Craft Bows: Make Your Gift Giving Beautiful at Christmas

Are you ready to make absolutely stunning craft bows? Christmas brings out the crafter in all of us. Now you can make your gift giving even more beautiful with this touch of handmade.

Making Your Own Craft Bows for Christmas

Crafting is one of my favorite things about the holiday season. You can make decorations for your home, ornaments for your tree, and gifts for your loved ones. But the crafting doesn’t stop there! In our house we like making wrapping paper, gift tags, cards, and decorative gift toppers, including craft bows!

I actually learned how to make this craft bow when I was about 8 years old, watching Carol Duvall on The Home Show. (I loved that show!) Anyway, it’s super simple and pretty quick, once you get the hang of it.

craft bows

Craft Bows Supplies

You’ll need some (staple-width) ribbon, strong, but thin string, scissors, a hole-punch, cardstock (or an old cereal box!), and most importantly, a stapler.

craft bows

Step 1: Grab Your Scissors

Cut a piece of ribbon between 4 and 6 feet, depending on how full you want the bow to be. You can use fabric ribbon, plastic ribbon or even felt, but if you use fabric ribbon, pay attention to the thickness/denseness. A spool of fabric ribbon I bought was too thick and bent the staples.

Next, cut a small rectangle of cardstock a little smaller than the width of the ribbon. Punch a hole into the rectangle and tie the end of the string through it. The string should be 1/2 the ribbon length, plus a couple inches for tying. If I’m making a bunch of bows, I don’t even cut my string off of the spool until after I’ve cinched the bow.

craft bows

Step 2: Fold and Staple

Fold the ribbon in half, but don’t crease the loop because this will be the center of your bow. Staple the cardstock/string, centered, about an inch down into the folded ribbon.

craft bows

About 3 inches below that first staple, staple the ribbon again, but at a 45-degree angle. Make sure the string stays centered and inside of the staple. About 3 inches below that, staple the ribbon again, but this time, at the opposite 45-degree angle. Continue alternating the staple angle down the length of the ribbon, always making sure the string is included.

craft bows

As I go along, I like to gradually increase the distance between the staples. By the end, they are about 4 inches apart.

craft bows

Step 3: Pull and Be Beautiful

Grab ahold of the string with one hand, using the other hand as resistance against the soon-to-be-bow, and gently start pulling. The bow should form easily.

craft bows

Once you’re done pulling the bow into shape, you’ll need to knot the string to keep the bow in place. I like to knot the string with a loop, so the tail of the string can be fed through the loop for attaching. You can also attach your bows with double-sided tape or adhesive foam.

craft bows

Shape your bow by rounding out the loops, and you’re ready to wrap!

craft bows

craft bows

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  1. says

    I LOVE making bows and actually make one using this technique except I have been sewing the string where you have been stapling. Stapling seems to be the way to go. Thank you for giving a faster way of making beautiful bows. ^_^ HA…this just goes to show that one is never to old to learn a new trick.

  2. Leslie The Cleaning Coach says

    Thanks so much! Now I don’t have to buy the ugly bows in a bag this Christmas!!