Cable Decluttering With a Twist

I hate cable clutter, but what does one do with stray cables that can’t be hidden behind a desk or concealed in wire loom?

Thankfully electricians, climbers, and roadies have been dealing with cable clutter for years, and they’ve utilized a nice technique that we can take advantage of!

The Chain Sinnet Cable Wrapping Method

The chain sinnet (aka chain braid, daisy chain, or monkey braid) is a cable shortening and storing method that can be used to make stray cables a little more pleasing to the eye.

You creating a chain sinnet by making a loop at the base of your cord, then pull the remaining cord into each new loop. Be sure to keep your loops loose to avoid damaging the cord.

Ultimately, you should end up with something that looks like this:

The sinnet process can be confusing, so here’s an uber cheesy video that shows you how to create one; just note that the starting loop is different in the video.

In Conclusion…

I wouldn’t recommended using the chain sinnet technique on all the cords in your home and office, but it’s something to consider when tidying up extension, speaker, power, and headphone cords that lie in plain view.

Anyway, leave a comment if you’re aware of any other methods to deal with cords that can’t be hidden!

The Closet Entrepreneur

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  1. Tushar

    That is cool. It beats using using the twist ties. Do this with my cell phone cords.

  2. @Tushar – It’s funny you say that because that’s what I’ve done with my cellphone’s cord. 🙂

    It beats having a long cord hanging all over the place, or having to bundle up loose cord if you use twist ties.

  3. Riona Torres

    It’s handy to keep an unbent paperclip looped around the base of your wires. Then simply loop any extra wire like a coil and drag the paper clip around it. It’s subtle, and not only makes it easier to look at, it also saves surface space. Alternative items could be folder fasteners or any other flexible materials you find lying around.

  4. @Riona Torres – Would you happen to have a photo or a link of this in action? I’m a visual learner. 🙂

  5. Sandra

    My new year’s resolution was to declutter my office. One goal is checked off my list. Another thing that I’m finding are companies that are saving money and energy by using phone conference calling , web and video conferencing services . Check out the blog at: Great article.

  6. @Sandra – Kudos on knocking out a new year’s resolution! I hope the office is looking great. 🙂

  7. Rebekah

    I’ve always done this with rope, but never with cables for fear that if I leave them like that for too long, they’ll kink up into permanent little loops. I know the little cords (like earphones and some chargers) won’t kink, but the thicker ones (like that Mac charger) do have that tendency. Have you had this problem at all?

  8. Should have added a step 3 there. Took me a little trial an error to figure out how to keep tying it.

    If this is any help you take the extra cord (would be the cord bottom right in “2”) move it to upper right and you’ll see a loop form similar to first one. To lock it, take the extra cord and make a similar action to “1” but pull the cord over the braided loop instead of underneath like you did in “1”. Repeat. At the end pull the bit of cord through the final loop to lock the braid.

    To get it to unwrap like in the video. You need to unlock the braid. You undo the last circle and you should then be able to pull it out. Remember to be careful depending on the quality of the cable so you don’t damage it

  9. JB

    I used to do that about 10 years ago with the extension cord. I haven’t done it in so long that I forgot how to start it. Nice to see a video on it.

  10. Andrea

    I’m laughing–I use this method all the time. Guys, all you are doing is crocheting your cords 🙂 See, you *can* do knit and crochet!

  11. yhalmudt

    Nice, but please don’t use on speaker cables or interconnects! The result most likely will sound horrible…

  12. mike

    Can you detail the step 3 for doing this on cell phone cord ?

  13. Thom

    In effect: crochet!

  14. carole

    Maybe this will help tame the cord gremlin that is always tangling my headphone wires.

  15. Jeenu

    All my desk cables are now braided. Thanks for this tip!

  16. That sounds real kewl!

  17. mjh

    I first learned this technique when I was skydiving. It was a way of gathering up your lines and keeping them relatively organized if you happened to land a long way from the drop zone and had a hike in front of you.

  18. @Rebekah – You should be okay as long as you ensure that the loops are not too tight. Just remember that you’re trying to keep some slack in the loops or else you risk damaging the cable if it’s pulled too tight—hope that helps. 😉

    @Todd – Sorry if the steps were unclear, and you’re right on that missing third step. I’m glad you were able to figure it out though, and thanks for your tips—I hope others find them useful as well! 🙂

    @Andrea, @Thom – I think you’ve found a way to bridge the gap between men and women! 😉

    @mike – Be sure to check out @Todd’s comment on the missing step three. 😉

    @carole – I hope so, he’s a nasty little bugger for sure! 🙂

    @mjh – That’s pretty interesting; I’m pretty sure rock climbers must use these techniques once in a while as well.

    @JB, @Jeenu, @Balakumar Mathu – You’re very welcome and thank you for the positive comment!

  19. Mim

    Thanks for de-mystifying this tidy solution to cord clutter! I thought my electrician friends were being possessive not to teach me how to do this! And I love the parallel to crocheting! Makes perfect sense now! Thanks again!

  20. Great tip. I have never heard or seen that method to declutter chords or wires, but that will do the trick nicely. Love the method. Will put it to use right away!

  21. @Mim, @Declutter – Your welcome and glad to hear that you enjoyed the tip!

  22. Stephen

    I also did a 3 way plat with the single cable, which very well. Loop the cable to the desired length, creating 3 cords (like looping the cable into thirds); then plat like you would a pony tail.

  23. Great Idea. After 30 years, an easier way for the daily cord.
    Saw the link on Electricianstalk.

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