Thursday, March 17, 2011

Ribbon-covered clippie

 May God grant you always...A sunbeam to to warm you, a moonbeam to charm you, a sheltering Angel so nothing can harm you. Laughter to cheer you. Faithful friends near you. And whenever you pray, Heaven to hear you.
-Irish Blessing

Today's post is serving several purposes...a request from a friend is being taken care of, it's a very basic and non- time intensive project and a little teeny shout out to St. Patrick.  Let's make ribbon-covered clippies.

 The supply list includes ribbon (I prefer grosgrain - the kind with raised lines in it). Your ribbon shouldn't be wider than 1/2" when making clippies.

Also on the supply list is Fabri-Tac (or a hot glue gun). A little side note...Fabri-Tac costs about $12.99 for the big bottle at Jo-Ann's and $10.99 at Michael's. This is a great item to use your 40% or 50% off coupon on. While it is expensive glue, it is the only glue I trust to glue fabric...and... I've tried them all. You only need the large bottle if you'll be making tons of clippies. This glue doesn't store well over long periods of time so don't buy the larger bottle thinking you will then have it on hand when you need it the next time. It does thicken up and get difficult to use.

Lastly you need single prong alligator clips. The single prong clip is on the right. (The clip on the left is a double prong alligator clip).

I purchase my clips at Sally Beauty Supply. They carry a box of 100 clips for about $5.65 a box. Yes, that works out to less than $0.06 per clip.

Alrighty then, let's get started. Remember the directions will make a lot more sense if you have a clip in your hands and you can manipulate it while you go through tutorial. Take your ribbon and spread on some Fabri-Tac on the side you don't want to show (also known as the wrong side). You can use hot glue but I personally find it a little bit more difficult to control how much glue you use. Hot glue is a little bit messier when doing small projects and dries too quick. If you only have a glue gun on hand, give it a try, just be really careful.

You want the glue thin and not too close to the edges (otherwise it oozes out a makes a mess). I do about 2 inches of ribbon at a time. Open up your alligator clip and slide in the gluey ribbon all the way in.

Press down lightly. Wrap the ribbon around the front part of the point of the clip. Then spread about 2 more inches of glue very thin and press the ribbon to the other side of the clip.

Now you can pinch both layers of ribbon together. Make sure the edges are lined up.

Next wrap the ribbon over the part of the clip that you pinch to open it.
You DO NOT need glue here. Notice the ribbon doesn't actually touch anything so it doesn't need to be glued.

Then glue more ribbon and press down on the top part of the clip while you have the alligator clip pinched open. If you don't keep it pinched open, glue will squish through onto the top side of the ribbon that is already glued down and make a mess.

So finish up the clippie by gluing the rest of the ribbon you will need to cover the clip entirely and slide it all the way into the mouth of the alligator clip and cutting off so that the ribbon goes all the way in. Press the two layers of ribbon together.

 You can see some bubbles in my ribbon. To remedy this, I use a few plain alligator clips to hold layers of ribbon together so it dries flat and nice.

I happened to find some scrapbooking 90% off deals at Meijer after St. Patty's Day last year. The little shamrock in this package is perfect to embellish the clip. I used the Fabri-Tac as well to glue down the shamrock to my ribbon covered alligator clip.

Easy, peasy, right?

Just about every time I make some sort of hair doodle, I start with a ribbon covered clip. So it is worth getting good and efficient at making these if you  intend to make lots of hair bows. A wrapped clippy finishes the hair bow nicely as opposed to a plain alligator clip. Because you will be so good at making them, you will bemaking a matching hair pretty for every outfit. I promise soon more blog posts about fabulous bows and other items to mount on the clippies. is a great way to help keep the clippie from sliding out. Use craft foam. I buy a package of twenty four 4" x 6" sheets for $1.00 at Dollar Tree. Cut a small rectangular piece of coordinating color foam. Mine is about 1/4" wide by 1" long.

Next spread the Fabri-Tac or hot glue in a thin strip along one side of the craft foam rectangle. Open the mouth of the alligator clip, press the craft foam piece onto the bottom.

There. You did it! I don't claim to have invented any of the ideas explained or pictured above. I am simply providing my take on how to make them for those that asked me "how". There you have it.


  1. Vey cute! I just wish I still had a little girl to make them for... Avery looks adorable btw!

  2. I bought Austin a crafty gift for his b-day yesterday(I won't say what it is incase he reads this). Matt thought I was crazy (it's not a traditional gift) but he doesn't understand "crafters" :) I hope Austin will like it. Who knows maybe he'll have something to put on the blog.

  3. Great tips! I tried to make these with hot glue and it was messy. I a new blog follower, hope you'll stop by my blog at