DIY Preppy White Sailor Knot Headband


I love headbands. They’re perfect to make a ponytail fancier and day-old hair less noticeable (kind of like braids, now that I think about it!).

The headband in today's post is another item I saw in a store (I believe J.Crew) and decided to attempt making myself. It's super preppy and patriotic, perfect for July 4th (tomorrow)! My favorite part about this headband is that it’s a soft one - it doesn’t give me headaches at all, like some do!


Things you will need:

  • Cotton sailor cord
  • Cotton ribbon or fabric strip, at least 6 inches long and ½” - 1” wide
  • Black elastic, about 6 inches, about ¼” - ½” wide
  • Needle and thread to match your ribbon/cotton fabric
  • Fabric glue, E6000 glue, or hot glue gun
  • Safety pin
  • Scissors

You can also make this with old T-shirts instead of sailor’s cord by cutting ~2 inch strips in the same length.



Step 2. Diagram of headband cords   

Step 2. Diagram of headband cords


Step 3. Finish off the end

Step 3. Finish off the end

  1. Cut the sailor’s cord into 4 pieces: 2 pieces of about ~16” in length, and 2 pieces about ~22” in length.

  2. Arrange the pieces according to the diagram above. 2 pieces will follow the red loop, and 2 pieces will follow the blue. Its easiest if you first lay out one loop with 2 pieces, and then weave the other 2 pieces under and over the first loop to create the second.

    Adjust all of the strands so that the four ends on each side are even and the knot is slightly off center.

  3. Finish off the end.

    1. Apply some glue around the four rope ends and wrap the white ribbon around to hide the ends. Wrap the white ribbon around 1-2 times, applying glue as you go along to secure in place.

    2. Cut the ribbon so that the ends are on the inside of the headband (so that they do not show when you wear the headband). Make sure there’s enough glue to hold the ends down.

    3. Holding the edge of your black elastic in the middle of the ribbon, sew a simple straight stitch along the bottom of your ribbon, attaching the elastic while also adding extra security. Double back and sew another line (again, sewing the ribbon, the sailor cord inside the ribbon, and the elastic) for extra security.

    4. Sew another line of straight stitch at the top of the ribbon, securing the ribbon to the cords.

  4. Decide how much elastic you need by testing different lengths.

    1. Using your safety pin to attach the elastic to the other side of the headband, try the headband on. The less elastic there is in between the two ends, the tighter the headband will be.

    2. Keep adjusting the pin and elastic until you find your desired tightness.

    3. Leaving about ½  of an inch of buffer length, cut the elastic.

  5. Repeat step 3 for the alternate side to finish the head band. A few tips:

    1. Again, make sure the ends of the white ribbon you’re wrapping are glued together on the inside of the headband.

    2. If you try your headband on and it’s too loose, fold the elastic slightly and sew the folded doubled-over elastic onto the white ribbon again. This makes the elastic shorter and the headband tighter. If it’s too tight, cut the thread of your stitching and make the elastic longer. You should have ½” of buffer for this very reason!