~ Here is my story, told one 'Spunky' moment {and craft} at a time. ~

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

How To - Zippy Flower TuTu

I completed this tutu to add to the package that I am sending to Samster's Mommy for her Tutu Drive.  I have till the end of the month (5 more days, yikes) to complete the five tutus I have as my goal to donate.  These are the two that I have finished so far (still three tutus to go!):

The Zippy Flower TuTu (left) and the Furry/Fuzzy Trim TuTu (right)

Here are the directions on how to create this fun tutu in a flash! 

Ingredients for the Zippy Flower Tutu are:
- 2 plus yards of tulle (I used 2 yards for 18" of elastic)
- Flowers and matching buttons
- 1 inch or 1.5 inch elastic, measure child's waist and subtract 1 or 2 inches to get length
- Thread to match tulle for both upper thread and to use in your bobbin

Sidenote: the puffier you want the finished tutu to be the longer your tulle should be.  If you can find tulle on sale you can easily (and affordably) use 3 or 4 yards to create a super tutu.  I got this peach tulle for 77 cents a yard at Hobby Lobby!

Unfold your tulle lengthwise, leave it folded in half as it came off the bolt.  Then fold over the open side across the fold side, and have your open edge 4 to 5 inches father than the folded edge.  See the picture for this to make more sense.

Take the top layer of tulle and lay it the offside of the other layers.  Then take the second layer of tulle and fold it up to the crease.  This will give you one single layer laying away from the rest of the tulle, and two layers of double tulle with a fold in each layer.

Lay the single layer of tulle back over the other layers.  Pin along the top.  I pin roughly at first, just make sure to get all the layers as even as possible.  Also make sure that the layer you just folded up (will have a rough edge along the top) is pinned securly.  I then measured the elastic, added a half inch, and repinned the entire length of tulle using this measurement to create a casing for the elastic. 

After pinning using your measurement from the elastic, take your tulle to the sewing machine.  Line up the pins to the right of your sewing machine foot.  You will use these pins as a guide to sew as straight a line as possible.  The great thing about children's dress up clothes is that straight lines, while always nice, are not imperative.  I used the standard straight stitch on my machine for this first line of sewing.  You will be sewing through three layers of tulle at this point.

Your result is going to look a little backwards when you lay the tulle out after sewing this "seam".  Here is the trick that we are going to use to give the waist band extra strength (this is important with children's dress up clothes, LOL).  Unfold the top layer of tulle, then fold it under the other folds of tulle making sure to not compromise the size of your elastic casing you just created.

This will give you three layers of tulle for the waistband.  Pin on both sides of your original "seam" the entire length of tulle.  Then use a small zig zag (I set my machine to 2.0 length and 2.0 width), and stitch the tulle in place directly over your previous stitches.

Here is a picture showing the layers.

Now cut the folded layers.  The top layer is cut 2 to 3 inches up from the fold, and the middle layer is cut only 1 inch or so from the fold.

Lay out your tulle, and then cute your tulle in strips beginning with the bottom layer working your way to the top layer.  You can cut the strips any width you like.  I cut the bottom layers in 6 inch strips, and the top two layers in 2 inch strips.  To save time you can certainly use your rotary cutter and straight edge to cut all the layers into strips at once.  I wanted to see how staggering the cuts would affect the finished tutu, and I have to say that it is a pretty neat effect but took more time than cutting all layers at once.

After you have cut the tulle into strips... this next step is where the magic happens!  Now instead of cutting millions of strips of tulle, and then spending countless hours (anything over an hour is countless hours to me, can you tell I like fast projects, LOL!), all you are need to do to create your amazing puffy strip tutu is to insert your elastic!  Sew with a large zig zag over the doubled up ends.  I set my zig zag for 5.0 width and 1.5 length to secure the ends of the elastic.

Move the elastic around so that where you sewed the elastic together is in the middle of your tulle (or so, remember you don't have to be too exact here).

Another bit of magic, you are going to use a flower to anchor your elastic to the tulle and the flower will also hide where you stiched the elastic together!  Use your button foot to secure the butrton at the center of your flower.  If you think you will be washing your tutu a lot, go ahead and lay out the flower petals on newspaper and spray with a fray check product to prevent the flowers from fraying over time.

Now add the rest of the flowers where you want, and you are done!  I used a piece of cardstock over the flower petals to manuver them under my sewing foot.  Then when I removed the cardstock my flower petals were all nice and laid out, and I could easily add my button.

I am linking this tutorail up with:
Take A Look @ Sugar Bee {check out her new look!}


  1. So cute! What a great blog :) I'm folling you from Tag-Along Tuesday, I look forward to you following back over at One Fine Wire!

    So nice to meet you!

  2. Very cute! Thanks for linking @Creative Itch's "Sew Cute Tuesday"!

  3. So pretty...I love the flowers! :)


  4. Very cute! I can't wait till my daughter is old enough to have fun with a tutu! :)

  5. Too cute! My wee girl has been waiting for my Mom to make her a tutu for her dance class. This tutorial makes it look like even I could figure out how to make it (following your directions!)...thanks! :>

  6. Very cute! My 4 year old happened to see the pic on my blog and said, 'I want that!'.......thanks for sharing at It's Party Time Thursday@PonyTails&FishScales!

  7. Perfect timing for me to come across your tut! I love it!!!!

  8. This is so darling! I love it and ma sure any little girl would too! Thanks for your comments!


Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I love reading your comments, and enjoy returning the favor {even if it takes me a while to return it, LOL!}.

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I am a fun loving mom of two, that fits in reading a book whenever possible! Come see what I am reading and what free eBooks I have found to share with you! ~Kimberlee
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