Headband Holder

Of course, there’s a backstory…

Finished headband holder, serving its purpose of taming frilly bows.
Finished headband holder, serving its purpose of taming frilly bows.

I planned this headband holder for Sofia’s hair accessories some time ago because,while I never feel she has quite enough of the things, they were bursting from their modest little box like the tentacles of a frilly, pastel squid. I had seen a picture of a similar one on a friend’s Facebook page and thought, I could do that. I made sure that the next time we needed oatmeal, I bought a canister instead of getting it in bulk, as I usually do. The canister sat like a cardboard judge in Sofia’s closet for months after that, mutely accusing me of falling into my typical habit of starting projects and never finishing them. It was eventually joined by a heavy glass candle holder I found for 40% off at Target, just the right size to hold the oatmeal canister. Together, their recriminating glares made me cringe every time I opened the door. But I just didn’t have the time to make the project. It would involve, for one thing, going to Jo-Ann Fabrics with a potentially grouchy baby and a preschooler. Jo-Ann has tiny carts, barely big enough for one child to sit in, certainly not adequate for a baby carrier in addition to a lanky 3-year-old.

Meanwhile, I slowly worked my way through the last few boxes of nonessentials that had come over from the rental house we’d lived in our first year here in Oregon. I noted the reemergence of my glue gun and observed that the contents of my ribbon box included some of just the right color. All that was missing was the fabric. And I really, really was not interested in making a pilgrimage to one of my favorite stores accompanied by two small people with a total of four grabby arms and four unpredictably wiggling legs and two sets of lungs and vocal cords and hungry tummies. So. The various components of the project sat, silently judging, while the headbands continued to spiral inexorably from the box. We were at an impasse.

And then. And then. And THEN. Oh my. My darling, my beloved firstborn, who persists in being taller than I can ever manage to remember, got a pair of scissors from the dresser in the master bedroom (I swear last time I looked at him he couldn’t reach the top of it), and experimented with them in our closet. Aaron’s clothes bore the brunt of the experimental snips. He lost a pair of really nice dress pants, a pair of linen pants, and an expensive triathlon suit.

Aaron wasn’t there for the pillage of the closet. He travels as a consultant and is gone during the week. I texted him to tell him what had happened and to ask if he wanted me to attempt to salvage the linen pants by trimming them into shorts. He declined. “Just throw them out. They’re ruined.”

Aaron is not an optimist.

I, however, had already noted what a nice color the pants were. How well they would coordinate with the pale coral and soft green of Sofia’s room. How sturdy, how adaptable the fabric. And of course I did not throw them away.

Making the project…

First I slit the leg of the pants along one seam. I trimmed the bottom hem off – it

The trimmed pant leg, ready to be glued on.
The trimmed pant leg, ready to be glued on.

was scrunched a bit, and I really didn’t need it. Then I laid the oatmeal canister on the fabric and measured off enough fabric along the leg to cover its length twice, and cut that much off the pant leg. I centered the canister on the back seam and wrapped the fabric around it, trimming enough from both sides that it would overlap by an inch or two on the front. That gave me just the right amount of fabric to cover the outside and the inside of the can.

Next, I drizzled a line of hot glue along the length of the oatmeal can, and placed it on the fabric so that the bottom was about an inch from the bottom of the fabric, and the glue was lined up with the seam in the fabric. Making sure I was leaving enough fabric to overlap, I folded over the edge of one side of the fabric and glued it down to make a finished edge for the top. Then I squeezed glue all the way around the top and bottom of the can and rolled it over the fabric, toward the unfinished edge first and then toward the finished edge. With the finished edge on top, I just needed one more line of glue to tack it down so it overlapped the unfinished edge. Then I tucked the excess fabric down into the can so there was no cardboard showing.

In order to be able to have easy access to barrettes as well as headbands, I used

Covered with fabric and mounted on the pedestal with dangling ribbons.
Covered with fabric and mounted on the pedestal with dangling ribbons.

the glue gun to tack six lengths of narrow coral ribbon to the glass base, evenly spaced around the perimeter. A hefty squeeze of glue around the top of the glass base, right on top of the ribbons, secured the fabric-covered can to the pedestal.

I chose three colors of grosgrain ribbon (the kind that’s coarsely woven and sturdy, rather than being satiny). The coral is just a few shades brighter than the paint we used on Sofia’s wall, and the green and blue came from nursery accessories Sofia inherited from Niko. I had removed the ribbons from storage boxes and replaced them with coral ribbon to make them more girly. Now they were coming in handy to help tie this new item in with the

Complete with colorful ribbons to finish off the edges.
Complete with colorful ribbons to finish off the edges.

rest of the room. I overlapped all three shades at the top, with the green in the center. Just as I had done with the fabric, I folded over one end of each ribbon and tacked it down with glue to make a more finished look. At the base I used more coral to cover the unfinished edge. Then I made a pretty, but simple, bow from the green ribbon. Making it as flat as possible, I glued it onto the green ribbon on the can, and tacked down the ends and the loops so they wouldn’t get in the way of the headbands I wanted to put onto the can.

The finished headband holder, serving its destined purpose of taming rebellious headbands.
The finished headband holder, serving its destined purpose of taming rebellious headbands.

The stretchy elastic headbands go around the can nicely. Barrettes dangle from the ribbon. Later, plastic, open-ended headbands can hang over the sides. If I need to, I can use the inside for more storage.

And that’s it. All done in the space of one nap time. I do believe that’s the best ending ever to a story of a preschooler on the rampage with scissors.


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