We’re all about the holidays, as you probably already guessed. And around here that means DECORATING!!
This year, leading up to Thanksgiving, I decided to set up a front door wreath and garland. It was a pretty simple DIY (maybe I’ll share that too), but it needed a little extra touch. So, I added a bow. Not a real bow mind you. A fake one. It’s actually just an overhand knot with the ends tucked back into the hanging loop.
Well, Amanda loved the look of it, and thought making a bow for the valance garland in the living room would be a nice touch too. So it was off to Pinterest to find a tutorial on how to make a real actual really real kind of bow out of burlap ribbon. That’s where I found Mommy Suite’s tutorial (pin pictured below, and pinned RIGHT HERE).
This seemed simple enough. Two loops, a tail, and a little ring to hold them all together. Easy, right?
The burlap ribbon we had from Michael’s was pretty wide, so after cutting the pieces to length I cut them in half lengthwise. Narrower pieces are a little easier to deal with at only 18 inches long. All I had to do was glue the 18 and 15 inch strips into individual rings. That worked:
After that, it was time to glue the rings together and pinch them in the middle to create a bow-like shape. With glue:
Here’s something they don’t tell you: burlap, when you cut it, becomes an unholy trinity of rage and frustration. First, it’s the ribbon you have. Second, it’s piles of loose yarn that start scattering as you try to work it. Third, it’s fuzz.
So. Much. Fuzz.
There was so much fuzzy burlap shed all over the table that it looked like my sweater after carrying my cat into the vet’s office.
Something else they don’t tell you: hot glue is REALLY hot. And sticky. That seems super obvious, but when you’re trying to pinch together bits of burlap (which is 88.6% empty space, and 10% shedding fuzz), what you end up with is a hot molten wad of fur that’s now stuck to your hands, searing your flesh as it sets up, and coating your palms in a stringy, gooey down.
No! It’s not what you think! I was making a bow! My eyesight is still perfect, believe me!!
The final result was this monstrosity:
…something I like to call “DIY Perfect Burlap Roadkill.”
I had enough from my original cut to try again (remember, I had cut everything to length, then in half lengthwise), but I thought nah, forget it. Instead, I took what was left of my full-width ribbon, created two more rings much longer, and glued those together (because that was the part I got right the first time around).
Then I took a length of another kind of burlap ribbon I got from Dollarama, tied a knot around the middle of the two rings, and trimmed it off. DONE!
This one was WAY easier, and while a trifle more rustic-looking, easily did the job of covering up the empty space in the valance garland and making life worth living again.
Plus, now I have a fun new hobby: picking bits of glue off my fingers for the next week and a half.
If you’d like to try out the original tutorial yourself, and you’re more confident in your ability to handle your glue gun than I am, please do check out Sarah’s original blog post HERE, and make sure to follow her on Pinterest as well.