A pancake tulle skirt is a tutu made of layers of tulle. The layers of netting fabric make a delicate circle, likened to a pancake because they stick outward from the body forming a flat layer, rather than hanging down toward the floor. This flat skirt, is most notably worn by ballet dancers in Swan Lake as part of their tutus.
Make a waistband. Measure your waist with the measuring tape and cut a strip of wide elastic to the same measurement. Set this aside.
Lay out the tulle fabric. You will use approximately six layers of tulle fabric. For the first tulle layer, measure from the hip line to just above the knee. Write it down. Use the yard stick to mark the measurement and then cut the first layer to size. Next, subtract an inch from the first layer's measurement for the next layer's size. Do this for each layer, subtracting an inch from the size of the layer before and cutting. Write all these measurements down.
Gather the first layer of tulle fabric. About a centimeter from the top of the first layer of tulle, make long stitches all the way across. Make sure one end of the stitching is securely tied. Work through another stitch about an inch or so below the first. Then hold the tulle fabric and pull on the thread, this gathers your tulle. Do not start on the other layers until you are sure you will have enough tulle fabric, gathered, to match the length of the elastic strip you cut. It is okay to have a lot of gathered first layers.
Sew the first layer onto the elastic strip. Make sure you sew close to the bottom of the elastic, leaving room for the next five layers to be sewed on.
Gather remaining layers, now that you know the amount it will take to make it along your elastic waistband. Sew them onto the waistband accordingly. The shortest cut layer will be the top layer.
Tie the first layer to the second layer with the thread. You do not have to do this step if you want the layers to hang free, but this will not get you the desired pancake effect. Repeat this tacking process, tying the second layer to the third layer. You do not have to tack it in the same spot. In fact, you can cover these tacks by using satin ribbon tied in pretty bows. The tulle fabric should naturally span out like a pancake after all the tacking is done.
Sew waistband together. Make sure you use a secure knot and a tight stitch. Once your waist band is sewn, go try on your pancake tulle skirt. This is where you will notice little things you need to refine. For example, the skirt is hanging not anything like a pancake. Try using more tacks on the first layer to the second near the waistband. Make any adjustments.
Hannah Scott has been a freelance writer for more than 12 years. Scott's first published article appeared in "The Mountain Press" in 1999. She has also written for the "Tennessee Star Journal" and several websites, including RAE Magazine.