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How to Sew a Simple Jazzy Bow Tie

Updated on December 10, 2017
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Sally Gulbrandsen Feltmaker: Her tutorials & techniques are as individual as she is — unique, experimental and always interesting.

An array of jazzy bow ties
An array of jazzy bow ties | Source

Finding the perfect fabric

Finding the perfect design for a conversational accessory such as these eyecatching bow ties is the easy part. I bought a 'Jelly Roll' which is a roll of pre cut strips which are widely available from Amazon or can be purchased from shops which sell fabric for patchwork enthusiasts. These are usually made of pure cotton and the fabric comes in a variety of colors and designs.

The ties shown here were commissioned by some local musicians who wore them for their most recent Jazz Band Concert Performance.

These sections and fittings make up the bow tie.
These sections and fittings make up the bow tie. | Source

Cut the fabric to size

Fabric cut to size
Fabric cut to size | Source

Materials

Small oddments of pure cotton fabric with a jazzy design.

Dressmaking scissors or a Rotary Cutter

Front facing Bra fixings or Box Tie Fixings

Pins

Sewing Machine

Hand Sewing Needle

Large Sewing Needle with a large eye

An Iron for pressing

Matching Sewing Thread

Disappearing sewing pen if you would like accurate sewing lines

Black narrow elastic - about 50 cm

Cut the Fabric Strips

First, cut two strips of fabric (Bows) which are 29 x 7 cm in.

They should be cut from contrasting fabric, each section of the bow should be different from the other.

Cut one strip from a complimentary color (Neck Strip) This should measure 29 x 5 cm in length.

Cut off 5 cm as shown in the image below - from the narrow strip. This small piece will be used to form the cylindrical shape which will be used to hold the two bow pieces together.

Contrasting Fabric Strips for Bow Tie
Contrasting Fabric Strips for Bow Tie | Source
Two complimentary colors or layers will form the double bow.
Two complimentary colors or layers will form the double bow. | Source

Fold the Fabric Strips

Fold the narrow strip in half lengthwise as shown below

Fold the wider strips width wise as shown below

Fold the tiny strip as shown.


Pressed bow tie fabric pieces
Pressed bow tie fabric pieces | Source

Making the small bow ring

Fold back a little of each end of the fabric from the right side and press these up towards the wrong side of the fabric as shown here.

Fold the strip

Now fold the strip over to face the wrong side of the fabric.

Sew Across the Top

Sew the folded strip down one side and across the folded pieces. Once you turn it inside out you will be left with a nice edge without having the struggle to neaten it off when you turn this tiny tube inside out.

Sewn bow tie connector - leave long threads to make light work of the turning inside out process.
Sewn bow tie connector - leave long threads to make light work of the turning inside out process. | Source

Leave the Long Cotton Threads!

Leave sufficient thread when removing from the sewing machine. These threads will help turning the strip being turned inside out. Simply thread a large needle with the thread and pass the needle through the tube. Use this thread to help turn the tube inside out.

Thread the Large Needle
Thread the Large Needle | Source

Insert the needle into the casing

Turn the casing inside out.

Scissors

A large pair of scissors can be a used with good effect to straighten the casing out.

A pair of scissors comes in handy for easing the casing into place.
A pair of scissors comes in handy for easing the casing into place.

Leave the threads

Don't cut off the threads yet. You can use them to sew the tube together a little later on.

Threads to use with the sewing needle
Threads to use with the sewing needle | Source

Sew the Tube Together

Use the long threads to join the tube together. Sew both sides of the tube, first the lower edge and then the upper one.. A few stitches on each section will do nicely.

The completed tube

The two layers of the bow tie have now been completed. These will be threaded through this tube to hold them together later.

The completed tube.
The completed tube. | Source

Make the two bows

Sew the short edges of each bow and place the seam in the center of the folded fabric and press.

Sewing the raw edges of the short side together.
Sewing the raw edges of the short side together. | Source
Place the seam in the center of the folded piece.
Place the seam in the center of the folded piece. | Source

Press Flat

Keeping the seam in the center and press both of the bow pieces flat.

This process should be repeated for the second bow section.

Press the open seam
Press the open seam | Source

Sew the sides of the bows.

Sew one side of each bow piece.

Now, sew the other side but this time, you must leave a gap in the center, through which the bows can be turned inside out.

Leave a gap in the center through which the bow can be turned inside out.
Leave a gap in the center through which the bow can be turned inside out. | Source

Both sections of the bow tie

The image clearly shows both side seams. One side shows where a gap has been left in the middle.

Gap in the stitching
Gap in the stitching | Source

Leave a gap in the stitching near the centre

The gap as seen below.

The gap
The gap | Source
Turn the bows inside out, using the gap to do so.
Turn the bows inside out, using the gap to do so. | Source
Turn the bow pieces inside out
Turn the bow pieces inside out | Source

Use a Pin or a Needle!

Pull out the corners out with a pin or needle to ensure that you get nice sharp pointed edges to your bow tie.

Neaten the Edges  Use a pin or needle to pull the corners out straight.
Neaten the Edges Use a pin or needle to pull the corners out straight. | Source
The bow turned inside out
The bow turned inside out | Source
Slip stitch the gap together.
Slip stitch the gap together. | Source

Begin Making the Necktie!

Sew the pressed neck strip down on one side and turn it inside out using the long threads as was done in each previous stage.

Turning the neck piece inside out

Thread the large needle and pull the cotton thread through. Gently ease the fabric over the long threads to turn it inside out.

Thread the needle with the thread as shown here, gently easing the fabric over the thread
Thread the needle with the thread as shown here, gently easing the fabric over the thread | Source
Gently ease the fabric across the thread.
Gently ease the fabric across the thread. | Source

Using the Scissors as a Tool

Use the points of the scissors to push back a little of the raw ends to provide a neat edge. Alternatively, the edges could be done the same way we did the small tubular piece by folding back the raw edges before machining the long edge.

Push the raw edges back into the neck tie with the scissors.
Push the raw edges back into the neck tie with the scissors. | Source

Assembling the pieces

This image shows two layers of the bow, a neck tie strip, a joined front facing bra connector and an adjustable bra clip. . Alternatively a bow tie kit can be purchased.

The assembled pieces waiting to be attached to one another.
The assembled pieces waiting to be attached to one another. | Source

Insert the Elastic into the Tube

Insert the piece of elastic into the tube and then attach it using a few firm stitches. Alternatively sew it with a machine.

Use the long threads to sew on the elastic
Use the long threads to sew on the elastic | Source

Insert the Elastic into the Tube

Insert the elastic into the pressed neck tie and secure the elastic with firm stitches or alternatively machine stitch across the elastic and the fabric.

Attaching the adjustable fittings

Add the bra fittings to the elastic as shown below. The loose piece of elastic should be fed back through the same little connector to form a circle. The other end of the elastic should be threaded as shown and then two ends of the elastic should be stitched together so cannot come loose. The Strap will be adjustable if threaded correctly.

Adjustable fitting for the neck tie.
Adjustable fitting for the neck tie. | Source
How to attach the adjustable bra strap connector  Placing the fittings in the correct order.
How to attach the adjustable bra strap connector Placing the fittings in the correct order. | Source
Threading sequence before attaching the fabric to the elastic.
Threading sequence before attaching the fabric to the elastic. | Source

Sew the fittings onto the elastic

Undo the front fastening and thread one onto the elastic and one onto the fabric of the neck tie. Fold over and sew neatly together as shown.

Attaching the bra fitting to each side of the neck tie.
Attaching the bra fitting to each side of the neck tie. | Source

The completed neck tie

The neck piece is shown here completed but without the two bows attached.

Ready to assemble, the bow ties.
Ready to assemble, the bow ties.

Insert the 2 bows through the tube.

Place the two bows together and thread them through the small cylindrical tube to form a single bow.

Threading the bow through the tube.
Threading the bow through the tube. | Source
The rear side of the bow.
The rear side of the bow. | Source
Thread the bow through on the wrong side and stitch neatly to keep it in place.
Thread the bow through on the wrong side and stitch neatly to keep it in place. | Source

The Completed Bow

You have now completed your Bow Tie. Any comments or questions are welcomed.

A group of completed ties
A group of completed ties | Source
A jazzy bow tie.
A jazzy bow tie. | Source

© 2014 Sally Gulbrandsen

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    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      aesta1

      Always nice to have some feedback, thank you for taking the time to stop by.

      Sally.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      This is really easy to follow so I am looking forward to making some.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Definitely a fun project and they really turned out great. The jazz band loved the ties and they looked amazing on the guys. Thanks for stopping by to comment.

    • Arachnea profile image

      Tanya Jones 3 years ago from Texas USA

      This is an interesting project. I plan to come back by and make a few myself. Thanks for sharing.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      peachpurple

      These were made specifically for some jazz musicians and yes, silk bows certainly have their place.

      Sally

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 3 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      so easy, but i prefer silk bow tie. Thanks

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      ComfortB

      I love the idea of using African Fabrics - oh, I know them so well. I completely agree, they would be perfect for this project. I hope you have fun creating the ties.

      Thanks so much for the vote up, beautiful and useful too.

      Best wishes,

    • ComfortB profile image

      Comfort Babatola 3 years ago from Bonaire, GA, USA

      These looks great. Way to go sallybea!

      I actually have made bow ties before. Even custom-made ones for a New York based designer guy. Just that I have plenty of my African fabrics at home and this just gave me an idea for what I might do with them next outside of making purses.

      Very nicely done!. Voted up and beautiful. Useful too.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Suzanne Day

      I tried to make this Tutorial as simple as I could. These bow ties are the perfect project for someone who is just learning to sew. Love the idea of making some bow ties for the teddies. Thanks for the vote up and awesome.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      randomcreative

      You are very welcome, I am glad you enjoyed the tutorial, how to make some jazzy bow ties.

    • Suzanne Day profile image

      Suzanne Day 3 years ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

      Thanks for ironing this out for me! (excuse the pun). A great idea and love how you photograph each stage of making the bow tie, so it is easier for someone else sewing one. My kids will want to decorate all of their teddy bears with bow ties when they see this! Voted awesome and up.

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 3 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks for the tutorial! What a fun little project.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Nelll Rose

      Yes the bow ties turned out great and the colors made them look unique. I love the way they turned out and the Musicians enjoyed wearing them too.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Sally

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      Oh Wow, what an amazing hub! I love them! I used to wear them back in the day, punky me! lol! but bow ties are cute and I love the colors, very clever! nice one sally! nell

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Iris Draak

      I think these bow ties would be a great idea for raising school funds for your school events. They take so little fabric to make.

      Thanks for stopping by to comment.

      Sally

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      grand old lady,

      I definitely think that bow ties for little dogs are a grand idea, especially ones like these - as I am sure they will sell like hot cakes - I intend to sell the extra ones I made from this tutorial.

      Glad you thought them cute - because so do I.

    • Iris Draak profile image

      Cristen Iris 3 years ago from Boise, Idaho

      I love this idea, Sally. I'm a sucker for a bow tie. Fun idea. I could see this being a great project for a school spirit club to sell to raise funds for school events.

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 3 years ago from Philippines

      Such beautiful bowties. It's too hot for these in the Philippines, but I'm glad to have read this article because many of my dog dresses have lovely bowties in the back. I can use your instructions to make bowties for my dogs'clothes, and the tip about using jazzy designs is so cute:)

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      MsDora

      I am glad you enjoyed my Jazzy Bow Tie Tutorial and I very much appreciate your continued support.

      Thank you.

      Sally

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Great tutorial! Clear, detailed instructions for the Jazzy Bow Tie. I admire your creative talent and your teaching skill. Thanks for sharing.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Ann1Az2

      It is nice to hear that you enjoyed the images and also the tutorial on how to sew a jazzy bow tie. I really enjoyed making them and am delighted that you liked them.

      Many thanks,

      Sally

    • Ann1Az2 profile image

      Ann1Az2 3 years ago from Orange, Texas

      What a great set of pictures and instructions! Well done. If I ever want to make a bow tie, this would be the place to come. They are so colorful, too. I really like them!

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      DDE

      You are such a valued follower and I so appreciate your very kind comment and your every visit. Thanks for the vote up, useful and beautiful. I hope you will give these bow ties a go in the future.

      I Hope you are having a great week-end

      Sally

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Brilliant! Your ideas are fantastic! I have not tried making such a kind of bow tie. I will keep this one in mind and save it. Voted up, useful and beautiful.

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      billybuc

      That is a very nice compliment to receive Billy and much appreciated. I like to think that these bow ties shout individuality and give the wearer sex appeal - I hope I shall see you wearing one again in the future.

      Happy Sunday to you and yours.

      Sally

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't think I have worn a bow tie since I was in college, but I would wear these. They are colorful and make a statement. I'm not sure what that statement is, but they appeal to me. You are very talented, Sally. Nice tutorial my friend, and Happy Sunday to you.

      bill

    • sallybea profile image
      Author

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      FlourishAnyway

      They turned out really well. Finding the right fabric was an added bonus and the Musicians looked amazing wearing them. I really appreciate your visit and especially the comment re - my tutorials - I accept your high praise with grateful thanks.

      Hope you enjoy the rest of your week-end

      Sally

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Awesome job. You are quite the seamstress. I never would have thought to have done these myself, but I could imagine that for plays, dance recitals, large groups that require everyone to be dressed a certain way this would be a major money saver -- in addition to the ordinary person. Voted up and very useful. You write awesome tutorials.

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