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N7 Running Tutu DIY

N7 Running Tutu DIY
  • On November 17, 2015

I’m not sure who started the whole running tutu thing, but I’m kind of into it.

Back in July, I ran a Color Run 5K for my birthday. (It kind of pains me to write that. Who knew I’d become the sort of person who runs 5K races for fun?) And I decided I wanted to casual cosplay Commander Shepard for it. After looking into the obscenely high cost of commissioning or buying an N7-inspired tutu—and after seeing how cheap tulle and elastic are—I decided to make one myself. It’s easy but somewhat time consuming (hence the cost).

In case you want to make one yourself, here’s a step-by-step guide to making your own running tutu.

What you’ll need:

  • A lot of yards of tulle. Like, seriously, buy more than you think you need—especially if you can get it in these spools (which can be returned, natch). 
  • Elastic slightly smaller than the measurement of where you want to wear it.
  • Needle and thread or a sewing machine or a safety pin.
This is what I started off with. It was not nearly enough black tulle.

This is what I started off with. It was not nearly enough black tulle.


Step one: Measure wherever you want to wear it. I wore mine around my hips because I wear a FlipBelt around my waist to carry my keys, my asthma inhaler, my phone, and my pepper spray. Don’t measure too tightly. Then subtract ½ to 1 inch to account for the stretch, depending on how tight you want it to be. (Remember, you can always trim the elastic if it ends up being too much.) I always have tons of knit and woven elastic on hand, but any fabric store should sell some. I got mine at Joann Fabrics.

Yep, that's me in my pajamas wearing an elastic around my hips.

Yep, that’s me in my pajamas wearing an elastic around my hips.

Step two: Sew or safety pin the ends of your elastic together. You should end up with a circle of elastic. This took me approximately 15 seconds on my sewing machine, but you could sew it with a needle and thread, too, if you don’t have one. Or, if you’re extra low-key, you could just use a safety pin to bring the ends together.

2015-07-21 20.21.07

This is self-explanatory.

Step three: Cut your tulle into strips that are double the length you want your tutu to be. Because it was cheaper, I bought the black tulle by the yard. This, however, meant more work for me back home when I had to start cutting. My Joann’s sold the white and red tulle in little spools. Those cut up much faster. I used the width of the tulle in the spools to determine how wide all the strips would be.

So much black tulle. So much.

So much black tulle. So much.

I also got a little silly cutting yards and yards of black tulle into strips.

This is me in my tulle shroud.

This is me in my tulle shroud.

Step four: It’s time to start stringing that tulle onto the elastic. I slipped my elastic over the back of a chair for this part. Take a strip of tulle and fold it in half. Put that folded piece behind the elastic with the folded edge at the top. Pull the rest of the tulle through the loop, and pull it tight. Voila! There’s your the start of your tutu. Now do this about 657 more times.

For the N7 stripe, I just did as much red as I wanted and then did half as much white on either side.

2015-07-24 15.22.17 2015-07-24 15.22.26

Step five: Pull on your N7 program alumni tank, some running shorts, and your tutu, and make this 5K your favorite race on the Citadel.

This was so perfect I had to do it.

This was so perfect I had to do it.

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