DIY Gift Bow – Photo Tutorial

diy gift bows, paper, easy, craft ideas

The Perfect Finish

Give your gift box or bag the perfect finish with this DIY gift bow. I got the idea for this project from Ann’s Happy Stampers on YouTube. If you live in the UK, you should definitely visit Ann’s website  and “adopt” her as your SU lady. She is amazing! Thanks for sharing the idea, Ann.

When you need a great present bow, there’s no need to run out and pay up to $5 or more, you can make your own really easily. Using just one half a piece of designer series paper, your project will only cost you somewhere around 50 cents.

This project is also great for that piece of DSP you really like but you just aren’t sure how you’ll use it. You can always make a bow (or two) that will wow the person you’re giving a gift to.

I’ll walk you through each step and show you photos and short videos so you can see exactly how to make these.

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diy gift bows, paper, easy, craft ideas

Cutting Your Pieces

This part is really important because you can get two bows out of one piece of DSP, but only if you cut it right. First, I’ll tell you the amount and measurements of each piece, then I’ll show you the best way to cut your paper to get two full bows.

To make one bow, you will need:

  • 8 pieces cut to 1 x 6″
  • 4 pieces cut to 1 x 5″
  • 1 piece cut to  1 x 4″

To be able to get two bows out of one sheet of DSP, make sure you cut it like the picture shown below. The first photo is the paper scored to how you would want to cut it, the second one is the pieces cut.

So, you’ll cut 8 pieces of 1 x 12″, 4 pieces of 1 x 10″ and then in the corner you’ll cut your 2 pieces of 1 x 4″. Keep in mind, I still have to cut the 10″ and 12″ pieces in half. This demonstration is just so you make sure not to waste your paper with the wrong cuts.

diy gift bow paper cuts

I hope that’s helpful. Now, as I mentioned above, you’ll need to cut your 12″ and 10″ pieces in half. You will then have all the pieces needed to create two present bows.

Fold Your Strips

diy gift bow pieces

I have turned my pieces of DSP over now, as I want my bow to be created out of the other side. I scored and cut on the side shown above to help you see it better. You can see I have all the pieces I need to make one bow.

Next, for every strip except for the 1 x 4″, you’re going to put a piece of fast fuse (or two, Ann uses two) on it and wrap it around. Let me show you how this step is done:

You can get the idea from the cover photo, but if it helps, there’s a super short video to show you what I did.

Note: I didn’t show it very well in the video, but the best way to get the fast fuse off of the paper  is to swipe to the right. Press down, roll, swipe to the right. Since this demonstration, I have stopped using fast fuse. The end result is great, but the tape runner is famous for breaking. I’d recommend the Tear n Tape or the Tombow Multi-liquid glue.

Combine Your Folded Strips In Pairs

diy bow pairs

Next, you’re going to use your adhesive again to tape your pieces together in pairs as seen above. Obviously, you’ll tape the bigger pieces together, and the smaller pieces together. For the smallest strip, you’ll add a piece of tape to the edge and roll it into a circle as shown.

Next, you’ll make crosses (or X’s) with your newly combined pieces. Again, large pieces go together and small pieces go together. Attach them with the fast fuse tape and press together well so they’ll stick. Once you’re done they will like this:

diy gift bow crosses

Glue Pairs Together

You now have four pieces as shown above. It’s time to construct our DIY gift bow! The two crosses (or X’s) for the larger strips, the one cross from the  smaller strips, and the circle made from the smallest strip.

The next step is to take one of the large crosses and place it inside the other large cross. Make sure to turn it where the points stick out in the empty spaces of the one on bottom.

For this step, I use the multi-liquid glue. I put dots of multi-liquid glue on the bottom piece, fit the top piece in, and press them together. Wait a few moments to give the liquid glue a chance to dry.

Silly me, I didn’t get a photo of this completed step before moving on. You should be able to see the results of it in the photo below. If you have a question, please comment and I’ll be glad to assist you.

Okay, now that the two big pieces are together, you’re going to do the same thing with the small cross. First place your glue dots inside the piece you want to attach your small cross to.

Turn the points on the small cross to where they poke out of the middle space between two points on the layer below. (Just like you did when fitting the first piece.) This time, when you fit the piece in (some of your pieces will get squished, you can fluff them back up later) use your bone folder to press down and hold until the glue has a chance to dry a bit.

diy gift bow last cross piece
See how the points of each cross (or x) are turned where they poke out of the middle space between the points on the layer below.

Finishing Your DIY Gift Bow

Our DIY gift bow is almost complete! We have one step left. Take the circle you made with the smallest strip, place a dot or two of glue on, and then use your bone folder to press it into the middle. Of course, you could also place the dot of glue inside your bow first instead. I’ve used both ways, the results are the same.

Once that has dried, you’ll have a bow! To adhere your bow to your gift box, you could use any of the adhesives. Fast fuse and multi-liquid glue are going to really stick well.

If you have some snail adhesive on hand, it will be more like the bows you purchase in the stores. (It might pop off.) This is good for those who want to save the bow to be used again. You could do that with the other adhesives as well, but you’d have to be careful with it.

You can see another example of this DIY gift bow in the butterfly gift tag post. The header photo has a box with one of these gift bows and the butterfly gift tag.


In the header photo, you can see a variation I did with this paper. For the demonstration, I did the bow on the left. The bow on the right has a slight variation.

For this, I turned my four 1 x 5″ strips over to the opposite side when I folded them. The opposite side of your DSP always has a perfectly coordinating design you can use in all of your projects. I love that!

What did you think of our DIY gift bow? Was it easy to understand and make? Did you get any feedback from the person who received your gift? Let us know!

Supplies for your DIY Gift Bow

Get your paper craft supplies to make your own amazing gift bows at my Stampin Up demonstrator website.

Items Used in the Demo:

About Laura

Laura enjoys a variety of crafts including paper crafting, crocheting, sewing, making vinyl tee shirts, and cross-stitching. She tries to balance her time and enjoy the simpler things in life.

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