There are so many different ways to make bows. There are ordinary bow tie-type bows that are useful for tying neckties or bows for holidays. There are star-type bows that have peel-away adhesives and are used to decorate Christmas packages. Some bows are simple enough for any person to make but others are more involved. For the most part, the average person can only tie simplistic bows for special occasions. To create the more fanciful bows you need bow maker machines and lessons. Look at a gift wrap store and you’ll see all sorts of elegant bows but you’ll see an elegant price, too! A single bow can cost a buck or more! That ends up being quite a lot of money after a year’s worth of birthdays, graduations, anniversaries and holidays. There is one unique, fancy bow that anyone can make, though, and once you learn how, you’ll be making them for nearly every occasion.
If you’ve got a piece of cardboard and some ribbon you’re in the bow-making business! The cardboard can be any type as long as it is very thin. It should not be thin enough, though, that it can bend really easily. Cut the cardboard into a square: a large square for a large bow or a much smaller square for a smaller bow. You’ll get an idea of the bow size by the size square you cut. That is, if you cut a 4″x4″ square you’ll create an approximate 4″ bow. This type of bow, however, creates a ball-shaped bow so the finished bow can appear somewhat larger than 4″.
The type of ribbon you choose to make the pom-pom bow is important. Forget wide or wired ribbon; choose narrow types instead. Cloth ribbons won’t give you the ball shape you want for the bow because they don’t stand up as well as plastic-type ribbons. Narrow ribbons that curl easy with scissors are perfect for creating pom-pom bows. Since these ribbons are available in a multitude of colors you’ll easily be able to find a color suitable for nearly any occasion.
To begin making the bow place the end of the ribbon in the center of the cardboard. Hold it against the cardboard as you begin to wrap it around and around the cardboard. Wrap ten times, turn the cardboard a quarter-turn, then wrap the ribbon ten times in that direction. Turn the cardboard back to its original position, wrap ten times, then turn it a quarter-turn and wrap ten times once again. Continue doing this until you’ve wrapped the ribbon fifty times in each direction. Make sure that, as you’re wrapping the ribbon around the cardboard, it does not get twisted but lies flat with each wrap. You don’t have to pull the ribbon extremely tight while you’re wrapping it but it should not be loose enough so that it falls off the cardboard. Finish by cutting the ribbon in the same location where you started. Use a small piece of tape to hold the end of the ribbon.
You’ll see that, the way the ribbon is wrapped, it leaves the four corners open for the moment. You’ll use one of these open areas to pull the cardboard out of the bow. To do this, slide your finger under the bow where the tape is. Hold all the ribbon pieces together, in that area, then bend the cardboard in half. Slide it out of one of the corner openings while continuing to hold the ribbon with finger and thumb. Where you’re holding the ribbon, gather the ribbon pieces in that area, then fold them. Wrap a piece of tape around it. The finished look should be that of a small bouquet, with the bow being the bouquet and the tape-wrapped area being the handle of the bouquet. Fluff the bow up, repositioning some of the ribbon strips if necessary, until you’ve created the ball shape. Trim the “handle” off to a small stub and tape that area to the gift. A piece of double-sided tape will easily hold the bow to any package.
It can sometimes be difficult to get the cardboard out of a really small bow. Instead, use scissors to cut away pieces of the cardboard while being especially careful not to cut any of the ribbon pieces. If the cardboard is not easily seen through the bow you can leave it in place. You can make something similar with wide, wired ribbon but the finished look is somewhat different between the two. Instead of wrapping the wide ribbon fifty times each direction, wrap it only ten times each way. Otherwise, follow the above instructions to create the bow. These bows are perfect for holidays, birthdays or most any occasion where you’ll be giving a gift.