by contributing writer Jackie
Do you have a stash of fabric scraps that are too big to throw away but not big enough for most sewing projects? Well, this Scrap Fabric TuTu project that will help you use up your scrap fabrics.
This tutu is so easy to make and will provide your little girl with something fun to wear during playtime or anytime.
- Scrap Fabrics
- Rotary Cutter & Mat
- 3/4 or 1 inch wide Elastic
- Sewing Machine & Thread (or hot glue or a safety pin)
1. Find scrap fabrics pieces that are at least 18 to 22 inches long and no less than an inch wide.
Note: You can use fabric yardage if you don’t have any scraps.
2. Iron the fabric if it is wrinkled. This will make cutting easier.
3. Using a rotary cutter and mat, cut your fabrics.
I cut my fabric strips to a width of 2 1/2 inches. However, you can cut your strips anywhere from 1 inch to 2 1/2 inches wide.
The length of my fabric strips were all between 16 and 20 inches for my 2 year old’s tutu. The 16 inch strips were a little on the short side for my toddler, but I was trying to use up my scraps.
I recommend making your fabric strips 18 to 22 inches long. You can always measure your child from waist to knee and then double that measurement to get an idea of how long to make your strips.
Note: There were 50 strips in the tutu I made for my daughter. Also, varying the length of the fabric strips will give the tutu dimension and a more whimsical look.
4. Measure your child’s waist.
5. Cut a piece of elastic that is approximately 4 inches smaller than your child’s waist measurement.
For example, my daughter’s waist is 19 inches so I cut the elastic to a length of 15 inches. The reason you want to cut the elastic so much smaller is because the tutu will stretch as you add the fabric strips.
6. Overlap the ends of the elastic and use a zig-zag stitch to sew them together. Sew over the stitches 2or 3 times.
No-Sew Options: Use a hot glue gun to attach the two ends of the elastic. You can also use a safety pin.
5. Determine if you want to make a pattern out of your fabric strips or just be totally random.
I was fairly random with my strips because I had quite a few of some fabrics and hardly any of others.
6. Place the elastic around your thigh.
7. Tie the strips to the elastic using a single or double knot.
I just did a single knot, but if you are worried about the knots coming undone then I would suggest tying a double knot.
8. Continue tying strips around the elastic until it is completely covered.
That’s all there is to making this simple and fun tutu.
I just know my little girl is going to love playing in her new tutu.
While the scrap fabric tutu I made was very simple you can do any of the following to change it up a bit.
Change the Look of Your Tutu
- Use pinking shears to cut the strips.
- Taper the ends of the strips so they come to a point.
- Use lace and tulle as well as fabric.
- Add some ribbons.
I definitely think I will have to make a few more of these scrap fabric tutus for my little girl.
Bulk Grommet Suppliers says
Such a pretty skirt! I’m sure she loved it.
Jackie @ Blessings Overflowing says
Thank you! Yes, she did.
I just started one but so far mine isn’t as cute as yours! The edges are fraying 🙁 did you have any trouble with this?
Hi, Alli. I am sorry you are having trouble. My edges do have some fraying. I just cut off any long ravels. One option would be to cut with pinking shears to eliminate or minimize fraying. Or, you could serge or overcast the edges to ensure there would be no fraying. Another option would even be to use Fray Check on all edges, or even sew two strips together (right sides together), leave one short end open, and then turn the right side out after stitching around the strips. I hope you find something that works for you. I really don’t mind the fraying and neither does my daughter.
Cody Doll says
This is the firsit scrap/ribbon tutu turioral that explains everything. I am trying to make one for myself so I am trying to see how many scraps or ribbons I need. THANKS.
Glad you like the tutorial, Cody. 🙂
Mrs. TDS says
Thank you so much for this! I was also having trouble with fraying. It is also great to know about how many strips to use!
Ok I used cotton for my fabric tutu and the fraying was awful but bearable – BUT then when u go to wash it for the first time it’s downright horrendous-it came out of the washing machine w strips half the size and a ton of string hanging off them! I’ve gotta say for me this is not worth my time cutting and tying for the tutu to fall apart
After the first wash- I did try sewing two strips together and turning them inside out and the strips are just far to bulky that way- Does anyone know of any non fraying fabrics aside from tulle of course? Otherwise I unfortunately have to give this item a hard no simply because of the fraying
You’re welcome, Mrs. TDS. I found that using a rotary cutter was better than tearing the fabric into strips. However, pinking shears would be the way to go for simplicity and to help cut down on fraying.
Sounds like a fun project! Perhaps a lark’s head knot would work also, for a slightly different look. If you purposely fray the edges on wider strips, they might self-tangle, preventing further fraying, and give a chenille-type look!
Thank you for the ideas. I will have to look up how to tie that knot.
So I’ve made countless tulle tutu, they always turn out amazing. I’m in the process of finishing my 1st fabric tutu for my niece’s bday. How do you keep the fabric from fraying? I use the liter trick on the ribbon when making my regular tulle tutus, but if I have to go through every piece of this fabric with a liter I am going to scream!! Any anti-fabric fraying ideas or hacks I can borrow from ya?? Thanks so much!
I’m having trouble with the knot. Instructions just say tie a knot. I’ve seen references to different ones and wondering which knot you used. Thanks!