Monday, January 9, 2012

Tutorial and Free Pattern: Shannon's Apron

I always loved spending time with my mom in the kitchen growing up (you can read about how we made sugar cookies here). She had a knack for throwing together a good meal, and I loved to help out! I would help mix or taste - and let's be honest, there is always enough clean up for everyone to help out with! When I think of growing up and spending time with my mom, I can imagine her kneading out bread dough and opening up her orange Betty Crocker cookbook (you know the one I'm talking about?). She is still the one I call if I have a question about a quick substitution or for a favorite recipe.

Anyway, when I was planning out Christmas gifts for this year, I knew that I wanted to do a cooking theme for my sister-in-law's family (since I, at least, associate family and food). Shannon has a toddler who loves to help out, so I found a good cookbook for toddlers and some smaller-sized kitchen utensils (like little spatulas, a whisk, and tongs). I also wanted to make an apron for the mother-daughter pair, but I really didn't want them to be too matchy-matchy. I was all ready to design the patterns myself, when I realized that I have no idea how big a toddler actually is. Luckily, Kelly at Sewing in No Man's Land (can I just say that she is one talented lady!) put out a free pattern for a toddler apron earlier this year. This is how that turned out. I couldn't be more in love with how cute it is.

For Shannon (my sister-in-law), I decided I wanted her apron to have some similar features. I wanted the same round pocket and the ruffle at the bottom. However, I decided I wanted her apron to be just from the waist down. I bought the same print in a different color (more oranges, yellows, and greens) and accented it with an orange coordinating fabric. This time, I made the pattern myself (I know about how big an adult is!). And, I am going to share the full tutorial and pattern with you today! Are you as excited as I am?

Shannon's Apron
*all seam allowances are 1/4" unless otherwise noted*

Now, for fair warning before we begin. This is the first pattern I have ever created. I don't have pattern making software; I used a pen, paper, my scanner, and Word. I tried my best to get every line to match up and to get everything the right dimension. If you need to shift a piece of paper to the right or the left a little bit to get all of the edges matched up as you piece together the pattern - then do that! Let me know if there are any major problems, so that way I can adjust them for you and future readers. Just know I tried my best, and I realize I am not perfect :).

You can download the pattern here.

Print your pattern pieces. There are 11 pages, making a total of 5 pattern pieces for this project. Tape together the edges with cooresponding shapes and cut around each of the pieces. On each pattern piece, it says which fabric and how many of that fabric you need to cut out. Make sure your fabric is folded on the Fold lines. If you have a directional print, note the top and bottom of the main apron piece.

1. Cut out a total of 8 pieces of fabric. (unpictured is the white, lining piece)

2. Place your two pocket pieces right-sides together. I put two pins close to each other for my starting and ending point, to make sure I leave a gap in order to turn the piece right-side out.
Sew around the pocket leaving an opening at the top. Clip the corners and the rounded edges (careful not to cut the seams).
Turn your pocket right-side out and press. Sew the opening closed using a small seam allowance (I also topstitched an 1/8" from the top edge of the pocket).

3. Choose where you want your pocket to be on the main apron piece, and pin in place.
Sew an 1/8" from the edge around three sides of the pocket
(leaving the top of the pocket open).

4. Prepare the ruffle. Hem the bottom, left, and right sides of the ruffle under
(I ironed first and then sewed).

5. Prepare the waist band. Iron each short end in about 1/4".
Iron the waist band in half the long way.

6. Place your ruffle (on the bottom) and the waist band (on the top) on the main apron piece.
With right sides together, place the ruffle on top of the main apron piece, lining up the two corners. Pin back the rest of the ruffle so it is not touching the outer edge of the main apron piece (we don't want it to get sewn in!).
Line up the raw edge of the waist band with the top of the apron piece. Center the waist band horizontally (there should be a 1/4" gap between the edge of the waist and the edge of the apron). Pin back the rest of the waist band so it is not touching the outer edge of the main apron piece (we don't want that to get sewn in either!).

7. Lay the main apron piece lining on top of the main apron piece fabric, right sides together. Pin all the way around.

8. Sew around the apron, using a 1/4" seam allowance.
Leave an opening on one of the sides of the apron (enough to turn the apron right side out).

9. Turn the apron right side out and press. Sew the opening shut on the side of the apron. Sew around just the main apron piece (DO NOT sew over top of the waist band) using less than 1/4" seam allowance (I used an 1/8").

10. Prepare the waist ties. With right-sides together, sew each of the waist ties in half down one long side and one short end. Snip the corner and turn each waist tie right side out (you should have two waist ties). Press flat.

11. Insert the raw edge of the waist tie inside of the waist band. Pin in place.
Sew close to the edge (closing the hole and attaching the waist tie) - making sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of your seam. Repeat on the other side.

12. Now you have your completed apron!

I would love to see what your completed apron looks like!
Write a comment linking it to your blog or email me a picture!

Have a great sewing day!

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  1. Cute apron - and a lovely clear tutorial too!

    I would love if you came over and linked this project to my weekly Round Tuit party at:
    Have a great week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success

  2. This is such a cute and bright apron :) 

    I hope you will share it at my party, Some Good Stuff:


  3. This is so cute! I love the fabric too.

  4. The apron was a lot of fun to make, and I was hoping the steps were clear. That is good to hear! Thanks for the invite. I just linked up!

  5. I was excited to find a matching print to go with the toddler apron. Thanks for the invite. I just linked up!

  6. I just love fabric - especially the red polka dot combined with the red/pink/blue print on the toddler apron. Thanks for stopping by!

  7. Great apron and love the colors and fabric. Stopping by from Creative Itch linky party and your newest follower.

    Here is what I shared:

  8. Cute apron!  Great, cheery color choices...wonderful tutorial too!  I would be thrilled if you'd share it at my party, going on now!  Hope to see you there!

  9. Very cute! Pinning this for later!

  10. ButtercreamSewingMachineJanuary 14, 2012 at 7:19 PM

    I am glad you like it! Did you use the Pin It button? I just added it to my blog this week, and I was hoping that it was working correctly. Thanks for stopping by!

  11. Love this! Can you add this project to SaMiE's first ever SURPRISE linky party? here's the link Thanks!

  12. Nice.. I love the fabric.. Thanks for linking up!

  13. Such a cute apron. I'm definately going to have to try it.

    New follower from Rae Gun

  14. Generally I don't learn post on blogs, however I wish to say that this write-up very forced me to check out and do it! Your writing style has been amazed me. Thanks, quite great post.
    UV Sterilizer

  15. I love your aprons. I really love the fabric, can you tell me where you got it or something about it, so that I can look for it? thanks