How to make competition cheer bows

Written by andrea lott haney
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The regular bow tied in a cheerleader's ponytail doesn't always provide the glitz and glamour needed for a competition look. Making cheer bows for competition ensures a uniform look for the squad. Use ribbon and trim that match the school's colours and squad uniforms, or contrast with an accent colour. Create the bows as a squad in an assembly line or at a party in the afternoon, or ask a loyal volunteer to make them.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 1 yard 1 1/2 inch wide grosgrain ribbon per bow, plus scraps, reserved
  • 1 yard 3/4 inch wide ribbon or trim per bow
  • Fabric glue
  • Hot glue gun
  • Ponytail holders
  • Fabric fray preventer

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Glue--using the fabric glue--the 3/4-inch wide ribbon or trim to the centre of the 1 1/2-inch wide grosgrain ribbon. Let the glue dry. At the end of this step, you will have a 1-yard length of grosgrain ribbon embellished with trim or narrower ribbon for each bow needed.

  2. 2

    Cut each 1-yard embellished ribbon into two pieces 20 inches and 16 inches long.

  3. 3

    Fold the ends of the 16-inch piece into the centre so you end up with an oval, with the embellishment on the outside. Place a dot of glue, using the glue gun, where the ends overlap. Pinch the oval in the centre and place a dot of glue from the glue gun on the inside of the pinched centre, gluing the joined ends to the top centre of the oval, creating the two loops of the bow.

  4. 4

    Tie a small scrap of grosgrain ribbon in a loose knot around the pinched centre of the bow.

  5. 5

    Slide the 20-inch piece of embellished ribbon through the tied scrap of grosgrain, creating the tails of the bow. Adjust the tails and trim the ends in a 45-degree angle to the length desired.

  6. 6

    Untie the knot in the grosgrain ribbon scrap, keeping the loops and tail of the bow in place. Place the ponytail holder in the scrap of grosgrain ribbon and retie the knot around the ponytail holder, attaching the bow to the ponytail holder. Add a dot of glue from the glue gun to the back side of the bow, covering the area where the bow joins the ponytail holder and comes together in the grosgrain scrap.

  7. 7

    Stiffen the bow around the joined are by applying fabric fray preventer to the centre of the loops and tail. Apply fray preventer to the trimmed ends of the bow tails. Allow the fray preventer to dry completely and reapply if needed for the desired stiffness before wearing.

Tips and warnings

  • If you don't have fabric fray preventer, substitute clear fingernail polish.
  • Properly supervise the use of a hot glue gun to avoid burns.

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