Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Apron

One day as my mom and I were shopping, we saw an adorable apron in Pier 1. It didn't look too difficult to make, so I tucked the idea away and brought it back out in time to make one for my mom's birthday last month. It really is a pretty simple project and would be a wonderful hostess or Christmas gift.

*Once again, I started writing this out and found that it is hard to explain! But then I was so far into it, I just had to finish. If you really want better explanation, e-mail me or let me know in the comments. Or better yet, come over, and we can make one together!

You need:

-large rectangle of white material 18x24 inches
-six different fabric pieces for ruffles, each 5x40
-three fabric pieces in same print for band and ties
-6x24 inches for band
-6x24 inches for ties (two of these)
  • Cut out your rectangle to be the size you want it. Mine was about 24x18 inches. Hem the edges all around. (Folding and ironing first really helps.)
  • Once you know the size of your base fabric, then you can cut out your ruffles. You can decide how many ruffles you want. To know the size of the ruffle strips, take the width of your rectangle fabric (mine was 18 inches) and divide by the number of ruffles you want, then add two inches for a seam and overlap allowance. I had six ruffles, so the width of each was five inches. For the length of the ruffle, I about doubled the length of the rectangle. This is the part that will be scrunched, so you can use less or more length depending on how ruffly you want it to be. My length was 40 inches.
  • On your large rectangle, mark with a pencil two inches from the top. This is where your band will go and where your top ruffle will be sewn. From that point, make a mark every 3 inches.
  • Hem three sides of each ruffle, leaving the top open. Fold and iron the top.
  • To make the ruffle, use your sewing machine to create a long, loose stitch across the top of the fabric. (Adjust the stitch length and tension to do this.) Pull on one of the threads to create a ruffle about 25 inches long.
  • I found it easiest to sew the ruffles as I made them. Staring at the bottom, pin the ruffle in place. The bottom ruffle should hang over the bottom of the rectangle. Also, make sure the ruffle is wide enough to hide any of the white rectangle. Sew directly onto the rectangle.
  • Continue creating ruffles and sewing until you get to the top one. There should be a couple of inches left above it.
  • To make the band: Fold and iron the edges 1/4 inch. Fold the width in half, so you have a 2.5 inch band that is still about 24 inches long. This will go over the top of the rectangle, covering the top ruffle. Pin in place and sew a bottom stitch, but leave the sides open.
  • Take your other two pieces of fabric, which are for the ties. For each, fold them in half so that right sides are facing each other and the width is now 3 inches. Sew around, leaving one end open to turn right side out. On the other end, sew at an angle. (This is the end of the tie.) Do this for each and turn right side out. Once they are right side out, you can sew the open edge. You will put this inside of the open edge of the band and sew. *You can make your ties look nicer by tapering them, but that'll require a little more effort. This way worked just fine.

5 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh! You are so talented! Seriously- ETSY is calling your name!

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  2. I think it's hilarious that if I saw an apron like that at Pier 1, I would say something like, "Obviously, Harriet Vane wasn't the ONLY person having a gaudy night, haha," whereas you and your mom said, "That apron, WE MUST HAVE IT!" And it does look adorable on your mom. I'm surprised you don't already have an Etsy shop.

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  3. seriously - so cute and you totally should have an etsy shop candace!! i wish i could sew...i took woodshop in high school instead of home ec :) that's come in handy with all of our remodeling though!

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  4. Darling, Can! I love your fabric choices too. I thought your explanation was great. I wanted to share an easy way to gather fabric that I learned by mistake: set your stitch length to long stitches (just as you said) and tighten your tension. The tight tension will pucker the fabric as you sew along. If you want more pucker, crank that tension up (higher number is tighter) and if you want less, just tighten it slightly. Be sure to leave a long tail of thread at the beginning of the stitch and at the end that way you have thread to make adjustments. You should end up with a very even pucker for very little effort!

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