Making Recycled Bows Out of Magazines, Newspapers, Glossy Store Ads and Phone Book Pages

If you’re bothered by the garbage bag of gift wrap that becomes the centerpiece of many holiday parties, you might want to consider wrapping your packages with recycled paper  and topping them with recycled bows. (Newspaper and brown paper bags are great for this.) While some may think it’s extremely tacky to wrap gifts in recycled paper, I’m totally cool with this concept. Plus, I’d rather spend more money on the gift and wrap on the cheap.

I demonstrated how to make recycled bows on during my Friday TV segment. (My apologies for taking so long to post the project details.) There are several recycled bow-making tutorials on the internet, so I’m not going to go into great detail. (See links to other more detailed tutorials at bottom of this post.) Read on for some quick instructions to get you started.

To make the bow at the top of this post, I tore a colorful page from a glossy department store ad. Then I cut the ad into strips measuring about 3/4″ across. (You need 9 strips total.) I left the first three strips full length. Then cut about 1.5″ off the top of the next three strips and about  about 2.5″ off the next two strips. I cut the ninth strip down to about a 4″ piece.

Then I looped the first eight strips into the bow shapes above and glued them in the middle with a glue stick. (Staples and brass fasteners also work to secure these.) Then I rolled the shortest strip into a circle and glued it.

To assemble the bow, start with the biggest pieces first and layer the pieces in a circular pattern, gluing each piece in the center before adding the next piece. Keep adding pieces between the points until all are glued in place. Finish the bow by gluing the final circle to the center.

To learn other bow-making techniques, check out these great tutorials on Craftster and How About Orange. And I LOVE these bows made out of felt over at Twig & Thistle. LOVE THEM!

Okay, I have to get back to work. The next podcast will be posted Dec. 21.

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