27 October 2011

Petticoat Tutu for Kids - TUTU TUTORIAL

So, here's my tutorial for petticoat style tutus for children.

What you need:
Tulle, Satin, Elastic, matching thread and ribbon

These tutus are made for a 4 year old and a 2 year old. Their waist measurements are about 17-18.   I can't easily tell you how much tulle you need to purchase because I purchased two spools of 18" wide tulle from ebay for these projects. I'm not sure how much yardage was on each spool, but I have a ton of this stuff left.
For the satin, I purchased about a foot.
Here is how everything ends up cut out:

This totals at 600 inches of 6inch tulle. For me, that was 200 inches of my 18 inch tulle. You can alter these measurements to fit (such as rounding to the closest yard).  How much tulle you need to buy in the store really depends on how wide the tulle is and how poofy you want tutu to be.  I do four layers... but I mean, I have these spools so I don't have to be frugal with the tulle. If it works better for you to only do three layers, it won't make a huge difference.

You can adjust all the measurements based on who you are making this for. For example, 24 inches for the hip area will not work for an average 6 year old, but it does work for a 2 year old and a skinny 4 year old. If you were making this for yourself (an adult) add a few inches to your hip measurement and go from there in deciding the measurements for the tulle.

Note: If you don't know how to gather fabric, please reference this or this tutorial, as I don't really explain it very well below. This tutorial is made with the assumption that you understand gathering. If you have any other questions please leave a comment

1. Tulle:
The tulle is a long tedious process.  First, I attached my 1/4" ribbon to the bottom of what will be the top layer of tulle.

After this, I gather all four pieces of 100" tulle to 50". For those of you who read here regularly, I'd normally use my gathering foot... but I stitch and gather by hand for this in order to ensure the correct amount of gather.

Next, I attach the 100" tulle to the 50" tulle.  I personally just lay 50" on top of the gathering of the 100" fabric. You can sew right side to right side to have an inside seam, but I didn't need the extra bulk so I prefer the seams to be flat. I am including some pictures using a white cotton so that you can see exactly what I mean, since it's really hard to see in the pictures of the tulle.

Take the top pieces of tulle (the one with the ribbon on the very bottom).  Stitch another piece of ribbon over the stitching that attaches the two pieces. (I actually don't have enough ribbon to do this right now... but I'm going to add it later so the step is here!) B

Now, take each section and sew them into a tube.  Again, if you want to do right side against right side that works.  I just set one atop the other to have a smoother seam. 

After this, I layer, pin, and then baste all four layers together.

Next, is gathering all four pieces of 50" tulle to be 25".  It's really important that you DO NOT gather the 50" tulle until AFTER you have attached it to the 100" tulle, because you're going to get yourself into a mess. You CAN gather each individual piece if you WANT before you baste them together, but it's easier and much faster to gather them all at once. After they're basted together, I gather.  I do separate stitches for the basting and the gather because I want everything to stay stable while I'm doing the actual gathering.

2. Satin:
Sew the far ends of the satin together and press the seam.

After this, make a casing for your elastic.  I use a 1" elastic, so I made my casing just larger than 1".

Right side against right side, I place the satin waist band over the tulle and pin. I tried to line up the side seams. Stitch

Lastly, I put the elastic into the casing.
Wah-lah! Adorableness!  It's a pretty long process, but they're totally worth it!

A few notes: Where I used ribbon on the top, you could definitely use something like lace! Like I said earlier, three layers would be just as good as four, but four is just what worked out for me. Everything can be adjusted for adults.  I used satin for the waist, but you could use another fabric if you wanted.

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  1. Just beautiful, my daughter would love one of these, thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank You. Hope to make these for my great=grandaughters for Christmas.