Oct 28, 2012

Costume time 2012: Making a tutu

Halloween is only a few days away, and I've actually finished my costume. (I have to blame this on the Halloween party that I went to a few days ago.)

My costume this year was pretty easy, I embellished a store bought tank top and then made a tutu to finish off the look. I wanted my tutu to have layers of color that formed stripes, so I didn't make the strip tutus that are all over the internet now.

I used 2 yards of fabric for each layer. The tulle was 60 inches wide, so I folded it in quarters for the top two layers and thirds for the bottom layer. Then I just ran a long straight stitch across the top of each layer to gather it all up. I also sewed the short ends of the tulle closed, so I had a tulle tube.
For the top I used a super wide 3 in elastic. Just make the elastic big enough to fit around you where you want the tutu to lie, and then stitch it up. Remember to leave yourself enough room to slip it on and off.

Next is the part that I find the most tedious, attaching the skirt to the elastic. I'm not one to use pins usually, but this process kind of requires them. You're gonna need to mark the front and back of your elastic and your tulle tube. The back is where your seam is, so just fold your elastic tube in half right on the seam. Mark the side opposite the seam with a pin. This is your front. Do the same thing with your tulle tube. Next, you're gonna pin both seams together and then both front marks together. Pull your gathering stitches until the tulle is the same size as the elastic. Use pins to hold this in place.

Now change your machine to the stretch stitch. On my machine it's stitch J. It looks like a dotted zig zag. This will allow the elastic to stretch better than a regular straight stitch.

I stitched right over the gathering stitches.

Since I was making a tiered skirt, I wanted to tier my layers of tulle. So I attached my first layer about half way up the elastic.

Then gather your next layer and pin it in place. I put it right under the stitching for the last layer of tulle, so I could get the "striped" effect I wanted. I stitched this one on then added one more layer for my last stripe.

Then try it on and check the length. I left my tulle folded as I sewed and then cut it once I had tried it on and saw what length I wanted. Just cut it straight across, no hemming needed.

And voila! You have your tutu. It's great for any costume (cause who doesn't love a tutu), and you can even make a smaller version for your little ones. Here I am all decked out for my party. (I'm supposed to be Nemo--yeah, it's an artistic interpretation.)

What are you gonna be for halloween? Are you making your costume?

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