Spirit Bows

When my daughter did a cheer-leading camp as part of her local elementary school, she had the excitement of cheering at the upcoming Friday night football game with the “real cheerleaders.” Well, bless her little heart, she was beside herself with excitement. Being the good, middle class, mini-van-driving, Patagonia-wearing mother that I am, I wanted to find her a hair bow to match her school colors for the evening.

So I searched high and low at all the local big box stores and found NOTHING. So, to Pinterest I went. And I found a few ideas and put them together and here’s what I came up with: a burst of ribbons to festoon her head. (Yes, that’s a real verb). I’m calling it a spirit bow because it seems like only little girls (or big girls) with spirit could wear one.

And it’s not hard. You’re just a few steps from the cutest bow of any color scheme you choose!

bows You will need:

What you’ll need:

  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • A variety of styles of coordinating ribbon
  • Thin string such as embroidery floss
  • Scissors
  • Hair clips (french barrette style is the best for this type of bow)

*Note: don’t be confused by the following few example pictures. I made the blue and yellow bow first without taking pictures of the process. When I made the next bow, I took pictures at the different steps, so there are pictures of two different bows going on in this post.

1. First cut ribbons of any color and size you want into three equal length pieces. Mine were about 5 inches for the longest layer; keep in mind, the longer the ribbon, the larger the bow. Repeat this for 3-6 different types of ribbon with varying patterns and textures. Grossgrain ribbon works especially well, I used the 2 inch width for my bottom layer. I made a few of the layers slightly shorter than what the ones I decided would be the bottom layer of the bow.

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2. Cut a “V” shape at the end of each ribbon.

3. Here’s the trickiest part: Take a lighter or match and slightly burn the ends of each ribbon. The heat melts the ribbon just enough to seal the ends from fraying. You might want to practice to see how close your heat source needs to be to slightly melt, but not curl or totally scorch the ends.

4. Once the ribbons are prepped, fold and tie each set of three together using thin string.

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5. Arrange the tied ribbons into layers, one on top of another. Once placement is decided, glue layers on top of each other using a hot glue gun.

6. Then tie all the layers together in the middle using a thin string to secure.

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7. Wrap one coordinating ribbon around the middle of all the layers to cover string and hot glue.

8. Fasten bow to a hair clip (french barrette is best) using hot glue.

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You can use only a couple of layers for a tame bow or lots of layers for more SPIRIT! I added a button to the “rainbow colors bow” my daughter wanted.

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The perfect cheerleading bow!

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Happy crafting!

Heidi