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How to make ribbon lined alligator clips

Updated on October 4, 2011

Cute clips for your little one

I have two girls, and they were both born with a considerable amount of hair. I would buy generic looking hair clips at my local Target because I refused to pay an arm and a leg for hair accessories found at children's boutiques or at department stores. I got bored one day and started looking into making my own hair clips. Remember I'm a DIY gal and love to tackle on any project! I realized that all the materials I needed were already items I owned, so I just went ahead and made a few and it became quite addicting.

I’ve made them as birthday gifts, baby shower gifts, and have even sold some for profit. The basic hair clip that can be made is a ribbon lined hair alligator clip. Normally these hair clips are made with grosgrain ribbon found at any local craft store like Michaels or Joanns. I like to use Japanese trim ribbon which is much more ornate and looks more like a designer hair clip than something handmade. Read on if you would like to start making your own, fully customizable hair clips.

Step 1

Gather all of your materials

  • Glue Gun
  • 1 3/4 Grosgrain ribbon (I used Japanese trim ribbon which can be found on Etsy)
  • Alligator Clip (Find at any beauty supply store)
  • Lighter

Supplies for Ribbon Lined Alligator Hair Clip
Supplies for Ribbon Lined Alligator Hair Clip | Source

Step 2

Cut a 6.5″ piece of grosgrain ribbon. (In this tutorial, I’m using Japanese trim that’s the same width of 1 3/4)

Cut ribbon to size
Cut ribbon to size | Source

Step 3

Heat the ends of the ribbon with your lighter. This is optional, but I strongly suggest you do this if you want a cleaner and neat looking hair clip. Look at my pic below to understand what I’m talking about. When you cut ribbon, the ends tend to fray and will continue to fray unless they have been heat treated.

Heat ends to prevent fraying
Heat ends to prevent fraying | Source

Step 4

Open your clip with your left hand, and apply glue to the inside of the clip. It doesn’t matter if you start with the top or the bottom part.

Open clip to start applying glue
Open clip to start applying glue | Source

Step 5

Close the clip and now glue the part where you will wrap the ribbon around. Once you apply your glue, I use a popsicle stick or something sturdy (this time around, I just had a piece of cardstock) and I smooth out the glue so it’s not lumpy. This is completely optional. Grosgrain is not very forgiving and you’ll see every bump there is! If you’re going to attach an embellishment on top of the clip, then it shouldn’t matter since you won’t even see it.

The gluing process
The gluing process | Source

Step 6

Wrap the ribbon around the clamp part. Not too tight and not too loose. No gluing is involved with this step.

The gluing process
The gluing process | Source

Step 7

Apply glue to the next piece of the clip.

**Tip: If you’re working with the double prong clip, make sure you glue only the prongs and not the inside part of the ribbon. There is spacing between the two prongs, so you don’t want to accidentally glue the inside!

Open the hair clip, and apply glue to the remaining inside strip. Attach ribbon.

Almost done gluing
Almost done gluing | Source

Voila! You're Done!

These clips are meant to be no slip hair clips. They will work well on any child with fine to medium hair thickness.

Ribbon Lined Alligator Hair Clip
Ribbon Lined Alligator Hair Clip | Source


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    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      xtinak, GREAT hub! Creative; Professional and easy to follow instructions. Wonderful idea for children. What a great idea. Voted UP and away. I appreciate your talent so much. Glad to have run into you on hubs. May I, with your permission, be both, a fan and a follower? I would like that a LOT! With highest regards, KENNETH AVERY from a rural town, Hamilton, in northwest Alabama that resembles Mayberry, that little town we see on the Andy Griffith Show. MUCH peace and success to YOU!

    • ktrapp profile image

      Kristin Trapp 6 years ago from Illinois

      These are really cute! And it makes it so easy to have a clip that coordinates with the baby's or little girl's outfit.

    • xtinak profile image

      xtinak 6 years ago from LA LA Land

      thanks P!!

    • princesswithapen profile image

      princesswithapen 6 years ago

      Hi xtinak

      This is a well written step by step guide which looks easy too! Thanks for sharing.