Saturday, November 6, 2010

Tutu Shirt Tutorial

A very long time ago, at least in a 4-year olds opinion, I promised I'd make my daughter a tutu shirt.  She had seen the tutu onesies I made and wanted one all for herself.
I finally gathered the materials that I needed and got to work yesterday afternoon.  After you see it, you're going to want one too, for some little girl in your life.  This would be a great Christmas outfit.  Iron a candy cane shape to a white or red shirt and use red and green tulle for a Christmas dress!
I may do that.  AH!

Materials Needed:
Plain shirt-best if it's a little long...
Tulle-2 rolls 6" wide
Matching Thread

Optional if you'd like a heart on the chest:  
Heat n Bond
Scrap of fabric 

The shirt is from Target.  They have a nice selection of plain shirts for $4.50 a piece.  

 The tulle is from Hobby Lobby.  It is often on sale for 40% off.  I spent $3.50 for both rolls.  Big hint:  Don't make the same mistake I did and buy GLITTER tulle.  There is purple glitter ALL OVER my house, all over me, and now all over my girl!

 I didn't know how much length of tulle to sew so I just let the rolls hang on the floor and unroll as I sewed.  it wouldn't help you much to know a length anyway, as you are likely making a different size!

   Layer the tulle evenly, one on top of the other.   I sewed for what seemed like forever, and then pulled the tulle down the thread to bunch it while the front was still in the sewing machine. It takes A LOT of tulle to make a tutu, so you'll be sewing and then bunching a lot.   Measure the length around the bottom of your shirt, and when you're bunching you'll know how many inches of tutu you're going to need to make it around your shirt. When sewing, use a very wide stitch to make it easier to pull the tulle down.  

When I finally had enough tulle bunched up to make it around the shirt, I tied the thread off on one end of the tutu so that it wouldn't loosen.  I then pinned the tutu carefully to the bottom of the shirt.  The top of the tutu should be about 1-1.5" inches from the bottom of your shirt.  Use plenty of pins.  It's pretty fluffy.
I put the shirt onto the sewing machine through the neck so that the skirt sticks out to the left of the machine.  Use a ZIG ZAG stitch for this part.  Sew over the thread that's already there.  Be careful that the t-shirt isn't bunching.  Go all of the way around and then at the end stitch back and forth a couple of times.
Cut your threads, and voila, you should have a beautiful tutu shirt for less than $10.  I also added a heart ironed on with heat n bond to the chest.  You can put whatever shape or fabric you'd like.

 I am new to tutorials, so please let me know if I can help or if you have any questions.  My camera ran out of batteries while I was making this, so I don't have as many pictures as I'd like, but I'm hoping they help you a bit!
Have fun!


  1. is this a joke?! who even has one of those machines you mention? what is that thing??? only sewing i know involved cutting needles and nylon thread...

  2. Really sweet! You should totally make more! my four year old would love it! And I can't/don't sew;)

  3. so cute! i have a bunch of tulle, so am excited to try this out. thanks for sharing. my 3 year old is going to go bananas over it!

  4. I just found your site and I love it! I am completely sold on this girls have 2 more weeks of dance, so I might be able to crank it out by then. Thanks for the idea - I'm your new follower!
    PS. Did you take any extra care when you washed it?

  5. I love the tutu shirt. Just wondering do you pin the tulle to the right or wrong side of the shirt. Thank you for your help. Stopping at the store after work today for the supplies.

    1. Hi There!
      You pin the tulle to the outside of the shirt so that the raw edge of the tool is on the outside (I think I just repeated myself!)
      Thanks for the query. Let me know if I can help any other way.


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