Saturday, December 5, 2015

Children's Apron: A Step by Step Guide

Well it's offical, my oldest bear is now 6 years old! Last weekend we hosted a gingerbread house decorating party and each little guest received one of these cute aprons to use at the party and take home. These would be perfect to make and give along with a set of baking utensils for birthday presents or to make for your little kitchen helper(s) this holiday season. For a downloadable FREE PDF pattern and a step by step guide with lots of photos, click below.

Children's Apron: A Step by Step guide

Step 1: Start by gathering your supplies and cutting out your pattern pieces. Click here to download the pattern. If you don't have access to a printer, here are the measurements for the pattern pieces. The PDF pattern doesn't include the ruffle trim, bias tape, waist band or neck strap, so those pieces will need to be cut out as per the measurements below. 

    • Cut 1 - 2 in x 80 in long strip for the apron skirt's gathered ruffle trim (photo A)
    • Cut 1 - 19 in x 11 in rectangle with one long side with curved edges (out of main fabric)
    • Cut 1 - 19 in x 11 in rectangle with one long side with curved edges (out of lining fabric)
    • Cut 1 - 8 in x 10 in square with one of the 10 in sides with curved edges for apron bib (out of main bib fabric)
    • Cut 1 - 8 in x 10 in square with one of the 10 in sides with curved edges for apron bib (out of lining fabric)
    • Cut 1 - 2 in x 35 in long strip on the bias for bias tape around the apron bib (out of apron skirt fabric) or you can purchase pre-made bias tape. 
    • Cut 2 - 2 in x 44 in for the waist band/tie 
    • Cut 1 - 3 in x 19 in for the neck strap
    • 2 x buttons 
    • thread 
    • sewing machine 
    • cutting mat and roller cutter 

Step 2: Fold the long strip of fabric for the apron skirt's gathered trim lengthways and pin and sew along the edge. Use a gathering sewing machine foot if you have one or sew a wide and long zig zag stitch and gently pull on one end of the thread to gather the fabric. You should end up with gathered ruffle trim like the one shown in photo A below. 

Photo A

Step 3: Pin the ruffle trim to the main skirt fabric with raw edges together. The ruffle should sit on top of the apron fabric (Photo B)

Photo B

Step 4: With the ruffle trim still pinned in place, pin the skirt lining fabric on top of the ruffle trim and main skirt fabric (ensure the pin has gone through and secured the three layers). (Photo C)

Photo C

Step 5: Remove the pins that were only going through the main skirt fabric and the ruffle trim. Your three layers should still be secured with the pins going through the lining/ruffle trim/main fabric. (Photo D)

Photo D

Step 6: Sew around the skirt edge. (Photo E)

Photo E

Step 7: Turn right side out and press. (Photo F)

Photo F

Step 8: Press and pin 3 pleats at the raw edge of the skirt. (Photo G)

Photo G

The top of the skirt should measure 10 inches now with the pleats in place. (Photo H)

Photo H

Step 9: Sew the pleats in place (Photo I). Don't worry too much about straight stitches, the top of the skirt and bottom of the bib will be covered by the waist band/tie. 

Photo I 

Step 10: Now it's time to sew the apron bib. Start by sewing the two bib fabric pieces (main fabric and lining) together (wrong sides). Sew the two short sides and curved long side, but make sure to leave the straight long side unsewn. This is to secure the fabric pieces and make pinning your bias tape easier. (Photo J)

Photo J

Step 11: Unfold the bias tape on one side and pin your bias tape around the sewn edges of the lining side. If you've never made bias tape before and don't want to buy pre-made bias tape, you can follow this youtube video which does a good job of explaining how to make it using a bias tape maker. I made my bias tape by folding and ironing the fabric without the maker, so just do whichever way is easier for you. (Photo K)

Photo K

Step 12: Sew along the edge of the bias tape using the first crease as a guide. Sew along this crease to secure the bias tape on one side. Once the bias tape is sewn on one side, the back of your bib will look like Photo L. 

Photo L

Step 13: Fold the bias tape over to the front main bib fabric. Pin in place and sew along the open edge, as close to the edge of the bias tape, where it meets the main bib fabric. (Photo M)

Photo M

Once sewn, remove the pins and the apron bib should look like photo N below. 

Photo N

Step 14: With right sides together, pin the raw unsewn edge of the apron bib to the top edge of the skirt. (Photo O) 

Photo O

Step 15: Sew along the pinned edge. (Photo P)

Photo P

Once the bib and skirt are sewn together the apron should look like Photo Q below. 

Photo Q

Step 16: Using one of the waist band/tie fabric pieces, fold in half along the long side and then fold each of the half long sides onto itself again, as if creating a bias tape. Repeat with the second waist band/tie fabric piece. Open each fabric piece so that the middle is no longer folded but the raw long edges are still folded in on themselves. Pin one waist band/tie to the front of the apron (placing the waist band so that the centre runs along where the bib and skirt meet) and repeat with the second waist band, pinning it to the lining fabric. Try and line up the waist bands so they are roughly positioned in the same spots. Remember the waist band fabric should be wrong sides together (so right fabric sides visible). (Photo R). Tuck and pin the ends of the ties in on themselves to close up the raw edges and sew the waist band along all edges.

Photo R

Step 17: Take the neck strap fabric and with right sides together, sew along the long side (Photo S).

Photo S

Step 18: Using a safety pin, turn the fabric right side out and press with the seem edge down the middle of one side. Sew around the entire edge of the neck strap (Photo T).

Photo T

Step 19: Sew button holes about 1 inch up from the two shorter edges (Photo U).

Photo U

Step 20: Hand sew two buttons onto the bib, about 1.5 inches from the top edge of the bib and 1.5 inches in from the side edge of the bib (Photo V).

Photo V

Place the buttons through the button holes on the neck strap and you're finished! Well done :)

Happy sewing!

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