Posted on August 2, 2012
My younger sister is getting married. I get to say younger a lot, since I’m the oldest, of many. But, due to the nature of marrying into the military, the planning was done with a tight date in mind. I was sad to hear that I wouldn’t be able to attend the event, because I already had events scheduled for celebrating my own wedding anniversary, that including non-refundable tickets to Iceland. The HB and I are heading out of town a week prior to their wedding.
I wanted to give her something for her bridal shower, that she would be able to treasure long after the hand towels fade and the coffee pot puts out.
She’s going to be a wife. She’s going to be a mom soon. She’s going to have to bake. She needs an apron!
I use a lot of wonderful things in the kitchen, but an apron is what really gets me excited. It needs to be cute so she wants to wear it. Like Desi would wear anything that wasn’t cute.
I’ve done sewing with my G’ma for years, but I’m not a seamstress by any stretch of the word. I can follow a pattern, I know what the symbols mean and I can think logically out loud with G’ma through a confusing inside/outside garment maneuver (like sewing a sports coat circa 2002).
However, I don’t ever look at a bolt of fabric and say, man I will make a sweet dress out of that! (So please keep that in mind when I share my measurements below.)
So I stressed about finding a fabric store in the area, until I remembered…I have my family’s genes. That means, I have a stash.
I dug out my fabric and low and behold, I have three suitable contenders. And the greatest part is, the fabric was from my grandma’s stash so it’s like I’m passing down a little history with it.
I don’t have a pattern for an apron, so I look at my own apron as a guide.
The fabric could be a little busy, so I chose a solid grey to help break it up.
Fabric:(Small/Large) (rough cutting guidelines – I reshaped after I got the rough rectangles cut out)
-(1) rectangle for the bust (10×14) (12×16)
-(1) rectangle-ish shape for the bottom half (22×21) (24×23)
-(2) neck straps – front and back (24×4)
-(2) waist straps – front and back (34×4)
-(2) waist band – front and back (24.5×4)
-(1) rectangle for added pocket
Buttons for ornamental reasons!
Paper – wrapping paper size
Finished seam – Press under slightly under 1/2 inch, then press under 1/2 inch. Seam towards the folded edge. (Essentially you are folding twice to tuck in the raw edge.)
When you want to make something out of fabric, but don’t have a pattern, or a convenient grandma who has a stash of large segments of tracing paper, wrapping paper is a fine substitute. If you are scared about haphazardly cutting into your beautiful sheet of fabric, I suggest cutting your pieces out of paper first and trying them on. Then you can make sure you aren’t wasting by cutting things the wrong size. Just be sure to remember ever edge has an extra 1 inch for seams.
During the entire process, I need a model to try things on. My choices are Karma (my cat) or the HB. You can guess who won.
Desi: If I can give you one piece of married advice – be sure your chosen one will allow you to use him as a model/pin cushion. This includes waking him up at 9 AM because you just finished your project and need someone to try it on immediately. AND he gladly smiles through the entire process.
I also learned from G’ma that ironing as you sew is CRUCIAL. It may feel like EXTRA work to newbies, but trust me, it’s well worth it in the end. Every time you fold over the fabric, don’t just pin down the edge and stitch it. Be sure to press the seam down. This will make your life much easier at the machine and your finished garment will look much better when completed. PLUS – it will be pretty much pressed when your done!
BASICALLY – I sewed the four straps, the finished the bust piece and the bottom panel the way I wanted them to fit. I then pinned them all the to waist band and basted them into place. I pinned on the top panel of the waist band and sewed it into place. I had the HB try it on and Decided to hem it with a curved bottom to give it a little more feminine feeling.
I placed the pocket where it felt comfortable to put his hand. I modeled the pocket shape from a pocket on an old pair of jeans. The pocket is really meant for a timer. I like to keep my iPhone in mine, so I can take pictures of whatever I’m baking.
I had to of course finish off the apron with a button. Buttons ARE my favorite thing in the world. The button is made from a scarf that was my great grandma’s, so it’s got some good juju.
I even got to give her a quick sewing lesson before I had to run back out of town! (She gets why you press before every seam!) Nice job, sis!
Getting married is a big important day. I’m so sad I can’t be there, but at least I can be in her thoughts when she’s cooking for her new family. (I better get her a cookbook….)