Apricot and Ivory

In 2018 I have resolved to make a few more RTW tutus to test new design ideas on the ballet community. This one was a classical colour combination but with a new lace type that my fellow tutu-maker Danielle Legge brought to my attention. It’s a net based trim that has tiny sequins adhered to it in beautiful baroque-style patterns, just perfect for a tutu.

Apricot RTW (1)

I’ve added apricot, topaz and jonquil rhinestones to enhance the pattern and break up the cream background a bit.

Apricot RTW (4)

The long points are arranged to give a star effect over the ivory and champagne skirt.

Apricot RTW (3)

Most of my RTW tutus are sold very quickly after they are released for sale. I sell them on my FB page and Tutus Off the Rack and a few other FB ballet costume platforms.

 

 

Blue and Gold Championship Tutu

One of my clients asked me to make a championship tutu for her daughter with just a few colours a no-go and the brief … lovely, layered, textured and romantic.

Here’s my interpretation of her brief …

 

bodice CU
Bodice decoration

I used a combination of 2 different laces on the bodice and a range of blue rhinestones.

 

back
back decoration

 

The main applique was white with light gold cording. To bring a textural effect I used bright gold venise lace and some topaz horse-eye navettes.

 

plateCU2
plate detail

I used the same applique on the plate with a few touches of venise lace. Between each of these appliques I placed a diamond of blue net edged with soft gold lace with a venise lace applique in the centre.

 

plateCU1
plate detail

You can see the effect of the three different gold colours is quite loves and provides depth to the design. Here is picture of both parts of the late together.

 

plate
plate

I was very happy with the design and the overall effect. I think It has attracted the most likes of any of my posts on FB.

3Q

 

 

 

 

 

Lilac Fairy

This is one of my most requested colour schemes/variations. Lilac comes in quite a few shades and this one was on the deeper end of the spectrum with the addition of a ruched corselet bodice.

 

bodice
Ruched bodice

The top if the bodice is ruched with hand-dyed stretch mesh made to look like a little chemise above a corset. Rather than applying the applique in the usual V-shape I have inverted it and take it around to the back of the tutu bodice.

 

back CU
back detail

It can be a little difficult to sew a non-stretch trim around the underbust with enough latitude for the dancer to squeeze it past her hips but I put a little bit of slack in the sewing and used a number of pieces rather than one continuous piece all the way around.

 

plate
Plate

The plate is made of matching lycra with a soft lilac lace and silver venise lace spilling onto the skirt. I’ve added rhinestones in purple, lilac and light magenta to give a bit of sparkle.

 

plate CU
plate detail

The silver venise lace was a feature of the skirt but I wanted to mute it a little with lots of rhinestones.

 

3Q
soft lilac and silver

The plate was really quite sweet and delicate. This lace had no bling so I had a lot of fun making it sparkle.

 

back
back

The back featured a central motif as well as the underbust decoration that was carried all the way around.

front

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ivory and Cream Tutu

I bought a cream coloured lace recently that had no bling whatsoever on it but the pattern was very attractive and I thought I’d be able to improve its stage-presence with a few (ahem) rhinestones to it to make it shine.

bodice detail
bodice detail

I also used a very sparkly gold glitter tulle in the skirt … you can see how far the glitter creeps past the skirt.

bodice
Bodice decoration

You can see how pretty the lace is and why I couldn’t resist it despite its lack of bling. The warm creamy colour is beautiful against the ivory lycra and below, against the ivory net.

plate
plate detail

I was very pleased with the way the tutu came together and I won’t hesitate next time I see a pretty non-sparkly lace.

front

 

 

Silver and Old Gold

I like to buy lots of different trims for my inventory so my clients have plenty of choice. One trim I bought online recently was quite an old gold colour with greenish undertones. I really wasn’t sure anyone would really like it so I thought I’d try it out first as a ready to wear tutu to test the waters. It sold so fast I didn’t have time to upload it here to my RTW page.

 

bodice
Bodice 

The trim was a lovely complement to a warm dove grey lycra I recently acquired. I used a favourite combination of topaz, citrine and crystal AB stones to embellish the appliques.

 

bodice CU
bodice close-up

I then  discovered I had another trim stashed away with the same old gold tones. It was perfect for the plate but I needed a little something extra for some nice long points.

 

plate CU3
Plate detail

I used another trim of a lighter gold to complete the design I had in mind. I don’t mind using trims of slightly different colour as I think it can add some light and shade to the design.

 

plate CU1
plate detail

The skirt was ivory and white with a layer of glitter tulle for a subtle ballet sparkle.

 

plate
plate

I was very pleased with the overall design. I think it sold within a few hours! I can’t wait to do some more RTW tutus. I’m planning on doing 1/3 of my work in 2018 as RTWs.

front

 

 

 

 

 

Dusty Rose and French Lace

I love collecting pieces of lycra in unusual colours so that I can offer my clients something a little different from the colours available from retail fabric suppliers. However, that means I can sometimes paint myself into a corner trying to find the right trim. I was just about ready to ring my client and throw myself on her mercy for a colour change when I found the last few pieces of a very pretty pink French lace. This trim usually attracts a premium but I was so grateful to the Embellishment Gods that I used it on the tutu at no extra charge.

DSC_0027 (2)
embellished bodice

I used the motifs on the lace to make a delicate irregular border on the plate and to float from the plate onto the skirt. The lace really didn’t need any more sparkle but I added some crystal AB stones for a little colour shift.

 

skirt detail
Plate detail

The effect of the plate was a very pretty soft and intricate edge. This perfectly suited the choreography and the dancer’s temperament.

 

skirt
Skirt and plate

The skirt itself was a mixture or lilac, pink and white. The feathered edge complemented the delicate design and colours.

front

 

 

 

Ivory and Gold Championship

Ivory and gold are classic colours for an elegant and sophisticated tutu. Here I’ve used gold venise lace with crystal AB, citrine and topaz rhinestones, and added pearls to lighten the effect of the heavier parts of the gold applique.

 

bodice CU
Close up of bodice

My client wanted the tutu to have rich embellishment without being too heavy so we decided on a small plate but added the trailing jewels on the skirt for a bit of added interest.

 

plate
skirt detail

I used a few different venise lace trims to get just the shape and effect I was after. Venise lace is a very accommodating trim as it’s easy to piece and re-piece. The slight difference in the gold can’t really be seen and I think it actually tricks the eye into seeing texture rather than colours. I loved working with the venise lace to create the points on this petalled plate

 

plate CU
plate detail

You can see here the skirt isn’t just plain ivory but it has a layer of glitter tulle for subtle sparkle and under that a layer of champagne to give a little warmth to the skirt.

DSC_0045 (2)

 

 

 

Champagne and Silver

I really like it when colour schemes I wouldn’t have thought of are suggested to me. A client saw a tutu I had made in a warm champagne colour and thought that it would suit silver trim.

 

 

I used a combination of light topaz and crystal AB rhinestones to break up the thicker parts of the silver applique I used.

 

plate
plate detail

I matched the champagne lycra with champagne net. I wanted a light effect so I used a net plate rather than a lycra plate. In the picture above you can see the subtle sparkle from the glitter tulle at layer 2.

 

front
Champagne and Silver tutu

 

This is such a lovely colour I ordered more lycra from the supplier as I have a few RTW ideas for this colour with a little bit of air-brushing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blue Roses

Here is a pretty little tutu in a soft delicate blue for a young dancer with just a few blue roses for a very soft romantic look.

 

bodice detail
Silver venise lace and blue rhinestones

The plate was just little bit fancy with a second tier and a few more roses and some tiny blue dianthus flowers. The net petals were made of slightly darker net than the skirt to give them just a little bit of definition. The AB crystals flashed a little pink for some colour depth.

 

plate
plate detail

The tutu was made for a young girl with a lovely warm complexion and the pale colours looked so good on her. I also loved the tiny patches of sage green from the leaves on the ribbon flowers.

 

3Q
Sixteen petalled plate with flowers and rhinestones

And I made a sweet little tiara to match, with rhinestones and flowers. I’ve added crinoline to the frame of the tiara to make it easier to pin to the hair.

 

DSC_0008
tiara with crinoline

 

 

 

 

Royal Blue Velvet and Old Gold

 

I found a beautiful corded lace earlier this year and couldn’t wait to use it on a RTW tutu. The lace and the velvet worked beautifully together and instead of the traditional white skirt I opted for powder blue. It was such a successful combination the tutu sold in a few hours.

plate detail
corded lace and AB crystals

The lace was a lovely warm old gold with pretty champagne embroidery. I loaded it up with lots of blue stones and a few crystal AB rhinestones for little flashes of pink.

bodice
bodice decoration

There was plenty of scope with this trim for embellishment.

3Q