s Easy No-Sew Tinker Bell Tutu Dress (Tutorial) - The Kim Six Fix
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Easy No-Sew Tinker Bell Tutu Dress (Tutorial)

No Sew TinkerBell American Girl Costume

If you have girls (and maybe even boys) under the age of 10 in your house, chances are pretty high that you have seen (or at least heard about) the movie Frozen.  It came to DVD and Blu-ray™ this week and of course we rushed out to get a copy.   My kids have watched it AT LEAST a dozen times.   They have watched ALL the features on the Blu-ray™, including a preview for Disney’s All-New Tinker Bell Movie:  The Pirate Fairy

You are probably well aware of my kids love of princesses, but they also love Disney Fairies, especially Tinker Bell.  Here they are meeting her at Disneyland last winter.
Meeting tinkerbell
Well worth the wait!  
So of course, when they saw the preview, they wanted to get The Pirate Fairy movie right away.  Luckily, it will be a direct to DVD release and we can own it on Blu-ray™ and Digital HD on April 1st (What a great idea as an Easter Basket Gift!) 

Until then, we decided we would instead make a Tinker Bell costume for their dolls.  I didn’t want to do anything too complicated (I’m still recovering from the Elsa costume) so I went with a super easy, no-sew, tutu dress.

Seriously.. start to finish it took me under an hour and the only tool I needed was a scissors.  THAT IS IT!  Here is what I mean by "Tutu Dress": 
American Girl Tutu Dress

It is a tutu which is tied at the chest and belted to form a dress.  Simple no?

The supplies you need are minimal:
Tinkerbell costume supplies
1 roll of tulle (you can buy it by the yard and cut strips but this is faster, easier and you will have ZERO waste) $3.99
1 roll of coordinating ribbon (I used the transparent kind since it was the best match, but really it can be ANY ribbon) $1.99
1 sheet of card stock (I used glittery blue but plain white would be fine too) $1.99

I also used a scissors and my cutting machine, but it wasn’t really necessary.

First you need to measure your doll. (We are using the standard 18 inch “American Girl” type doll here).  I didn’t want the dress to be too long, since Tink usually wears a mini-skirt, so I settled on 11 inches for the length (just under the knee):
Measuring doll for dress

That meant that I needed strips of tulle 2x as long as that, or 22 inches.  To make a quick and easy cutting template, I had to find something that was 22 inches around.  This book did the trick:
Tulle cutting template

I wrapped the entire spool of tulle around it:
Wrapping tulle

And then used a scissors to cut ONE END ONLY:
Cutting tulle

When you are done you should have strips like this:
Strips of tulle

Next you need to know the circumference of your dolls waist.   I wrapped a ribbon about the dolls chest and left about 8 extra inches on each end (so you can tie it) Then I made two knots were the doll’s skirt will actually start and end.
Tutu for American Girl Doll
You will only want tulle between those two knots (they also help keep the wrapped tulle in place).
Next you take two strips of tulle (this is for my really full/puffy version of the dress, if you want to rein it in a little you could use a single layer) and fold them in half:

You want to lay the ribbon on top of the loop like so:
Adding tulle to tutu

Now pull the loop down (folding it over the ribbon) and push the tail up and through so you get something like this:
How to make a tutu

Pull gently on the tails to tighten:
Tulle knot

Now slide that loop down to one end and repeat the process, continuing down the ribbon.
Tying tulle on tutu

One roll of tulle was enough for me to fill in between the knots completely:
Tying tutu dress

Next you have to tie the tutu around the dolls chest.  At this point you are going to think to yourself: What in the heck am I doing? This looks RI-DONK-U-LOUS.  (That means you are doing it correctly):
Tutu dress American Girl

You need to give the dress some shape by adding a ribbon at the waist (I folded my thicker ribbon in half lengthwise so her waist wouldn’t be TOO wide):
Tutu Dress tutorial
You can see how the puffiness of the tulle above the waist mimics a full bust line.

Now she is pretty darn darling, just like that, but she isn’t a FAIRY.  Because fairies have WINGS.  So the next thing you need to make her some out of card stock.  I used my Silhouette to cut them out:
Fairy wings on silhouette

Then I just attached them by tying the to back of the dress with the same ribbons we used to make the skirt. Because they are stiff card stock, they have no problem staying up:
Tying on fairy wings

And here is the finished costume:
American Girl Tinkerbell

 We used some double stick tape to give her little pom pons on her feet, just like Tinker Bell:
Doll Tutu Dress Tutorial

The cool thing about this tutorial is that you can scale it up to be CHILD SIZED.  A super easy way to make a halloween costume.  You need a lot more tulle and the strips will be longer but the methodology is exactly the same.  You could easily add commercially available wings and have a great costume for under $20!   Gotta love that!
American Girl Tutu Dress

Now we just have to wait a few more days to get our hands on the new Pirate Fairy movie! Until then, we can check out some other great ideas on Disney's The Pirate Fairy Pinterest board.. and probably squeeze in another half dozen or so viewings of Frozen.

Linking up to MyRepurposedLife and a few of THESE parties.

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  1. Thank you! This looks easy enough for me and the bitty girl to do together.

  2. So cute!!! I loved Tink as a girl- still do!

  3. Our Family Inspired HomeMarch 27, 2014 at 7:16 PM

    Super cute! This would make a great craft idea for a fairy garden birthday party! Thanks for sharing!

  4. So smart and so cute!


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