Friday, December 24, 2010

Fun Sock Friday (The Christmas Eve Edition) – How to Make the Perfect Bow

It’s just after eight on Christmas eve morning. I’ve been a busy little elf so far this morning… Buns are rising, ham is in the crock and I’m stopping for a sip of juice before tackling the rest of my to do list.

Over the past week or two I’ve been working on my bow making skills. I must admit I have a bit of a ribbon addiction and I have rolls and reams and spools of ribbon just waiting to be made into something. I’ve bought the majority of it because I love the colour or the texture but some has been purchased because I knew it would make a perfect bow. Four and a half years ago when I got married, I thought I’d perfected my art of bow making but it’s been a long time and when I sat down to transform the lovely Christmas ribbon into bows, I couldn’t remember my tail from my nose (hahaha). So in my chair I sat, ribbon in one hand, wire in the other and thought… I twisted and trimmed, tried and retried and then it happened.

Now I realize that I likely did not “invent” this bow, with so many talented crafters and artisans before me, they likely happened on the recipe long before I did but this is my attempt and I hope you find it makes as splendid a bow as I did!

Wired ribbon (I used 12’ (about 3 metres) of ribbon to make the bow illustrated)
Florists wire (24 gauge) on paddle
Wire snips

Cutting your bow

1.Decide how big/full you want your bow

2.Snip this length, allowing ½ to 1” extra for overlap

3.Cut three of this length (illustration used 20” for this)
4.Cut two more – one inch (1”) shorter (2 @ 19”)
5.Cut one more – one inch (1”) shorter than the previous (18”)
6.Cut nosing – 4 to 7” (depends on how you wrap it)
7.Cut tails – decide on how much hang you want on one side, cut 2x (leave one long piece)

Putting it all together
1.Pick up first long loop, overlap and fold loop in half to mark centre point. Pinch centre point in with overlap (accordion the pinch).

2.Using florists wire, wrap 2x around pinch, pulling very snug to secure (DO NOT CUT WIRE)

3.Repeat step #1 with next 20” piece, place immediately below first wrapped loop and wrap 1x snuggly with wire

4.Repeat with final 20” piece and place below second wrapped loop and wrap 1x snuggly. Wrap all three loops once or twice and pull tight. DO NOT CUT WIRE

5.Pick up first medium loop (19” piece) and repeat step one. Lay this pinch atop the foundation bow layer. Wrap wire around 1x.

6.Repeat with second medium loop and wrap 2x around, pulling snuggly.

7.Pick up small loop piece (18” piece) and repeat step one. Lay this pinch atop the middle layer. Wrap 2x to secure.

8.Pick up tails and fold in half. Place below all loop and secure.

9.Cut about 8” of wire from florist wire paddle and set paddle aside.

10. Take nosing and loop around middle of bow. Leave it loose and overlap at back of bow.

Using wire, loop around and secure nosing. Form a loop in the wire and secure to itself (for the hanger)

11. Fluff up the bow and viola! The perfect bow!

I just love crafting and I’m so glad I have this to share with you!

A huge thank you to my photographer extraordinaire and fellow blogger for helping me with the photography for my first tutorial. I can tell you the hot lights are HOT but they made the pictures just pop. I love you and thank you!

**So excited to be sharing this with Blissful & Domestic and her Friday Linky Party!**

All images used with permission. All images copyright Blackstone Images

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