Whether you make one for your hair accessories or for your scrapbooks, you sure want to make a perfect-looking bow. This can be done with a bow-making jig. A jig is a simple tool that holds the ribbon and guides you as you form it into a bow. The good thing is that you can make your own bow-making jig. It is not so complicated to make and can in fact be finished in about an hour. Here’s what you should do.
- Gather your materials. The materials for bow-making jig are easy to find. Foremost, you need wood scrap that measures two inches wide and four inches long. Other sizes work as well, but make sure they are neither too small nor too big to manipulate. You also need two dowel rods that are about ¼ inch in width and six inches in length, drill, pencil, and ruler.
- Mark the wood. Position your wood scrap on the table lengthwise. Find its center with your ruler, then mark. Following the center mark, make a straight line down through the wood scrap using a ruler.
- Mark the jig holes. Measure one inch from the top edge of the wood scrap; mark it with the pencil. This is for the first jig hole. Then measure one inch from the first jig hole to mark the second hole. Repeat this process until you have jig holes along the straight line, one-inch apart.
- Drill the holes. Using ¼-inch bit, make holes on the marked points. The holes should be about ½ to one inch deep. Then try to insert the dowel rod in the holes. It should go deep down the holes and should be stable. If not, the dowel rod might wiggle out of place when you use the jig in holding the ribbon.
- Position the dowel rods. As soon as you are sure the holes can securely hold the dowel rods, you can place the first dowel rod into the first hole and glue it in place. The second dowel, meanwhile, can be positioned into any hole and should be transferred to another hole, following the intended size of your ribbon.
- Sand the bow-making jig. To make the jig more presentable, especially if you are going to give it as a gift, try to smooth out the surface with a sand paper. You can paint or stain it as well if you prefer. Make sure to let it completely dry before using to avoid staining the ribbons.
- Test the bow-making jig. Make several ribbons of different sizes using the jig, and as you do so, check that the dowels are firmly planted in the holes and that the jig itself helps you create the ribbon you have in mind. Clamp the jig onto your workbench to make it more stable.
Aside from a wood bow-making jig, you can also create a jig made of chipboard. To do this, get a piece of chipboard that is as wide as the ribbon you want to create. Then, cut a three-inch strip from the center of the chipboard, making sure that the left and right sides of the chipboard are equal in width. To use, simply wrap a length of ribbon around the chipboard jig, its tails making an X pattern. Insert a thread through the center opening and wrap the thread over the center of the ribbon.