Things You'll Need
1. Decide what the bow is for. This will help you choose the ribbon by texture and color. For example: if the bow is to be added to a garment you're sewing or it's part of the accessories accompanying an outfit, match the ribbon to the colors or textures of the clothes.
2. Choose by quality. Satin is a standard type of ribbon used for making bows from but it can be slippery for the novice bow maker. Grosgrain can be an easier beginner ribbon. Prints, velvet, Lurex, cotton, sheers and other varieties of ribbon are all suitable too. Ribbons with wire edges are great for gifts and bouquets.
At its most basic, if you can tie the ribbon into a tight knot, then it can be tied into a bow by hand.
Some ribbons are too stiff to make into bows without additional help, such as wiring or stitching.
3. Experiment. Try experiment with different types or ribbons, including different widths, to find the exact style you're after.
Always keep in mind that you need a lot of ribbon to make a bow. All the folding and tying consumes a lot of the ribbon.
Method 2: Tying a Basic Bow
1. Consider the basic approach. Pick the bow that suits your needs and desired look. Once you understand the basic technique, you can apply it to all types of uses.
2. Cut a length of ribbon. Make sure it's long enough for making the bow. Always allow extra for easing the bow into shape and leaving a long enough tail.
Lay the ribbon length down on a flat surface.
3. Bring both tail ends of the bow to the middle. Overlap them and you'll have created two loops and two tails. Shape the loops if they're not evident.
4. Adjust the proportions. This means checking that both the loops and the tails are the size/length that you want them to be and that they are symmetrical.
5. Fold the left loop over the right loop. Take it around the back and through the center hole. Pull tightly at the center.
Method 2: Creating a Grosgrain Ribbon Bow
1. Use for a gift box. This bow is ideal for adding to a gift box. The ribbon will be tied around the box.
2. Measure and wrap the ribbon. Cut 6 1/2 feet/2 meters of grosgrain ribbon. Wrap the ribbon lengthwise around the box. Use glue or tape to join to the box and to join the ribbon but leave the ribbon uncut (you'll continue to work with the long end of the ribbon to make the loops).
3. Make a loop with the ribbon. Bring the loop back to the center join. Hold the ribbon in place with a finger. Crease the ribbon length at the loop fold. Fold back to make another loop. Glue/tape in place, if you want. Make one more loop this way.
4. Create more loops. Shift to the other side of the center. Repeat three more loops in the same way, bringing them back to the center and gluing them in place.