Saturday, December 3, 2011

#5 - A Simple and Easy Hair Bow

My 7-year old daughter has been begging me to try making her some hair bows.  I've made bows for wreaths, for gift wrapping, and for crafts, but never have I attempted to make a hair bow.  Needless to say, I was thrilled to come across a Pin from Notes from the Patch.  Suzanne has her own quilt store in Bakersfield, CA and this is the blog she runs for the store.  The specific post I found here shows a super simple way to make basic hair bows.

Since we live in Alabama, we are all about College Football this time of year.  And when in Alabama, you must choose a side - Roll Tide (University of Alabama) or War Eagle (Auburn)!  I grew up a Florida State fan, which I still am to this day, but in the 3 years we've been here, I've become a huge fan and supporter of the University of Alabama Roll Tide!!  The recent win over Auburn inspired me to make Daisha a hair bow in red, gray, and white in support of her favorite college football team (black would have been included as well, but I decided since this was my first attempt, 3 different ribbons was plenty).

Suzanne recommended 1.5"-wide gross grain ribbon, but since I was using multiple colors, I went with 7/8" for the crimson and gray, and 1/4" for the white.  Following her instructions, I cut 1 yard of each and laid them out side-by-side.  Start by cutting 5" off of one end and set this extra ribbon to the side - you'll use it later.

Marking the ribbons with the dotted lines was the easy part (you should use a marker that will bleed through to the other side).  Your first mark will be at 3.5" in from one end, then every 6" until you reach the other end.

There should be a total of 5 marks when you're finished.  The next step is where it got tricky for me... stay with me and you'll see what I mean.  You want to take a needle and double thread it, making a large knot at the end.  After that, you simply weave the needle in and out in small stitches using the first dotted line as your guide.

I opted to lay the thinner white ribbon on top of the red and then slightly overlapped the gray.  I held them together the best I could while doing my stitches.  Next, using the fan-fold method, bring the first line over to meet the next line and continue stitching.

You'll use this method all the way to the end.  This is how it should look when you're done stitching through all of the dotted lines:

Now the fun part... gently pull on the thread as you push the ribbons together.  You will want to shape them as you go - I didn't think about this when I did it, so I wasn't totally thrilled with the end result.  Once you have the bow the way you want it (you should have 2 loops and a tail on each side for each piece of ribbon you're using), wrap the thread around the middle snuggly and tie it off.  You may want to stitch through the middle a couple of times to give it some extra security.

This is where you will want to pull back out the 5" you cut off in the beginning.  Depending on the width of the ribbon you used, fold it lengthwise into half, thirds, or whatever you need to have a decent width.  Then you will make a loose knot in the middle of the ribbon:

* A note here:  Since I was using more than one piece of ribbon, I actually cut a couple of extra inches for this piece of ribbon to ensure it would fit around my bow properly.  After making the bow with just the red, I knotted a piece of the white around for added effect.

Apply a small amount of hot glue to the backside of your knot and attach it to the middle of your bow.  Wrap the edges around and hot glue each flap, adding your clip in along the way.  I glued one flap, glued the clip, then glued the other flap.

Trim the excess ribbon and you're finished!

There are lots of ways to decorate the middle of this bow.  I am still searching for an elephant we can put in the middle to represent the Alabama mascot, but for now, Daisha was completely happy with how it looks:

I chose to use a clip with a flat base so that she can clip them to her headbands or into her hair.  There are so many different types of clips you can buy - I had no clue.  I can't wait to try some other variations of this bow and start building up her collection!

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