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How-to Cutomize a Handkerchief with Hot Ribbon

Creative Team | May 8, 2017

In this tutorial you'll discover the basics of appying an iron-on ribbon to a handkerchief, just in time for Autumn. Nova Howe shows you how.


Handkerchiefs are always in style. I discovered a product called Hot Ribbon that can make a ordinary handkerchief look a lot less boring, just in time for Autumn. 

1.jpgMaterials Used: 

  • Cloth napkin 
  • White Hot Ribbon
  • Mini iron
  • Regular iron
  • Scissors 
  • Thin piece of fabric, or handkerchief
  • Pencil and eraser 
  • Copic markers: YR12, YR16, Y15, YR 21, E34, E35, RV29, R37, YG95


Step 1: Draw your design

First, you'll draw the design on the napkin. I went with the Autumn theme, a season when you're likely to need a handkerchief! You could also draw the design on a piece of paper and cut out the shapes to trace around on the napkin as a guarantee that you don’t mess up. 


Step 2: Coloring Hot Ribbon

Hot Ribbon comes in a delightful number of colors. I selected the white kind because I wanted to see if I could apply Copic marker to by coloring the iron-on ribbon with a yellow, (YR12 which is perfect for pumpkin). I made sure to color a little bit at a time because I didn’t know how much I would be using and I didn’t want any of it to go to waste.


Step 3: Cut ribbon to fit and iron it on

Now cut the edge of the ribbon according to the outline of your design. To tack it on, use the mini iron. I would suggest not cutting ribbon too precisely before ironing it on because you might end up misjudging the length you need. Line the ribbon side by side with the one that’s been ironed on, making sure there’s no space in-between, then do this with the rest of the pumpkin.

Do this same thing for the stem of the pumpkin, using your E34 Copic marker as the base color. Redraw the lines inside the pumpkin to make the next step easier. 


Step 4: Adding dimension

Color some more ribbon with a YR16 Copic marker, then iron it onto the redrawn lines of the pumpkin as well as the outline of the pumpkin. Repeat this for the stem, this time using E35 for the outline color.


Step 5: Yellow leaf

The next few steps are simply a repeat of steps two, three, and four. I followed these steps again to create yellow leaf in different Copic colors (Y15 and YR21 for the outline.) You can color over it once it’s already been ironed on to make the different colors pop more, but be careful not to color on the napkin. 


Step 6: Brown leaf

Now for the brown leaf; it can be difficult to stick the ribbon around a curve, especially tight ones, so cut the ribbon every so often so you only have to curve them slightly. These colors will be the same as the pumpkin’s stem, E34 for the base and E35 for the outline.


Step 7: Red leaf blunder

As you can see, the red color of the leaf smudged onto the fabric a bit. I think this was the result of not waiting for the ribbon to dry long enough after coloring before ironing it on, and also not cleaning the iron. (I’m not too sure, but you can clean the iron and wait for the ribbon to dry longer as a precaution.) Other than that, repeat the previous steps for the red leaf. I used RV29 for the base and R37 for the outline.


Step 8: Final press

Using YG95, color two long strips of the hot ribbon for the vines (you’ll probably use two whole strips or more, depending on what design you want to do). Iron it on, curving it every so often, then end it with a curl. 


Try to make the curves bigger rather than smaller because the ribbon has a tendency to lift up off the fabric a little bit when the curves are too tight. Put a thin piece of cloth over the napkin, then set the regular iron on it for 40-45 seconds to permanently bond the ribbon to the cloth napkin.

And voila! Now you have your own personalized fancy napkin!


And voila! Now you have your own personalized fancy napkin!

Get Hot Ribbon 


Topics: DIY

Creative Team
Creative Team on May 8, 2017

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