September 18, 2010

Paper Bow Tutorial

This bow came into being because I needed a 3-D accent. I did a search and learned how to make them from a post on flickr that used magazine pages. Paper is a little different, but these are really fast to make and can add a fun happy look to your pages or cards. OR... you could actually make it for a present topper. :)

You'll need a paper cutter, liquid adhesive and a pair of scissors (optional). Here's a step by step for you:
  1. Cut 4 strips of 12 inch long paper. For this example I cut mine 5/8" wide, but you can experiment with the width.
  2. Cut three of the strips in half at the 6" mark. At this point, you'll chose which side you want showing. I wanted the ruler side of Harper's Ruler to show because I thought the variations would make for a fun bow. Notice how I marked and X at the 3" mark on the ruler side? That will guide where you put the spot of glue, right in the middle.

    3. Now comes the trickiest part of the process. You'll put a dab of the liquid adhesive on the X and then fold the end on the paper backward onto itself.

    Here's what it looks like from the front:
  3. Now you repeat the process with the other end of the same 6" strip.

    Here's what it looks like from the other side:
  4. Now you repeat the same process six (6) times. For the last two times, before you start the process, you'll want to cut about 1/2" to 3/4" off the strip to make the end loop a bit smaller than the first four. You'll have a group that looks like this, aren't they so cute in a row like that? Notice the two on the end are just a bit smaller. It makes it easier to put the bow together.

  5. Now the fun part, assembling the bow. Put a dab of glue in the middle of the first twist.
  6. Then start stacking, adding a dab of glue (this is why I use the Quick Dry Adhesive by Scotch 3M, it really is FAST. The first and second ones will nest nicely, the next four will not nest, they'll start the lift that you see in the end.

  7. The final step involves cutting a small piece of the strip, mine was 2.5" long, gluing the ends together and inserting it into the middle of the bow, attaching with one last dob of liquid adhesive. 
  8. Then you can use the bow in any manner you'd like, on a layout, a card, or another project. The bow will smash when you put your layout in an album, but that just leads to the personality of the project in my opinion. I hope you have fun with this project!


Christine Campbell said...

I've always wanted to know how to make these, Em, you rock!!!

Michelle*G said...

Great tutorial! Thank you!

debbieback said...

FAB tutorial. can't wait to try one myself =)

Sueli Pinheiro said...

Que ideia legal. Super bem explicado!

La Vikinga said...

Good tutorial - I like the little bows!!!


Diane B. said...

i shall never buy a store-bought bow again! thanks for the tutorial!

Ohana in Bend said...

this bow reminds me of all those pretty christmas bows we used for years on our packages! thanks for the tutorial! i'm inspired for bows all year long!!!

Anne Temple said...

This is a great tutorial. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

great tut thank you

Lis said...

Thanks for sharing. I just made one - turned out perfect and only took a few minutes.