18 December 2013

Making Bow Magic with the Bow Master Bow Maker

I love nothing more than scouring through thrift stores for vintage bits and pieces of holiday's past. For some reason, holidays are the one time it's totally permissible to embrace your inner collector, gathering as much as your heart desires, and still not be looked upon as hoarder.

Earlier this year I was in one such establishment when I came across this fabulous Bow Master bow making kit from the 60's. Its ribbon (genuine "shasheen") was in relatively good condition, so I splurged on the .50 collection.
bow magic bow making kit
It was complete with ribbons, pins, and instructions.

Lord knows you needed the instructions.
bow master instructions
vintage bow magic kit
It's a loop de loop of fun, while at the same time a brain teaser.

At my age, my brain cells appreciated that little bonus.
bow master bows
And magically, it goes from this
creating bows with the bow master
To this (if you're lucky)
vintage bow maker bow
I finally got the hang of it after - a couple of tries.
1950's bows
But I only made a few because I'm hoarding them.

I do that sometimes...

Don't you love the vintage colors?

I also love these bows because they have the old-school plastic pins that pierce the box rather than adhere with sticky adhesive. Somehow that makes them extra special and completely worthy of hoarding.

Am I the only one who feels this way?
holiday wrapping paper
The Bow Master Bow Maker - true magic.

These will definitely go in the "save for next year" pile of leftover boxes and ribbons.

Because I'm a holiday hoarder. ;)

*Update: this post recieves a surprising amount of views, so I'm wondering if people are looking for directions on how to use their awesome vintage Bow Master. If you're one such person, please leave a comment below. Perhaps we can create a few tutorials. If you're here for that reason, let me know!



  1. When I was growing up in the 70's my Mother made some unbelievable crafts using this bow maker, from a giant pumpkin to a bride doll with matching bridesmade dolls with matching wedding color dresses. I would love to be able to make these crafts again and I I am so excited this treasure has come out of hiding.

  2. Oh, wow, I didn't know you could do all that with one of these little guys! Nothing in the instructions indicates anything more than bows. I'd love to see all the things your mom created. Isn't it fun to see a little thing such as this bring back such fond memories? Thanks for sharing!

  3. I have the same memories as Debbie. My Mom actually had a home crafts business where we did "Craft Parties" using the bow master. We made roses, center pieces for tables and wedding cake toppers, as well as holiday decorations for every holiday. Still have one somewhere!! Wish I had some pictures. The dolls and other decorations are made primarily with the very small bows crafted all inside of the spindles or bottom of the bow master and the pin is pressed into a Styrofoam form. To add a feathery look, after you get the bow started with the center and one row, make a small cut along the side of the ribbon before looping and pinning. A few loops done in this method makes what was called a Chrysanthemum Bow. Roses are done by putting the pin holder into the hole on the bottom and twisting the ribbon in a different manner. A little floral tape, a calyx, and stem with leaves and you're on your way to "forever" roses. Velvet ribbon works best for the roses. ~ Dona in FL

  4. How fun for you! I wish you had pictures, too! This post gets so many hits - there seems to be a lot of people searching for information on the Bow Master. The instructions that came with mine are very basic. It would be fun to see everything this little gadget can do!

  5. i need the instuctions please


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