Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

This is all you need: your favorite fabric + the Dritz® bow tie set.

So, we’re kind of obsessed with bow ties. They’re easy to sew, and they can take on so many different looks depending upon the fabric you use, the style of bow that you make, and, of course, how you wear it. Today we’re going straight up traditional and showing you how to make a standard, can’t-be-beat bow tie. Given the season, we chose a festive plaid fabric. Marry the fabric of your choice with our handy Dritz® bow tie set and you’re on your way to looking fabulous! 

Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

These are the supplies needed to make a traditional bow tie:

Dritz® sewing supplies:

Omnigrid® supplies:

Other supplies:

  • 1/2 yd fabric (we chose a traditional & festive red plaid)
  • 1/2 yd fusible woven inerfacing
  • Sewing machine & thread
  • Iron & pressing surface

Prep:

  • Cut 2:  3″ x 15-1/2″ fabric pieces on the bias for the tie
  • Cut 1:  2″ x 3″ piece on the bias for the knot
  • Cut 1:  3″ x 20″ piece on straight grain for neck strap
  • Cut 1:  3″ x 15-1/2″ piece on the bias of interfacing

Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

Using an Omnigrid® ruler and rotary cutter makes bias cutting so easy. Here’s how:

Be sure to use the unmarked side of your cutting mat to avoid line confusion.

Line up 45° line with selvage or straight edge of fabric. (We used a thread in the woven plaid pattern.) Cut along edge of ruler with rotary cutter. Use bias cut edge as straight edge to cut needed bias pieces.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

Ready? Gather your cut fabric pieces and the Dritz®  bow tie set. The bow tie set includes three necessary pieces of hardware in one handy package: a hook, eye and slide adjuster. 


Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

A couple quick notes: You’ll use 1/4″ seam allowances. WST = wrong sides together. RST = right sides together.

1) Fold strap piece in half lengthwise, WST, and press. Open strap and bring raw edges in to meet center crease. Press edges. Fold strap back in half along original crease and press. Stitch along both folded edges to close strap.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

2) Insert one end of strap into slide adjuster and extend 1” past middle bar. Fold raw edge under 1/4”. Wrap strap around slide adjuster and stitch end in place.

TIP: The Dritz® sewing gauge has a handy sliding marker that makes it easy to see your measurement and repeat it. 


Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

3) Insert other end through metal loop on the eye piece of hardware and then back through the slide adjuster.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

4) Insert end through hook and extend 1”. Fold raw edge under 1/4″. Wrap strap around hook and then stitch end in place. Set aside.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Sew a Traditional Bow Tie

5) Fuse interfacing to wrong side of one bow piece. Align bow pieces, RST, and pin. Stitch around all 4 sides, leaving a 2” opening in the center of one long edge for turning.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

6) Trim corners and turn bow right side out. Use  a point turner to push out corners. Press flat. Hand stitch opening closed.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

7) Accordion fold bow piece widthwise into 3 equal sections.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

8) Fold bow tie in half lengthwise (back sides together) to find center pleat. Form a pleat on each side of center pleat. This will make a 2 pleat bow tie.

 

For a single pleat, fold bow tie with front sides together. Fold sides down to meet bottom of center fold.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

9) On back of pleated tie, hand stitch pleats together. For tighter pleats, tightly wrap thread around pleats several times before tying off.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

10) Fold knot in half, lengthwise, with RST. Stitch along long edge. Turn right side out and press with seam in the center. Apply Fray Check® to raw ends.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

11) Place bow on top of knot. Wrap knot around center of bow. Bring raw edges to back of bow. Turn one edge under 1/4″ and pin over other knot end. Hand stitch fold end to knot without catching bow tie.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

12) Thread finished strap through knot at back of tie.


Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Traditional Bow Tie

Now it’s time to wear it! Pretty cute, huh?

Are you in love with bow ties? Check out these additional inspirational resources: glitter and girly bow ties from our friends at Sew4Home; an easy-sew accordion bow tie that we published previously on our blog; and a dapper dude sporting a bow tie and suspenders combo. Nice!

What’s your favorite style of bow tie? Any pro tips you’d like to share? We’d love to hear them!

 

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