How to Make a Bow Tie

on May 26 | in Sewing Tutorials + Patterns | by | with Comments Off

Melissa from a happy stitch is back with a fun project to kick off a season of graduations, weddings and other important celebrations. Make your favorite guy a bow tie!

Find more from Melissa on Etsy, Instagram and Facebook. Remember her great how-to for Half-Square Triangles here earlier this year?! Stop by a happy stitch for a peek at her latest projects, like her new dress plus fun bow tie photo outtakes.

We also show you how to make Boy Suspenders, The Shirt Onesie for little guys, Boutonnieres and more!


Nothing is cuter than a bow tie on a kid. Nothing! I honestly dare you find something cuter. Kids can carry all the cool fashions. I was determined to make some bow ties for Father’s Day because, you know, it’s really not that far off.

Of course, kids will be kids and I thought a traditional bow tie might be restrictive. So, I concocted this little tutorial to create a bow tie that is not only adorable but also has a Velcro closure, because keeping kids comfortable is the key to keeping them in the cute outfits. And, look at the cuteness! Am I right or what?

So, here goes!

Supplies:
(Please note, this bow tie is sized to fit a child aged 4, 5 or 6 years old but if you lengthened the strap it would fit an older child.)

  • One rectangle of cotton fabric size 5″ by 11″ for the bow
  • One rectangle of cotton fabric size 16.5″ by 1.5″ for the neck strap
  • 1.5″ long piece of sew-in Velcro cut to 1/2″ in width
  • One chopstick

Let’s start by making the neck strap. Grab the piece of fabric sized 16.5″ by 1.5″. Placing the length of the fabric right sides together sew along one short end and the whole length of the long end, leaving one end open.

Using your chopstick, turn the strap right side out. This works best if you can nestle the chopstick into the sewn short end of the strap and gently push the strap over itself until the whole thing is right side out. Press with an iron to straighten, de-wrinkle and flatten the strap. It can get a little wonky in this process.

Sew one piece of velcro to each end on opposite sides of the strap. For the end of the strap that is NOT sewn shut simply fold over the end once, pin the velcro in place and stitch it on.

Set the strap aside. We will now start making the bow portion!

With your piece of fabric sized 5″ by 11″, place the fabric right sides together along the length. Stitch along the long side leaving one inch unsewn at both ends.

Turn the rectangle right side out.

The next step is a teeny bit tricky but also quite fantastic, so bear with me. Start by pinning the short ends of the fabric, right sides together, beginning by matching the portions that meet at the seam you have just sewn. By leaving one inch of fabric unstitched earlier, it should make it easier to put this together. Put in a pin or two to hold it together. You will be sewing the right sides together for the whole length of the short ends but it won’t be possible to pin the whole thing.

Once you have a few pins in place, begin stitching the short ends closed. You will need to sew a few stitches; position the needle down and reposition as you work your way along the whole end.

Once you have finished sewing it will look like this:

Once you have completed this stitch, turn it right side out. You will have created a tube with a small remaining opening.

Hand stitch this opening closed to create a complete tube of fabric.

Turning your new tube right side out, fold it accordion style in the center to imitate the bow tie look.

Now, picking up your Velcro strap, find the middle of the strap and tie the strap around the mid-section of the bow with a regular knot at the back of the bow.

By adjusting the bow tie from the front, you should be able to straighten it. To keep it straightened hand stitch a few tacking stitches an inch or so from the middle knot on the back, connecting the strap to the bow.

Next, attach that bow tie one of your cuties and watch the world swoon!

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