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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fast and Easy Tutu Tutorial

Photo by Lou&Magoo

Sweetpea is starting to really like putting different things on and parading around the house. The other night she was walking around in her pj's with a pair of shorts over top. Growing up we had lots of fun dressing up in different costumes or grandma's costume jewelry and hats. I had a lot of fun this summer picking up different dress up items at garage sales, thinking Sweetpea might enjoy them.

I've also started thinking of things that I can easily make for her to use for dress up. I've had extra tulle tucked away since my wedding (yes, I am a bit of a packrat) and I haven't given it away because I'll use a bit of it here and there for wrapping presents and decoration.

While window shopping for Christmas ideas the other day I came up with the perfect use for the rest of my tulle - I could make a tutu for her to wear! I thought it would be easy, and I was right - it took me about a half hour over the weekend, and I used up the rest of my tulle. It turned out so well that I'll be buying more to make a gift for my niece for Christmas. I thought I'd include the instructions here, for those of you that might be interested.

First, start with non-roll 3/4 inch elastic about a half inch longer than the waistband size that you want. Fold the elastic in half and stitch the ends together.

Fold the ends over in one direction and sew again.
Now you have the waistband fully assembled, and are ready to move on to the tulle and ribbon.

Cut pieces of tulle twice the length you would like the skirt to be. For the tutu shown at the end of this tutorial, I cut 16 lengths of tulle. Fold the tulle in half over the waistband and tie a slip knot, making the knot as close to the elastic as you can - this will help hold each piece in place. Repeat this with as many pieces of tulle as you like, to give you the fullness that you want. When you're done placing the tulle, you're ready for the ribbon.

I used ~5 yards of ribbon, but you can make do with less or add more. Start with one long piece of ribbon and wrap it loosely around and around your waistband, covering the tulle knots. This makes for a more finished look and also helps the tulle knots stay in place. Once you make it all the way around the band, tie a double knot and make a bow. I made a "matching" bow directly across from the first to balance things out. You could also tie extra pieces of ribbon onto the band before finishing it.

I think multiple colors of tulle would look nice, as well as more or different colored ribbons. Just one ribbon tied around the waistband would look nice. The possibilities are endless!

*to make this project even easier, instead of making a waistband with elastic, use a stretchy headband loop - just make sure it's the correct size for your ballerina!*

Please come back tomorrow - I'll be linking up to some great tutorials that would go wonderfully with this tutu for dress up or Halloween.

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Mommy2Twinkies-Deb said...

Very nice idea. I wish I had extra tulle lying around. Angel would love it!

Steph at Problem Solvin' Mom said...

Hi Deb! The spools of tulle like I used are just a few dollars at most craft stores, if you're interested you might want to check them out! I'm estimating the total cost of the tutu was $4, but when I go out and buy more materials I'll be able to make a better estimate.

Monica said...

How brilliant! I bet Sweetpea will have great fun!

Mommy2Twinkies-Deb said...

Looks really cute. I didn't know I could get tulle that cheap. I'll look next time I'm in Michael's.

I'll have to give an iron update on my blog-it's funny!

HeatherPride said...

I bet she loves her tutu!! That photo is adorable! I loved playing dress-up when I was little too, and I can't wait for Claire to get big enough!

(also - I've got my pork chops thawing out right now for our island pork!!)

Elle Charlie said...

What an adorable little ballerina you have!

Amy said...

That is so beautiful! I have been planning to make one of those for Emily and that would make a great Christmas gift. Thanks for the idea- bookmarking for future reference :)

Jen said...

OK, I am going to do this. I'm not sure when I am going to do this (isn't that always the problem?) But I am definitely going to do it. My daughter would be so happy!

Kate said...

I love it! I definitely don't know too much about sewing (although I'd love to), but I think I'm going to give this a shot. My 3 year old and 9 year old would just love to have tutus for playing ballerina school. Thanks so much!

Stephanie Wilson she/her @babysteph said...

Ivy doesn't have a tutu! This is darling!


Phoebe @ GettingFreedom said...

Thank you so much for the tutorial!! Sounds simple yet frugal!
We're in dire need of quick/easy costume ideas for my daughter *(she keeps chaning her mind!)..hopefully this will help.
I still have tulle from my wedding, too. Haha

CZ said...

My daughter calls tulle, "screwdriver" (like "tool")

CC said...

if only I could be this crafty....

Just me said...

Wow! I think I might try making two for the twins birthdays:) and one for my oldest daughter as well! They'd absolutely love it! Thank you so much for the complete instructions! This is great!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for this tutorial. I made one this weekend for my daughter's fairy princess costumes and it looks fabulous! You trully are a problem solving mom ;)

Lisa Knight said...

These are sew simple! I've made three for my Princess, last one was for her Halloween costume.

Tonya said...

I just saw another blog where they did something similiar but instead of sewing, they tied the elastic and then tied on strips of tule. She used black and made a witch's tutu..i'll have to see if I can find it, it was very cute.

Very nice work! You have inspired me to use up some of my tule for a tutu for my 2 year old!

Love your blog. Just found it today!

Ramona-quilter said...

Fabulous idea. So I just went out and bought the tulle for this project for my almost-2yo granddaughter who I call "SweetPea". She is going to love it.

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