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blue ribbon

1. noun A prize for first place. In contests, the person or thing that wins first place is often awarded a blue ribbon. Congratulations on winning the blue ribbon! It was certainly well-deserved—I never knew pecan pie could taste so good!
2. adjective By extension, excellent or the best of a particular group or category. Often hyphenated. Wow, Sharon, this is a blue-ribbon pie—I never knew pecan pie could taste so good!
See also: blue, ribbon

cut (someone or something) to ribbons

1. Literally, to badly cut or gash someone or something. Kids, get away from the broken window—all that glass could cut you to ribbons!
2. To judge or criticize someone or something harshly. I thought I had done a good job on the project, but my boss just cut me to ribbons, pointing out every little thing I had overlooked.
See also: cut, ribbon, to

cut a/the ribbon

To formally open or begin something, which can include the act of cutting a ceremonial ribbon. The CEO should definitely be there when we cut the ribbon on the new hospital wing tomorrow.
See also: cut, ribbon

shoot to ribbons

To shoot something multiple times and thus break it into pieces or destroy it. A noun or pronoun is used between "shoot" and "to ribbons." The gangsters shot the poor man to ribbons right on the doorstep of his house. Rebel soldiers shot the government building to ribbons during their attack.
See also: ribbon, shoot, to

shot full of holes

1. Shot multiple times. Police found the gangster shot full of holes. My car was parked outside of the bank during the robbery, and it ended up shot full of holes during the ensuing gunfight with police.
2. Comprehensively unsound or flawed; having many faults or problems that do not stand up to scrutiny or criticism. Alludes to a vessel that has been pierced multiple times by bullets and thus can no longer hold its contents. Does anyone have a better suggestion? Mark's idea is clearly shot full of holes. The suspect's whole alibi is shot full of holes.
See also: full, hole, of, shot

shot to ribbons

Shot multiple times and thus broken into pieces or destroyed. Police found the gangster shot to ribbons. My car was parked outside of the bank during the robbery, and it ended up shot to ribbons during the ensuing gunfight with police.
See also: ribbon, shot, to

tear (someone or something) to ribbons

1. Literally, to destroy something by ripping or tearing it. I got so frustrated with that sketch that I finally just tore it to ribbons.
2. To judge or criticize someone or something harshly. I thought I had done a good job on the project, but my boss just tore me to ribbons, pointing out every little thing I had overlooked.
See also: ribbon, tear, to
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

cut someone to ribbons

1. Lit. to cut or slice someone severely. He broke a mirror and the glass cut his hand to ribbons.
2. Fig. to criticize someone severely. The critics just cut her acting to ribbons!
See also: cut, ribbon, to

shot full of holes

 and shot to ribbons; shot to hell; shot to pieces 
1. Fig. [of an argument that is] demolished or comprehensively destroyed. Come on, that theory was shot full of holes ages ago. Your argument is all shot to hell.
2. to be very intoxicated due to drink or drugs. Tipsy? Shot to ribbons, more like! Boy, I really felt shot full of holes. I'll never drink another drop.
3. totally ruined. (Use hell with caution.) My car is all shot to hell and can't be depended on. This rusty old knife is shot to hell. I need a sharper one.
See also: full, hole, of, shot
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

cut a (or the) ribbon

perform an opening ceremony, usually by formally cutting a ribbon strung across the entrance to a building, road, etc.
See also: cut, ribbon

cut (or tear) something to ribbons

1 cut (or tear) something so badly that only ragged strips remain. 2 damage something severely.
See also: cut, ribbon, something, to
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

cut, tear, etc. something to ˈribbons

cut, tear, etc. something very badly: She was so furious when she discovered her husband with another woman that she cut all his clothes to ribbons.
See also: ribbon, something, to
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

blue ribbon

Of outstanding excellence; also, first prize. The term comes from the wide blue ribbon that is the badge of honor of the Garter, the highest order of British knighthood. It was founded by King Edward III about 1350 and reestablished in the nineteenth century. The choice of a blue garter allegedly dated from a court ball where a lady lost her blue garter. The king picked it up and, seeing knowing smirks among the guests, bound it around his own leg and said, “Honi soit qui mal y pense” (“Shame on him who thinks evil”). The saying became the motto of the Order of the Garter. The award was originally limited to members of the royal family and 25 other knights, but in the 1900s it was granted to a few commoners, among them Sir Winston Churchill (in 1953). In the mid-1800s the term began to be transferred to any outstanding accomplishment and today it is applied to excellent schools (Blue Ribbon Schools Program), as a name for restaurants and menu items (blue-ribbon special), and as the first prize in athletic competitions.
See also: blue, ribbon
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in classic literature ?
`twilled' till it was cut off, gave the wrong change, and covered herself with confusion by asking for lavender ribbon at the calico counter.
With our glasses we could see the blue ribbon on his neck and a patch of white on his brown chest.
"There, you!" said Miss Ophelia, "will you tell me now, you didn't steal the ribbon?"
Topsy now confessed to the gloves, but still persisted in denying the ribbon.
"Now, Topsy," said Miss Ophelia, "if you'll confess all about it, I won't whip you this time." Thus adjured, Topsy confessed to the ribbon and gloves, with woful protestations of penitence.
Winn helped him to a seat in the machine, then went to the pigeon-loft and took possession of the bird with the ribbon still fast to its leg.
Claire Schafer received Top Project, Reserve Champion, and State Fair for her Coffee Cake in Cooking 101, State Fair for her Visual Arts Fiber String Art project, and State Fair alternate for her Heritage Arts wood painting project, along with numerous ribbons in Photography, Cooking, and Visual Arts.
As part of White Ribbon and CTP's collaboration, all the 2,600 traffic personnel of Lahore will be wearing White Ribbons from 3rd December to 10th December and work as the cause's change agents to sensitize the public at large on ground capacity.
All 2,600 traffic personnel of Lahore will wear white ribbons till Dec 10.
Some stars showed support for their favorite organizations with ribbons. Several celebrities and Academy Award nominees wore blue ribbons to show their support for the American Civil Liberties Union.
Sometimes you see people out away from the venue and they still have their ribbons on.
Meanwhile, Beast leader Yoon Doojoon finds himself marooned on an eery skyscraper, literally on top of the world but forlorn and lost (referencing the hung-over figure who awakes after a night of drunken revelry in last year's 'Yey'?); handsome maknae Son Dongwoon alone in an empty craggy landscape save for his car, on which he is strapped by ribbons (alluding perhaps to the fast car he's driving while crying due to heartbreak in 2010's 'I Knew It'?); Lee Kikwang wandering in an empty subway station and opening a locker where a hand creepily emerges; and baby-faced and eternal child Yoseob stranded in an abandoned theme park and riding the merry-go-round alone, bereft of any parent or companion.
And former Coronation Street actress Lucy-Jo Hudson has officially launched Overgate Hospice's Rainbow of Ribbons fundraiser.
Using a vegetable peeler, start on the flat side of each zucchini half and shave the zucchini into thin "ribbons.'' Alternatively, use a mandoline or sharp knife to make the long thin slices.
BARRY YMCA gymnasts took home a massive haul of 56 medals and ribbons from the recent South Central Novice & Intermediate Championships.