Are you the parent of a little practicing ballerina? If so, you can benefit from learning how to sew a tutu. These ruffled dance skirts are fixtures in any ballerina’s wardrobe, and it is actually extremely useful to have several. You can really get creative with color, design and style once you have made your first one.
How to Sew a Tutu
You will need tulle, elastic, measuring tools, patterns, needle and thread or a sewing machine, and decorative materials (such as lace or beads).
Step One: Take Measurements
Measure the waist, hips and stride of the ballerina. You will also need to measure the desired skirt length. The stride is measured by having the ballerina take a step as far as they can go.
You can create a pattern with white paper or poster board. Trace the body of the ballerina with a half-inch buffer. This will help in creating the size and shape of the tulle. You can buy patterns at some stores to skip this measurement step.
Step Two: Gather Materials
Once you have the measurements, it is time to go out and purchase the material. You will need to double the length of the tulle that you measured, because you will be folding the tulle in half to create a layer. The elastic should be and inch or two smaller than the measurement because it is likely to expand when handled, sown and worn.
Don’t forget to buy decorative materials to make your little princess’ tutu look special. Ribbons, lace, bows and other embellishments look great on tutus.
Step Three: Pin the form together
Fold the tulle in half with the bent edge at the bottom. Now cut the tulle into the pattern that you created or purchased. Leave a small amount, perhaps ½ inch, for sewing. Take the elastic and pin the top sides of the folded tulle to it. Do this carefully and make sure that everything is even.
Step Four: Sew it together
Use a sewing machine to sew the tulle to the elastic. Remember to remove the pins as they approach the needle, or you can break the needle on the machine. Once you reach the last stitch, be sure to reinforce the end with and extra stitch. If you are sewing by hand, remove the pins as you approach them to avoid loose loops.
Step Five: Decorate
Have your ballerina try it on and make sure it fits comfortably. Adjust as needed. Then you can add all of the fancy garnishing items you bought to make it special.
Now you know how to sew a tutu.
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Valerie Longhurst, Instructor
I simply adore crafts and love teaching others how to make tutus!
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