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How To Make The Famous Behnke Bow

Ribbon and Bows

Since the late ’60s, Behnke’s has always had a Christmas Shop in some form or the other. My mother, Sonja Behnke Festerling, talked her parents into carrying a few German ornaments and so it began. As time went on, the Christmas Shop grew and grew with her sister-in-law Ele Behnke helping with the buying and managing our Christmas Shop. The “Famous Behnke Bow” came about during this time because if you were going to buy a wreath, you needed a bow.

When I was first married, I would make hundreds of bows for the nursery at night in my home. I think I got .25 cents a bow. They supplied everything, and I just made bow after bow after bow. All the same 2.5-inch wide red velvet indoor/outdoor ribbon.

Years passed, and thousands of bows later, I was lucky enough to end up becoming the buyer for our Christmas Shop and the RIBBON!!! It seemed that no matter who was involved with choosing the ribbon, someone else would wrinkle their noses and say, “really?” I am kidding, but it seemed the ribbon choices were the stuff nightmares were made of for me. I had a budget that would go out the window when we would see all the different patterns each new year.

The other day I decided to try to make a video of just how to make a Behnke Bow. While determining just what to say and how to approach making a video, I started watching other youtube videos on bow making. Hours later, I figured out that no one actually makes a bow like we were all taught. For one, many people never measure and cut the ribbon. We sold ribbon by the yard. You needed to measure! Below is my bow-making video that my wonderful son-in-law taped for me. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, making it. (Can you tell I was a little nervous?)

As with the video last week, please leave your comments and suggestions. I am thinking of what other videos we can do. I already have a date next Spring to take a video tour of our friend Larry Hurley’s personal garden.

The video below is called, It’s “All About The Bow“. This was the brainchild of one of our elves during Christmas, Debbie Shepard. When Debbie was not helping in the Christmas Shop or producing videos, you could always find her in the Perennial Department.

Debbie is now working at Homestead Gardens, so if you happen to be in Davidsonville, stop in and say hello. Enjoy!

Stephanie FlemingBeyond Behnkes

Stephanie Fleming was raised at Behnke’s Nurseries in Beltsville. Her Mom, Sonja, was one of Albert & Rose Behnke’s four children. She was weeding from the moment she could walk and hiding as soon as she was old enough to run, so many weeds, so little time. Although she quickly learned how to pull out a perennial and get taken off of weed pulling duty.

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