Sunday, January 16, 2011

Cooking is "sew" much fun!

Ok, ok apologies for the terrible pun.  I couldn't help it; I'm corny.

I know it's not the best picture, but you try getting a 3 year old to stand still for a photo.
Last weekend my siblings came to visit me.  It was the first time we've all been together outside of organized family functions.  We had a great time together.  My little niece was there as well and one of our favorite things to do together is bake "cakes".  Technically we bake just about anything, but you try explaining the difference between cake and brownies/banana nut bread.  

So the last time I saw my niece I tried, unsuccessfully, to get her to wear my apron.  However, she quickly pointed out that "it's too big."  Well this time I decided it was time for little miss Hope to get her very own apron.  I looked online for a couple of how-to's to make an apron and really didn't find anything that I particularly liked.  This one is an adaptation of several blog versions and a pseudo-hack of Williams Sonoma's children's apron.  It took about 1 yard of the base fabric and 1/4 a yard of the accent fabric.  For the record, she loved it and we spent all weekend whipping all kinds of tasty food...until I decided it would be a great idea to grab the handle of a skillet that had been in a 425 degree oven.  Didn't work out so well, but on the brighter side, I'm keeping my "destined to injure myself somehow during any project" streak going.  I also sliced my finger with my rotary cutter while sewing the apron.  Maybe that's not such a bright side, after all.  I am definitely in the running to be the first person who actually needs to live in a bubble, but I digress.

Are there any kiddos in your life who need an adorable apron?  If so, here are the instructions!

  • 1 yard base fabric, 1/4 yard accent fabric
  • Basic sewing equipment: rotary cutter, scissors, sewing machine, thread
  • Fold a 14"x30" inch piece of fabric in half lengthwise.  Eyeballing where you want the armhole to go, draw a semi-circle with something for marking fabric.  I think I measured about 6" in on the top and about 20" up on the side.  

  • When you're satisfied with the armhole locations, cut them out.  Repeat with another piece of fabric the same size.  I used two different pieces so I could enclose the seams.  If you're not worried about it, you could simply use one.

  • Cut out the rectangle for the pocket.  I completely eyeballed this.  I think it was about 4"x10" total.  Fold 1/2 in around the entire rectangle and iron.  Topstitch what will be the top of the pocket.  Place the pocket on the front piece and topstitch it to the apron.  Don't top-stitch the top or you'll sew down down the entire pocket!  I also sewed down the middle of the pocket to create two small pockets, instead of one large pocket.  (And sorry, I forgot to the take a picture of this step.)
  • Ties and what not- Cut out 2 strips of fabric from you accent fabric measuring 3"x15".  This will be the neckties for the apron.  Fold the strip in half and iron, unfold.  Fold each raw side inward to the crease you just ironed in.  This will leave a folded edge on the outside.  Finally fold the entire thing in half lengthwise.  Sew down with a straight stitch as close to the edge of the tie as you can get.  I chose to miter the edges, but feel free to simply tack it down on itself.  Repeat twice with the base fabric to make the side ties.

  • Assembly time!  Put your apron pieces together right sides facing.  Place the side ties midway up the apron.  Leave a small section of the ties sticking outside what will become your seam.  The rest will between the two apron pieces.  Pin the pieces together, except the bottom.  Sew all the sides with a 1/4" seam, except the bottom.  Once sewn together, cut the excess tie pieces from the sides, flip right side to and iron all the seams flat.

  • Sew on the neck ties.  Pin the neck ties about an inch in and an inch down on each side.  Sew a square around the entire side and an X across the middle, without picking up the needle at each corner.

  • Lastly, fold the bottom of the apron under slightly rounding the corners.  Topstitch down.  Iron one more time and you're finished!  
The entire project took me less than an hour and cost about $15.

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