Rachel Lynn

Diagramming Knots - Print Design

Project Overview

In this project, we were asked to create step-by-step diagrams for tying four different knots. We were not allowed to use any words to describe steps so that our diagrams could speak for themselves and guide viewers in their knot-tying. After creating our diagrams, we were allowed to display them in any format of our choosing. I chose to display mine in the form of a book.

initial low-fidelity sketches

Design Challenges

Clarity of Steps

The diagrams needed to have enough steps to aid the viewers in their knot-tying, but not too many to be redundant. The knot diagrams needed to have structure in each step so that the steps feel cohesive. The knots could not have any captions to aid the tying process.


We were given freedom to display the knots in the way we felt was best. The display needed to be cohesive and complement the knots without adding unnecessary information. The method in which we displayed our knots needed to be simple with no distractions.

Adding Steps

I began with too few steps that left some gaps within the diagram, but this actually became helpful because I could see where steps needed to be added rather than making the decision of cutting steps down. I wanted just enough steps to create clarity. I also began with more freeform ropes that ebbed and flowed, so to create more structure, I used more straight lines and even curves. I built each step off the previous to keep the same visual system.

revised low-fidelity sketches

Creating the book

I felt that a book would be a great way to display the knots and help viewers follow along in a cohesive and fun way. I developed a color palette that was more subtle with a fun pop of color and used knot puns to add humor. I changed the color of the knot diagrams to match the color palette and overlayed the pink hue on my photos to create a clean visual system. The book format allows the viewer to focus on each diagram by itself as well as viewing imagery to inform them of the final knot and how it should look. This format also makes the knot-tying experience more interactive and lively.

A look at the book

front and back covers
inside cover
section header
rope page spread


I feel that I was very successful with this project. I created step-bystep diagrams that clearly display strong sequencing without the need of words or descriptions. I also implemented a creative way to display the knots in a way that is engaging for the viewers. Because I decided to go with a booklet, I wanted to make it something that people would enjoy reading. I wanted it to feel casual and a little playful while maintaining order, and I believe I achieved this. If I were to revise this project, I would love to add more knots and a table of contents as well as additional pages of fun facts or other knot-related trivia to add more to the flow of the book.