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title: Artist Youngmin Lee
Maedub are Korean traditional decorative knots that have been used for centuries to decorate traditional dress and ritual objects. Instructions for making them have been passed down through generations of skilled men and women specialists.

The cording used to make the knots is called Dahwe, which was traditionally made form silk thread. Now synthetics are also widely used.

The knots were decorative items used on male and female outfits. For the male the knot attached a wooden identity tag to the sash of his outer garment. Knots to decorate a folding fan were exclusively used by the scholar officials. Knots and tassels were also used to decorate pouches, spectacle cases, and other items.

Norigae, knotted pendant trinkets, were used by women. Knots embellished many other personal belongings of women such as earring tassels, pouches and various headgears.

Korean traditional knotting which generally uses only one cord to make each knot design is quite different from European macramé which creates knot patterns with several cords.

Source: Kim, Eun-Young, Traditional Knots (Seoul; Gana art Gallery Publisher,1992)