How to Make a DIY Baby Tutu
Create a sweet DIY Baby Tutu following this tutorial. Discover the trick for sewing a tiny rolled him in tulle and netting!
Hello Crafty Friends! I’m excited to share this sweet tutorial with you today on how to make a baby tutu. Tutus are so cute and I love making them. They are great for special occasions and holidays but they are also adorable any day of the year. Which is why I made this cute playtime tutu.
I call this tutu a playtime tutu, because unlike large and poofy tutus I often see in photoshoots or for birthdays, this tutu is perfect for playtime and everyday use. It is short so it doesn’t get in the way of important baby activities, like crawling and rolling. Because it is so short (and sheer), I pair it with baby leggings.
For this tutu I actually repurposed a baby dress from Old Navy my daughter grew out of. The dress fabric matched a lot of the onesies we had, so I figured why not make it into a tutu skirt! It was definitely worth it, because it is getting a lot more use from the tutu than if it remained a dress sitting in a box unused.
The trick to keeping this tutu easy is to make it with Ban-Rol. An amazing sewing product I just recently learned about and really enjoyed trying out on this project. I purchased it in October when I was doing a bridal alteration on a dress with several layers of chiffon. I was dreading hemming the chiffon when I found a tutorial on hemming a silk handkerchief using Ban-Rol. It worked perfectly for the bridal alteration and I was so excited I wanted to try it again with a baby tutu.
*Update: Ban-Rol can be a little tricky to find right now. You can search “ban-rol sewing tape” and see what your buying options are. I paid under $10 for mine from a seller on Etsy who is no longer selling it. As of his update, you can purchase it from a shop called Starmalia. Ban-Rol is reusable as long as you are gentle with it. I have used mine several times on multiple projects.
Supplies Needed for DIY Baby Tutu:
- Tulle or mesh fabric
- Cotton fabric in a coordinating color
- 3/4″ elastic
- Ban-Rol for finishing the hem – search for “Ban-rol sewing tape” online. Try this Etsy shop, Starmalia.
- Sewing notions: thread, straight pins, needle, scissors, ruler
Step One: Cut the fabrics. This tutu is two layers of mesh or tulle with a cotton elastic waistband. Cut your fabric to the following dimensions. These dimensions worked well for a 9 months/12 months size. You can fit the elastic to whatever size you’d like though, so these measurements could work for multiple sizes.
- Top layer of tulle: 5.5″ x 29″ (includes a 1″ hem)
- Bottom layer of tulle: 6.5″ x 29″ (includes a 1″ hem)
- Cotton waistband, cut 2: 2.5″ x 20″
- Waistband tulle used to cover the cotton fabric, cut 2: 2.25″ x 20″
To create the cotton waistband covered in tulle, I’d recommend first cutting the cotton pieces to size, and then pinning them, or sewing them, to the tulle and cutting the tulle down to size after. This will be easier! You can see exactly how I did this in step 5.
Step Two: Hem the layers of tulle. This is when using the Ban-Rol will really come in handy!! On each layer, mark a hem line 1″ from the long edge of the fabric. This line is your hem line and you should use it to line up your Ban-Rol. For instructions on using the Ban-Rol to hem your tulle, check out the following two tutorials. They explain things very clearly! I have included pictures of my process so you can see what it looks like using the mesh fabric!
- Narrow hem with ban-rol by olive + s
- Hemming Tutorial – the wonders of Ban-Rol by Obsessive Creativeness
I needed to sew two pieces together for each layer since I was repurposing the Old Navy baby dress. Pictured below are the four lengths of fabric I hemmed using the Ban-Rol! I love how perfect and tiny the hems are! :)
Step Three: Each layer needs to be stitched into a tube. I chose to do french seams since the fabric is sheer. This isn’t completely necessary as the tulle and mesh shouldn’t fray. I like the way the french seams look!
Step Four: Stitch the layers together. Stitch the two layers together along the top edge (opposite the hem) using a gather stitch, or long running stitch, on your machine. Layer them as you want them to appear. Lay the short layer, right side up, on top of the long layer, also facing right side up. Stitch at 1/4″ from the edge. I lined up my french seams.
Step Five: Create the waistband. First sew the long piece of cotton fabric into a tube. I did a normal seam at 1/4″. I decided to cover my waistband in the tulle so it would all match. To do this, I laid the tulle over the waistband and stitched very close to the edge, at about 1/8″ on either edge of the waistband. Once the tulle was stitched down, I cut it to the same size as the cotton waistband. Doing the waistband this way eliminates any possibility of the tulle being misshapen or cut wonkety!
Step Six: Gather the skirt to the waistband! Gather the skirt to the waistband, right sides together. I found my half way points and continued to find the next half way point until I was working in smaller sections. Stitch the skirt to the waistband using a 1/2″ seam allowance.
Step Seven: Fold the waistband over to create a casing for the elastic. Press the top edge under 1/2″ first and then fold it over. You shouldn’t have any raw edges showing. Stitch in the ditch from the front side, catching the waistband as you go. Leave an opening to insert the elastic.
Step Eight: Insert the elastic. I chose to try the tutu on Jellybean before cutting the elastic. Once I knew how tight I wanted it, I cut the elastic and sewed it together by overlapping the ends. I slipped the elastic inside the casing and then hand stitched the casing closed.
Step Nine: Embellish with a fabric rosette. You can leave your tutu as is, or choose to embellish it with a simple rosette as I have.
The DIY Baby Tutu is all finished!! I actually thought this came together pretty quickly, although this tutorial is quite long! The hemming process was so fun with the Ban-Rol. I’ll have to post a picture of the red one I hope to make next week!
What a cute tutu! Thanks for linking up my tutorial, I hope others find it helpful too.