I freely admit I am a little "tutu obsessed". I have managed to purchase tulle in nearly every color just so that I am ready at a moments notice to make one if asked and even force them on those friends who don't ask! In fact I'm pretty sure moments after the ultrasound tech said, "It's a girl!" I was on google asking the question every expectant mother asks... "How to make a tutu?". Instead of checking on my husband who was still in shock (he was convinced it was another boy), I was mentally accessorizing this little person. And now that she is here it has only intensified my problem. But sometimes my little model is not so thrilled with the feel of the tulle and plus it's kind of hard to hang with the boys and be a tough Cowgirl when grass and dirt are sticking to your skirt. So I wanted to try something new. Not to mention I have a borderline "hoarding" problem when it comes to fabric. No one told me three months ago when on a whim I decided to buy a sewing machine and "teach" haha myself to sew that I would start buying fabric like crafting prohibition was just around the corner and the stuff would soon be illegal.
Needless to say I have plenty of fabric laying around that needs a home. So I grabbed three fabrics that I thought would look fun with these amazing purple cowboy boots that my little munchkin recently got! Lucky lady huh? And this is what I came up with! Mini Model not included :)
The strips vary in width but most are about 3 inches wide and for my little one I wanted the length to be 10 inches so I cut them about 20 inches long so I could double them over. You can cut them with scissors or a rotary cutter but I just made small cuts where I wanted the strips to start and stop and ripped the fabric. It is so easy and I love the frayed edges, but if that's not for you go ahead and cut the pieces. I use no roll elastic that you can buy at any craft store or sewing section for around a dollar. Just make sure that you measure your little models waist and then cut the elastic at least four inches shorter. When you tie the strips it stretches out the elastic and pretty soon it gets huge. If that happens at the end no worries just fold the elastic over on itself in the back and put in a few stitches, no one will ever see it and it will allow you to undo the stitches and easily "let it out" when they get bigger.
I overlap and hand or machine sew the elastic together to make a circle. Doesn't have to be fancy just make is secure. Then I either put the elastic on a paper towel roll and hold it tight between my legs or I just loop it over my knee. But do whatever feels most comfortable to you.
I take the doubled over fabric tuck the loop under the elastic, put the tail up through that loop and pull it down tight. Surprisingly you kind of get in a zone and before you know it you are done. And you can be done right here with a fun skirt, but I wanted to make this a dress so I took one of the extra fabric strips looped it over one of the already tied pieces in the opposite direction and then you have a halter tie. Because precision is not always my strong suit I did go back and even up the bottom by cutting all the pieces at an angle.. it makes kind of a fun handkerchief hem, but you can leave it straight if you prefer.
This dress is a little big and long, but that's so it will fit when her great purple boots do next year... but hopefully you get the idea!
My model however went on strike about 3 minutes into our photo shoot demanding better working conditions or she said, "The headband gets it!".. OK maybe she didn't say that, but that's what she was thinking!
So I did what every "good" mom does... I bribed her with a graham cracker to give up the goods :)
Good Luck, Lindsey