Fun Goods. Awesome Living.

DIY: How to Build Your Own Hammock

Hammocks are the epitome of summer; what could be better than outside naps in the shade with lemonade and a slice of watermelon? Have you ever wanted a hammock of your very own and either couldn’t afford one or never got around to doing anything about owning one? (If you’ve never had a hammock because you have no space for one, I’m sorry: I can’t help you there!)

Naval Hammock 2

Choosing canvas or heavy duty fabric in bright colors and patterns will also add flair to your backyard!

I’ve got a remedy for your hammocklessness! How about building your own? (Note: this article will not cover building a hammock stand; that’s for another time!) All right, so here’s what you’ll need for a standard naval hammock:

  • 2 meters x 1.2 meters (6.5×4 ft) or longer (if you’re tall) canvas or heavy duty fabric (something that will hold your weight, basically)
  • 60 meters (200 ft) rope (recommended: braided clothesline or climber’s rope)
  • Sewing machine and polyester thread (why polyester?)
  • 40 grommets, #1 burred
  • Grommet die, punch, or press
  • 2 large metal rings

Now that you’ve collected everything, here’s how to make your very own naval hammock.

First, make sure your canvas is 2×1.2 m (6.5×4 ft). Lengthen the measurement if you’re taller than most, and bear in mind that 15 cm (6 in.) of fabric will be lost from sewing the sides.

Turn in the long edges of the canvas 3.8cm (1.5 in.); sew a seam. Then, turn the short ends of the canvas in 3.8 cm (1.5 in.) and press into place. Repeat once, and then sew the pressed ends together using at least two or three rows of stitching. Keep the stitches at least 2.5 cm (1 in.) from the end to leave space for the grommets.

Mark 20 evenly spaced spots along each of the shorter ends of the hammock to mark your grommet placement. (Any kind of marker is fine, but if you don’t want the marks to show, use an invisible fabric marker or tailor’s chalk.) Using the grommet die/punch/press, punch the grommets into place along the marks. Set aside the canvas for a moment.

Cut your rope into 10 smaller ropes, each 2.7 m (9 ft) long. Fold five of the smaller lengths in half and and attach to one of the metal rings using a lark’s head knot. Then, make a clew knot with them and attach the ends to one side of your canvas through the grommets using a bowline knot. Repeat on the other side of the canvas using the second metal ring and the other five rope lengths.

Naval Hammock 1

Grab a pillow and a good book and take it easy this summer.

 

Finally, hang your hammock from two trees or a hammock stand. Make sure to test the hammock before putting your full weight on it so that you don’t hurt yourself! If you follow these steps, take a picture of the result and post here so that we can see what great craftsmen and women you are. Happy napping!

About V.E.

author, poet, editor, human

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