Thursday, October 9, 2014

How to Make a Fluffy No Sew Tutu

I need a costume for a performance. I opened our costume closet and came up with a costume idea with a kooky Dresden Dolls, Steampunk, Katy Perry, vaudeville kind of vibe.

Best of all I my costume includes a tutu! I always wanted to wear a tutu as a kid but unfortunately modern dancers don't do the tutu.

Sorry Martha Graham, this gal is making her long denied tutu dreams come true!

Dancers tip: Wear a pair of flesh colored tights (or pantyhose if you wearing them as part of a Halloween costume) under your fishnet tights. The hose will even out the skin tone of  your legs. It also helps the fish nets stay on and from bagging around your ankles with movement.
Dancers tip #2: Don't buy the cheapo fishnet tights at the Halloween store buy professional dancer's fishnet tights (get more info about them here.) Dancer's tights have a flat nylon sole so you aren't painfully walking on little ropes all night. They cost a little more but are totally worth it!

This is not a real life ballet dancer’s tutu. Real life ballet tutus use much more tulle, often need a support underneath (it is like a mini hoop skirt,) and cost a ton of money.

If you need a quick and cheap tutu for Halloween, a short performance, or for fun, then this tutu’s for you!

How to Make a Tutu for Adults

You will need:

10 yards of tulle – I’m using two shades of red to give my tutu a little depth
elastic the size of your waist (ribbon works if you want to skip Step 8 and tie your tutu on)
safety pin
Optional: needle and thread
Something to hold your tutu while you work – I’m using a dressmaker’s dummy but a large flower pot, a door knob,  or a something of that nature works too

Make it:

1. Fold the tulle in half width wise and and cut the tulle into strips that are 7 inches long. Keep measuring and cutting until you have cut all of the tulle.

After I cut all of my tulle, I cut the strips in half to make my tutu shorter since I’m so short. If you want a longer tutu, you can leave the tulle strips as you originally cut them.

2. Measure your waist and cut a piece of elastic to its size.

3. Put the elastic around your work surface and safety pins the ends of the elastic to each other to make a loop.

4. Fold one strip of tulle in half, slip it under the elastic, pull the loose ends around the elastic, and through tulle loop.


5. Pull the tulle tight to make a slip knot.

Warning: Your elastic may start to stretch out as you pull the knotted tulle tight. That’s OK, keep going. We will fix that in Step 8.

6. Repeat Steps 4 and 5 forever and ever until you have knotted all the strips of tulle along the elastic band. Play some jams or watch a movie while you work, if you like.

I alternated a strip of each shade of red tulle along my elastic band. By the time I finished the tutu it was so fluffy the shading looked random, which is what I wanted.

7. Remove the tutu from your work area.

8. Try the tutu on. If the elastic has stretched (and chances are it will) remove the safety pin and repin the elastic so it fits your waist. Trim the leftover elastic with scissors.

elastic tutu
After I trimmed the elastic to fit my waist again, I sewed the elastic closed with a few hand stitches.  I didn’t want the pin to accidentally come undone during a performance!

8. Optional: Sew the elastic waistband closed with the needle and thread.

9. Optional #2You can tie a piece of ribbon into a bow to hide the spot where the elastic meets. I used a leftover piece of tulle. It also reminds you which side of your tutu is back!

10. Fluff the tulle and flutter off to your Halloween party!

how to make a no sew tutu

Come back soon when I teach you how to make a mini top hat fascinator. You won’t believe what I used to make it. So easy!

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