January 7, 2011

Sewing 101: A Tutu

When deciding how to decorate the nursery for our daughter, I knew the entire room would be focused around a hand embroidered picture that my mom made for my room many years ago. It is the quintessential picture for a little girls room and I was so glad that she saved it all these years for my baby. I will post it here once it is returned from the frame shop.

In order to stay within that theme, I turned to the internet for other ideas and stumbled on the website Posh Tots. When I saw this dress form and tutu I knew it would be the perfect addition and worked well with the picture.

dress form

The problem is it costs $450, which is truly ridiculous for a dress form adorned with a tutu. So the seamstress in me took on the challenge.

I found a dress form on good old Ebay for $50 and spent another $40 or so on the materials for the tutu and flower. Here is my version.

Pretty good for around $100, eh? I am an amateur seamstress. Okay truly I am still learning how to sew a straight line so this took everything out of me. Blood, sweat and tears folks but I love how it turned out and that makes it all worth it.

I used the Lulu Grace tutu pattern. Here are the materials you will need to make this tutu:
- Lulu Grace pattern
- 7 to 9 yards of tulle in your choice of color (I used 7 yards because my dress form is a size 3T/4T so 7 yards made a very full tutu).
- 24 yards of matching ribbon (more if you use more than 7 yards of tulle)
- 1 yard of 3/4" to 1" elastic
-Matching thread
- Fray Check

1. Cut the tulle in half width wise along the length of the fabric so you end up with two long strips of tulle.
2. Pin and sew ribbon along the edge of the tulle with the wrong side of the ribbon against the tulle. Repeat on the other side of your long strip.
3. Fold the tulle, ribbon edges together, length wise. Cut 12" wide sections. You should end up with a ton of tulle rectangles.
4. Apply fray check to all of the ribbon edges on all pieces. Do not skip this step!
5. Cut elastic 2-3 inches shorter than the waist measurement. For example, a 3T/4T waist is about 20 inches so I cut an 18 inch piece of elastic.
6. Seam elastic together. Place the circle of elastic through your leg up above your knee. About mid-thigh area.
7. Begin tutu assembly by taking one section of tulle between your leg and the elastic. Even the edges so the tulle is evenly divided and tie securely twice around elastic, but not so tight that the elastic folds. Continue with each section of tulle until the entire elastic band is covered. 

How to make the organza flower.
- Organza fabric in your color choice
- Matching satin ribbon
- 3 pearls for the center of the flower
- Coordinating thread
- Votive candle

1. Cut 5 rough flower shapes or circular shapes if you prefer a round flower to a rose. I may have cut 2 smaller pieces for the center of the flower.
2. Hold cut organza pieces one at a time over a candle flame until it melts to your desired curliness.
3. Assemble flower with your melted organza pieces and sew pearls through all of the layers with matching thread.
4. Sew bottom layer of organza to matching satin ribbon.
5. Pin to dress form.

Good luck!

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I would love to see the pics of your tutu but they aren't coming up. Also just to clarify is only one long strip of the tulle beribboned and cut into sections or both?