A step-by-step guide to making a hammock chair

A chair, an armchair or a deckchair, or a little of all three. And, certainly, a seat very beautiful in its simplicity, but also comfortable and easy to make in a short time. It can even be considered as the “number one” or “official” seat of bushcraft, backpacking, and wilderness camping… Its origin is mysterious, but it is likely that it goes back to the dawn of time. The hammock-chair has the advantage of being easily adaptable to the user’s morphology. It is also adjustable and can be adapted to different situations: nap, lazing, meditation, reading, active discussion around the fire, or even manual work…

Create the structure

1 Layout the 3 uprights, 2 on the ground and the third on top, aligning their ends.
2 With the rope, tie a capstan knot around one of them, then make a series of turns around the 3 uprights and finish with an overhand knot (tripod knot, see here).
3 Straighten the tripod by spreading the uprights, between 1.10 and 1.50 m from the ground.

Create the seat

1 Double the canvas and pass the crossbar at the fold.
2 Squeeze one end of the fabric in your hand and tie the end of one 80 cm length of cord securely. Do the same at the other end.
3 Tie the 2 cords at the top of the tripod: the crossbar will hang against the 2 uprights.

Adjusting the seat

1 Sit down. The chair is very comfortable this way. By pushing on your feet, you sink into the chair. But you can still adjust it:
2 Adjusting the length of the fabric: to raise the seat crossbar – and to sit a little higher yourself – simply shorten one of the cords (or wrap it around the top of one of the posts).
3 Adjusting the distance of the tripod: by moving the 2 front legs of the chair apart or together, you lower or raise the seat crossbar. By moving the rear leg closer or further apart, you can tilt the chair more or less.
4 Adjusting the seat crossbar: You can attach the seat crossbar to the 2 front legs with a brace.

This is often a good solution, once you have found the best position for this crossbar, according to your morphology. And the chair remains adjustable by playing on the cords and by spreading the rear post.

Technical advice

Which fabric?

Any type of fabric is suitable, as long as it is strong enough to support you. You can even use a sheet or a meat bag. A weather-resistant fabric, such as hammock or deck chair fabric, is ideal.

What size?

Adjust them to your size. First, build a large chair, with legs of 2 m – or more. If it doesn’t fit, you can always shorten the posts to them – or give up your seat to the giant of the group, and make a smaller one.


A simple triangle.
Two poles tied at the top, with 1 canvas doubled on 1 crosspiece are enough to make a seat: just lean them against a tree. You can even do without canvas, by sitting on the crossbar and leaning against the uprights, which must be close enough. A seat that may be prehistoric, but really comfortable!







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