Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tutorial (sort of): Cheerleading Hair Bows

Funny story time!

I was at a cheerleading parents' meeting about a month ago.  (That's not the funny part - it gets better!)  I was carrying my Thirty-One bag - the one with the changeable skirt - and it was a skirt that I made.  (I mentioned it here, but that was a while ago.)  Here's the one I was carrying, just because it would be kinda lame to talk about it and not show a picture:

Anywho, so I got to the meeting, and one of the other moms said, "oooh, I like your purse!"  I of course said "Why thank you!  It's one of those bags where you can change out the skirt - but I make my own skirts because there's no way I'm spending any $25 on the ones in the catalog."  And I said it with attitude.  Like, "Ha, I stuck it to the man, and they can just deal with it" attitude.  To which she replied, "ha ha, I sell Thirty-One bags.  I'm a consultant!"  To which I replied, "Oh!  Uh, um, uh, um, uh, um...oh...I'm sorry!" Stupid, stupid, stupid!  I felt so dumb.  Luckily for me, she didn't care.  In fact, she thought it was pretty funny.

But Rachel!  You say.  What does this story have to do with Cheerleading Hair Bows?  Well let me tell you.  For you crafty types, you know how this goes.  "Oh, you sew?  Wow!  Hey, she sews!"  And then..."Do you do hair bows?"  Hmm.  No, not really.  But I'm up for anything, especially not having to shell out unnecessary cash for some mass-produced, overpriced hair bow.  So basically, I volunteered to do the hair bows for the squad.  They didn't want anything crazy; they just wanted simple basic bows that go on ponytails.  Can do!

I used this tutorial and adapted it a bit.  These cost about $1 each to make.  $1 each!  I bought my ribbon in 20-yard spools.  I probably used about 10 yards of each.

Here's how I did it:
1. Cut ribbon lengths.  To make 22, I cut 22 lengths of each, in 3 different ribbon widths: 1.5", 7/8", and 3/8".  Each length was about 20".  I cut each end into a "v" shape* by folding the ribbon in half (long-ways) and cutting it diagonally.  The skinny ones were a pain to do, but that's ok.

 2. Seal the edges.  Using child labor* (my 8yo), each end of all 66 ribbon lengths was sealed with Fray Check. 
Fray Check is awesome stuff, and it lasts forever.
 3. Assemble the ribbons and machine-sew* together, with the ponytail holders.
Here are my 3 ribbons.

Here they are, centered and stacked together.

I folded them over in the middle...

held the ponytail holder to the underside...

...and sewed back and forth 2-3 times using a zigzag stitch.  I cannot be bothered with hand-sewing, sorry.

the top

the underside
flip the ribbons over - inside out, almost.  They lay down pretty nicely. 
4. Put on an episode of 24* and fire up the glue gun

5. Finish.  Cut small lengths of ribbon (I used the 3/8") and glue them around the middle.  Just find which way works best for you. I used flat-nosed pliers to squeeze the ribbon down*, because one of my pet peeves is burning my fingers with hot glue.

These were probably about 1.5" to 2" or so.  Aren't you glad to have such an accurate and specific tutorial to follow?

6. Admire!*

7. Regret never having made the cheer squad in high school or college.

8. Stuff the pain by enjoying a Reese's PB Cup.  Or two.*

*Optional, but recommended

Linking to...
  Home Stories A2Z


  1. They look so cute. I never cheered either, plus I can't make bows. I can eat peanut butter cups though. And I've told you before but I love that fabric you used for your purse. (My daughter is a 31 consultant also.)

  2. Awesome tutorial... and HILARIOUS endnote! Good job, Rach! :)

  3. Fab tutorial, funny story - loved it! x

  4. Lol, My MIL is a 31 consultant, but I like hte idea of making your own skirt for the bag. I may give that a shot.:)

  5. Awesome tutorial! I really like how they turned out! And I love your words at the end, hilarious! Thanks for sharing this @ Show & Share! I love having you here!