Sunday, June 28, 2009

"Designer" Apron Tutorial

So, you want to make your very own, one of a kind, "designer" apron? This is a great stash buster pattern! First, you need a pattern. I have a one-piece apron that I just placed on top of my fabric. Carefully cut around it. By 'carefully,' I mean, don't cut your apron by mistake! If you don't already have an apron like this, you can find several free patterns on the internet like this one:

Go through your stash and pull out one piece of fabric large enough for the apron body. Gather some coordinating, complimentary, or surprise fabrics. Cut the apron out, but ignore the rest of their instructions and follow mine now. ;o) Just remember, this ain't rocket science. The width of the ruffle doesn't have to be exact. I suggest not making it too a little 'cheap' with it.

Cut 1 Bib ruffle = 4" deep x 1 1/2 times the width of the bib. (For the apron pattern in the above link, the bib ruffle will be about 13" wide.) Don't get it too wide or you'll have too much ruffle.

Cut 3 Bottom ruffles out of different fabrics = 4" deep x 1 1/2 times the width of the apron.

Cut 2 Ties = 3" x 42"

Cut 1 Neck band = 3" x 22"

Don't get bogged down with the width of the apron. If you have the full 42-44" of fabric, and you need the width, cut your apron that large. If you are working with a remant, go narrower. Adjust the width of the ruffles according. Just remember, the more ruffling, the more work you have to do!

Now that you have everything cut, if you have a serger, serge all edges on the apron and the ruffles (not the ties or neck band). With all ruffle edges serged, guess what? You don't have to hem the ruffles! Yeah! (Sorry. If you don't have a serger, start hemming ALL those edges - except the ties and neck band.) After serging the ruffle edges, pick one long edge as the top and run a row of basting stitches. Be sure to leave thread tails so that you can gather them.

Turn under the serged edge at the bib top only and sew 1/4 - 3/8" from the folded edge.
Fold the bib top in half and put a pin there. Fold the bib ruffle in half and pin it to the top center front of the bib.

Pull your gathering threads. Pin both ends of the ruffle on top of the bib. Sew the ruffle to the bib.

Match the edge of the bib with the edge of the ruffle.
Fold as one and turn the serged edge to the back and stitch it down. (If you had to hem everything, just lay the ruffle end even with the edge of the apron and stitch down.)
Continue stitching the entire 'arm' area.
Find the center front of the bottom of your apron and the center of a long ruffle. Pin and sew the same as for the bib. Pick up your second ruffle, find centers, slightly overlap to top edge of the first ruffle, gather and sew it down. Follow the same procedure with the third ruffle.

Line up the ruffle edges with the side of the apron.
Turn under 1/4 - 3/8" and sew through all the layers. (If it's all hemmed, just line up the edges of the ruffles with the apron edge and sew them together.)

Ties and neck band - Fold each in half lengthwise. With 1/4" seams, sew across one short section then down the long raw edges making a tube. Using a skewer or your favorite turning trick, turn the ties and band. Sew each to the apron in its appropriate place. Leave one end of the neck band free.
Cut 1" piece of velcro. Sew one side to the back of the apron. (Yeah, go ahead and sew through the ruffle - it won't be noticeable.) Adjust the neck band to suit you and sew the other piece of velcro to the band.Try your new designer apron on for size and GO COOK SOMETHING GOOD!

I am going to make a Cannoli Pie. Photos to follow...


Gloria said...

thanks for sharing the pattern. I have added this to my project

JessicaSews said...

Enjoyed your tutorial, Sherry!