Great Ribbon Decorating Ideas for Christmas

I’ve always had a love of textiles and trimmings and with the festive season upon us, I thought I’d share with you some great ribbon decorating ideas for Christmas.

Jane Means ribbon

Ribbon by Jane Means

Aside from the very obvious way that ribbon is used lavishly, luxuriously and in flamboyant, festive ways to wrap gift boxes at Christmas, it is an extremely versatile product that can be used all over the home to assist in the creation of an embellished and decorated Christmas.

 

What about selecting three or four colours to compliment your personal Christmas pallet and, instead of the traditional paper chain, making a ribbon chain or garland instead…  Ribbon widths can be uniform or you can mix widths and fabric types.

 

Baubles are beautiful on a tree but showering your Christmas tree with hand tied bows, large or small, or twirling wide, wired ribbon around and around your tree is beautiful if you wish to soften the style of decoration.

 

Wreaths with an abundance or red ribbon are seasonally enhanced and very appealing.

Ribbon wreath

Image Courtesy of Clifton Nurseries

Banisters and dining chairs need not go undecorated at this time of year.  Drape or wrap an evergreen garland from top to bottom of your staircase banister and dress with bows and hanging, curled ribbons, along with other festive decorations.  Dining chair backs, tied with a large ribbon with a snuggly held candy cane, place name ‘gift tag’ or prettily wrapped table gift are a practical addition to Christmas table settings.

Sophiasdecor

Image courtesy of Sophias Decor

If the pictures around the walls of your home appear neglected in terms of Christmas decoration, then embellish one top corner of random frames with a sprig of holly, tied with copious lengths of ribbon and secure with easily removed, non-damaging sticky tape.

 

Tall candlesticks are another seasonal decoration where snuggly tied bows and draping ribbons can add elegance.  An embellishment at the candle base and some well chosen satin or velvet ribbon on either one or a grouping of candles will enhance a table setting or fireplace and add that cosy Christmas feel that we all love.

Bauble ribbon

Image courtesy of Red Online

Light fittings are often designed in such a way that they lend themselves to being transformed into Christmas chandeliers.  With the addition of fine thread-suspended baubles, draped evergreen garlands and lots of twirled, tied and curled, hanging ribbons, a dramatic chandelier can quickly be created.  This can add an effective centrepiece to any room and is a great suggestion for light fittings that are positioned over dining tables.

Recycled crafts

Image courtesy of Recycled Crafts

Wherever evergreen garlands are hung, draped and displayed for Christmas, attaching randomly positioned, ribbon tied bows with a little florist wire always adds subtle, seasonal detail.  Bow-decorated, garlands, sit beautifully along fireplaces and window sills, fit, grandly from floors to ceilings in room corners and, when draped and equidistantly clipped, embellish seasonal table edges to perfection

I always love to see new creative used for ribbon, especially off cuts and roll ends. Feel free to share your ideas with us on Instagram and Facebook…we’d love to see your photos.  x

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How to tie the perfect bow in gift wrapping

One of the most asked questions I get asked on our gift wrapping workshops is “How do you tie the perfect bow?”.  We all have our own way of tying a shoelace or a bow and through my experience of teaching gift wrapping, I’ve found it’s very hard to change your technique after tying the same bow all of your life

tying a bow

I did a day skipper sailing course several years ago and thought the knot tying part would be so easy.  To my horror I failed my knot exams and was all fingers and thumbs. Although I had to resit the exam, it gave me food for thought and made me realise that many people will struggle to tie the perfect bow.

 

I have seen so many ways of tying a bow and my advice is to use the same technique that you’ve used all of your life with a couple of changes that will help you enormously.  Many of us tie a loop at a time, however some will form 2 loops and tie them together (known as the bunny ears).  During my workshops I have seen many different techniques and everyone can tie the perfect bow.

the perfect bow

The ideal bow should resemble a perfect angled letter ‘X’ so it is a good idea to imagine this X and follow the outline as you are tying your bow.  The 2 loops should be at 10 and 2 o’clock and the 2 tails should sit at 8 and 4 o’clock.

ribbon bow

The critical point is the part just before you pull the bow tight. Take a pause and look at the outline of your bow.  This will give you a chance to re arrange the bow so the loops and tails are in the correct position. If your bow looks messy or out of proportion, if you rush ahead and pull the bow tight it will still look a mess and out of proportion.

Turquoise ribbon

Another helping hand is to choose a double sided ribbon that has the same finish on both sides. Many of my students say that tying a wired ribbon is a lot easier. If you are working with a printed ribbon like this turquoise spotty design, ensure that you twist the ribbon to the correct side as you tie your bow.

For lots more bow techniques and gift wrapping projects, grab a signed copy of my new book ‘giftwrapped

Happy bow tying!

 

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