I love vintage dresses with giant chiffon bows on the front, so I decided to whip up a large bow with some clips on the back so I can wear it with any of my dresses! It's a really easy and affordable project, and the possibilities for outfit remixing are endless!
Here's what you'll need:
Fabric for the bow
A Sewing machine
Bobby pins with glue pads
For the fabric you can really use anything you like, but I wanted something sheer and flowy like the pretty bows on the vintage dresses that I love so much! I found these scarves were the perfect material and size for this project, and they come in SO many colors! You could really make a clip-on bow that goes with every outfit!
Start by cutting a piece of fabric 10" x 63". If you are using the scarves that I linked to above, just cut the scarf in half lengthwise. It comes folded so it's easy to just cut along the fold line without having to measure!
Fold that piece in half lengthwise and sew it closed, kind of like you would if you were making a pillow. Just leave a little bit open at the end so that you can turn the piece inside-out. Then hand-sew the opening closed using a blind stitch.
I used my zipper foot on my sewing machine for this project in order to get closer to the edge of the fabric. Since the fabric is slightly sheer, this helps conceal the excess fabric when you turn the piece inside-out.
With your remaining fabric, cut a piece to 10" x 14." Fold in half so that it's now 10" x 7" and sew around the edge, following the same steps that you did for the longer piece. Turn it inside out, then sew the edge closed.
Cut one more piece for the center of the bow. This piece can vary in size depending on how you want your bow to look. A smaller piece will result in a tighter, more bow-tie shape. A larger piece will create a more dramatic, square-shaped bow. When you've decided what size you want, follow the exact same steps that I mapped out for the other two bow pieces. Then sew two ends together in order to form a loop. It should look kind of like a napkin ring.
Iron your pieces flat to get rid of any folds in the fabric and flatten the sewing work. If you're using the same scarf fabric that I used, I found that it worked best if I ironed on a high setting with steam, with a pillowcase between the fabric and the iron for protection. Delicate fabrics can burn very easily so make sure you have the iron on the proper setting if you're ironing directly on the fabric.
Thread the two larger bow pieces through the small one to create your bow, and then tack the pieces in place. Make sure to fiddle around with the bow and make sure everything is centered before making any stitches!
At this point you could definitely go ahead and sew the bow directly onto a dress or blouse if you don't want the piece to be detachable. But I wanted to be able to mix things up and wear it with a bunch of different outfits!
I tested a few different types of clips before I ended up trying bobby pins. It is definitely an unconventional choice, but trust me -- it lays perfectly flat when it's attached to your neckline, and you don't even notice it's there while you're wearing it.
Just make sure to get bobby pins that have glue pads, which give you a surface to adhere the pin to the fabric. I used Gorilla Glue and then let it dry overnight and it feels very sturdy. If you're a handy seamstress, you could also add some stitches to really hold the glue pad in place.
Place one pin on each corner of the bow and one in the middle. Place the pins about 1/4" in from the top of the bow so that you don't see it when you wear the bow. If you're wearing a v-neck dress, start by attaching the center pin and then work your way out to the end pins. If you're wearing a round-neck dress, you'll only be attaching the end pins.
And there you have it! A detachable giant bow that will turn every frock in your wardrobe into a vintage-inspired dream!