How to make ribbon tree toppers

How to Make a Bow Christmas Tree Topper

by Courtenay 17 Comments

In this post I’ll show you how to make a bow Christmas tree topper! This is an easy and elegant solution that you can easily customize to match any tree decor!

Have you ever noticed that it’s really hard to find just the right topper for your Christmas tree? I don’t think I’ve ever found one that I really love and that works for me year after year, no matter what type of tree-scheme I’m doing that year. I find that store bought ones always seem just a little too cheesy, or a little too rustic, or a little too tacky. I’ve ended up using a whole bunch of berry picks from the floral section of the craft store, along with other unusual items to try to make my own, and that usually works quite well, but I picked up an extra roll of ribbon this year that I really wanted to use somewhere, so I decided to try my hand at a big, fluffy bow Christmas tree topper. It turns out that they’re pretty easy to put whip up!

This post is part of the December edition of the Thrifty Style Team project. Be sure to scroll all the way down to the bottom of my post to see all the other thrifty projects from other talented bloggers on the team! Wired ribbon can get pretty expensive, but it also goes on sale quite a bit around this time of year, so if you still don’t have a topper for your tree, you can make one of these quite affordably! Also keep in mind to search the after Christmas sales for clearance ribbon that you might want to use for this project next year!

Supplies Needed to Make a Bow Christmas Tree Topper

I used:

  • Wide wired ribbon. My roll was 25 feet long and I used basically all of it for this one bow.
  • Pipe cleaners (floral wire would work too of course, I just used what I had when inspiration struck, which happened to be way too many pipe cleaners. #momlife)
  • Scissors

The things that I love about this is that you can reuse all of the supplies that go into making this bow topper in a different way next year if you want a different color of ribbon for your next tree. So this is a really practical and inexpensive tree topper solution!

How to Make the Bow Tree Topper

The process for making the bow basically involves creating as many loops as you want and then securing them tightly at the bottom of your bow to hold the whole thing together.

To make your first loop, unravel about 12 inches of ribbon from your roll, and create a loop. Next, create another loop by pulling out more ribbon and creating kind of a figure 8, then pinch both loops together at their bases.

Continuing creating loops until you have the full, fluffy bow that you were hoping for. My bow has ten loops for reference. I could have gone for more, but you do want to leave a little bit of extra ribbon so that you can create matching streamers to hang down from your bow topper over the top 1/3-1/2 of your tree.

When you have all of your loops done, pinch them all tightly together at the base and wrap them tightly in floral wire or pipe cleaners.

How to Make the Streamers for Your Tree Topper

Cut three to four lengths of ribbon that are about two feet long to use as your streamers. Cut the end that will be dangling down over you tree on an angle for a nice finished look. To secure my streamers, I just wrapped the top few inches of each right around the top of my tree. Since the ribbon is wired, it holds quite well and looks tidy.

Finish the topper by resting the bow on the top few branches of your tree. Feel free to make it even more spectacular by adding in some floral picks, or by using twigs and other natural elements that you gather from outside! I gathered some phragmites from the banks of our creek and tucked it in all over our tree for something a little different. I saw phragmites used in all kinds of beautiful holiday displays when I was in Old Montreal recently so I just had to try it out for myself. 🙂

Do you create your own tree toppers or have you found a store-bought one that you absolutely love?

Grad yourself a cup of hot chocolate and spend some time checking out these other great Thrifty Style ideas as well!

DIY Mason Jar Centerpiece – Chatfield Court
How to Make a Bow Christmas Tree Topper – The Creek Line House
Easy Thrifty Outdoor Peppermint Pillow Wraps – DIY Beautify
Dollar Store Olive Appetizer Wreath -Redhead Can Decorate
Recycled Metal Seat Door Wreath – Bliss Ranch
How to Make Scented Pine Cones – I Should Be Mopping the Floor 
Champagne Bucket Christmas Tree Stand – Postcards from the Ridge
Thrifty and Easy hostess gifts – Duke Manor Farm
Dollar Store Duster Christmas Wreath– The How-To Home
Christmas Cloche Centerpiece Ideas – 2 Bees in a Pod
Vintage Thrifted Christmas Tablescape – What Meegan Makes
DIY Snowman Ornaments – Cottage at the Crossroads
Rustic Leather Magazine Holder – Unskinny Boppy
Vintage Drawer Pull Clipboard – Jen Rizzo

Filed Under: Christmas, Uncategorized

How to Make a Designer Tree Topper Bow with Multiple Ribbons

Alright guys, I’m going to come right out and confess it. I don’t really like tree topper bows. They’re just not my style. But a lot of my viewers have been asking for a tutorial, so I’ve got a fun little challenge today. How would I make a tree topper bow with multiple ribbons if I was making one for myself? 

This post may contain affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

Now, I want to start by saying that when I make bows for my own home, I don’t usually measure. I just do what I think looks natural. I’ll give you some examples in the video, but for the written tutorial below, I’ve given approximate measurements. 

Let’s get started!

Supplies for Designer Tree Topper Bow with Multiple Ribbons

4” Ribbon 
2.5” ribbon
Additional ribbons as desired
Zip tie
Craft Mat 
Rustic Wire

Most of the ribbons I used in this tutorial came from Carolina Pottery. I also recommend looking at Trendy Tree.

Steps for Making Your Tree Topper Bow

Step 1: Forming the base of the bow

Start by unrolling some of the 4” ribbon and measuring a tail of about 24”. From there, measure about 21-22” for the first loop. Pinch and pleat it between your thumb and index finger. 

Now, y’all know that whenever I’m teaching bow making, I always emphasize that you’ll start by pinching the ribbon just between two fingers. Then it gradually shifts back toward your palm as you add more loops. 

But since we are using such a wide ribbon, this one is going to be a little different. You can see in the video that even after the first loop, I am not keeping it pinched tightly between my finger tips. There’s just too much material there. 

Now twist the ribbon and continue adding loops of the same size. 

The number of loops you need to make really just depends on personal preference. I don’t like mine to look too full and take away from the beautiful tree, so I am only doing four loops of the first ribbon. 

Step 2: Adding the second layer of ribbon

Next, unroll a bit of your 2.5” ribbon. Measure and 18” tail and add in three 16” loops, pinching and twisting your working ribbon between each loop. These should all be above your 4” ribbon. Finish off with another 18” tail. 

If you were going to add an additional accent ribbon like I do in the second bow of the tutorial video, this would be the time to do it. Check out the video tutorial for additional instructions.

For now, we are going to make the simple version of the tree topper.

Step 3: Placing Streamers and Making Adjustments

I like my tree topper bows to look nice and airy, but I don’t think it’s quite done yet. So instead of adding more loops, I’m just going to go ahead and add in a couple streamers to the back. 

Cut a streamer of each ribbon and pinch it in the middle then add it to the bottom of the bow. I did not measure these streamers, but I would suggest about 24” 

However long you want your tails, double that. 

Now, before you secure it, make sure all the tails are in the back and the bows laying nicely together in the front. 

Step 4: Securing the Bow

Turn the bow over and slide a zip tie underneath your index finger, Wrap it around the bow and tighten until all the loops and tails are secure.  

Step 5: Trimming the Ends

Now, just finish off your tree topper by trimming the ends of each tail. I like to fold them in half and dovetail them for a tree topper. I think it’s a more festive finish than just cutting on an angle. 

And that’s all there is to it!

Watch the video tutorial below to see me make 3 different versions of this bow. 

Tree Topper Bow with Multiple Ribbons – Video Tutorial

If you enjoyed this and want to learn to wreath the professional way,
try our Wreath Making 101 Workshop!

Happy Wreathing,


If you enjoyed this post, you might also like:

How to Make a Christmas Wreath Bow

How to Make a Tree Topper Bow

Christmas Lantern Topper Tutorial

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Master class on decorating Christmas balls

Before the New Year, one of the most beloved holidays for both adults and children, there are only a few days left. And of course, during this period it is worth thinking about the festive decoration of your home.

Many people keep various Christmas decorations and decorations in boxes. They have been waiting for a whole year to be taken out again, to decorate the Christmas tree, the interior of an apartment or a country house with them. Vintage Christmas decorations passed down from generation to generation and large painted glass balls, of course, always occupy the best places and rightly so, because they are the keepers of our memories.

But what to do with a large number of multi-colored, monotonous plastic balls that our Christmas tree decorations boxes are filled with? It is best to give them a second life - to breathe a fabulous and festive mood into them, to let them play in a new way.

Necessary materials and tools for decorating Christmas balls

For work we need:

  • plastic balls of various diameters
  • sponge or sponge
  • nail polish remover

  • synthetic brushes of different sizes

  • sanding sponge (sandpaper zero)

  • decoupage cards and New Year's napkins

  • priming

  • glue professional TURY Design or universal PVA

  • acrylic paints TURY Design, Luch, etc.

  • acrylic varnish

  • one-step TURY Design craquelure varnish or two-phase (depending on the idea)

  • reusable plastic stencils

  • texture pastes

  • various decorative elements (rhinestones, beads, ribbons, sequins, lace, etc.)

  • glue gun

  • scissors

  • palette

  • hair dryer

The process of decorating Christmas balls

First of all, we begin to prepare the balls. We remove the hangers from the tops of the balls. For ease of processing and decorating, we string the top of the ball on a stick (Chinese sticks are perfect). We begin to peel off the sparkles and other elements with a sandpaper, if they are present on the balls. Then, with a cotton pad dipped in nail polish remover, we erase the pattern and paint from the plastic balls, and at the same time degrease the surface. We sand the surface so that the subsequent layers adhere well to the base.

The next step is to apply the primer in two layers. The primer paint must be applied to the balls in a uniform, thin layer (thick layer may roll, crack when drying or fall off) with a brush or sponge. We apply first to the top of the ball, then we take the ball by the stick and cover the remaining surface with soil. Leave to dry, use a hair dryer to shorten the drying time. After complete drying, it is necessary to carefully sand the surface to remove bumps and smudges of paint. We apply the second layer by pre-mixing the primer with PVA glue (4 parts of paint + 1 part of glue). Again we let the layer dry completely and then with the help of the skin we get rid of the bumps.

Next, we tint the balls in colors suitable for our idea, taking into account the compositional moments. The application of tinting on the ball occurs according to the same technology as the primer, only in one coloring layer.

We proceed directly to decorating Christmas balls. This can be painting, decoupage, decoration with beads and rhinestones, applying three-dimensional patterns using texture paste or mixed media.

And so, on a pre-prepared ball, we paste a pre-cut element of the New Year's drawing using professional glue or PVA glue. Very important! If the element is large, then it is necessary to make cuts along its perimeter with a distance of approximately 0.6-0.8 mm, from the edge of the picture to the center by 0.5-1 cm. This procedure is necessary so that the pattern sticks to the ball without creases and as tight as possible. Small elements on large balls can be glued without cuts. Keep in mind that the orientation of the ball will change.

The next operation is the application of layer-by-layer two-phase craquelure varnish to form cracks on the surface of the ball. Follow the instructions carefully or read the article about craquelure polishes. If desired, you can also use a single-phase craquelure varnish, this must be considered before starting work, since contrasting colors will be more appropriate.

After the formation of the craquelure mesh, we overwrite it with a pigment of a contrasting color. We apply the final layers of acrylic varnish, drying and sanding each layer.

The final stage is decorating Christmas balls. We decorate the balls with braid, ribbons, rhinestones, beads and fasten the suspensions back to the balls.

Happy New Year and Christmas!

10 Cake Topper Ideas

The simplest cake can be turned into a work of art with the popular decoration of the topper. We have collected for you 10 original ideas that are easy enough to implement.

1. Such a cute topper can be made by hand by printing templates on a printer. The idea is taken from the master class from Tinyme. It will perfectly complement the birthday in the style of "Circus".

2. Simply the cutest garland and very easy to make. It will be a bright finishing touch for a simple cake. Idea from Tell Love and Party.

3. Amazing topper from What's Gaby Cooking. The cake was decorated with colorful meringues, gerberas and a few sparklers. Such a presentation will be more effective than ordinary candles!

4. Add a touch of spring to your cake with a floral topper. Found at The Sweet Escape. Such a topper is suitable for the collection "Fairies" or "English Tea Party".

5. Another spectacular cake decoration from Oh Happy Day. You will need special mini balls, bright tubes or other base and satin ribbons for decoration.

6. This composition will also suit the collection "Circus" or "Rainbow".

Gorgeous dogs made of modeling balloons. So simple and so cute! Found at Studio DIY.

7. Bespoke-Bride offers this decoration option - a beautiful floss garland that is very easy to bring to life.

8. An interesting homemade chiarabelle topper that you can make with your kids. They can help cut out the flags or decorate them with glitter.

Learn more