Thursday, December 8, 2011

American Girl Doll Tutu!

This idea came to me one day when I was thinking about how expensive American Girl Doll clothing and accessories are. My Niece wants American Girl doll clothing for christmas and I am not a sewer so the only thing I could do is spend $30 for ONE outfit, RIGHT? Wrong! Anyone can make this simple tutu for a fraction of the cost. You can make one for your daughter AND one for her doll! This is what you will need:
  • White elastic
  • simple sewing needle and white thread
  • tulle (whatever colors the child will like)
  • Ribbon(Optional but always makes for a prettier tutu)

The first thing I do is cut my tulle and ribbon. For an american girl doll 5 1/2 inches length for a tutu is pretty good so you want to make strips of tool 11 inches long, they will be folded in half when making the tutu so you double the length. Tulle normally comes in rolls about 6 inches wide. If you are making a tutu for your daughter, leave it this wide but if you are making one for her doll I make my strips 3 inches wide (or half the width). So you cut an 11 inch strip and then cut it down the middle of the width to make two strips of tool 11 inches in length & 3 inches in width! Cut your ribbon the same length as your tulle!

The next step is to get your elastic ready! For an American Girl doll, the waist is about 11 1/2 inches. But for your elastic you always want it to be stretched a little when on the waist so it stays on! I cut my elastic at about 10 1/2 inches. This gives me 1/2 inch to overlap and do a few hand stitches to connect the elastic together and 1 1/2 inches to stretch so I know it will stay on the doll! If you are making one for your daughter just get her waist measurement and subtract 2 or 3 inches for stretching but don't forget to leave a 1/2 inch to sew the elastic together.  Seriously, if you have NEVER hand stitched before... it's not hard at all. Just take a needle with a few inches of white thread and go back and forth threw the overlapped area.... it doesn't have to be perfect...I mean look at mine! =) Just so it's secure!
 Next step is to find something your elastic will fit around preferably stretching the elastic a little! I used this puffs container. I ended up turning the container upside-down and pushing the elastic to the top so it stretched the elastic a little! It's best to use a paper towel roll when making a tutu for your daughter. If you have a half used roll that will work the best for making the dolls tutu.

Now all you are going to be doing is basically tying knots of tool around the elastic to make a BEAUTIFUL tutu! Here is the step by step:
Get a piece of tulle and fold it half with a little loop at the top.

Pull the tulle under the elastic with the loop side down!

Pull the loop up and put the other end of the tulle through the loop!

Then pull it tight and here is what your knot will look like!

Simple as that! You just keep going all the way around the elastic!

These are pretty spread apart, once you get the pattern going on the elastic, make sure you push the tulle together very close. This makes for a fuller tutu!

Here are two doll tutus that I made!

Here is what the skirt looks like on an American Girl doll! SO CUTE!!! I borrowed the doll so sorry if the whole outfit doesn't match! 

Here is my daughter with the 4th of July tutu I made for her this year! It seriously took me like an hour to make! The length of a little girls tutu is really up to you!

Lastly, say your child doesn't have an American Girl doll but they do have a favorite doll! Make one for their favorite doll! Obviously you will have to change some measurements but it's so easy and fun to do! The little girls in your life will LOVE it!!!! The model below is WELL loved! His name is Koala Jack, which my 3 year old daughter named after Jack Black(who she LOVES)!

Guys, Post me a comment to let me know if this is easy to understand!!!!!
It's such an easy project and I hope I'm explaining it well!


  1. I totally want to do this for Reese. She has an AG doll, and is getting another one (Target brand) for her birthday. She is ALL about the matching outfits! You tried to explain to me when you did this tulle tutu before, but it is much easier to understand with pictures! Great job!

  2. Thanks for the comment Debbs! I was wondering if someone who has never done this before could get it through my pictures! It's so easy!!! Someone could even do this with their girl scout troop! If I thought of this YEARS ago I would have done it at Yellow House with 3rd/4th grade! I can't wait to see pictures if you make one!

  3. I've made these for my daughter and it never occurred to me to size it down for a doll. Genius! Thanks!

  4. shelli2/04/2013

    How many strips of tulle do you need to cut for making an American girl doll tutu???

    1. Shelli, this depends....
      Are you going to use ribbon also?
      Do u want it really fluffy?
      I'm just going to guess here...
      Just making a tutu out of skinny strips of tulle
      around 40.
      hope this helps.

    2. Anonymous12/06/2014

      Thank you! We are having an American Doll Birthday Party for my daughter who will be 10. We are planning this for our craft.

  5. Love this idea! So simple! Can't wait to try this!

  6. I was supposed to be making a tutu with my niece this afternoon but she has a soccer game so tutu making has been delayed until Sunday. I couldn't wait that long so I made one for her doll, haha. I love it and can't wait to teach Sophie how to make her own!

    1. Wendy, this is great! Isn't it so fun and simple! I hope Sophie likes making it too! =)


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