How to Tie a Bow with Ribbon

Learning to tie a bow with ribbon is easier than you think. Be a bow pro in no time with our easy tutorials below.

tie a ribbon bow

Hair bows serve the dual purpose of adding a touch of sweetness to any outfit and holding wispy hair out of your little one’s face. They’re what everyone wants out of an accessory: practical and fashionable!

Decorative BowsYou’ve read about how to tie a classic and fancy bow with ribbon. Now add a couple of new bows to your repertoire.


Basic Boutique Bow


  • Two feet of 1.5-inch ribbon — grosgrain works great! Try a solid color or fun patterns.
  • Two inches of 3/8-inch ribbon
  • A lighter, an alligator clip, embroidery floss, a needle, scissors, a ruler, and a hot glue gun


  1. Cut the ends of your wider ribbon at a 45-degree angle. Then use a lighter to carefully melt the ends of the ribbon to prevent fraying.
  2. Thread the embroidery floss through the needle, and tie a double knot at the end.
  3. Holding the ribbon in one hand, loop one end of the ribbon over at the top, making the first loop of your bow. Be sure to leave the pointed edge sticking out to the side.
  4. Make the second loop the same size as the first by folding the bottom of the ribbon over to the center, and holding it in place with your thumb.
  5. Take the remaining ribbon from the top, and this time loop it under, tucking it underneath the ribbon beneath your thumb.
  6. Loop it once more back over the top.
  7. Carefully turn the bow over, continuing to hold the loops in place.
  8. Fold the center accordion-style to prepare for sewing.
  9. Feed your needle through the folded center, pulling it all the way through to the knot.
  10. Wrap the thread twice around the center, tie it off securely at the back of the bow, and trim the excess thread.
  11. Fluff the loops to make sure they stand up evenly.
  12. Heat seal the edges of the 2-inch ribbon, and hot glue it to the center of the front of the ribbon, wrapping the ends around to the back and hot gluing them in place.
  13. To finish it off, glue an alligator clip to the back of your bow.

Now your bow is ready to accessorize any cute little ponytail, updo, or side-swept bangs!

The Double Ruffle Bow

For fancier occasions, try a dressy double ruffle bow. This bow is easier to make than it looks, and it’s a guaranteed fashion statement!


  • Two 30-inch lengths of 1.5-inch ruffle ribbon (this satin ruffle ribbon works well, too!)
  • Five inches of 3/8-inch ribbon for the center
  • Five-inch bow board
  • Upholstery thread, a small zip tie, four to five alligator clips, a lighter, scissors, and a hot glue gun


  1. Attach the edge of your first 30-inch ribbon to the bottom right corner of your bow board with an alligator clip.
  2. Toward the upper left corner of your bow board, loop the ribbon under itself (but on top of the board) and bring it across toward the upper right corner. Clip the folded portion into place.
  3. Fold the ribbon at the upper right corner behind the bow board, bringing the ribbon in an X shape to the bottom left corner. Clip in place.
  4. Bring the remaining ribbon horizontally across the bow board and tuck under the clipped ribbon from step one, then reclip the two layers together.
  5. Bring the remaining length of ribbon around the back of the bow board and clip to the top left corner.
  6. On one side, the ribbons should make an equal (=) sign. On the reverse side, the ribbons should make an X.
  7. Turn your bow board over so that the X side is facing up.
  8. Wrap your upholstery thread around the center of your bow twice and pull tight. Twist it to form a solid center. Then tie it off and trim thread.
  9. Remove your bow from the board and fluff the loops evenly.
  10. Repeat the process with the second length of 30-inch ribbon.
  11. Once completed, rotate one of the bows so that the tails are facing the opposite direction.
  12. Stack the two bows directly on top of one another, or turn the top bow at a slight angle to give the bow a fuller appearance.
  13. Secure the bows together with a zip tie, and attach the alligator clip to the zip tie.
  14. Trim the ends to your desired length and heat seal the ends.
  15. Tie a knot with the 3/8-inch ribbon for the center. Glue knot to the front of the bow, then wrap ends around and glue to the inside of alligator clip in back.

A headband can be used as an alternative to the alligator clip. Simply sew the double ruffle bow to a soft, stretchy headband, and you’ve got an adorable accessory for babies.

Now you’re equipped with the know-how for tying both basic boutique and double ruffle bows with ribbon. Check out our selection of high-quality ribbon today and keep tying away!


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