As promised in a recent post, here is my bow tie tutorial! This is about the 7th bow tie I've made, & I think I've finally got it down this time. The key, as it turns out, is patience. Who knew?
I know clip-ons are much easier to make, but there's just something about the classic bow tie. Sophistication? Elegance? Or maybe I'm just old-fashioned.
You'll need a few things for this project:
- 1/4 yard cotton fabric (at least 42" width)
- Thread in a corresponding color
- Vest buckle
- A sewing machine
- A pencil or some kind of stick
- An iron & ironing board
- Tape for taping pattern together
- Bow tie pattern (page 1 & page 2)
First, print out your bow tie pattern. The pattern of the tie itself should be 20.5 inches long, so it will need to be printed on two sheets of regular printer paper. When printing, make sure to set the printer's properties so it does not scale the image. Cut the pattern out & tape the two pieces together.
Pin your pattern to the fabric, and cut out the bow tie shape.
Repeat the last step three times, for a total of four bow tie pieces. Each piece is identical, so it doesn't matter how you lay your pattern down.
We are making two different bow tie sections for the final product. Pin two of the bow tie pieces together right sides together, skinny end to skinny end. Do the same for the other two pieces. You should now have two bow tie shapes with the pattern facing in on both sides.
Take your pieces to the sewing machine & begin sewing around one of your bow tie shapes. Start at the skinny end. Take your time going around the bow end, this part is a little tricky. The pattern allows for 1/4 inch seam allowance.
Sew entirely around the bow tie shape except for the bottom of the skinny end, as seen above. Leave the skinny end open. Do the same for your second piece.
Your pieces, now sewn together, should look like the above photo with the skinny ends open.
Now comes the really tricky part, & this is where patience really is a virtue. Turning these suckers right side out! Use the rubber-end of a pencil or some kind of stick to help you. This will be frustrating, so take your time & go slow. You don't want to force it - you could break a seam!
If it's getting stuck, roll the end around in your hand.
Make sure you poke all of the edges of the bow section out, getting it as flat as you can.
After you've turned them both inside out, sew the opening shut. I rolled mine inside of itself about 1/4 of an inch before sewing. Alternatively you could fold the fabric over 1/4 inch and sew shut.
Take your pieces to the ironing board, & iron them flat.
Finally, feed the skinny end of one of your pieces through the vest buckle. When putting your bow tie on, you'll feed the second piece through as shown above. I love this feature because it means you only have to tie it once as you can take it off from the back.
Done! If you need help tying your bow tie, I used a mixture of images and videos. Once you get the hang of it tying a bow tie it's a breeze. But again - remember this tutorials theme: patience.
Even undone, m'lady looks classy in her new tie. But maybe I'm just biased.