Sunday, October 10, 2010

50's Poodle Skirt Tutorial

When it came time to choose Halloween costumes, my husband and I couldn't decide. Last year was our kids first Halloween and we made them Luke and Leia. My husband loved the idea since they were twins. I couldn't decide if I wanted them to have completely different costumes this year or have them related. While discussing it with a friend, she brought up the idea of my daughter wearing a poodle skirt, and my son being a 50's greaser. I was immediately sold on the idea. I already had everything I would need for my son, and knew I wanted to make the poodle skirt. I found it to be very simple and inexpensive. Two of my favorite things.

1/2 yard of felt 
1/2 yard ric rac ribbon
Elastic 3/4" width
Steam a Seam

While doing some research on how to make a poodle skirt, I found it was made from a circle skirt. It was very common from the era. It can be made from a simple math formula. I know, MATH, that's what I thought. I enlisted my hubby to help with this one. Math is not my strong point. I found some simple instructions on What The Craft. You may want to practice on some spare fabric before cutting your felt. I only needed 1/2 yard of felt, because my daughter is 18 months. You may need more depending on the measurements you have.

I decided I wanted my poodle skirt to be a little more full, so I added a tutu underneath. This is optional you may be happy with the fullness of just the felt. I made my tutu with two colors of tulle. First I measured my daughters waist. It was 18 inches, so I cut my elastic 17 1/2. I used a zig zag stitch to connect the ends of my elastic. Second you will need to know how long to cut your tulle. Use the measurements from the waist to the knee, and add a few inches. You can make tutus different ways. For this one I kept it simple, and just tied knots around the elastic. I used a lot less tulle this way. I didn't think it mattered since it would be covered up by felt.

Once you have done the math and cut the circle skirt out, the fun part begins. With any poodle skirt, you need a poodle pattern. I found a perfect one here. After cutting my pattern out of my fabric, I decided to put it on the easy way. I love Steam A Seam, and try to use it whenever I can. This one was a little tricky since you can't iron felt. I used a scrap piece of fabric to lay over my poodle and ironed that. I love it when things work out.

I pinned the ric rac where I like it, then used my sewing machine to sew it on. I just sewed down the center of the ribbon.

To connect my tutu to my circle skirt I pinned it together, and put a few hand stitches every place I pinned it.

I decided I wanted it to have a more finished look, so I took wide black ribbon and made a waist band. I used my Steam A Seam to add that too. I also added some jewels to the poodles neck to look like a collar. I love how it turned out. My daughter loved wearing it, and didn't want to take it off. I will probably add it to her dress up clothes when halloween is over.

You can see where I will be linking this week here.

mingle mondays button


  1. I love the skirt!
    Cute idea for the costume theme for your twins.

  2. So cute! How badly do I wish I had a daughter to do this for!!! URG! LOVE!
    BTW...having a new party over at my blog read about it here

  3. The skirt turned out really cute, great job!
    I'm following from Monday's blog hops. Check out my blog at

    Have a great monday!

  4. Oh, they will be so cute! Love the skirt, great job!

  5. Tag! You're it!

  6. This is just too cute. I am your newest follower from Mingle Monday.

  7. My goodness - This is so adorable and sweet! Fantastic job - what a cutie! Hope you have a wonderful weekend! Stephanie Lynn

  8. What a cute skirt. I have twin girls who are going to be 4 in June and they just told me they want to be 50's girls for Halloween...why we are thinking of that in April, I have no idea. But, your steps are great and I can't wait to make them cute poodle skirts for Halloween this year.



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