Crocheting and Nesting Your Paracord for Storage Alternatives - ITS Tactical

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Crocheting and Nesting Your Paracord for Storage Alternatives

By Kelly Black

Over the years you’ve more than likely come to the conclusion that different tools you have around the house can be used for more than one purpose. Sometimes, we figure this out by necessity in an urgent situation and other times a light bulb goes off in our heads as we look at something and think up a new idea. The latter is what happened to me one day while I was looking at coiled Type 3 Paracord sitting on my desk.

As I looked at the loose paracord and a tool I had within reach, I pondered a way that would help me make a better use of the unused cord. Tools and rope have gone hand-in-hand for a long time. Rope work can require the use of tools, like marlinspikes and fids, when it comes to rope manufacturing, splicing or repair. Even though paracord isn’t quite the same as rope, I wondered if the this idea would transmogrify.

Type 3 Paracord Storage Mat

I’ve mentioned in previous articles that one of my hobbies is to crochet. I have a rather large collection of crochet hooks in all sizes that I’ve accumulated over the years and it occurred to me that one of my large crochet hooks would be a great tool to transform this loose coil of paracord into something more secure. I gave it a shot and it worked!

I found that by crocheting a simple chain, followed by slip stitches, I was able to create square or rectangle shapes that made paracord storage more utilitarian. (Check out the video below for instructions) It’s no secret that a  large coiled loop of cordage can come undone or get tangled. With this new “crocheted” configuration, paracord can be stored almost anywhere and lay flat.

A section of 100 feet of Type 3 Paracord can be transformed into a small mat that would store well in a trunk or a “go bag” without worry of   becoming a tangled mess when you need to use it. Smaller sections of 20 – 30 feet make great coaster size squares, which could easily be stored on a shelf, in a drawer, or in the small compartment of your car door.

Another thing that’s great about storing paracord after its been crocheted, is that it can easily be unraveled for use and you don’t have to worry about knots or tangles in your line.

Don’t have a crochet hook? You can also make these stitches using your fingers. The result may be a little less uniform, but with practice you can perfect your work.

Once I realized crocheting Type 3 Paracord would work well as a storage solution, I started thinking about other ways I store fine/thin yarns that would translate into alternatives for Type 1 Paracord storage. Sure, I could crochet the finer weight of cordage with a smaller crochet hook, however another idea quickly popped into my head.

Type 1 Paracord Storage Nest

When I unravel a crocheted or knitted project, sometimes it’s easiest to rewind the yarn into a center-pull ball using my thumb. This works really well for small amounts of yarn and creates a small nest that can be reused by pulling the working end strand from the center.

I’ve found that winding the Type 1 Paracord on my thumb can be a bit fiddly at first , however with a little practice it becomes easier to manage. The nest of cord would probably store best in a location where it wouldn’t get jostled around, but if you have a piece of netting to go over the nest, it will hold everything together firmly. You can buy yarn/cord nets or save the netting that comes on apples and pears when you buy produce, or on certain types of flowers at your local flower shop.

These are just a couple of ideas for you to consider for paracord storage, if you’re looking to eliminate coils of cord hanging around here and there. Do you have other ways of storing paracord that works well for you? If so, please share them in the comments below and check out the other storage methods we’ve shown here on ITS linked below.

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  • Matt

    I can’t wait to see the video for this project. I have a project in mind for a disabled veteran friend of mine.

    • Kelly Black

      Sounds great! Let us know how your project goes and let me know if you have any questions.

  • Hank Morrow

    Looking forward to the video, never crocheted in my life. and I am sure no matter how I explain it to the wife, she will still be laughing at me as I act all “domestic”

    • Kelly Black

      Maybe if you present it as a “tactically domestic” skill you won’t get teased. Good luck and let us know how it goes! : )

  • Bill H

    Hmm….remember that Kevlar core 550 cord? Can you crochet me a vest? 🙂

    • Kelly Black

      I have faith that you can do it, Bill! : )

  • This is one of the more clever dual-purpose ideas I have seen in a while. Yes, giggles from the wife but she started to make a list. Stadium butt cushions, coasters, place mats, dash mats… I’m doomed.

    • Kelly Black

      Thanks for your feedback! Let me know how comfy the cushions are… LOL!

  • egs

    great idea. so far i’ve just stuffed it in a ziplock bag. thanks!

    • Kelly Black

      We appreciate your feedback! Let us know if you try it out!

  • Now there’s an idea! I weaved almost 100ft of paracord into a belt for myself (using a blazebar knot if I’m not mistaken) But I like the idea of these mats for mass storage!

    You could probably even use them to actually make other functional items such as hats (though I’m not sure how warm or comfortable a paracord beanie would be!)

    Of course the next step would be knitting amirite? paracord sweaters anyone? XDDD

    • Kelly Black

      Thanks for your feedback, Tessa! Keep us posted if you take the leap into knitting paracord… you’re braver than I am! : )

  • Dr. Ron G.

    Nice work
    I found video to show ppl how to make there own nets for hunting/fishing
    They could also be used for those paracord storage mats

    • I’ve made one hat already and it is super cute! I’m wonkirg on my second hat and I want to add a flour to it. I’m so excited! I’ve only been crocheting for about a week now. Thank you so much for your easy to follow tutorials. I fail every time I try to read a pattern but I can follow you and the end results are always amazing! Keep up the great work!

  • Jason

    I love the storage ball idea, very easy to wrap and comes out tangle free as I need it! Thanks so much for sharing.
    I am going to have my wife teach me to crochet next, looks like a handy storage idea and even a faster way to make rifle slings and stuff then braiding it by hand like I have been. I know how to sew, why not crochet? Skills are skills.

    Thanks for your time in making these!

    • Jason

      Ok, I learned to crochet, very simple to learn. The needle only cost $2.50 but you could even carve one from wood in the field if you wanted or needed.

      It makes a nice compact and tangle free way to store your paracord. I made 2 25 foot ones and a 50 foot one. Being a novice it took probable 45mins to do 50 feet, but I was watching TV so not really a time waster.

      Mostly I like the fact that you don’t have to undo the whole thing to use your cord, you just pull off what you need, 1 foot or 10 feet, whatever and the rest stays in the braid, tangle free and ready for the next use.

      I made squares this time but next I will try doing a strap about 2″ wide and use it as a sling for my water bottle or musket bag. Practical and cord when I need it.

      Maybe make a rectangle and then fold it in half and lace up the sides to may a small organizer bag for inside my pack, multiple uses. If it is taking up room in my pack anyway might as well figure out a way to make it do something.

      Anyway, just some ideas, thanks for the videos and sending me in a new direction!

  • ron

    I’ve been using a “chain knot” to store para cord for years. It shortens the apparent length and reduces the chance of the loose rope knotting up. It’s a long skinny version of one of your mats that does knot require any tools to create.

  • ron

    (oops…) The Chain knot is the same as your chain stitch, but I do it without a hook.

    One thing I’ve learned is that if you expect to store the cord that way for a long time, make the chain loose. If you make the chain “neat and tight” and leave it that way the cord will tend to settle into that shape and undo into a kinky rope.

  • Rob

    One of things that you might want to consider is using paracord “mats” to fill the knee and elbow pockets of several brands of tactical clothing. There are foam kneepads on the market that fit into these pockets, but they are very easily damaged by abrasion and the smooth surface makes it easy for an elbow to slide off at the range. Putting these “mats” between the fabric of the pant and the kneepad would 1) protect the pad from damage 2) provide a textured surface for resting an elbow with kneeling shots as taught by numerous police academies 3) provide a space for paracord storage.

    • Stoney

      Good idea!

  • Stoney

    Kelly: Both a buddy and I did this for our EDC Bags after watching your video. Works great. Good idea! Keep them coming. I intend to use this from now on!

  • Skip Van Hook

    Tried it with 50′ of cord; looks great except for my ends look a little goofy- any advice?

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