HOW TO MAKE TUTU'S
First off, I did not get any of these materials from a garage sale but I am all about getting things for cheaper so when I decided I wanted to have my girls wear tutu's in their birthday pictures I knew there was no reason to go out a spend a fortune on a tutu when I could make it myself.
Here is what you will need:
Sewing Machine or if you don't have one just a needle and thread will do
Tule of your choice
1/2 or 3/8's inch elastic
Lighter or matches
You can buy elastic by the yard and it is much cheaper! Here is some 3/8's inch elastic and it is .79 cents a yard. You don't even need a 1/4th of a yard so your elastic shouldn't cost much.
I choose some of the more exciting tules. I used a pink and yellow that were thicker and had bigger holes than your average tule did.
My teal tule was shimmery and my green had sparkles in it.
After you have your supplies you will need to determine how much elastic you will need. I did this by measuring my girls waist with it. When you are measuring pull the elastic tight because as you begin to add your tule on your elastic will begin to stretch. If you don't pull it tight your tutu will be too big.
I didn't get a picture of this step but next you will take a lighter and melt (NOT BURN) both ends to make sure your elastic will not fray.
Next you will sew your end together. If you don't have a sewing machine hand stitching it will be fine.
Here is what mine looked like when I was done. You can sew it however you want as long as you know it will stay.
Next I cut my tule into 1.5 to 2 inch strips. To determine how long you need the tule hold it up to your child to see what length is best. When you buy fabric off the bolt it comes folded in half. I layed my tule on the ground, keeping that original fold and cut my strips. For my three year old I took each folded strip and cut it in half. For my one year old I cut it into thirds.
After you have your strips all cut and your elastic sewn you will take a strip and fold it in half as shown in the picture below
Then you will lay your strip of tule just how it is on the top of your elastic
(My elastic was too big. It started folding over itself but I didn't want to go buy anymore so I made it work) After you lay it down you are going to wrap the tail end under and to the back of the elastic and push it through your loop. Then pull it tight.
It should look like this...
From there you will continue to do this until your elastic if full of tule.
When your finished you have a cute tutu!
You can add ribbon to hide the knots of tule and help keep the elastic from showing through but I had plenty of tule and liked the way the knots looked without the ribbon. If you want to add a ribbon here is what you need to do. Choose a ribbon that is 1/2 an inch to an inch wide. For Jaysa's tutu, who is 3 years old, I used about 6 feet of ribbon. I would have liked to have a 7 or 8 feet though. I didn't have quite enough to make my bow at the end every big. For a one year old tutu I would say use about half to 2/3rds of the 7-8 feet for Jaysa's.
Then you will separate your tule and push your ribbon back and toward the inside of your tutu. Then bring it up through the center and back around to the front where you started.
Continue lacing up this side of your ribbon around your tutu until you have about a foot left of ribbon. Then start lacing the other side until it meets up with the side you previously finished. Ideally, you would have about a foot on this side left too but it's possible you may not. It doesn't really matter as long as you have enough ribbon to make a bow.
If your short on one side unlace it a little bit and lace up the side that you have extra ribbon on until it meets again and you have even amounts of ribbon left. Then you will tie a bow with it and cut off the excess ribbon. My bow is a little small and short. I would have liked to be able to make the loops of my ribbon bigger and the tails of my ribbon longer. You will also want to melt the ends of your ribbon with a lighter or match to keep them from fraying.
To learn how to use any of the other props I used in my girls birthday pictures choose from the following: