Tuesday, April 23, 2013

french- inspired tea towel apron diy

So book promoting is kicking my tail a little bit. But in a good way.
This week I have two events, two nights in a row.
Last night I got to speak the most lovely group of women at First United Methodist Church in Little Rock, and tonight I am continuing on the Homemade Living Room Tour at a friends house. 
The Homeamde Living Room Tour is a little bit like a Tupperware Party for A Homeamde Year.
But instead of Tupperware, I am sharing my story, reading a chapter, and serving a few simple sample recipes and craft ideas from the book, and answering questions about how all of this came to be. I am also selling/signing the book as well. 
I adore meeting new women and hearing their stories, and getting to share my story and the book with them.
But I am not going to lie. 2 events in 2 days on top of work is stretching me.

(We have been test driving them around town at friends homes to see how they go over. If you would like to know more about my upcoming events or if you are interested in hosting a Living Room Tour party, please check out my Events page. for details and contact info)

But enough about all of that-what we are really all here to do today is talk about cute aprons. That you can make. 
Not a master seamstress? Trust me. It will be okay. This one is EASY. I did it, after all.

With Mother's Day, Weddings and Graduations just around the corner, this can be the time of year where easy-but-unique gifts can be in high demand.  I thought this might be a good time to show you this pretty simple apron that I designed this past December. Because I only dabble in sewing (I am a fan of things with straight edges, no armholes for me please) I designed an apron that was easy to make, required almost no measuring or cutting, and could be easily customized. I made my aprons to give out at Christmas, but I think that they are going to be a go-to gift for all sorts of events and holidays for me going forward.

I have done my best to explain my process below.
I have to give a huge shout-out to all those sewing writers out there because for me, writing sewing directions is ten times as hard as writing a craft project or recipe. I promise.
There are three sewing projects in A Homemade Year and I had to help getting the directions straight on all three (thank you Mom, Jeanetta and Jemimah!) 

I am visual and tactile learner, so I liked to be able to see a  finished product and then work backwards when I am following DIY instructions.
I tried to make the directions for this apron simple and clear, but they may be more like mud.
If so, please feel free to ask me a question or suggest a better to explain what I mean.

To make this apron I used:
2 generous in size flour sack towels
2 large grommets
5 yards of 5/8" Cotton Twill Tape
Sewing Machine
Coordinating Thread (I used red)

This first thing I did was wash, dry and iron my towels. This last bit-the ironing- is a tip from my mother who is a master seamstress.Even in my limited sewing experience, I have become true believer in washing and ironing first.

Next, I stitched down the middle of your 1 1/2 yards of twill table using a zigzag setting on my sewing machine to make the neck tie. 
(Now here is why I am not ever going to actually make these aprons to sell. I stink at all the finishing details. Don't look too closely at the ends of my twill tape ties, or you will see a bit of folded,stitched, mess. )
With the exception of finishing the ends, making the stitched twill tape (which I bought in bulk from Amazon,) was super simple. I love the simple detail of the red against the white- and the zigzag just adds a hint of whimsy. 

To create the shape,  I laid one towel horizontal and then laid the other towel on top of the first vertically. I then pinned my remaining plain white twill tape across the middle of the vertical towel where it met the horizontal towel, thus securing all three elements together and creating a waistband. 
To sew them together, I started at one of end of the twill tape (the part that was for tying in a bow) and stitched  down the center of the the twill tape and then the two towels together, using the zigzag stitch again, running the stitch all the way to the other end of the twill tape. 

I made the tie extremely long because I like the be able to wrap around and tie my aprons in the front. Feel free to adjust your length as needed.

For the neck ties, I added two large grommets about 2 1/2 inches in from the edge of the vertical towel, and about 3/4 an inch from the top. I used silver grommets and a grommet punch. 
Next, I ran my neck tie through each grommet and then knotted the ends. This created the neck loop.

The only thing that could improve this apron is a pocket on the bust area. I might have to add one when I make the next batch. My favorite thing about this apron, is the "hand towel" that is created by the bottom half of the vertical apron. I am forever wiping my hands on towels and my apron when I am working in the kitchen and I like having this little flap so close at hand. Also, it is good for gathering eggs.
I love that his apron is fairly unisex, a good fit for most sizes, and the neck strap is easily adjustable. It is easy to make and easy on the budget.

So there you have it! A little DIY apron for your Tuesday. I hope between the pictures and my less-than perfect instructions you can figure this one out and make it your own. And please let me know if I need to make something clearer!


  1. 'Super cute apron! Congratulations on the book! What an exciting time! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Love this apron. I'm planning on making one but making the hand towel removable with a second one to swap out when washing the first. Not sure how I'll attach it yet, snaps, Velcro, or something else. Thanks for posting this with the instructions.


ok, really. tell me the truth... do these comments make me look fat?

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