Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tutorial: Felt Flowers and Bows


Making felt flowers and bows couldn't be easier - a little time, a little patience, and you've got yourself accessories as fit for a broach as a headband, or a flourishes for a jacket or purse.

Things you'll need:

Felt - you can use the thick kind, or the cheap (like twenty-five cents a sheets cheap kind). I'll show you projects using both (the bow is thicker, the flower thinner).

Felt balls - you can buy these pre-made at places like Hobby Lobby (in the US at least) or online (Ornamentea). OR, if you can't locate them you can cut a round of felt, stuff with dryer lint (no reason to buy batting when you've got stuffing in the trash bin!), and sew closed to form a ball.

Needle and thread.
I prefer embroidery floss for previously mentioned reasons. Again, you can do these projects with hot glue, but I prefer to keep the bows/flowers as soft as possible for use on little heads.

Felt Bows

Cut a length of felt - in this case about 8 inches long by 1-ish inchs wide, but you can go longer/shorter, thicker or thinner depending on the bow you want. Cut a small section from the end and reserve. You'll also need two more pieces (not shown) (about 2 inches long for this example) - same width as your bow.

Fold the two ends toward each other to meet in the middle.


Pinch the middle where everything overlaps. Make sure to pinch the ends that you folded inward toward each other to give that nice dimpled effect. Tie off with thread and stitch once or twice to secure.


Using your reserved section (cut to the width you like), wrap around the pinched section and sew closed at the back.


Working with the two other reserved pieces decide how you want the "ribbon" ends to look. For this case I liked the "v" snip - fold the pieces in half length-wise, snip on an angle from the fold up to the end - unfold and you'll have a v-shaped sniped section.

I should note here - you can make your ribbon all in one piece but I prefer this method because it uses the least amount of felt and lies flat.

If you do not want "ends" simply omit this and the following steps.


Position to "ends" on your ribbon.


Sew the ends on - like in the headband tutorial make sure to not go all the way through so that the stitching can't be seen on the front side.


Your bow is complete!


To make into a headband use the directions found here - be sure to stitch the "ends" onto the headband as well if you want the bow and ends to wrap flat against the head.

Felt Bows

First, go ahead and download the template for the flowers and leaves here.

 Determine the type of flower you want and go from there.


For this kind use the flower on the bottom right of the template. Finish by cutting a felt ball in half, then sewing onto the middle of the flower.

Felt Flower Headband

For these flowers use teardrops (4 total) and a full, small felt ball. Secure the center and two teardrops, then add the opposite, bottom teardrops. You can also use a small circle shape if that is easier for you.

For this kind use the teardrop shapes (5 total). Fold each inward and stitch, then stich together. Again, use a half a felt ball to finish. (Note: this is made with thicker felt)


For this flower do the same as above (5 teardrops) with bigger teardrops, or circles, pleat twice if possible. Use a half a felt ball to finish. (Note: this is made with thinner felt)


This flower is the same as above on top of the basic flower in the first example.


This is another layered flower. I'll show you how to make the center below - but I like the center all on it's own. Made in a few colors, then clustered it makes a beautiful decoration.

Folded Flowers - How-to:


Using either of the flower shapes on the left side of the template page cut out 4 flowers. Note: this is the "cheaper felt" in action - still looks great when done!


Fold the flower in half.


Fold in half again the opposite way.


Stitch to secure.


Repeat for 3 of the flowers/discs.


For the center and final flower/disc: fold in half, then roll from one end to the other (on a slight angle, if possible). Stitch to secure.


Lay completed folded petals/flowers next to the center.


Stitch on to secure.


Finish with a knot, trim thread ends and the folded flower is complete!


There's really no end to the types and styles of flowers you can make - cut out some shapes and have fun playing!


Sue said...

This is fabulous - I'm actually making a prayer blanket that each major saying starts with a large letter made out of felt flowers. And I had run out of ideas for flowers - thanks for the tutorial!

Kristen said...

You are so creative and make this look soooo easy! With 3 girls, I can totally find this useful!

k said...

wow that last little flower one looks so fancy! thanks for the tutorial (i love the photos you took to use) :)

keishua said...

that's so cool. I was just thinking about getting some bows on etsy. Now, I might try my hand at making them. The flower is a amazing. Peace.

Ashley said...

I'm not a big felt fan but I really like those flowers. I think the stiffness/thickness of felt is awesome for doing 3D stuff like that.

Lynda :-) said...

I was having a very sad day, a little pity party for one lol, when I stumbled upon your sweet little bows and flowers. Their cuteness and charm made me smile and melted my heart. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful idea and for cheering me up. Best Wishes, Lynda :-)

Tricia said...

Lynda - good grief, you made me tear up! Thank you!

Rachel (Lines across my face) said...

These are so beautiful. Thanks for sharing. I tried making one of them but it did not turn out as well as yours. I hope to make the bow soon as well. It is so adorable.

Daily Craft said...

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antArtiste said...

nice tutorial.... thanks for sharing.

Dita Maulani said...

I love the colors you use for the flowers! They look really nice to be used in packaging too :)
Shared this to mytwitter followers!