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The Everyday Uses of Sailor Craft Knots

A historic skill from the high seas turned functional design flourish for household items

by David Graver
on 11 September 2015

Even as the summer wanes, the allure of the ocean remains. Nautical themes have long found their way into the world of design, perhaps for this reason, but for those familiar with sailing, there's nothing quite as important as a knot. A good understanding of sailing knots has helped guarantee safety and success for sailors for centuries. As a reflection of this, historically some Spanish and English sailors would make decorative knots in their downtime to sell when reaching port. With all of this in mind, Charleston, South Carolina-based Keith Hudson developed Sailor Craft Knots—a charming hub of decorative but useful handmade knotted goods.

From dog leashes to door stops and book-ends, there's something familiar to their design and ultimately authentic. As Hudson explains to CH, "First, I'm a member of the International Guild of Knot Tyers. I have been a member since 1992. The guild is designed to teach and keep the old knots alive." He has incorporated sometimes centuries-old knots into his work, and the variations in the knots dictate the different types of items he produces. When not making his own goods, Hudson also spends time repairing (and re-knotting) antique decorative knots and lines. There's something magical about his work, his interest in preserving history and ultimately the functionality of the objects he creates—even if they're just designed to punch up a corner.

Browse all the Sailor Craft Knot offerings online.

Images courtesy of Sailor Craft Knots

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