Bow Maker Directions

Updated April 17, 2017

Bow Maker is a small device that makes it simple to make neat, professional-looking bows for gifts, barrettes, corsages and home decor. It features a wooden base marked with a ruler to measure the size of your bow loops and wooden dowels to hold the ribbon in place. With these step-by-step instructions you can use the Bow Maker to create bows for all your decorating, beauty and gift-wrapping needs.

Cut four yards of ribbon. The best ribbon size to use for this project is 2 3/4-inch wide.

Cut a 16-inch section of floral wire and insert it between the large dowels. This wire will hold the ribbon together and will be long enough to attach the bow to your wreath.

Measure 16 inches from the end of the ribbon, using the length of the Bow Maker as a guide. This piece will be a long streamer end of your bow. Insert the ribbon between the dowels sideways so the 16-inch section is on one side of the dowels and the rest of the ribbon is on the other. Then make a half-twist in the ribbon so it lies flat against the Bow Maker.

Grasp the long end of your ribbon and make a bow by creating loops on each side of the dowels. Make a 5-inch loop on one side, thread the ribbon through the dowels and make a half-twist at the dowels. Then form a 5-inch loop on the other side, pass the ribbon through the dowels, twist again and make another 5-inch loop. Repeat this process until there are three 5-inch loops on each side, then make two 3-inch loops on each side. These will lay on top of your 5-inch loops and make your bow look full.

Make one more loop, approximately 1 1/2 inches, for the centre of your bow.

Finish the bow by wrapping the wires through the dowels so they cross each other in the centre of the bow. Pull the wires so the bow is held tightly. Holding the bow firmly in the centre, gently lift it to remove it from the Bow Maker. Turn the bow so the bottom is facing you, then twist the wires tightly together, ensuring that the bow won't come apart. Spread out the loops and adjust the bow as necessary, then trim the end of each streamer at a diagonal angle so the streamers are identical in length.

Cut a piece of 1 1/2-inch-wide ribbon in a 6-yard length.

Insert a 16-inch section of floral wire between the dowels to secure the bow when it is finished.

Measure eight inches from one end of your ribbon and insert the ribbon sideways between the dowels at this point. Make a half-twist in the ribbon so the ribbon lies flat on the Bow Maker. This 8-inch piece of ribbon will be one of your streamers.

With the long end of the ribbon, make a 4-inch loop. Thread the ribbon through the dowels to the other side and make another half-twist at the dowel. Make another 4-inch loop, thread the ribbon to the other side again and make another half-twist. Repeat this process until you have eight loops on each side of the dowels, then make a 1 1/2-inch loop on one side. This small loop will be the centre of the bow.

Refer to Step 6 in the wreath bow directions for finishing this gift bow.


The wreath bow can be made fuller and larger by beginning with a longer piece of ribbon, increasing the sizes of the loops and adding more loops in smaller sizes. Begin with a longer strand of ribbon and increase the loop size to make a larger gift bow. These are ideal for Christmas tree toppers and large floral arrangements. Make elegant bows for church pews by creating the gift bow with long streamers. Either bow can be made smaller by starting with narrow ribbon and using smaller loop sizes.

Things You'll Need

  • Bow Maker
  • Ribbon
  • 24-gauge floral wire
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About the Author

Tess Reynolds began writing in 2010 for various websites, specializing in parenting, relationships, film and video-editing topics. She has taken private local classes to expand on her interests. She also enjoys writing about computers, family and home improvement.