It’s here. The tutorial to help demystify the enigmatic, often-confusing but totally AWESOME Boutique Bow. In my Boutique Bow journey (lol, but seriously), I have discovered many things (symmetry, focus of attention) and some things still remain a mystery to me. Bowmakers who can create a Boutique Bow by folding and pinching? Give those ladies props because that’s some serious skill! The way I learned how to make a consistently cute Boutique Bow was through placing and pinning my loops. You will see in the video that I do not attempt to fold the bow while holding it – rather I pin my loops in place, removing and replacing pins as I go, until I have a bow that can be pinched and un-pinched without the overlapping loops ever moving out of place. I found that this was the best method for me because – quite simply – if I messed up my pinch, I don’t have to remake my bow! And I’m a bit of a perfectionist.
So before I give you a list of things to “Keep in Mind” while you bow, here’s a list of materials. If you guys are like me, you want to skip to the action immediately (and then wonder what went wrong later when you didn’t read the directions but, like, YOLO, you know? I get you. I’m that way ) If you can press on with some instruction beyond the list of materials, more power to you!
You will need the following:
- 1.5 inch grosgrain, 30 inches
- straight pins (at least 2)
- alligator clips (at least 2, ideally 4)
- needle and thread
- glue gun
So here are some things to keep in mind while making a bow with this method:
- Keep your placements and angles symmetrical.
You’re going to be using evenly-spaced creases in your ribbon to make all of your placements, so this shouldn’t be a difficult rule to follow! The best looking bows are the bows that have been made with careful attention to symmetry. Especially the symmetry of the loops. You want the loops on each side of the knot to be the same size, right? Yes. In order to get there, all of your previous folds must be on-point, as they say. So just keep this in mind whilst you fold – symmetry is king!
Overlap your ribbon at 90 and 45 degree angles. We’re talking Parallel and Perpendicular lines here. Once you get going and cranking out some awesome bows, then you can start relaxing this rule. But initially, try and be close to a right angle.
This method takes time, it’s not quick. But that’s ok! Once you get the idea down, I think you’ll be able to hold-and-fold! This method gets you a boutique bow that looks good every time and teaches your brain the basic structure of the bow. After you *get it*, you’ll be soaring through these bows! But for now, go ahead and be OK with this taking about 5 mins per bow.
Taking a break allows your brain to work better. If you feel frustration mounting during this process, just take a break and try again tomorrow. When I started learning how to make this bow, I took days of in between and found that each time I came back to try, a new part of the process would make total sense to me. And my bows were better! So do take breaks.
Pink Tree Camo is *possibly* our favorite new release since Winter Wonderland!
It’s our RABOM Real Tree on Pink Grosgrain and… well… it was a major “ah HA!” moment for the RABOM design team. You know when you’re cooking and you’re using a recipe you’ve made 100 times but you do something a little different and it majorly pays off? Let’s say you’re making thumbprint cookies and this time you decide to add some almond extract to the dough and maybe some lemon zest to the jelly in the center. When you take that first bite of the cookie and you recognize the cookie you’ve enjoyed a hundred times BUT IT’S LIKE SO MUCH BETTER! Just that little difference and – BAM! – it’s amazing! Well. That’s how we feel about Pink Tree Camo We heart it very much!
Three new Awareness prints! For the girls who want to rock their support and their camo at the same time, there’s a Save The Rack Realtree awareness ribbon! We love it and we can’t wait to see the bows. And of course, we can’t talk about “Save the Rack” without also throwing down a “Save Second Base” print! Cleverness and Awareness make a Great Pair! No pun intended
Motivation Monday! Maybe don’t let go of everything, but let go of that small thing that you can let go of. You’ll know what it is. And you’ll feel better once you’ve set yourself free from fretting over it
You just have to see these in person. They’re perfect! Granna’s Goodies bows are the expert work of one Granna, Sharon C. You can find her on Facebook and do all your shopping with her there – find price lists, size charts, and payment and order info on the left-hands side of her FB wall.
So what do we love about these bows? Well WHERE to start! The variety of colors and textures in these bows is so delightful and well-balanced. These are the kind of bows that a Bowmaker can love and appreciate just as much as a kiddo who just loves big bows! They’re beautiful from all angles and SO well made. Granna’s Goodies is a bowmaker after our own hearts – frills, loops, glitter, integrity and clearly made with love! Thank you to Sharon C. for letting us snap some pics of these great creations!
Here’s another awesome bowmaker that will be here bright and early tomorrow – we LOVE the decadence of these bows! Granna’s Goodies are some seriously beautiful creations, great for the girl who loves a bow with some lux! We just love this style! Stacked bows with feathers and sparkle tulle? Too awesome.
In her own words:
On favorite bows to make
Favorite – OTT Funky Loopy bows.. inspiration – whatever I can put my hands on to put on/in a bow…love the different and unusual … I make custom boutique outfits and appliqués
On style and getting started
I started making hair bow 3 years ago with the birth of my first granddaughter… tips – never give up…I thought I would never make a pretty bow…now I am actually loving the bows I make – just keep trying – never give up – let your style shine – no two bow makers are alike – everyone likes different bows !!!
On favorite RABOM product
Favorite RABOM product is the 2 1/2 dots/prints – Makes the best double loop / large boutique bows ever!!
Dear Ribbonistas -
This may be my all-time *favorite* blog post - I’m so excited to feature the seriously adorable and beautifully-made bows of one RABOM Ribboninsta Sew Like Mad a.k.a Joni! Joni agreed to let us take pictures of some of her cuties and also sat down to answer a few of our questions. After all, we love hearing from Ribbonistas! And we think her insight into creativity and retail apply to ALL crafters and artists, not just our bowmakers. I’m so delighted she wanted to be featured here!
What we love about Sew Like Mad bows: such great use of color and Machine Embroidery! Her centerpieces are so carefully and well-incorporated – we love ‘em!
Sew Like Mad will be at the HairBOW-nanza on August 26th with these gorgeous bows and so many more! You can find her at sewlikemadboutique.etsy.com on Etsy and facebook.com/sewlikemad on Facebook!
RABOM: Favorite bow or ribbon craft to make:
SLM: I love creating layered boutique bows. The possibilities are endless with mixing and matching several styles, patterns, and colors.
RABOM Where do you find your inspiration for your bows?
SLM My nine year old daughter, Emmy, is my inspiration. Many bows I create stem from what she and her friends love. When she loves an item I make, I feel successful. She loves helping with our home business and I enjoy have her perspective.
RABOM What are some other crafts or DIY’s you SLM I incorporate my passion for machine embroidery in my bows and other ribbon crafts. The combination of embroidery and ribbon allows me to create unique and personalized items.
RABOM What’s your fav RABOM product?
SLM Even after six years of shopping at RABOM I am still mesmerized by the solid grosgrain ribbon shelves. The ability to easily view and purchase ribbon in any size and color I could dream of is a bow makers dream.
RABOM Finally, how did you get started making bows? Any tips for beginners or beginning sellers?
SLM I began making bows six years ago for my daughter. There was a lot of trial and error but I found the process therapeutic. I tested many methods and supplies before I found the right fit for me. I started my small business selling bows within a few months. I recommend lots of practice. Find the method and style that fits you. Don’t copy what you have seen but create something unique and true to you.
If you’d like to show your RABOM bows and crafts on our blog, contact us! Just send an email to email@example.com and we’ll tell you how you can participate.
Hello all! Here’s a simple RIbbon Sculpture tutorial that you can customize to any color palette you love – we’re thinking some Football Butterflies would be pretty adorable! The Butterfly Clippie is SO easy - just keep this ONE big thing in mind – you want all of your loops to be as symmetrical as possible. We’ll give you some tips to help you there.
- Micro adjustments – Pay attention and look at your loops carefully – Symmetry is King here and you may find yourself making the tiniest of adjustments, but for a bow this little, little adjustments make a big impact.
- Use a needle-nose glue gun Adjust all your placements FIRST, then insert the nose of the glue gun carefully in between your layers of ribbon – you might feel the heat but it’s worth it!
- Go slow, use exact measurements Ribbon Sculptures look wonderful when they are precise – just like any other bow.
You’ll need the following
- 3/8 ribbon
- alligator clip
- 3/8 inch Korker ribbon
- hot glue gun
1. Your loops are, in order
- 8 inches
- 7 inches
- 6 inches
- 5.2 inches (just a little bigger than 5, but under 5.25 inches)
2. Fold your loops in half and give the crease a good squeeze so you can see where the center of your loop should be. Overlap the bottoms just slightly, and glue together lightly. This gives your Butterfly wings a little more of a pointed wing instead of a perfect round loop. Be careful here, though, to make sure both bottom edges are equally tilted away from each other so your loop is symmetrical! Don’t just torque one edge and then glue it down – you’ll end up with a butterfly with one enormous wing!
3. Fold your crease over and check that it is directly over the center of your glued edges. Adjust in your fingertips to make sure both loops look symmetrical. Use your needle-nose glue gun to then glue-in-place as you’re holding.
4. Using same glue-in-place technique, overlap your butterfly wings and make micro adjustments to get the wings centered. Watch the space between the uppermost part of your loops to make sure they’re equal. Glue in place while you pinch.
5. Again, carefully place the wings on top of your covered Butterfly Clip and adjust until you get the perfect butterfly shape. Insider Tip – we overlapped them slightly, tucking the top wings under the bottom wings just a little to give it a more compact butterfly.
6. Lay down a strip of hot glue and gently place your Korker center on top.