DIY Tutu Dress

FLower Girl copy Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

Hello Everyone!  It’s my first shared blog post between Mary Riley Photography blog and this one.  I haven’t had a craft on here in a long time and thought I would share this no sew project that was super easy to do and my little girl LOVES this dress.  She had to show her teachers immediately!

Fairy Girl 2 VigenetteMary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri copy 2

I saw a few dresses like the one below on Etsy and thought it would be so pretty for my little girl.  The prices were not as pretty 🙂  This is a NO SEW project.  I promise.  And not one fairy was harmed during this project.

This dress is great for just playing dress up, for a flower girl at a wedding, for a photo shoot or Halloween.  I cannot tell you how excited I was by how fast this project is to complete.  I made entire dress while rehearsing for “Beauty and the Beast” at the same time, so again pretty simple and fast.    The sky is the limit on color combinations – use the same color for a fairy type dress or use whatever favorite colors you like.

Lantern Girl Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri copy

As for the hair band… that is another project.  I found those on Etsy as well for around $25.   It cost about that amount at Michael’s unless you have 50% coupon.  The floral stems are 50% off sometimes.

Lantern Girl 4 Mary Riley Photography Wentzvill Misouri copy

The dress in the photo is about a size 7/8.  Skirt is 24″ long.  Crochet top is 10″ long.  Crochet top is 29-32″ in circumference.  I purchased the crochet top here.  I purchased the tulle here.  The top is Eggplant. The tulle is purple HOWEVER I had to color correct the skirt because their purple tulle looks blue in photographs.  If you know a place where you can preview the tulle and top let me know!  I would love to be able to see the color I am ordering first.

Lantern Girl 5 Copy Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

Here is a place where you can view the tulle and purchase 25 yards for $1.99.  I haven’t used them yet though.

For a smaller size dress, there are 8″ lined crochet tops that are 7-8″ from top to bottom and 7-8″ wide and 22-24″ in circumference.

Lantern Girl 3 Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri copy

Supplies you will need:

Helpful DIY Photos found HERE.

-a 10″ lined crochet top for a size 5-8 (I found mine here)  or a 8″ lined crochet top for a size 2-4  (can be found here)  **Check the description for accurate measurements!!**

-100 yards of tulle for a single skirt or 200 yards of tulle for a double skirt (I used just over 75 yards of tulle on the dress in the photo.  The skirt is 24″ long)


-a piece of plastic or cardboard that is the length of your skirt (not totally necessary, but makes life easier), so my skirt is 24″ so I used a 24″ long piece of cardboard

-crochet hook

  1.  Make sure the crochet top fits the girl first.
  2. Once the crochet top is on, measure from the bottom of the crochet top to where ever you want the tutu to stop.  Usually skirts go to the ankle, just below the knee, or between the knee and waist (with a bottom underneath).  I made this one to go to the ankle.  From crochet top to ankle was 24″.
  3. Now that we have our measurements, we can get started!  Find something that is the length of your tutu.  My quilter’s plastic omnigrid ruler just happened to be 24″ in length.  But you can use any scrap piece of cardboard cut down to the measurement you need.
  4. Wrap the tulle around the cardboard lengthwise.  Remember the end you started on (I place my left thumb there each time.)  I went through the entire 25 yard roll.  Then cut just ONCE on the end you started on.  Cut the short end.  This will create tulle strips that are DOUBLE the size you need.  You want to have strips that are 48″ for a 24″ tutu.  You want 38″ strips for a 19″ tutu.  Etc. Etc.  You can move to the next step and crochet this amount so you don’t over cut the amount of tulle you need, or guesstimate.  I used 3 full rolls of 25 yards in the tutu and just a little bit of the 4th roll.
  5. Take one strip and fold in half lengthwise.  Push your crochet hook up the bottom hole in the crochet top.  Hook the tulle you folded and pull through.  Now, tuck the tails through the hole.  Pull the tails and this will create the tutu.  Sometimes they don’t pull very well – I just work on each tail gently and it will eventually lay flat.  Do this all the way around the tutu.
  6. If you are really ambitious and want a fuller tutu, do this all over again in the second hold above the first.  Go all the way around the tutu again.
  7. To make the shoulder straps, I made two more strips.  I used my crochet hook to wrap them around the front and through the back.  Now I had two tails in the back.  (I just eye balled the placement.  I am pretty good at eye balling.  If you are not, I highly recommend to just simply use a ruler to make sure each strap is symmetrical on the dress.)
  8. Due to lack of any imagination, I tied a pretty bow in the back and that was it!  The bow held very well even while prancing and dancing around.
  9. Please wear shorts underneath these tutus – they can be see through.  If taking photos, try to find a pair of shorts that matches the color as best you can.

Fairy Girl Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri copy

For the Headband:

Helpful Youtube Video Here

  • 1/2 fold over elastic
  • flowers of your choice (choose at least 2 or 3 in various sizes, 1 main color and 1 complimentary color)
  • hot glue and hot glue gun
  • ribbon
  1.  Take the fold over elastic and put it around the person’s head (or someone of approximate size).  Cut to size.  I had it start and stop behind her ears.
  2. Remove stems from the flowers.
  3. Glue flowers inside the flowers if you like.  This is not necessary.  I thought it gave the headband some interest.  Then, I laid out the flowers the way I wanted them to look.
  4. Take the ribbon and cut two 10″ strips.  Enough to wrap around the end of the elastic and tie a bow on the back of the head.  Always go longer than you think here – it is much easier to cut it later.
  5. Hot glue the ribbon to the elastic.  Wrap the ribbon a couple of times around the end of the elastic and glue down.  Do again on the other side.
  6. Hot glue the flowers to the elastic starting from the middle of the design you laid out in step 3.  Work your way out to the ends.
  7. Allow to dry an hour or so.

Now dance outside!  You’re done!

Flower Girl 3 copy Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri


  1. These dresses are adorable! The photographs are amazing. That second to last one is stunning…she’s so pretty :). And I love her goofy one too

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