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.



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.

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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 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.



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.








Purple and Burgundy Tutus

Purple and burgundy are beautiful rich colours that make for stunning stage costumes.


Burgundy and Gold

The combination of burgundy velvet, venise lace and a full lace overskirt is a perfect Paquita.


Cherry burgundy and silver

Changing the colour tones slightly to cooler silver and purple gives a tutu a whole new character.


Aubergine and Purple

The colours in this tutu were beautiful. I even included some red in the skirt for an extra bit of zing.


Iris and Gold

My clients provided this beautiful ornate lace and asked for a deep purple velvet to accompany it.


Light Purple and Gold





Lilac Tutus

Last year seemed to be the year of the Lilac Fairy. Here are 6 variations on a theme.




This tutu was very pretty with pinks and mauves moving against each other in the skirt. The lilac corded lace spills onto the skirt where you can see the multiple skirt colours.


Emily’s Lilac Fairy

This tutu was embellished with silver venise lace and rhinestones. The top layer of net is sparkle tulle and it is a little shorter than the next layer to give a soft colour shift at the edges.


Lilac and white

This is a tiny little lilac fairy for a 4 year old. It is embellished with white corded lace, pearls and rhinestones.


Lilac Fairy

This Lilac Fairy was made as a RTW tutu. It uses the same lace as the first tutu but I used the selvedge to trim the plate and it gives the plate quite a different look.


White and Lilac

This tiny tutu uses the same lace as the tutu above but you can see on a white background it has a different effect. Compare it to the next tutu using the central motifs of the same lace.


another lilac fairy!



Blue Tutus

This last 12 months has been completely awash with tutus and I apologise for not blogging more. I promise the next 12 months will include more detailed posts. So for now I’ll just catch up with photos of completed tutus. This first post will be for blue tutus.

blue french lace 3Q

blue French lace

There is a lovely lightness about the lace overlay on this skirt. I don’t often make a tutu without a matching plate but this worked so beautifully.

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Hand Dyed corded lace

This tutu began life as a RTW tutu after I hand-dyed some corded lace as an experiment. It was so pretty I built the tutu around it.  The tutu was listed on a tutu sellers page and sold in 2 hours. Sorry, it didn’t even make it to my RTW page.



Royal Blue and Venise Lace

Royal blue and gold are perfect partners and I especially like this ornate gold venise lace. A liberal hand with the blue rhinestones added a bit of extra colour to the lace which can sometimes be a little overwhelming.

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corded lace

This pretty fine corded lace has a metallic thread through it giving some extra sparkle. It’s actually dark blue so stands out well against the light blue.


Pretty full lace overskirt

The lace overskirt was another dyeing triumph. We needed a pale blue sparkly overskirt and this pretty silver-white lace from Spotlight took on a lovely light blue colour. Even the sequins were dyed!


Pretty little blue and silver

It was lovely making this for a dear little girl. She was so excited about her first tutu!


Pas D’Esclave

I like making a little bodice like an Indian choli for these tutus and decorating them richly with venise lace and rhinestones. The off-the-shoulder effect looks terrific on stage.



This was a lovely choice for Esmeralda, a soft turquoise blue with a tiered skirt and long mesh sleeves. We also added a deep back to show off the dancer’s flexibility.

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deep back

And to finish off the blue theme, another sweet tiny tutu for a 4 year old just starting her ballet solos.


Velvet and roses





Tiny Cinderella

A mum from Queensland asked if I could make her 4 year old a very romantic Cinderella style tutu in blue, cream and gold. She gave me a few ideas, like a swag around the top and shoulders and a deeply ornate plate but basically gave me free rein. We were both very pleased with the sweet little confection I came up with for her wee girl. Have a look at the elements in the pictures below.

plate detail (2)

Plate detail

The plate was blue at the top and edged with gold venise lace. The second tier was cream and I used 2 other trims in lighter gold. The lace was embellished with crystal AB and blue rhinestones.

plate detail

central detail

The very centre of the plate had an ornate focal point using french lace that mirrored the bodice decoration. The skirt was ivory underneath with a blue layer and a layer of glitter tulle on the top for some Cinderella sparkle.

bodice detail

bodice detail

The bodice had a little swag cross the top that continued around the top of the arms and to the back. The centre of the bodice was decorated with venise lace, embroidered lace and a some french lace remnants I have left over from another tutu. I always keep a box of little trimming pieces just in case. The french lace was perfect for this.


finished tutu

I was very happy with little tutu and then completely delighted when I received this picture from the ballerina’s mum with her daughter wearing the tiara I made for her as well.


completely adorable

Blue Roses Stretch Tutu

I made this tutu as a RTW tutu. I had a tiny bit of the blue ribbon rose lace left and I thought I could eke out a design with it. Turquoise velvet was the perfect choice to match the lace.

bodice detail

bodice detail

The lace is quite simple so I blinged it up a little with rhinestones.

plate detail

plate detail

I trailed the lace onto the skirt for a soft delicate look. The tendrils were caught by  thread through the top layer of the skirt. I prefer the look of  lightly floating plate rather than mounting it on net.


completed tutu

I submitted the tutu to a FB page selling RTW tutus and it sold within a couple of days. I’ll try to reprise the design a few different ways and add the style to my repertoire.

Lilac and White tutu

This is a simple little tutu for a very young dancer. Pastel and white with a little glimmer is a good choice for a first tutu.

starting point

corded lace with pearls

The leotard has a simple sweetheart neckline which is suitable for a young dancer. The skirt will grade from lilac to white so the panties on the leotard are white as the lowest ruffles of the tutu should match the panties.


lilac leotard

Once the leotard is finished the appliques were sewn on with the leotard stretched over a bodyboard.

bodice detail

The net has been feathered or ‘dagged”. This gives a very soft edge and is perfect for birds and fairies.  Layer 2 is a very sparky glitter tulle and the following layers alternate between orchid, pink and white.



feathered net

The net is attached from the top down. The first layer is attached at the high hip. In this picture you can see layer 2 pinned under layer 1 ready to be sewn on with a zigzag stitch.

attaching net

attaching net

The plate has 6 appliques arranged around the plate in soft points. I’ve used crystal AB rhinestones for  bit of sparkle. The centre hole is an ellipse rather than a circle.

plate construction


The inside circumference was clipped to allow it to fit neatly around the high hip above the first layer of gathered net. I sew the turned under seam allowance to the net as close to the bodice as possible.


plate detail

The lycra plate has been trimmed to match the shape of the appliques.


tiny Lilac Fairy


Pink and Pearls

Pink and white are traditional colours for a young girl’s first tutu. This one is teamed with pearls and a sprinkling of rhinestones for some subtle sparkle.



Here’s the starting point for the tutu.



The skirt is a slightly paler pink than the bodice so I made lower part of the leotard in pastel pink. I’ve placed the appliques on the bodice to get an idea of final placement.


sewing on appliques

decorating bodice

I glued rhinestones to the appliques. While the glue dried I finished the bodice and attached the elastic straps. This allowed me to stretch the leotard over the body board. The bodice was decorated after the leotard was finished.

clipped plate


I added more half pearls to the plate. The inner circumference was clipped to allow a tidy fit around the high hip.


sewing plate to tutu skirt

I sewed the plate to the very top of the skirt as close as possible to the bodice. The curved needle made the job less fiddly. The very edge of the plate was also loosely sewn to the skirt as well.


finished tutu

I also made a beaded tiara to match.



Apricot and Ivory

Apricot is a very popular choice for a young dancer’s first tutu. It teams beautifully with gold or like in this one, with ivory. I’ve used a delicate ivory lace applique for the bodice and teamed it with a linear lace for the plate.

bodice detail (2)

bodice detail

I used a combination of crystal AB and apricot AB rhinestones and some half pearls on the venise lace applique.

trimming plate


The lace for the plate was a light embroidered tulle. To fit it around the elliptic plate I curved the lace by overlapping and stitching down small sections then machine stitched the curved lace to the plate. I trimmed the lycra away from the edge to emphasize the pretty scalloped edge. Once the plate was made I added rhinestones and pearls. The next step was attaching the net.

putting on last ruffle

attaching the ruffles

The skirt was stiff ivory net with a layer of apricot to give the skirt a soft blush. The edges were scalloped to match the lace on the plate.

plate detail

plate detail

The embroidered lace gives a lovely delicate look. I used larger rhinestones to cover where I had pinched the lace together to curve it.


finished tutu

The little tutu has a sweet soft look perfect for a young dancer.