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Tag Archives: Classical Tutu

  • Where do I start?


    It is the time of year where we get a lot requests for help for first-time tutu buyers. Don't worry! We understand that tutus are pretty crazy garments and we are happy to assist. Here are some tips we have for getting you started.

    Class Act Tutu Class Act Tutu Style: Scoop-Neck Tutu Bodice with Nude Inset and Classical Skirt Color: Ivory

    How to Order Your Tutus

    At Class Act Tutu our tutu pieces & options are sold separately.  This way you can get just the tutu that you want—no more—no less—and you can mix & match for greater costume options.

    Step 1: Choose your bodice style.

    Step 2: Choose skirt style(s).

    Step 3: Choose your bodice and/or skirt color(s).

    Step 4: Choose the options & accessories that you want.

    Step 5: Choose your size.

    • Refer to our handy How to Measure section for advice on obtaining correct measurements and to print our measurement form where you can record these measurements.
    • Then check our Standard Size Chart to pick your correct size.
    • If you would like our assistance in choosing your size, you may submit your measurement form with your order.
    • If you are not basing your order on specific measurements, use the reference to “Typical Clothing Size” that is found on our Standard Size Chart to help guide your choice.

    Step 6: Place your order online at by adding each item to your shopping cart.  You may:

    • Complete the checkout process and you are done!   or
    • “Save” your items to the cart for later checkout.
    • You can also enter your purchase into your shopping cart, indicate Check/Money Order for payment method, and submit.


    • Just submit your "wish list" via email and we will write up an estimate to get you started. Don't worry about all of the details. We are happy to assist you!

    Choices for Ordering Tutus

  • Urban Nutcracker

    We are sharing this fun post from Dustin Todd Rennells that talks about creating all new costumes for Tony Williams', Urban Nutcracker.  Enjoy!

    by Dustin Todd Rennells

    Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker Photo: RavenWolfe Photography Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker Photo: RavenWolfe Photography

    This was one of my favorite overall projects to do for Urban Nutcracker. This tutu came to us at a great price from Class Act Tutu when I begged for a good price for our amazing show. It came naked just wine and black. Through the help of numerous volunteers all the gold window panes and sequined borders were sewn on and tacked down. First is Katrina Gould as Sugar with her backup of Sugar Plum Attendants in several beautiful images by RavenWolfe Photography. Next is my original drawing of the piece that I had envisioned. This is most likely the closest to my original idea. Lastly is the tutu we had used for 6+ years. Definitely a new concept here! Sugar embodies the city of Boston, wine/brick red like the buildings with glowing lights of a city during the holidays. Thanks to Anita Handy-Velasquez, Amanda Lapham, Yara Figueroa, Molly Mclaughlin-Drubin and Judith Alvarez for their additional work to this costume and headpiece. Based on original drawings by Rebecca Cross.

    Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker Photo: RavenWolfe Photography Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker Photo: RavenWolfe Photography
    Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker Photo: RavenWolfe Photography Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker    Photo: RavenWolfe Photography


    Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker Photo: RavenWolfe Photography Katrina Gould in Tony Williams' Urban Nutcracker    Photo: RavenWolfe Photography


    Concept for Urban Nutcracker's Sugarplum by Dustin Todd Rennells. Concept for Urban Nutcracker's Sugarplum by Dustin Todd Rennells.
  • Quick Tip - Let the Fabric & Trim Do the Work!

    Hand work can be delightful if you have time, but in a crunch, it may not be an option. Here is what I do:

    Find nicely embellished fabric so that little or no adornment needs to be added.
    Find fabric that needs no edge finishing (that is, no hemming).

    My favorite choice is embellished (sequined, beaded, embroidered) tulle like we used in this “Spanish” tutu design:



    To create an overlay for your skirt:

    • Cut a “donut” shape with the “hole” the measurement of the bottom of the tutu basque.
    • Choose the length of the overlay.
    • Cut an 8 inch slit at the center back.


    If needed, use a coordinating trim to edge the outside of the skirt circle.  This trim can be hand stitched or machine sewn.


    For the bodice, cut a shape that follows the lines of the bodice. Again, if needed, outline the fabric with a co-coordinating trim.


    If time and budget permit, add beads or crystals.


    Tack bodice & skirt overlay in place so that it is secure but easy to remove for cleaning.

    Voila!  An elegant tutu embellishment without a lot of stitching time

  • Talking to People

    by Madison Rayn Abeo

    The Fairy of Beauty


    Yesterday was the last show of Pacific Northwest Ballet's Sleeping Beauty. I was fortunate to be able to volunteer to help as a greeter in the lobby before the show and during intermissions. The Pacific Northwest Ballet School gives dancers in the upper levels, the chance to wear one of the costumes from the ballet, and talk to patrons in the lobby, taking photos and talking to people about the ballet! All the dancers love to wear the beautiful costumes, but I also really love talking to people. The adults ask about my dancing and I am able to tell them about upcoming shows I am in (told a lot of people about Pinocchio!) and the little kids love touching the tutu & pointe shoes and taking photos. Sometimes just getting down on the little kids levels, asking their names and what their favorite part of the ballet has been so far - is enough to make their day! It helps make their experience even more magical than Pacific Northwest Ballet already makes it! I am very grateful to have the opportunity to do it!

    Madison is a student at Pacific Northwest Ballet.  For more information and to follow Madison's journey towards becoming a professional ballerina check out her Facebook page, Madison Rayn Abeo: Support and Update Page.
    Photos:  Mariangela Abeo

  • Sightings: The Ballerina Supremacy

    The Ballerina Supremacy, Madison in Seattle Washington


    Class Act Tutu had lots of fun this summer!  We got to dance around the Seattle area with Day Kol (Photographer, The Ballerina Supremacy).  Day is looking for ballet dancers in the Seattle area.  Head on over to The Ballerina Supremacy 's Facebook page to message him if you are interested in collaborating.

    The Ballerina Supremacy, in Seattle Washington with Madison


    The Ballerina Supremacy, Madison at The Evergreen State Fair


    Model:  Madison Abeo, student at Pacific Northwest Ballet

    Styles shown:  "Pancake" Style Classical Tutu Skirt, White worn with (Top & Bottom Left Photos): Vala Dancewear's Cross-Back Corset Leotard in "Lipstick" (Style #22003 - New style coming 2014) and (Bottom Right) Photo "Siren" Leotard in Steel (Style #22001-New color coming 2014).

  • Quick Tip: Easy Tutu Skirt Embellishment

     Lilac Fairy Tutu design© CJDL Design

    Make your tutu skirt embellishment easy to place and to remove by attaching it to a lovely trim!

    1. Stitch your appliqués, petals, or whatever decorative pieces you are using to some coordinating trim.  Here we have used a metallic gold.
    2. Sew or glue some gems, beads, sequins, etc.
    3. Hand stitch the trim to the bottom of the tutu basque or waistband.
    4. Tack pieces to the tutu skirt if needed.


    Lilac Fairy Tutu design ©CJDL Design

  • Tacking Your Tutu: Part 1, Preparation

    When it comes to creating the perfect silhouette for your classical or bell style tutu, there are a number of factors to consider: how you cut your layers, the fabrics that you use, and so on.  However, “tacking” your tutu is one step which makes a grand difference (and entrance)!

    Class Act Tutu's "Pancake" Style Classical Tutu Skirt
    Photo:  Laura Gilbreath, soloist, Pacific Northwest Ballet © Angela Sterling

    Whether you have made your own tutu, purchased your tutu or have a tutu in need of repair, “tacking” is a skill that you need to have if you are working with Classical or Bell Style tutus.  “Tacking” is when you secure the layers of your tutu together.  This keeps your ruffles from flying when you dance and helps to shape your tutu.  There are many different methods to use.  We thought it would be fun to share some of the tricks we have learned through the years.

    We will be adding to our “Tips & How-To” blog category some of our favorite ideas for tacking your tutu.  First up is preparing your tutu for tacking.

    Preparation:  Steam & Flatten

    Although some may consider these steps optional, we think that preparing your tutu by gently steaming and pressing--or flattening your tutu is worth the time.  A tutu that is shaped and flattened before tacking is begun is much easier to work with and results in a better finished product.

    • To steam your tutu,  first test your fabric. Nylon melts and, if your steamer or iron is too hot, you can damage your tutu.  If you are using an iron, use the lowest setting that can provide steam.
    • Straighten, shape and steam the layers of your tutu one by one.  The idea is to straighten the layers so that they lie straight out from the tutu panty.  Visualize the spokes of a wheel.

    Tutu Tacking Diagram

    HINT: If you are making your own tutu, it is much easier to attach your tutu layers if you gently steam each layer where it is gathered before it is sewn on.

    • To press, lie your tutu topside down, arrange the layers neatly, and place heavy books all around the tutu.  Leave overnight.
    Flattening Your Tutu with Books


    As always, if you have any tips you would like to share—or would like us to share, just let us know!

    Next Up:  Using a “Tagging Gun” to tack your tutu

    Tagging Gun

  • Sightings: Aspen Santa Fe Ballet's "Nutcracker by the Numbers"

    We love these mathematical rundowns of productions.  It gives a small sense of all the work that goes on behind the scenes to create a performance.  We were thrilled to see this piece posted by Aspen Santa Fe Ballet that show some Class Act Tutus in the piles!

    Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, "Nutcracker by the Numbers"


    Aspen Santa Fe Ballet has performances of the Nutcracker in Omaha, Santa Fe and Aspen.  Get your tickets!

  • A Peek Inside: The Rock School's Nutcracker 1776

    The Rock School's "Nutcracker 1776"


    The Rock School for Dance Education's 'Nutcracker 1776' provides a delightful patriotic twist to a traditional holiday classic. Nutcracker 1776 "tells the tale of two children entrusted with an enchanted key and Nutcracker that lead them far from their home in colonial Philadelphia."

    Not only were we at Class Act Tutu proud to have created some of the production's costumes, we were curious about the inspiration behind this beloved production.

    We posed our questions to The Rock School's directors, Bojan and Stephanie Spassoff.

    What was the inspiration behind Nutcracker 1776? Why did the school decide to "travel off the beaten path" and branch out like this? (Which by the way, was an awesome idea!)

    We wanted to "re-invent" a new Nutcracker.  Distill it and make it Philadelphia-centric.  Ben Franklin is our "Drosselmeyer" figure - a cross between Dumbledore and Drosselmeyer.  Instead of a German Parlor in the opening scene we are in Ye Olde City Tavern Inn, a real Philadelphia tavern  during colonial times where virtually all of the Founding Founders met, discussed and planned the issues of the day.  This seemed to us to make it much more personal for our Philadelphia audience as well as sneaking in some actual history.

    How has the community received the production over the years?

    This is only our third year of doing this production but the response has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic.   The School's Rock Reach outreach program has a special dress rehearsal for over 1,800 under served children from schools in Philadelphia, Camden and Chester County.  The children are thrilled to see what may be their first and only Nutcracker.  The response rivals a rock concert!

    That's amazing! So do you offer a more traditional production as well? If so, how do attendance/ticket sales compare between the two?

    No, we do not as this production is specifically geared to be more accessible for families with young children and fathers who do not want to sit for two and a half hours.  It is truly still a traditional Nutcracker.  We try to keep it fresh every year by adapting to the students enrolled in The School.

    In closing, what advice would you give other dance schools or companies looking to spice things up over the holidays?

    Just look at your audience to see what is going to make it more feasible for them to go and enjoy something for the whole family, that is beautiful, elegant, and yet dynamic.  It is also important to review show times, assess when the performances are better attended, and to take into consideration feedback from the audiences.  Incorporating elements of magic, the unexpected and a variety of smaller charming little parts for children in the production is pleasing to both participants and the audience.  Keep the joy in the dancing!

    For more information about Nutcracker 1776 or to purchase tickets, please visit their website at

    Class Act Tutu created the V-Neck Tutu Bodices and the Romantic Skirts with Basque (color:  White) for The Rock School's Snow Scene as well as the "Betsy Ross" Classical Tutu Skirt (color: Royal Basque/Red Skirt   style:  soft classical).

  • Sightings: Pointe Magazine, October/November 2010

    In the Costume Shop:  Magic is made behind the scenes.

    Thank you so much, Pointe Magazine, for featuring our "Happily Ever After" tutu in your article, In the Costume Shop:  Magic is made behind the scenes.  [ page 38]

    "Happily Ever After"


    This Classical Tutu design was created by CJDL Design for Class Act Tutu.  It features a Sweetheart Tutu Bodice style with a fabric upgrade (Gold/Silver Brocade), a Classical Tutu Skirt with Hooping and  Scalloped Edges.  The Embellishment is an amazing array of  hand-made fabric shapes with crystals, beads & painted accents.

    This is definitely one of our all-time favorite tutus. Just imagine how this gorgeous "Beauty" would look on stage! Whether you're dancing Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty--or any other Princess role--no Prince Charming could possibly resist!

    With all of its lavish design features and incredible "wow" factor, our Happily Ever After is more than just a costume--it's a fairytale dream come true!

    For information on how to purchase this tutu, please contact us.

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