Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Big ONE: Birthday Outfit

When I began reviewing items on Pinterest to start coming up with ideas for Abby's birthday, I quickly decided I wanted her to wear a tutu for the big day. When I saw that many are going on Etsy for $30+, I thought I would look into making my own to help save money.

After a quick Google search, I found this online tutorial on how to quickly make a no-sew tutu. It looked so simple, so I picked up my supplies at Hobby Lobby so I could get to work on it. Hobby Lobby and Michael's both regularly have 40% off coupons available, so it makes these types of craft projects more economical/enjoyable.

The supplies for this project are pretty minimal. You need a crocheted headband, which will serve as the tutu's waistband, rolls of tulle, scissors, and a ruler or tape measure. Other useful items to have to make cutting the tulle easier are a piece of cardboard, cut to either the length you want the tutu, or twice the length, as well as some rubber bands.

While you can simply cut pieces of tulle one at a time, per the video I linked above, there is a much easier and more time-efficient way to do so. That's where the cardboard comes into play.

You'll use the cardboard to wrap your tulle around. I found it easier when getting started if I used one rubber band to help hold my beginning piece in place.

Once you have the edge of your tulle lined up with the edge of your cardboard, you'll continue to wrap the tulle around. You can either do this until you go through the entire roll, or just until you have wrapped around the number of pieces you need for your skirt.

If you cut the cardboard equal to the length you want your tutu to be (as I did here) then every full wrap around (front & back) will equal one strip of tulle. If you cut the cardboard equal to twice the length of your tutu, then every full wrap around will get you two strips of tulle.

Once you're done wrapping your tulle, you will want to place a rubber band or two around the whole thing to help keep the fabric in place when cutting.

Next you'll be cutting. If your cardboard is the length of your tutu, you'll make just one cut, along the edge where you lined up the beginning of the roll. If your cardboard is twice the length of your tutu, you'll make two cuts, one along both edges.

When cutting, be sure not to pull too much with your scissors or to veer towards one side or the other in order to keep your tulle lengths as close to even as possible.

Once you're done, you can remove the rubber bands and you'll be left with a neat stack of tulle.

Complete this process again as many times as needed for each color you're using. I am using four colors for my daughter's tutu, so I completed this four times.

Once you have all of your tulle ready to go, you'll simply follow the directions outlined in the video for tying the strips to your headband.

You'll grab a piece of tulle, gather it and fold it in half, then thread the loop through the back of one of the holes on the headband. You'll then pull the ends through the loop on the front side and pull down to create your knot.

Keep going around until you have made a full circle around the length of the headband, and before you know it your tutu will be complete!

I just did one layer of tulle and used the second row of holes (rather than the very bottom row) on the headband to provide a little more strength. And if you want a fuller skirt, you can circle back around with a second row.

This is such an easy project, I created two of these for my daughter. One will be used in the next week for her smash cake photo shoot, and the other will be worn at her party.

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