In this article, you will learn how to make a cheerleading hair bow that will pass the strict regulations of sports in schools on accessories.  This cheerleader bow does not have any metal of any sorts. Most districts do not allow any metal to be worn during activities. This is to protect kids from injuries. Follow the steps below to learn how to make cheerleading hair bows.

Cheerleading Hair Bow

Things You'll Need:

  •     Grosgrain Ribbon
  •     No metal ponytail holder
  •     Embroidery floss (a long needle if you wish to sew your bow rather than tie)
  •     Hot Glue
  •     Sealer

Gather two strips of the desired color and size of grosgrain ribbon. I prefer to use 5/8 inch on top and 7/8 inch ribbon on the bottom layer. You should also have ready two long pieces of embroidery floss. You can separate it if you like but for this bows I use a full piece. These need to be sturdy. The length ribbon you cut for your bow depends on how long you like it. Some schools' regulations state that the bows can not reach the shoulders. You should check ahead of time. Of course, if you do happen to make them too long, they will be no trouble at all to trim. However, it would be a waste of materials.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 01


Starting in about the middle of the strand of ribbon make a loop. Remember the loop determines the size of the bow. The angle of the loop will determine the roundness of the bow (barely angled will be a flat bow and more angled will be rounder)

Cheerleading Hair Bow 02

Cheerleading Hair Bow 03

Now on the other side make another loop. These need to be the same size to make sure it will be even.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 04


There are two different ways to crease the middle. One is very fast and the other is more complicated. The picture shows the faster way, which I don't feel is the best looking. For the fast method, fold the middle in half. (continue to directions below picture) 

For the longer, prettier method, string a long needle with a long piece  floss. For best results use a piece floss that is separated in half. Make three even stitches in the middle of the bow, while holding the bow on the needle. After you make the stitches, gather up the middle onto the needle by bunching up both sides. Now pull the thread through (you will probably have to use a thimble) while holding the center creased up very firmly.  Pull the floss evenly around the middle several times on each side while still holding it firmly. Then tie it off. When you do the top layer, tie it off at the front side of the bow and tie the bottom layer at the backside. They will be easier to connect this way.


Cheerleading Hair Bow 05


Now take the outside edges of the fold and fold them down. You have to have a strong pinch grip in the middle as you fold them down.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 06


Tie off the middle while you hold it securely in the back.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 06(43371)


Make your embroidery floss long because you will be using it to tie your layers together and to the ponytail holder. Since this polka dot bow is my top layer I want the knot of the thread to be on top.

Now repeat the steps and make your bottom layer. You will want your bottom layer to be just a bit larger than the top. This is so the top will rest neatly in the bottoms loops. Tie the knot of this layer on the back side of the hair bow.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 07

Now take the thread and loop around each layers middles a few time and tie them together. Make the knot on the top of the bow.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 08


Now wrap several times around the ponytail holder. You want it to be secure enough it doesn't slide around but lose enough it's not cutting into the ponytail holder. If you would rather, you can sew the bow onto the ponytail holder, or even use a zip tie to attach it.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 09

Now take a piece of ribbon and make a knotted or flat center. Then attach it to the hair bow using hot glue or sewing it on.

Cheerleading Hair Bow 10

Now it's time to put the finishing touch on this bow by cutting the ends. I like for my top layer to be just a bit shorter than the bottom layer. It's a good way for that bottom contrast to show up some more. Make sure you seal your ends to prevent fraying by either using heat (wood burner or lighter) or liquid fray check. These cheerleading hair bows are the perfect complement for any cheerleader outfit!

Warnings and tips:

  • You can use liquid starch to help the bows hold shape if the ribbon is not very stiff, or use other methods of stiffening hair bows.
  • Korker ribbon also makes cute cheer bows.
  • Use caution when using a hot glue gun.
    Use caution if applying heat for sealing. It should only be used on 100% polyester ribbon.
    Make sure you check with the schools regulations before spending your time making these.