With the amount of tulle that I saw on the moodboard for this month’s issue, I figured it would be not only appropriate but necessary for me to do a tutu DIY! While a tutu probably isn’t something you’d wear every day, I think it’s always a good idea to have one on hand just in case you ever get the urge to frolic around in yards of frilly fabric. Or maybe you just want something to wear with your Halloween costume this year. Either way, this is a winner.
- Tulle (and lots of it). For my tutu I used 10 yards of 54-inch-wide tulle. I think this amount would work best for small/medium-size folks. For larger sizes you’ll probably want at least double that amount. If you want a longer tutu, use wider pieces of tulle.
- A piece of fabric measuring 5″ in width and your waist* measurement in length, four extra inches for overlap.
- A piece of ribbon that’s long enough to fit around your waist,* plus a little extra to tie the ends off with.
- Measuring tape
- Sewing pins
- A sewing machine
* When I say waist I mean wherever you want the top of the tutu to sit–this could be at your natural waistline, low-waisted, or on yourhips. It’s up to you!
Cutting the fabric:
1. Lay out all your fabric on a flat surface.
2. Measure seven inches in from the outer edge of the tulle with a measuring tape. Mark this measurement with a pin.
3. From that pinned point, measure and mark another seven inches, and so on. Keep pinning each point and measuring another seven inches from it.
4. Cut the fabric into strips, using the sewing pins as a guide. The strips should be (roughly) seven inches wide.
5. Repeat this measuring and cutting process on all of your fabric until all you’re left with is a ton of fabric strips.
6. At this point you’re probably thinking, How the eff am I supposed to make all of that look like a tutu? I promise it’s possible! I’ll show you how in the next step.
Making the tutu:
1. Lay out one of the tulle strips and cinch it in the middle.
2. Fold the strip in half and form a loop towards the top of it.
3. Next , grab your ribbon and place the folded piece of tulle, looped side up, under it.
4. Weave the bottom ends of the tulle strip through the loop.
5. Pull the ends of the tulle up through the loop until a knot forms.
6. Continue this knotting process with the all of tulle strips until you’ve filled the entire length of ribbon.
7. When you’re done adding all of the tulle strips, tie off each end of the ribbon to secure the strips in place.
8. At this point, if you’re not really interested in adding a waistband to your tutu, you can just leave it as is and use the ends of the ribbon to tie the two sides of the tutu together when you wear it.
Attaching the waistband:
I’m throwing this step in for anyone who wants the waistline of their tutu to look a bit more finished, as opposed to having all of the tulle knots showing when you wear the tutu. Again, it’s not 100% necessary that you do this; it’s really just a way of making the tutu look a bit more put together.
1. Fold your waistband fabric in half and mark the center point with a pin.
2. Do the same with your tutu. Fold the whole thing in half and mark the center point with a pin.
3. Line the two pins up. Pin the tutu and waistband together at this point.
4. Continue pinning the waist band fabric to the rest of the skirt’s waistline, lining the edge of the fabric up with the tops of the tulle knots.
5. Flip the tutu over so the knots are facing you (instead of the waistband fabric) and sew a straight stitch right under the knots.
6. Fold and pin the raw edges of the waistband fabric over about 1/2″ to create a hem, and stitch them closed.
7. And finally, tie the tutu on, fluff it up, and enjoy! ♦