No-Sew Super Full Tulle Skirt {DiY}

Super Full No-Sew Tulle Skirt.  Awesome tutorial for making a darling ultra-full tulle skirt without a sewing machine.  So easy to make and perfect for dress-up or a fun photo shoot!

I am certainly not a professional photographer, but I do really enjoy taking photos, especially of my friends and family–I call it “mom-tography.” Last fall some close friends asked me to do a family session for their Christmas card photo.  They wanted a look that was fun and playful, with a bright pop of color, so we decided to make a big puffy tulle skirt for their little girl to wear.

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Had I known how easy it would be to whip these little puppies up, I would have tried it a long time ago.  Their family photos turned out absolutely darling, and I made a mental note to make some full-skirted tutus for my own girls the next time we got around to doing a photo session of our own.

Fast forward almost ten months and here we are.

Luckily this time around I managed to snap actually takes some photos while I was making the skirts, just so you could see how simple they really are.  I whipped them both up in about an hour and the girls were so excited about their fancy princess skirts that they happily agreed to pose for me.  (P.S. The little jean jackets were a great sale find at the JCrew outlet!)

Here is what you need:

tulle fabric (at least 20 yards per skirt)
elastic (1/2″-3/4″ size is fine)
scissors


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Step 1:  Grab a length of tulle and fold it over, then measure it against your model to see how long the pieces will be that you have to cut.  This is not an exact science, but better slightly too long than too short!.

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Step 2:  Cut your first piece based on your measurement, then cut remaining pieces until tulle is all cut.

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Step 3:  Lay pieces flat on top of each other, then cut in half, starting in the middle of the folded edge.

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Step 4:  Measure a piece of elastic around your model’s waist and tie in place.  Don’t knot it too tightly, as you may have to adjust it after the skirt is finished.

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Step 5:  Take a piece of tulle and loop it around the elastic, pulling the two ends through the loop as shown.

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Step 6:  Pull to tighten loop, but do not tighten all the way until all the tulle is on the elastic so that you can adjust as necessary.

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Step 7:  Continue looping the tulle pieces onto the elastic until they are gone.  Make sure tulle is evenly spaced on elastic.

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Step 8:  Place skirt on model.  Trim bottom of skirt to make it floor length.  Adjust elastic as necessary.  Tighten tulle loops and you’re done!  Whether you want to take your own photos or arrange a professional shoot, these skirts photograph beautifully!

UPDATE:  These photos were shot with my Nikon D3100 DSLR camera fitted with this Nikon Nikkor 24-70 wide angle zoom lens. For the shot of all four of us, I used a tripod and the timer setting on the camera.  They were edited using Photoshop and PicMonkey.com.  Check out my simple tips for taking better photos here.

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Super Full No-Sew Tulle Skirt.  Awesome tutorial for making a darling ultra-full tulle skirt without a sewing machine.  So easy to make and perfect for dress-up or a fun photo shoot!

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Do you consider yourself a “mom-tographer,” or do you prefer leaving it to the professionals?

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{ 55 comments… add one }

  • Aimilee July 22,

    OMG, your girls are SOOOOO cute! The skirts are adorable! I am totally doing this!

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup July 22,

      Thanks Aimilee! Let me know how it turns out! :-)

      Reply
  • Ellen T. July 22,

    What beautiful photos of your family. Did someone take them for you or did you do these yourself? Love the skirts.

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup July 22,

      Thank you Ellen! I took them with my camera; we used a tripod & timer for the one with all of us. :-)

      Reply
  • Jennifer Green July 22,

    I can’t believe how easy those look. Thanks so much for the tutorial!

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup July 23,

      You’re welcome Jennifer!

      Reply
  • Mel July 22,

    Very cute. What do you use to edit your photos?

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup July 23,

      Thanks Mel! I use mostly PicMonkey.com

      Reply
  • rachel July 22,

    thanks for sharing! this is adorable! can’t wait to make one for my little girl!

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup July 23,

      You’re welcome Rachel! Let me know how it turns out!

      Reply
  • Chelsea July 22,

    so adorable. I really want to make one for my toddler now, and try my hand at my own mom-tography. Do you have a fancy camera?

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup July 23,

      My camera is a pretty basic DSLR (the Nikon D3100) but I do have a pretty nice lens. I added the details to the post above!

      Reply
  • Suzanne @ Just Another Girl July 23,

    This is beautiful! I have so much tulle left over from my wedding that may just have to be repurposed this way! :)

    Reply
  • Michelle July 31,

    I love your tutorial :) I must try to create this soon. I’m trying to purchase the tulle online, but they offer various width sizes (ex. 12″, 18″, 27″, 54″, or 72″). I have no clue which width of tulle you used for your skirt. Can you please help me out. Thanks :)

    Reply
  • Anonymous August 6,

    Do they have a slip on under the skirt?

    Reply
  • Ashlin September 8,

    Yours are soooo cute! Thank you so much for posting this. I am trying to make myself a full-length skirt for Halloween. I bought 25 yds of black tulle. Before I cut anything, I want to understand your instructions completely. If I am measuring the length from my waist to the floor, then folding it over, why am I cutting it in half? Wouldn’t that make it short? This is the time I wish my mother were still living – she was such a great seamstress and could figure measurements in her head! I’m not that good with math. LOL I just want to make sure I don’t mess it up. Thank you for your help! I appreciate it.

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup September 9,

      Yes….you need to make the pieces DOUBLE the length from your waist to the floor, then cut them in half! :-)

      Reply
      • Anonymous June 17,

        If you cut the double length piece in half when you attach the tulle to the elastic, does that not make it shorter?? Do you fold the cut piece in half to make the loop??

        Reply
        • BrendaH July 11,

          “then cut in half, starting in the middle of the folded edge.”

          You are thinking about cutting it the wrong way. You want to cut *down* your folded length so that you have two pieces that are both twice the length you want but are only half as wide as the bolt.

          Almost all bolts have the fabric folded over. The instructions don’t *say* to unfold it, but that’s what you do. Unfold and then double over one end to twice your length. Cut. Continue that process. Stack them high and cut them in half starting mid-way through your folds and cutting towards the cut ends.

          Reply
  • acire September 11,

    Awesome tutorial! I was trying to find a way to make a full tulle skirt for my Marie Antoinette Halloween costume and I think this, in adult size, will work well.

    Reply
    • Ashlin September 12,

      Thank you! I’m going to cut my first piece! Thank God for electric scissors! I guess they don’t all have to be perfect, do they? I cut crooked sometimes…. :)

      Reply
  • Ashlin September 12,

    Help! I measured 4 feet and doubled it. (like the first photo) I then cut where the end piece met the attached tulle. So I had a piece 96 inches long. Then I cut that in half, but now each piece is only 4 feet. I am not understanding how you cut the tulle laid out on the table. Did you UNFOLD the folded piece and THEN cut? If I loop it over the elastic, it’s only going to be 24 inches long. I’m not stupid, but I can’t figure out WHERE you are cutting it in half. I don’t want to cut any more until I can understand. It’s Steps 2 and 3 that I am not understanding. Based on the first photo in Step 1, I can’t see the same length that is up against the little girl on the table. I see SIDE folds but don’t understand where those are coming from. I wish this were a video so I can follow along. :(

    Reply
    • Anonymous September 17,

      She is cutting in half LENGTHWISE to end up with twice as many “strips” of 96 inch, (or whatever your measurement) tulle. Each strip is attached to the elastic using the fold and slide through the loop method. You want the strips double the height from the floor to your waist, but you don’t need them 45″ wide, only about 22 inches … does that make sense?

      Reply
      • Anonymous September 21,

        So each strip of tulle is 20″ wide? instead of the typical 5″ wide strips for other tutu’s?

        Reply
    • Katrina January 23,

      I’m so glad you asked this – I’ve been rolling it over and over in my mind, and can’t figure out HOW it will be long enough! Glad I’m not the only one :)

      Reply
  • Lindsey Ruisi September 13,

    I love your idea for the skirts! How hard would it be to figure out the measurements for an adult skirt. I want to make one for myself for Halloween!

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup September 15,

      I think it would more or less be the same thing–just double the length from your waist to the floor.

      Reply
  • Anonymous September 17,

    How wide did you make each strip of tulle? Cuz i know for alot of tutorials I’ve seen they are like 5″ wide. But i like how these ones turned out and looks like an actual skirt.

    Reply
  • Sarita September 20,

    Do you know about how many strips of tulle were used per girl? These girls look about the same size as my niece who I am making this for.

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup September 20,

      I didn’t count the number of pieces, but I think I used about 15-20 yards per skirt.

      Reply
  • Kira Nichole September 20,

    Hi! My daughter is fourteen but she absolutely loves these. I was wondering about how much tulle would be needed to make one of these for her? She is about 5’4 if that helps. Thank you so much for sharing this technique!

    Reply
  • Cassy October 6,

    So cute, I’m making a really. Short one and a long one for Halloween.

    Reply
  • CindyTF October 10,

    I’m going to make a costume for my neice :) Just want to be sure of the measurments. If i need a skirt to be 20 inches long, and I buy tulle that is 45 inches wide, my strips should be 40 inches long, and 22.5 inches wide when i attach them to the elastic right? Thanks so much!

    Reply
  • Megan October 26,

    Hi!

    I was just wondering if the 20 yards was for one skirt or two skirts since two are pictured?

    Thank you!

    Megan

    Reply
  • Demi Monfries October 27,

    Hi there these tutu skirts are perfect for a no-sew mum like me! LOL
    Like others here although i get that you measure from the girls waist to the length you want and double so when you loop it over the elastic, “voila” it is the correct length, but how wide are each of the strips? Might try to make one for my daughter for Xmas using 3 colours and interspersing thinner and thicker strips eg one main colour and 2 highlights. Do you think this will work? Also, how was the elastic secured in the end? Did you sew the ends together or is it justed knotted on each time they wear it and if so how do you stop the strips sliding off when its undone?
    Sorry for all the questions but not much money means it must be done correctly first time!!
    Thanks in advance!

    Reply
    • Claire October 30,

      Demi,
      Hey! I was doing some trial and error with this last night. For a girl’s size, I found that 6″ strips gave me lots of fullness. I also cut thinner and thicker strips in my “highlight” color to keep it interesting. The good news is that small imperfections don’t ruin the skirts. They come out cute & wearable even if you are a DIY novice.
      The elastic: I tied it super tight, but then still felt that wasn’t secure (a bit bulky, too, because I didn’t have thin elastic), so I scrunched all the tulle strips as far away from the elastic joining, untied the knot, left a 1″ overlap, and (messily) tacked around the overlapping part until I was sure it was NOT gonna budge. Then just fluff the strips back around the skirt and hide the Franken-stitched elastic. I hope this makes sense! :)

      Reply
  • Amber October 29,

    Thanks for posting this! I was able to quickly create my daughter’s skirt for her Halloween costume!

    Reply
  • Claire October 30,

    I made two last night for a last-minute costume for myself & 6 year old. Since we were going for a “witch-y” look, I cut some of the strips at odd lengths and angles once the skirt was all done. I also made them black with lime green and hot blue strips. Other than that, I followed the instructions to a tee, and I am so happy with the results! It took me about 3 hours to finish both (I’m not as crafty as Ruth!). They are perfect. I don’t think I will ever buy another $30-40 costume that is mostly tulle again. It’s so easy to make them. Just a note that for an adult skirt, I needed about 25 yards (15 yards of black, and 10 of the lime green accent color) to get the same fullness I got with about 18 yards for the child size version! Thank you so much for this super-easy, super-pretty skirt!

    Reply
  • Magic and Mayhem November 1,

    These are darling. I’m wondering how much they cost to make though, since they need about 20 yards of tulle per skirt and most fabrics are at least a dollar a yard? I’m hoping tulle is super cheap! :)

    Reply
  • Anonymous November 2,

    Would this work with 6″ tulle doubled over and cut to length or does it have to be wider?

    Reply
  • sydney November 8,

    how many yards would u need for a 5’8 girl. my daughter is 15 but she loves these skirts to death!!!

    Reply
  • Sandy December 13,

    OMG! Wow… I had no idea that this was soooooo easy.
    I have been wanting to make one for my girls for soooooo long.
    I love sewing and sew every day… However… when i even touch the tulle I get upset at it.
    Thanks for these wonderful tips.
    I will make one this weekend! And do the photoshoot to boot!

    Hugs and Blessings!

    Sandy

    Reply
  • jeanetteann January 4,

    Hi, I have just found you through a Pinterest board. I just absolutely love love love your skirt and the pics of your beautiful family. I have pinned this for use one day Thank you for the tips.
    jeanette

    Reply
  • Anonymous February 14,

    This is awesome! Can’t wait to try it!

    Reply
  • Laura - Le Pecionate February 27,

    Hi! I wanted first of all to thank you for this tutorial and for your beautiful photos, but I’m actually writing to tell you that I’ve made one myself and posted a tutorial where I link back to yours here http://bit.ly/1hVMhWD
    It’s in Italian, but I hope you’ll be happy to know that the “living well spending less” word is spreading on this side of the ocean :)
    Hugs,
    Laura

    Reply
  • Marsha March 29,

    I have a Glinda the Good Witch costume I made (for myself) years ago, and every time I go to wear it I groan at the bulkiness of the tulle – I now am armed with a GREAT idea on how to make a perfect Glinda skirt! THANK YOU!! I did one of those hit the forehead “why didn’t I think of that?” things.

    Reply
  • Parker June 26,

    What were the deminsions for your tulle? 20 yards by __ inches? Sorry to ask, but I am using 6 inch tulle by 100 yards, and need to know if that is enough for a full lenth tutu.

    Reply
    • Ruth Soukup June 27,

      I didn’t count the number of pieces, but I think I used about 15-20 yards per skirt. Cutting in half LENGTHWISE to end up with twice as many “strips” of 96 inch, (or whatever your measurement) tulle. Each strip is attached to the elastic using the fold and slide through the loop method. You want the strips double the height from the floor to your waist, but you don’t need them 45″ wide, only about 22 inches …
      I hope this helps!

      Reply
      • Parker June 27,

        So, what would you say about how much AREA you used for each skirt? I’m using 6″ by 100 yards for my tulle, and need to now how much to purchase.

        Thank you for your reply above!

        -Parker

        Reply
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  • Anna August 27,

    Hi Ruth! I just want to thank you for an awesome tutu-orial. I found it to be quite easy after taking the time to read and fully understand your directions. My daughter is a princess, so of course she needed this dress! With the help of some imaginery singing birds and mice, it is done.
    Thanks so much!

    Reply
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  • Ava Jane September 21,

    Hi! I was wondering how many strips you used per knot? Last year I made a skirt for halloween (very close to this) but I only used one strip per knot and it was very sheer and not full and fluffy like I wanted it to be. Also, how thick was each strip? I am 5’7 and already know that Im going to need about 25 yards of tulle. Thanks for a reply!

    Reply
  • Patti September 30,

    is it normal for the elastic to twist and turn?

    Reply

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