When I was in high school, I bought a bunch of old windows from a friend I worked with. As a teen, I wasn’t sure what in the world I needed old windows for, I just knew that I did indeed need them. I don’t believe all of the decisions I made as a teenager were very clever, or even sorta clever, but I have been extremely happy with at least that one impulsive decision!Over the years I’ve done some fun things with those old windows. When I had my first baby girl, I used one window to store/display her hair bows. Two more baby girls and a whole lot of bows later, I decided it was time to update our bow holder.
Old Window or Large Empty Frame
1″ wide Ribbon or Lace Trim (I used about 4 yds)
Glue Gun and Glue Sticks
If you don’t have an old window lying around, there certainly are plenty of places you can find one (Etsy or Ebay are good options). Or if you prefer, you can simply use a large open frame.
First things first, you’ll need to prep your window. This includes, cleaning and repainting if needed. A lot of old windows have lead paint so be careful and watch for chipping. I personally love the look of my old window and since it is out of reach of my little ones, I left it as is. I removed the gold latch from the front and added picture hanger brackets to either side of the back.
Next, choose a ribbon. My first go round I used 1/2″ plain white ribbon. For my new and improved bow holder I thought a bit wider would work better and it definitely does a better job of holding the bows in place. Choose a 1″ to 1 1/2″ ribbon that coordinates with the room or bathroom your bow display will hang. If in doubt, go with the same color frame you are using.
Lay your window or frame on a flat work surface. Measure and cut pieces of ribbon long enough to wrap around the entire front surface and overlap an inch or two onto the back. The first time I made one of these I only used five rows of ribbon, since that time we’ve acquired a lot more bows and I went ahead and added a few more rows. Lay your ribbon pieces out on the front surface of your window, equally spaced apart, making sure you have plenty of room between each row (so your bows aren’t too snug when clipped on). I used my window panes as a guide for my ribbon placement. If using an open frame you will need to measure and mark some guides.
Next, using a hot glue gun, secure your ribbon in place along the front side. Keep in mind, wherever you place glue, you will not be able to clip a bow there, so go as easy as you can on the adhesive. I glued each ribbon at the top, bottom and center pane. If you are using a frame you obviously will only be able to glue along the top and bottom of each ribbon. Make sure to keep the ribbons taut as you glue them in place.
TIPS FOR NOT BURNING THE CRAP OUT OF YOURSELF WITH A GLUE GUN:
First of all, in all my crafty years of experience, I’ve never met a glue gun that wasn’t about 10 thousand degrees too hot. Whenever using a glue gun, place the smallest amount possible on the desired area and then WAIT at least 10 to 15 seconds for it to cool slightly. I often times give that firey ball of flesh melting terror a few good blows before even attempting to adhere something to it. After the glue has cooled to a very hot temperature, rather than a crazy ridiculous, extremely HOT temperature, I use a tool (not my finger) to lightly press the ribbon on top of the glue. Typically I use whatever is handy, in this case a pair of scissors.Don’t press down or the scissors will become stuck to the glue, rather lightly tap until the glue is almost completely cooled. At this point, I finally press it firmly in place with my finger.Not a single burn later, your scissors will look something like this.Which is better than your finger. Am I right? In two seconds or less this glue will come right off. Plus, I personally find it strangely satisfying to pick at pretty much anything, so added bonus!
Okay back to the task at hand. Flip your window over and glue the ribbon ends around and down to the backside of your frame or window. Flip that baby over and you are all set.Now dig those beautiful bows outta your drawers or cupboards, or boxes, or wherever you stash them and start clippin’!You certainly don’t need to arrange them by color, but it is sorta fun!
This bow display has been a great way to keep our hair accessories organized and always easy to find. I hope you’ll give it a try!
OUR FAVORITE BOW SHOPS:
Denver Darlings * Little Lady A Shop * Little Poppy Co
** Denver Darlings is one of my absolute favorite shops to find adorable (and well made!) bows and head wraps. They are giving my followers 15% off any order now through May 15th! Use the code RFRIEND15 when checking out!