If you follow my social media pages, you’ll know yesterday I accidentally deleted all the photos for a completely different tutorial I was planning, irritated at my own clumsiness I decided to do something quick and super easy instead, i’ll have to re-make the other one later on in the week (Its a really good one!!).
So bows, the perfect accessory and if you love handmade you’ll know theres no shortage of sellers. This was something I sold a lot of back when TLWP was a children’s wear shop, I love how completely versatile they are, no matter the outfit you can always find (or make) one to match. So today I’m making one to match Mischa’s summer dress/ uniform for nursery.
Heres what you’ll need:
-Fabric, the fantastic thing about making a bow is that you can use scraps, there really is no set size, so if you’ve got a beautiful piece of fabric but only a small amount left it will still work.
– Fabric shears.
– Chop stick or anything skinny but blunt, you’ll need this for turning out your corners.
– Hot glue gun. these are so cheap to buy, I think mine was about £4 off ebay. I guarantee once you buy it you’ll be using it for all sorts of crafty little jobs.
– Dress makers pins.
– Crocodile clip – Alternatively you can use an elastic band or even a plastic headband, whatever works best with your little ones hair.
– Iron on interfacing, This is completely optional, you can still make a perfectly good bow without it, but I use this to stiffen, especially if i’m using I flimsy fabric, I use white/medium for light fabrics & black/medium for dark. If your using a stiff canvas type fabric you don’t need this, it will just make it harder to turn out.
– Bow template, again completely optional, but if you plan on making a fair few bows up its easier to have one. I just used an old cereal box and mine is 7″ length & 5″ width.
So lets get started.
First, using your template, cut your fabric. This will be the main part of your bow, you’ll also need to cut a piece for the middle, I usually make my middle strip around 1 and a 1/2″ wide and about 3″ length.
Next, you want to cut the same (or there abouts) with your interfacing. before ironing the two together. You want your interfacing on the back side of your fabric *Remember to iron your interfacing textured side down, the glue is a nightmare to scrub of your iron.
Whilst your ironing you should also fix your middle bit. Simply fold the insides in slightly & iron thoroughly.
Next, fold your fabric in half, (interfacing on the outside) I don’t usually need to pin, but if your still a bit shaky on your machine then you can.
Now you sew. I start up at the left hand side, down & round into an ‘L’ shape. stop, cut your thread, leave an inch or so gap & re-start doing the same up the other side. *Remember to lock your stitch, this is especially important around the gap, the next step will pull your bow apart if you don’t.
This is where you’ll need your chopstick (or other pointy object, nothing to sharp or it will just go through your fabric).
I’ve found the easiest way to do it, is to poke both of the corners furthest from the gap through, so you have them both peeking out, now simply pull gently & the entire bow will turn the right way out.
Now use your chopstick again to poke through the gap, inside and give the corners a good poke, this will give a nice turned out corner. It will give a beautiful finish to your bow. Once you’ve done this, pop an iron if it quickly to get rid of any wrinkles.
Now we need to fold your bow in half.
And then fold back on its self. Keeping tight hold of your folds, flip your bow over & do the same again.
Now is the time to plug your glue gun in. Glue the end of your strip down the middle of the back of your bow. The back can be any side you like, I choose the side that has the most folds.
Now fold your strip around until you’re back where you started. Snip off any excess fabric. I like to have a little give, so don’t pull it tight, just loosely around.
Finally, clip your crocodile grip onto the end of your strip leaving a little excess, blob some glue on the excess & fold over, keeping hold until the glue had dried a bit and your bow is secure.
And your bow is finished. I like to turn the corners under a little and with the interfacing inside it will keep in shape nicely. Don’t worry if you can’t perfect it first time, it will take some practice, but I guarantee within a couple of tries you’ll have it sussed. Also sorry about the glue gun burns, you’ll get used to that – probably. I don’t think i’ve had fingerprints for the last 6 months.
The little woman pretends.