Wednesday, December 21, 2011

DIY Gothy Hair Bows in Two Easy Steps

black velvet, black lace, black ribbon and a skull!

Once, I received a handmade hair bow as a freebie with an etsy purchase.  It was handmade, all right... terribly handmade.  The bow was a piece of fabric sewn in a loop with visibly sloppy stitches and stuck to a bobby pin with a big glob of hot glue.  One look at Frankenbow there and I knew I could do better.

I decided I wanted a hair bow with trailing ribbons, maybe due to memories of the braided ribbon barrettes that were THE thing when I was a little girl.  The first bow I made was so easy that I made another.. and another... and another...  They are really fun to make. :-)

This is the type of barrette I like to use.  They're great because you can tie your ribbons, etc. right to the barrette without interfering with its function. 
they come in various sizes

Step one: Make a bow with fabric, lace or wide ribbon.  This can be done by cutting the material to your desired size and then folding or squishing it together in the middle.  Tie the middle with a piece of thin ribbon, leaving plenty of extra ribbon hanging.
bow made with wide velvet ribbon

Step two:  Tie the bow to the barrette.  Do this by running the thin ribbon under the metal arc on the back of the barrette and tying in tight knots.  You can then leave the ribbons trailing or cut them.  I like to add a drop of hot glue over the knots for extra security.

Note:  Before tying, consider if you want the barrette to open on the left or right.  One option will be easier for you, depending on how you wear the bow and whether you're right- or left-handed.  For a pair of bows to wear on either side of your head, I suggest making one with the barrette opening on the left and one opening on the right. 
this barrette has a spiffy plastic guard so it won't damage hair

If you want a simple bow, you are done!  Or you can add more ribbon, beads, lace, charms... whatever suits your fancy.
this large bow is made from strips of lace
just tie on as many as you want in different lengths
spiderweb lace on top of velvet bow, with a skull bead... for that goth Elmyra look

small lace bows with cross charms (stitched on with needle and thread)
lace bows with flowers and matching ribbons

a pair of Elmyra-style bows with ribbons
it is awkward trying to take a picture of the back of my head ;-)


  1. thank you, now i feel a giant diy fever coming up again XD been too lazy for that during the last months <3

  2. DIY fever is the best kind to have! :)

  3. Those are fantastic. I will have to make some of these soon.

  4. Thank you! They could be very cute with the various updos. :)

  5. Great post, these all look so cute! Also, I had a great laugh at FRANKENBOW!!! I just have this vision of a huge, nasty bow coming to get me!!

  6. Thank you! Frankenbow... he's alive! Alive! And he wants to live in your hair! ;-)

  7. what about a goth bowtie