center weight, in my case a golf ball, inside your twine.

Then feed the rope back through the loop above the ball and then forward through the loop under the ball.

Again you repeat this motion the same number of times as the other directions.

Now all you need to do is go around starting from the beginning end and tighten the rope. The key is to hold the pieces next to the part you are tightening so they don't slip. You want to probably go through and do this a couple times. I had a little tail left over. So I wrapped some scotch tape around the end to make it easier to feed it under the tightened ropes this made my wrapping a little fuller so I couldn't see any of the golf ball and then I just trimmed the end and tucked it in.

After it was all done I rubbed some catnip all over it to make it a little more interesting for the furry children.

Brady wasn't overly excited but Miss Tasha was rubbing her face all over it. I'd call this project a success.

Make sure you visit the rest of the Pinterest Challenge projects at the hosts blogs: Young House LoveBower PowerThe Remodeled LifeDecor & The DogSo will you be making your own Monkey Fist balls? These could be fun with some bright colored rope if you wanted something that wasn't so nautical looking.


  1. Thanks for this! I've seen these at stores, but never wanted to pay for a pile of rope. I didn't know how to make it though - will be doing that soon, probably for some cats and some for me!

  2. Oh your cats are so cute!! Great project :)

    1. Thank you. Brady is the tabby and is my husband's. The tortie is Tasha and she is my baby girl. We each had them before we moved in together. They don't always get along. Your Cooper and Ollie are adorable.