How to Make the Prettiest Bows for Flower Arrangements

Written by joan greylord
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How to Make the Prettiest Bows for Flower Arrangements
Dress up a flower arrangement with a pretty bow. (flower bouquet with bow image by robert mobley from

Adding a pretty bow to a flower arrangement is the perfect way to make a display of flowers or a gift basket even more special. Many florists and gift shop owners use professional bow-making machines that can produce "perfect" bows. However, with a little practice and patience, you can learn how to make bows for flower arrangements by hand. Your bows may not be perfect, but they will have a pretty, handmade look that will add a personal touch to your arrangement.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Spool of ribbon
  • 22-gauge wire

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  1. 1

    Hold a spool of satin ribbon in your left hand. (If you are left-handed, hold the end of the ribbon in your right hand.) Make sure the "shiny" side of the ribbon is facing up. Make a 4-inch loop of ribbon and extend the loop away from you. Cinch or pinch the loop together at the point where you are holding the ribbon.

  2. 2

    Hold the cinched loop of ribbon tightly. Twist the spool to make sure that the satin side of the ribbon is up. Make another 4-inch loop of ribbon, but position it pointing toward you this time. Cinch or pinch it together at the point where you are holding the ribbon.

  3. 3

    Repeat Steps 1 and 2 and continue making loops--one pointing away from you, and one toward you---until you have made the bow as full as you want.

  4. 4

    Fold a length of 22-gauge wire and in half around the area where you are holding the cinched ribbon. Grab the two ends of the wire tightly in the back of the bow and give it three quick twists. Cinching, pinching and binding the loops of ribbon tightly is the key to creating a full, pretty bow.

Tips and warnings

  • Choose the prettiest ribbon for the occasion. Many professional florists favour acetate ribbon with a satin finish for floral arrangements because it is stiff and easy to shape into bows. Experiment with different colours, widths, textures and patterns of ribbon to create the prettiest bows for flower arrangements. Coordinate or contrast the ribbon colour with the colour of the flowers. For a sophisticated look, try iridescent, velvet, chiffon or taffeta ribbon.

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