Super Easy, Cheap, No Sew Tutu Tutorial and DIY Project Parade

Well – OOPS!  This was to publish Sunday but I messed up the date. Welcome to the party one day early!

My niece’s 1st birthday is coming up and as our family’s (amateur) photographer, my gift is portraits.  

Her mom wanted pictures of her in a tutu. So cute!  Loving DIY and little girl stuff, I offered to make one.  

No Sew DIY TuTu Tutorial
under $10!
This might not be anything new or unique. I’m not up on the latest DIY baby but in any event, here is what I did.
Please pardon the blurriness of these pictures. I forgot to change my settings. 🙁

Materials:  Ribbon, Roll of Tulle, Scissors

How to:

1.  I guestimated my niece’s waist size (and it was perfect too!).  Measure around waist.  Add 12″ to each end (24″ to waist measurement) and cut ribbon to length. 

2.  Tie a knot 12″ in from the end on each side.

3.  Cut strips of tulle to desired length.  For a 1-yr.-old, my strips were 12″ long.  If you have tulle in yardage, just cut strips on your own about 6″ wide and desired length (which will be folded in half in next step). For my niece, I used 30 (12″) strips of tulle from my roll.  
4.  Gather strip of tulle.

6.  Fold strip in half. Put “hole” (fold) of tulle over the ribbon between the knots.

7.  Pull ends of tulle through ” tulle hole” and knot (pull ends underneath ribbon and up through the ‘tu
lle hole’. Ribbon will be inside tulle).
Knots will look like this:

8.  Weight one end of the ribbon (I just put it under a heavy vase) and continue steps 5, 6 and 7 until finished from one knotted end of ribbon to the other. Weighting the one end allows you to slide knotted tulle into place.
Finished tulle knots:

9.  Trim tulle and ribbon if needed.  Optional:  Add ribbon in a different or coordinating color scattered throughout. Add flowers. Use different colors of tulle – get creative!

Super easy, right?  TUTU cute!

I‘ll be sharing a few more DIY baby girl projects coming up – I’ve been invited to a baby shower too and love handmade gifts. Don’t you?

What have you been doing this weekend?  

The DIY Show Off

If you’d like to link YOUR DIY project post to The DIY Show Off Project Parade:

1.You must use the button above (ADD BUTTON HTML CODE FROM SIDE BAR TO YOUR POST) and link to this post to share the linky love.

2.Include your name or blog name and project title. Add your permalink (not your blog url, but your DIY project post url). Feel free to link a Past Post, just invite your readers in a current post with a quick note.

3.Or email your link to and I will add it for you.

4.If you notice your link has disappeared -please add the link back to The DIY Show Off to your post today, a button or a quick note to your readers about the party and try again! I love when everyone participates and readers check out everyone’s links, but I think the return favor of linking back is the nice thing to do so everyone plays fair and enjoys all of the projects and links. Also – this blog party is for DIY projects only. Links not related to DIY will be deleted.

5.  NOW you can “like” the links!  Most liked link moves to the top of the list!  What a fun idea!  Most liked links may be included in a post of DIY Project Parade highlights later in the week!  🙂

DIY Easy Wall Art (and Niski update)

First, I want to thank you all SO much!  Your comments, support, love and prayers give us comfort and strength to get through this with Niski.  We’ve chosen conservative treatment at this time with meds and 8 weeks of bed rest.  I think we’ve established a routine.  My mom also had a cart (for flea market shopping) which Niski fits into.  She has enough room to lie down and be immobile (bed rest) but can be in the same room with us.  Here she is hanging out with me in the living room today:

She isn’t in any pain and still has bladder control and wags her tail. She still has an appetite and has resigned to taking the meds without too much of a fight. So, please keep the prayers coming.  It’s going to be a long summer without being able to chase birds and chipmunks but if she’s back to herself after that or even paralyzed but able to have a happy pain-free life, then it’s worth every minute.
Now to the topic of DIY!  Brooke from Sweet Mint Studios has the cutest DIY wall art project going for a nursery. She is also the sister of Britt, one of the most creative DIY’ers I know!  Here is her post and precious wall art:

Decorating :: Easy Wall Art, Part I

My sister, Britt has been sharing a series titled “Easy Peasy Wall Art” on her blog A Penny Saved. She has some really creative ideas. Take a minute to hop on over there and check them out! This week, she has asked me to guest-blog for her, so I’m sharing some of my own DIY art, and of course I wanted to share it with my readers as well! So, here it is:

Let’s start in our girls’ room. When I was 8 months pregnant with Clara, our first child, I waddled into Hobby Lobby and stumbled on an incredible sale. They had marked tons of frames 90% off. If you’ve ever been in a situation like that, you KNOW that their buggies are way too small! I fit as many frames as I could in my buggy, and then I was faced with a dilemma. Should I walk away from the other frames that I wanted in order to grab another buggy and hope that they would still be there when I got back? No way! I grabbed all of the frames I wanted, and threw them over my shoulder… and then my other shoulder. Then I carefully, precariously made my way to the check-out counter. By the time I got all of my treasures home that day, I was pretty proud of my accomplishment. I showed my hubby all of my deals and he wanted to know what in the world I was going to do with so many frames??? So, I then had a mission to fill them. I’ve used several, but secretively, I have many, many more hiding under the guest bed! So, without further ado, here is our little girls’ room.

With so many frames to fill, my goal was to get creative because art, mats, and glass can add up quickly. Here’s how I created the wall art above:
1. I hung the frames and then using light pencil marks, traced the inside dimensions of the frames onto the wall. Then I took down the frames and got to work.
2. Painted the entire outline white. So there were four white rectangles on the wall.
3. I cut a scallop stencil out of a piece of cardboard and used it to trace the scallop outline on top of the white rectangles. Then I filled them with pink paint.
4. I brushed some light green details on the edge of the scallops.
5. My hubby hung the glass knobs for me.
6. We put the frames back up where we had initially hung them, but this time, there was art inside the frames.

There are so many different things you could hang from the glass knobs. In the pictures above, the baby dresses that are hanging are dresses I wore when I was a baby. It’s sweetly sentimental. Right now the girls are still little (they just turned two and one). As they get older, I’ll take down the baby dresses, and frame something else. It’ll be such a quick, easy change that will really allow the frames to grow with my girls!
Click HERE to see Part II of her DIY Wall Art series.  Here is a sneak peek:
Thanks for sharing your creativity Brooke!  Beautiful job!  Sentimental, pretty and easy!  LoVe!
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DIY Project Parade

Did you DIY this weekend? I didn’t (last minute party at my house so I was busy with DIY housecleaning and hosting) but I have some things to show off for others then link up and show off your latest project!

Click the links for more details:

Life All Around – Dawn claims to be a beginner but her built-in shelving is a success!Tales and Trials (tutorial here) – Abby makes it look so easy!

Make your own carseat cover – Simply Designing shows you how!

Pamela – From My Front Porch to Yours gives her mantel a new look. I love her technique!

This one is SO cute! She added safety straps and reupholstered an old high chair. Check out the details at Notes from a Very Red Kitchen!

I love this foot stool rescue too from Citified Country Girl
Here is her post:


Old footstool Before


Reupholstering During…

To give my $3 foot stool a little something extra, I lined the inside with black velvet. Adhered the velvet with spray on adhesive and trimmed the top.

Velvet and new hardware

New footstoolAfter!

Isn’t is gorgeous? Great job Sarah!

The DIY Show Off

If you’d like to link YOUR DIY project post to The DIY Show Off Project Parade:
  1. You must use the button above and link to this post to share the linky love.
  2. Include your
    name or blog name and project title. Add your permalink (not your blog url, but your DIY project post url). Feel free to link a Past Post, just invite your readers in a current post with a quick note.
  3. Or email your link to and I will add it for you.
  4. If you notice your link has disappeared please add the link back to The DIY Show Off to your post today with a quick note to your readers about the party and try again! I love when everyone participates and readers check out everyone’s links, but I think the return favor of linking back is the nice thing to do so everyone plays fair and enjoys all of the projects and links. Also – this blog party is for DIY projects only. Links not related to DIY will be deleted.

DIY Baby Gift Set

Editing to participate!

Practice makes perfect. I originally made some bibs/burp cloths for my soon-to-arrive nephew. See the boy patterns I chose & DIY tutorial HERE. I had the opportunity to make some more for a baby girl. I love Michael Miller fabrics and they turned out so cute! Great gift idea!

This one is my favorite (damask/houndstooth). Front Side:

Back side is made from a hand towel
Burp cloth is made using cloth diaper
sewing a strip of pretty fabric down the middle
wild peace:

flower power:

Tie with ribbon

They’re so easy to sew. I made 3 sets in just a few hours.
The mother-to-be loved them.
No two alike…no trip to the store to return

Great Christmas gift too!

Elephants On Parade – Nursery Details

I have been preparing for blog parties all week – working on some nursery details for my sister.
I love participating in Kimba’s DIY Day at A Soft Place to Land and I’m excited to join in the fun for Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Chic Cottage too! The best part? We don’t even have to get dressed up for these parties! (Thankfully! Because lounge pants and a tank top is the best DIY uniform.)

I wrote out separate tutorials for each project otherwise this post would be really, really long and I’m not quite sure what would happen if I wrote a novel-length blog post. Are you? Is there a limited # of characters to each post? Does blogger tell you to “zip it”? I don’t want to risk suspension for excessive chatting! So – just click on each link to view the tutorial for each of these projects if you’re interested in the “behind the scenes” details.

Ready for me to get to the point? I thought so.

The cutest little vintage-inspired elephant pull-toy-decor. Isn’t he so cool?

Click HERE for the tutorial.

(I’m not 100% comfortable with it being a real “toy” since I’m not a professional. I tried to make it child friendly by securing everything, but just in case – it’s for decor purposes only.)

I made this cute little elephant/grapevine mobile:

Click HERE for the mobile tutorial.

This is the nursery bedding that I bought. I considered making it, but this set was so cute. It’s where I came up with the color scheme and ideas:

The removable changing table pad and valances that I sewed (no tutorial – I just designed, measured, cut and sewed what I had in mind):

I really want to paint this trim…but “no touchy”. 🙁

And finally, a transformation:

Nursery Lamp – my sister had this old sconce type lamp. Had I known – it’d be mine but she needed lighting for the small nursery space so I accepted that without a “mine” tantrum or tug-of-war and redid it to match the nursery. So easy.

Click HERE for the lamp makeover tutorial.



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Baby Bibs & Burp Cloths

Hey – I’m late … as usual. I posted this Monday, but I love participating too! Here is the DIY project I worked on last weekend (and a little tutorial from While They Sleep too):

You guys know that I love introducing you to new creative DIY-ers, right? I’m so excited to show off this next post for Hannah from While They Sleep. It IS very easy and she has a lot of cute projects and 3 darling angels, so click over and take a peek!

I love etsy – I could “shop” there all day and when I kept seeing the cutest bibs and matching burp cloths while shopping for my soon-to-arrive nephew, I knew I must get some. But…I wanted 5-7 sets and it gets a bit pricey so I thought – I’ll tackle these myself! VERY easy and VERY inexpensive.
I made this:

Here is Hannah’s tutorial for the bibs which is nearly exact what I did (I added my comments in bold italics – hopefully her tutorial with my minimal comments will help you):

The EASIEST EVER Bib: A Tutorial

You could probably just scroll down to follow the pictures and understand how to make this but I will provide commentary just in case. I decided that the girls can never have too many bibs (these girls can DROOL like nobody’s business…not to mention the projectile spit up we get to experience a few times a day).

So I decided to save some dough and make my own. I figured that using a thin, cheap towel (from Target) (I got mine at the dollar store and was able to use washcloths – but make sure they’re the ones with the woven band on the end (the bottom)- the ones without the woven band will shrink too small. You can get 2 bibs out of 1 handtowel, 1 bib from a washcloth if it has the woven strip towards the bottom.) and some of my scrap fabric the total cost is about 25 cents each. I also love the idea of having bibs that are unique (me too!). So here is the tutorial:

I just traced one of the girls bibs that I liked (size-wise). Then just cut the it out to make my pattern. (I did this too. I made myself a homemade compass using a sharpie taped to another one. One with lid on and one with lid off. I then traced the real bib with the lidded sharpie to create a small sewing allowance. I also traced the finished pattern directly onto my fabric with a washable marker – easier to cut out without the pinned-on pattern. I don’t have bibs, so I did purchase one at the dollar store to use as a pattern for my “pattern”.)

Make sure that your fabrics are washed and ironed…I hate this step because it requires patience which I have very little of…but it is really important for things like this. You don’t want your bib to be all weird after it gets washed do you? My new rule after I purchase fabric is to put it right in the washer when I get home…then when I get the urge to create…I don’t have to wait! (I agree and I hate this step too…fabric does get all wrinkly and frayed, but it is VERY important!)

Next just cut out your pattern from each piece of material…the towel…

and then your scraps.
You should have two shapes that look like this.

Then just put the right sides together and pin.

Now it’s time to sew!
Sew almost the whole thing together but make sure to leave about an inch and a half un-stitched so you can turn it right side out.

then…turn it right side out

and it looks great except for that little opening…so now just tuck both sides in and pin
(I ironed during this step…but cool to know it’s not important.)

and then I just start there and sew about an 1/8 inch all the way around

almost done…
Then just sew your little 1 inch velcro onto both sides and …
(Remember – One on the fabric side on the left and one on the towel side on the right.)

YOU ARE DONE!!! The front

the back (or whatever side you choose).

Laurel likes it…in fact she thinks it good enough to eat!

How cute! I don’t have a model…but here are the ones I made for my soon-to-arrive nephew.

Additional Tips:

  • I also sewed in the middle of the bib when completed to give it a little bit of a “quilted look” and to help with future washings.
  • I recommend using thread that is the same color as the towel – to help keep it looking good. For example – in Hannah’s tutorial above, she could have used a bright blue thread, but the white side of the towel would have shown the seam and using white isn’t as noticeable on the patterned fabric.

Coordinating Burp Clothes

Here is a quick tutorial for the burp cloths I made (step by step photos to be edited in later):


  • 1 – cloth diaper
  • 1 – 6″ x approx. 21″ piece of fabric
Again, wash fabric and cloth diaper before sewing.

Iron both.

Fold in 1/2 borders around the strip of fabric and iron.

Pin to center of cloth diaper (over the extra padded strip)

Sew onto cloth diaper. I used 3/8 seams. I also sewed a geometric pattern throughout some of mine to help with future washings. It looks quilted and will help the burp cloth keep it’s shape. I also find that using the same color fabric as the cloth diaper helps to disguise crooked lines/etc.

Thanks so much for sharing your tutorial, Hannah! It’s a wonderful gift idea!

What do the DIY Show Off readers think?

Vintage Inspired Elephant Toy-Decor

Public Service Announcement!
Not intended for play!My Vintage-Inspired Elephant Pull-Toy Decorative Accessory

DIY vintage elephant toy decor

Here is my tutorial. Feel free to email me with any questions.
Wooden shape
Scrapbook paper
Wood filler
4 Wooden Toy Wheels
2 – 2″ Screws
Washers (I used 8 metal ones)
2 Nuts (the hardware kind…this is a family-friendly website!)
1 yd. decorative rope
2 wooden beads
Spray paint
Spray laquer
Mod Podge
Tools: Drill, 2 disposable craft paint brushes, xacto knife or scissors

Trace the wooden shape onto the back side of the scrapbook paper.
Flip wooden shape the other direction and trace on the 2nd scrapbook paper.Cut out paper shapes. Helpful tip – trim smaller than the actual tracing so it doesn’t hang over the edges of the wooden shape.
This elephant was originally meant for a wall hanging. I filled the holes with wood filler and sanded.

{Sorry! The rest of the tutorial pictures did not transfer over from moving to WordPress}

I used a pencil to mark where the wheels would go so that my husband could drill holes for the axles. (I used a mechanical pencil with the lead out more than normal – yes, it broke a few times, but I was able to scribble inside the tiny holes for drill marks.)

Next I spray painted my elephant and his wheels. I used a satin oil-rubbed bronze color. It’s my new favorite color of spray paint! A rich dark chocolate brown with bronze/gold flecks.

I almost wanted to leave him like this. But, then I remembered my pretty scrapbook paper (I love pretty papers!). So, I used a brush to apply Mod Podge to one side of the elephant and the back side of the paper.

and applied the paper to the glue-side of the elephant. Slide it around a little until it’s perfectly in place.

Smooth out with a dry towel. I used a wooden skewer to poke through the paper where the drilled holes were and rotated it around a little.

Let dry.

Once dry, repeat the same steps with the other side and let it dry.

Next I used coordinating paper to cut out elephant ears. Apply Mod-Podge to the back side and put in place. Smooth out with a dry towel.

Repeat on the other side.

Once everything is completely dry, I took a clean brush and applied Mod-Podge to once side to seal everything up. I use circular motions for texture. Let it dry again.

It dries clear.

Then repeat on the other side.

I then took it outside and sprayed a coat of stain lacquer finish. Once dry, I flipped and repeated.

I used a piece of decorative rope and threaded it through the cut out for the eye for the pull string. I tied knots and used beads. I also used thread and super glue to make sure everything was secure and didn’t make the string too long. Again – this is a decorative accessory, not a toy.

Once that was done – I was ready to apply the wheels, which I bought at Michaels (1 1/2″ wooden toy wheels). Mr. DIY and I made a trip to the hardware store for bolts, washers and nuts to use as axles. We spent a great deal of time trying to figure out the best way. A dowel rod would also work since it’s only for decorative purposes.

And here he is…all done!

DIY vintage elephant toy decor
It’s a lot of steps but it’s so easy. I feel like one of Santa’s elves. I just love it. I think it’ll be a perfect hand-crafted (with love) keepsake gift. What do you think?


Edited: I’m linking to Mod Podge Mania at This Is The Year!

Flying Elephants Mobile

This is a little hard to explain but hopefully the pictures help and if you have any questions…just shoot me an email.

Elephant/Grapevine Mobile

I found a picture of elephants that match the bedding and cut/paste it into a word document, resized then printed on card stock. I cut them out to use as patterns. Fold or double the felt and then trace, pin and cut. I added a little more size to mine.

I also cut the ears out of the original pattern to use.

Un-pin and sew on the ears. I did the first one with the sewing machine, but did the others by hand since it wasn’t too difficult.

Sew on beads for eyes.

Then pin with wrong sides together and sew around the edges (whip stitch). I started at the top side of the trunk and stuffed it once I got to the bottom of the first leg. Then worked my way around the feet to the backside. I then stuffed the feet and mid section and sewed it closed. I found that a skewer was helpful for pushing the stuffing into tight spots.

I used embroidery thread to make a small tail.

Cut 2 pieces of ribbon to desired length (I think mine were about 27″). Tie each end around the grapevine wreath, spacing them out evenly.

Hold up the middle of both ribbons and tie a knot. This makes a loop for hanging.

Cut pieces of ribbon to desired and varying lengths. Either sew the middle of the ribbon to the top of an elephant and then tie onto
the wreath which these pictures show:

Or…change your mind like I did and use fishing line. I tied a small knot in one end, making a loop then used the loop to secure to the elephant with a few stitches. I then tied the other end of the fishing line to the wreath.

I also bought a grapevine ball, decorated it with ribbon around the middle and a ribbon for hanging from the top to the top of the “hanging hook” of the entire mobile.

Add more ribbon/etc. to decorate. Here’s how mine turned out: