Yesterday was a big success for 3 reasons: First of all, I started + completed my FIRST real sewing project of 2011. This year… I have not been sewing and it’s a source of personal frustration. I’ve not made time for it, and I want to. The second reason is that I made my first apron – a type of project I’ve wanted to tackle for a very long time. Finally, I made my big trek to the post office and am all but done shipping gifts. (FIST PUMP!!)
My first apron (soon to be followed by #2 and #3 for my own girls) is for the coolest girl in middle school I know. I saw the fabric shown above and *had* to give it a go. I figured she’d love the funky skeleton animals with holiday cheer. First I doodled (badly) and wrote some numbers and generally wrapped my head around how-to and what pieces I’d be cutting. Making an apron has endless options…
Next up? Carefully cut all the pieces. Despite wanting a frilly ruffled apron at first – I knew it would be too much and I’d either mess it up, or go mad from trying to figure it out on my first time.
Also? get out iron + ironing board. My kids were fascinated. What IS this thing? (can you tell how often I iron?). The lesson I’ve learned in sewing projects past is that you MUST IRON IT ALL. The fabric needs to be pressed flat/creased/etc. The iron is your friend. Straighter lines, fewer screw ups – that is what the iron does for sewing projects. Don’t try to fight it.
Below you see my pieces as I’ve been cutting them and laying out – PRE iron. Laying it out helps me think about the order in which I need to sew, see if I like where it’s going, and generally gives me time to make sure I like what I’m doing. Simple as this project is, it’s not easy in the sense that I was using my brain on FULL CAPACITY the whole time. No day dreaming or “slapping together” for me when it comes to this kind of project!!
Ok. Pleased with my pocket size, thickness of straps, etc. I iron, iron, iron, and sew the pieces as needed. I sewed all the pieces (except neck strap and straps to tie in back) onto front before stitching a (black polka dot) piece of fabric to the back to give apron better weight and such.
There was a point… when I sewed the apron strings into it and flipped right side out to make sure it was working that I realized “oh holy crap. This is going to work.” To be perfectly honest I didn’t do more documenting or anything because I wasn’t sure I could pull it off.
Elizabeth models my apron – and asks when I’m going to make hers with the fabric she had picked out. I used myself and Elizabeth to gauge sizing. Obviously doesn’t need to be exact, but I wanted to be sure it’d be a good size for the young lady it’s heading to.
The very BEST part? I can not tell you how accomplished making this made me feel. I have tried aprons before with patterns – I failed spectacularly EVERY TIME. This time I just grabbed my plain single piece of fabric fronted apron and added my own touches (belt, pocket, etc) – and it worked better. It was a success. I know I’m going on and on – but this was a HUGE breakthrough for me – and I’m slightly giddy.
Will I hit the craft shows? Open my own apron shop? Probably not. My sewing is still weak at best – but I will happily accept this victory and mail off this first (maybe only) homemade gift of the year.
question: would you want to see a process video (of next one) and have sizes/pieces used to make such an apron? Let me know in comments… I am thinking about if I want to do more tutorial as I gear up to make the next one…