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NO-Sew Tutu tutorial

Okay, I am such a sucker for comments. I love reading them and love to see what people have to say, where people come from, ideas and suggestions from you, you, and you……I love it all. So much, that while reading each comment during this last giveaway I secretly wanted to go buy enough supplies to make tutu’s/shoes/bows for all of these little girls you were trying to win for. Awwww, little lovelies dancing all around in fluffy tutu’s………..


Well, bad news. I can’t afford to make a gazillion tutu’s. But, I can teach you how to make your own. They really are pretty simple. And don’t require ANY SEWING SKILL. So, get those scissors out and I’ll walk you through this one.



(By the way…….I have been asked about a tutorial for the shoes by several people. I actually don’t offer a tutorial for them. Thanks for your interest in them but at this time I am only selling the pattern for the shoes.)


For the tutu, you’ll need:


  • A 1/2 inch wide piece of elastic (measure the length against your little girl, everyone’s different. And then add about 6 inches or so, allowing you to make to make a temporary knot until the final adjustment when you’re all done.)
  • 4 1/2 yards of tulle (I used 1 1/2 yards each of brown, purple, and light purple….you can use a LOT less but I just like mine really full.)
  • scissors
  • A couple yards of coordinating ribbon
  • Miniature flowers
***These instructions are for a size 2T – 4T (roughly) so if you need another size, remember to make adjustments.***


Cut strips of tulle about 3 inches wide by about 28 inches. (No strict rules here… can make them a little less wide, a little shorter, a little longer. You get the idea.)


Next, tie a knot (that you can later take out) and put it over the back of a chair to hold nicely for you.

Then, take 2 strips of tulle and fold them in half. Lay the loop, where you just folded it, over the piece of elastic.


Fold the ends under the elastic and pull through the open loop…….and pull through.


And then wiggle it tight.


Then, add more tulle, 2 by 2. And remember to keep your pattern going if you have more than one color.


Slide all of the knots together, making more room for more tulle.


Measure it against your little girl, making sure that the fit is just right. Then either make a tight knot in the elastic and trim the ends or sew it closed. (I know, I said no sewing was involved. So, only if you want to.) Then, pull all of the knots pretty tight so that they don’t loosen up over time.


You can stop here…..or you can add a little something extra. If you like the look of the ribbon detail, cut 6 pieces of ribbon about 12 inches each. You can stagger the length of each ribbon, if you like the look of that. Hot glue little silk flowers to one end and then tie the other end very securely to the elastic. Trim your ends of ribbon.


Fluff and go.


Thanks again for all of your comments during the giveaway and for sharing small pieces of your lives with me. I loved hearing from everyone and who you would have given the little tutu to. Now, go make your own. It’s that easy.



Ashley Johnston
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Ashley Johnston

Owner at Make It & Love It
Ashley Johnston is a professional DIY costume maker, sewist, crafter, and owner of Make It & Love It. She is a mom of 5 and a wife to a very patient (with the craft clutter) husband. In case you’re wondering, she always chooses crafting/sewing/designing over mopping/dusting/wiping base boards……but bathrooms/laundry/full bellies are always attended to. Whew!
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  1. Mamaof6 says:

    Just made a bunch as birthday party favors…I used stretchy headbands for the waist! They come in great colors and are already finished. A set of 6 was $3 at Walgreens :).

  2. NinaMei says:

    Want to make these for highschool girls that are about 30 to 40 inches around and 5 feet to 5 feet 8 inches. How much fabric would you recomend. How much did you spend on the tutu you made?

  3. Daniela Walsh says:

    Thank you so much for posting this awesome tutorial! I used it to make a tutu for my baby girl’s first birthday. I posted about it on my blog here {and of course linked back to you!}:

    Put A Bird On It

  4. Sandy says:

    I’m not sure I understand the measurements. I bought about 400cm each of 3 colours and it is nowhere near enough tulle!

  5. Tanya says:

    I want to make one of these for my tiny niece she is only 4lbs right now but her mom want me to make one to do pictures in. Was wondering if you could give advice in how big for an infant so small

  6. Katherine says:

    I never knew tutus were THIS simple! I needed these instructions because I need to make a tutu for my daughter’s Rockstar day on Thursday. She is going as Cindy Lauper (lol right!) and she needed one for her costume. Anyways, how much tulle would I need to make a tutu for my five foot four 12 year old?

  7. Kaye says:

    Thanks for putting up your tutorial. Just made one for my niece for her 1st birthday! Pictures made it really easy especially for being sewing-challenged =P

  8. Anonymous says:

    Has anyone ever tried to make a business out of this? How did u do?

  9. Prom Dress Uk says:

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  10. Paige says:

    I am going to make one of these again for a silent auction for Cub Scouts. So, I needed a refresher from your tutorial! OH MY GOSH!!! Ellie was soooooo little! I miss those days! My girl is the same age as Ellie…it’s so fun to see the things you create for her. Then, I’ll try my fingers at it! I can’t believe that it has been so long since I made this cute little tutu for my baby!!!!

  11. DesertMama says:

    I love ur tutorial! I’m making one for my baby girl’s 1st birthday :D

  12. Rebekah says:

    Thankyou for making it easy, everyone elses tuitorials are complicated

  13. Rebekah says:

    Thankyou for making it easy. Ive looked at other tuitorials and they were complicated.

  14. stephanie says:

    if I would make a tutu for an adult how long would I make it

  15. dana says:

    I have used the tulle that come on a roll for weddings I guess… Very easy. I found mine at a second hand store for 50 cents… What a steal!!

  16. Kate and Kinley says:

    Thank you so much for posting this forever ago! I am making my daughter a tutu for her first birthday and one for myself to match! Hopefully I will be able to make this better than the repurposed sweaters into hats. I am definitely not a fan of the sewing machine!

  17. Dianne says:

    Love this tutu!i made one for my grand daughter a couple years ago and I entered it in our local fair.i won first place with it.there were about 7 or 8 in competion with me and mine got first place. It IS the best last minute gift to make for a little girls birthday .

  18. Molly's Mom says:

    Thank you so much for this tutorial. I am making tutus for the little girls that will be attending my daughter’s Princess Birthday Party. Her tutus are going to be the highlight of the party!!!

  19. Re Re says:

    luv the instructions i wanna make about 6 for my daughters b-day party about how much fabric will i need the sizes are from 3mos – 6yr im using 3 colors. & how much string or elastic? THANKS IN ADVANCE!!!

  20. Cassandra Perkins says:

    I am so thankful you have shown step by step on how to make these, I have 5 nieces that I am making these for! Wish me luck and thanks so much! :-)

  21. Rocio says:

    is beautiful!..:)

  22. Brittany says:

    OMGOSH this is too cute!!! My daughters are going to beflower girls in my brothers wedding and they need hot pink and black tutu’s I have been looking EVERYWHERE for reasonably priced tutu’s and for the look the bride wants the cheapest I have found is like $45…. Until I stumbled across this :-) in so excited to do this…. I am alsi going to take some flip flops and tie the tulle and ribbon along the thong portion so they have poofy flip flops too!!!!!

  23. sophie says:

    i need a tutu for a fancy dress at a low price is this idea really suitable for a plus size adult????

  24. Ali says:

    I absolutely love this, making it for the hunger games… can’t wait I am 14 woop woop

  25. Beverley Penkin says:

    Thanks so much! Just made the tutu and it came out wonderfully!!

  26. Brandy says:

    This was so easy! Thanks! Instead of making a standard tutu, I made this for a highchair “skirt” for my daughters 1st birthday. I started it while watching a movie and before I knew it, I was finished! My husband was so impressed with my ability to multi-task! Anyway, thanks again. I know this will adda perfect touch to my little peanut’s birthday!

  27. Cassie says:

    This is amazing! Does anyone know where i could buy zebra tulle?

  28. Elizabeth Noles says:

    I have made these for my nieces and for the elastic I bought a $3 pair of shorts or jogging pants at Walmart and cut the pants off and just kept the fabric covered waist. You cut all the way up to the seam at the bottom of the elastic. I bought a pair in the color to match my tulle I was using. It kept me from sewing and also from having to worry about the elastic rubbing or bothering her because it was covered in fabric.

  29. Eric says:

    Any idea on how to remove glitter from furniture and carpet my wife decided to use glitter tool -_-. Forever I shall be living like someone threw a jar of glitter everywhere

  30. Anonymous says:

    Even I think I can do this! Super cute!

  31. The Shiny Side says:

    I had hopes of making this tutu but the perfect fabric changed my plans. I included a link to your tutorial on my post about making a tutu for my daughters first birthday. Thanks for sharing you super cute tutu, I still have plans at making this at some point.

  32. Mom of 3 says:

    I just went to a store and their tutus like skirts were $5.25, but tulle was $0.97a yard! Guess which I bought ;)?

  33. krysten says:

    Thankyou so much for this info…Have been wanting to make tutu’s for a while but never thought I could do it!

  34. Suemedlock says:

    I have just finished two of the tutus for my two granddaughters. Only one thing gave me trouble-keeping the elastic from twisting-not staying flat. Any ideas how to make it stay flat?? Thanks

    1. Natalie says:

      This is so cute! Thanks!

      I just made one of these and found a way that prevents the elastic from twisting. If you tie the knot as instructed… you are pulling it tight, hold the pieces at the top as they are going through the knot part with one hand (you can position your hand against the elastic to keep it straight) and then pull them through with the other hand. I’m not sure if that makes sense but it works. I’m not sure how to describe it better. Hope it helps!

  35. Angela says:

    Super cute & super easy! Thanks!

  36. Amanda says:

    Thanks!!! Love the tutu!! Can’t wait to make it!! I have three girls and four nieces, this will be great gifts!! :)

  37. Dawn Renee says:

    Thanks so much! I already had learned the basics about the no-sew tutu, but I was
    Searching for a way to add more depth and detail. I used three shades of
    Shiny green Tulle and then added white Ribbon and a Few Flowers for
    Added Detail. I absolutely LOVE it and will run the Disneyland Tinker Bell
    1/2 Marathon in January wearing it ;)


  38. Ashley says:

    This may be a weird question but if adults want to make a tutu for a halloween costume would the only difference be the measurement of the elastic?! Or would the measurement of the tulle change as well?! Your tutu came out so cute and thanks so much for the tutorial!!!!!

  39. Rachelle says:

    Is there any way to double this? Instead of one strip of elastic, can you possibly do 2 strips of elastic to make the tutu that much thicker?

    I am not very crafty at all but am in love with this idea of tutus and would love for someone to help me because while i absolutely love this tutu, i would love for it to be thicker?

    any ideas?

    and btw, thanks so much for this tutorial…you broke it down very easy for people like me! I greatly appreciate it! :)

  40. Brittany & Jurzie says:

    Omg this really helped thank you i htought it would be so difficult but this is awesome im def doing this for my little girl 1st bday/ 1 yr pics! Thanks!

  41. Lindsey says:

    I plan on trying this tutorial for my friend and I to make adult size tutus to wear for Packer games! Green & yellow, green & yellow. :)

  42. Parvati Patil says:

    Thanks!!! P.S. smiles to you!!!

  43. Anonymous says:

    WOW this is great!! So much easier than I thought it would be!! I'm definitely going to use your directions. One thing…. you kept saying 'little girl'…. I know some little boys that would love dancing around in tutu's too!! c: THANKS this is fabulous!

  44. Miss.Kathryn says:

    I'd say the easiest way to figure how many yards you need is your waist size x5 (approximately the amount of strips per inch)
    ex. 23(in.) x 5 = 115 strips
    An average bolt of fabric is 56 inches tall, and if your strips are 4 inches wide. Divide 56 by 4 This is the number of strips per section of material.
    ex. 56/4 is 14
    Now take the number of strips you got and divide by that number, and round up if its over even. This is the number of strip sections you will need.
    ex. 115/14 = 8.2 so 9
    Now take the finished length you want, and times by two, because the strips are doubled. Add an inch for the knot. This is the length of each strip.
    ex. 12 inches x 2 = 24 + 1 = 25 inches
    Take the number of strip sections and time by the length of each strip.
    ex. 9 x 25 = 225
    Divide by 12 for feet and 3 to make it into yards.
    ex. 225/12= 18.75/3 = 6.25
    So you will need 6 1/4 yards fabric, and we rounded up, so you will have a little extra to leave room for error and maybe a hair accessory? =]
    It seems like a lot of math but it really isn't use a calculator and it's very easy! Hope this helps!

    1. Sasha says:

      Would the 6 1/4 yards be for each color or would you divide it by three if you were using three colors?

  45. Sabrina says:

    Thank you for these easy instructions. You just saved me some moolah on buying these all the time once she grows out of the old ones! I had no idea how simple this is to make :)

  46. Karra says:

    You are one talented lady! :) Thank you so much for showing me how to do this. I have twin girls and they just loooove putting on the tutus I make! Also I have made one and gave it to my niece….BIG hit!
    Thank you again!

  47. kacie says:

    Ashley, I just LOVE your site… I find myself checking it out for new things every day! You have really brought the creativity out in me! Thanks so much for all the great tutorials and congrats on the new little girl that will be here soon!

  48. MadEli says:

    This is really one of the best websites I have seen in a loooong time for free tutorials!! I posted it to my facebook fan page!!!

  49. Karli says:

    Could this be any easier!!! I've just spend the last couple of hours checking out dozens of your tutorials and i can't decide where to start! one problem – my machine is broken. I'm itching to try this idea as it is soo cute and doesn't require any sewing. Hmm, the shops are shut at this hour. Come on morning.

  50. Brandy says:

    Thank you so much for this tutorial. I have been searching for a tutu for my bug to wear for her first birthday that didn't break the bank. I can't wait to pick colors and try this. Thanks again.

  51. Anonymous says:

    im so exsited now i can make my sis a tutu for her birthday insted of having to buy her something or make her a cake again witch turned out discusting and ugly

  52. surveyqueen1997 says:

    I'm so excited to try and make 3 of them today for little girl birthday parties my "boys" got invited to this weekend. I hope mine turn out as cute as yours!

  53. Jennifer says:

    I love this, It is soo easy! I made a few for my niece, and she absolutely loves them.

    So I took it a step farther, every year I make her an easter basket, This year I made a small tutu and hot glued it to the basket. It looks so cute and I think she is going to love it!

  54. Jennifer says:

    I love this, It is soo easy! I made a few for my niece, and she absolutely loves them.

    So I took it a step farther, every year I make her an easter basket, This year I made a small tutu and hot glued it to the basket. It looks so cute and I think she is going to love it!

  55. Danielle says:

    This is awesome! I've been wanting to make a few tutus for my daughter since I saw the at the dollar store (and was not impressed with quality at all). This will definitely help, and will be a great birthday present for one of her friends.

  56. katrina says:

    thanks for the tutu tutorial! i made one for myself today to wear as part of my costume for the NZ sevens. yes, your blog is loved even in new zealand! cheers.

  57. Peggy says:

    You are awesome thank you so much

  58. Lamps Family says:

    I just stumbled upon you r blog and I love it. This tutorial is awesome, I do a lot of sewing and I have done a couple of tutu's but this is a easy and different way to do it. Thanks so much for sharing, I think I might make my girls matching tutu's for Christmas and also so matching hair bows!!!

  59. Kimberly says:

    I just finished making one of this about five minutes ago. I let my little girl pick out the colors, it's part of her xmas present. PLUS it will be used for ballet class, so I don't have to buy anymore skirts. lol I do gotta say though, my back is KILLING me now. I'm going to wait a couple of days before I make the next one. Thanks so much!!! It was super easy!

    I read the tips before hand and the only thing is the "measure and multiply by five" Didn't work for me. It ended up being more tulle then I needed. I'm going to turn it into hair ties and a matching tutu for her doll though!

  60. LAQuilts says:

    Fabulous pattern – I made it twice – by accident – no roll elastic is a must.

  61. Ashley says:

    Thanks Mommyof4…..those are some really great tips. You've got this down to a speedy science!! :)

  62. mommyof4 says:

    Great tutorial! I agree on using the tulle on a spool. Use a coupon at your local craft store to get it even cheaper or buy it online. Take your waist measurement for your finished product (example, 25), and multiply by 5 (that’s how many knots of tulle per inch you will want). So you will need 125 strips of tulle.

    Next, figure your finished length. Say you want it to be 10 inches long. Double that number (so we are at 20), and add an inch (for the knot). So you are at 21” of tulle. Multiply the length (21”) times the number of strips you figured from above (125). This gives you a figure of 2625, right? This is how many INCHES of tulle you will need. A 25yd. roll of tulle is 900 inches of tulle. So for a 10” long, 25” waist tutu, you will need approximately 2.91 spools. Of course your knots won’t always be perfectly spaced –at least, mine aren’t J

    A cutting tip—Find something that is the length (halved) of your final strip. I made one for my daughter, and happened to have a cooling rack (you know, for cookies) that was perfect. I started at one end, and looped over & over & over till the end of the spool. Then cut on the SAME edge that I started my tulle at—just slid my scissors in and up to the end and SNIP—I had one whole roll cut faster than fast! Your tulle doesn’t have to be PERFECTLY the same length for each piece—just close enough and using the cooling rack worked great!!!

    Another hint I’d suggest is, sew your no-roll elastic, and then pull it over & up your leg. Then sit & watch tv & knot, turning as you go. Making my daughter’s took about 45 min. from start to finish—INCLUDING cutting the tulle (on the cooling rack!), sewing the elastic (with my machine, of course!), and knotting. I used 4 different colors and it was SOOOOOO cute!! HTH!!!

    1. Laurann says:

      Wow, Thanks Ashley for the tutorial! And thanks you Mommyof4 for some more great instructions! I’m going to be making a tinkerbell costume for my little girl, and am excited to find such good information. :)

  63. Harley House says:

    Wow!!! That is soo cute and adorable! Those would make great Christmas gifts for my little cousins!! Thanks!

  64. Amy says:

    Thanks so much for this! I am not at all crafty but I have a 2 year old going through a princess phase- and the blue tutu grandma bought simply does not match all of her shirts. It appears I will be spending some time tying some knots and getting outfits arranged for the precious diva.

  65. amber lee says:

    okay, i just found this tutorial today, soo cute! i have been wanting to make one of these for awhile, and now i know how! thanks!

  66. Ketena says:

    Totally cute. I just made a Tinker Bell tutu on a little dress. This is way easier. Maybe I make another!!! :)

  67. Amber says:

    How did I not think of this myself?? This is so simple, my 2-year-old will no doubt insist on helping me. And oh, how she loves to dance… What a perfect project for yet another rainy Saturday in the forecast.

  68. Northern NY Mom says:

    My word! My daugheter NEEDS one of these! lol! But really how easy is that. Glad I follow you.

  69. Candice says:

    I just love this so much, and I dont really know how to sew so this is right up my ally. Oh thank you for sharing this.

  70. Apsara says:

    This comment is from FAR away – Sri Lanka. Thanks for all the great instructions, patterns and pictures. Just lovely.

  71. ✩Molly✩ says:

    thank you! now my heart doesn’t have to be so sad for missing out on winning the giveaway. Such a kind spirit, you have!

  72. Bamamoma says:

    I just had four friends over for a tutu-making party. We had so much fun. From that I have two suggestions for ease in making these tutus.

    1. Buy tulle on the spool – that way you only have to cut the length, not the width.

    2. If your little ballerina really is little (mine isn’t quite two) a table chair might be too big. Use her little stroller (you know the one she pushes her baby dolls around in). It was the perfect size for such a tiny bit of elastic. I also didn’t break my back bending over a chair (I just sat down and went to work).

    I love this site, thanks for sharing your creativity! I’ll be posting pictures of my tutu-wearing princess on my blog soon.

  73. Sher says:

    this is soo adorable and simple. You are so clever! I’m expecting my first baby and it’s a girl, I definitely plan on making this for her!

  74. Ashley says:

    Lauren……I would LOVE to see you in a matching tutu. :o)

    1. makekknzie says:

      I love ur comment

  75. Giles Fam says:

    I’m totally making one of these for my little girl…and do you think I could adjust the measurements for an adult, too? :)

    (totally kidding)

  76. Strand Family says:

    Wow! I could probably do this one :)

  77. Aubrey says:

    haha so i actually like the new design better :D and i'm SOOO gonna change my old tutu into this better version, cuz mine kinda sucks right now, and since i already have tulle and elastic… YAY!!! i love you! <3

  78. Ashley says:

    I know…..secret’s out. It’s not too hard, huh?

    And thanks guys for your comments on the blog and the tutorials. I really have a lot of fun doing this. It makes it even better that someone else is having fun too.

    And Rose, I know, tutu to……gotta love it. I almost edited that but thought…..”Are you kidding? It’s perfect!!”

  79. Martin Family says:

    This is too cute. I am going to save this for the future. Right now we have two boys but we’re working on making that girl… lol… your tutu seems easier! Thanks again!

  80. Rose says:

    Ha! I love that you said “tutu to” there at the end of your post, it made me smile :)
    Great tutorial, I have a niece that just might get one of these for her birthday!

  81. Katy-the-Lady says:

    Okay…since you like comments…I have to rave about you! I’m sorry, but I already knew how to make tutus, but everything else has been so amazing! We are buying our first home and will close next month. I’m so excited for all of the cute crafty project ideas for our new home! Thanks for being willing to share!

  82. Bobbi Lee says:

    I love your new look, very very cute!

  83. Lyndsey says:

    Thank you so much for the instructions on how to make it. I never ever win contest so I am just happy that I can make it myself!!

  84. Laura McGee says:

    seriously i had NO idea it was this simple! awesome thank you so much!! i have an awesome idea for a Halloween costume.. i know its A LONG TIME away. lol

  85. Kristen says:

    Thanks so much for giving a tutorial on this. I have three little boys myself, but I have many nieces who would love this…and it is easy enough that I can actually make it!

    1. Dance lover 123 says:

      Wondering if this is true or not because people told me the skinnier the cut the fluffier the tutu is this true

    2. Brandylki says:

      So I may just be a big ‘o dork, but make sure not to make the knots too tight or else the elastic won’t spring back together. I made sure they wouldn’t come loose like she said lol. I had to go back and loosen every-single-knot before it looked the way it’s supposed to.

    3. Rachel says:

      I made mine too tight too, and had to loosen them up before it looked right.

    4. Joelle says:

      Thank you so much, we are making them for a bunch of teenagers for Homecoming.. You saved me…

    5. NinaMei says:

      How muchbfabric did you use on them?

    6. i made one says:

      1/2 yard of different color of tulle i use to make one tutu and 1yard of different color of tulle to make 2 tutu.. age 1 to 3.. i chose up to 5 colors

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Hi, I’m Ashley—the DIY-enthusiast behind this crazy blog!

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