Vintage-Style Aprons from 'Oh Sew Easy'

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Aprons were originally created for a simple purpose — to keep your clothes clean while cooking. Well, aprons aren’t just for the kitchen anymore: They’re an accessory. Designers have them in a variety of colors and styles, some beaded, others in a vintage style and — what can we say? — we want them all. This excerpt from "Oh Sew Easy - Life Style" by Valori Wells and Carolyn Spencer offers a free apron pattern that’s homier and quicker to make than chocolate chip cookies. Well, almost.
Main Body (3/4 yard) Cotton Print 1
Top Band and pockets (1/4 yard) Cotton Print 2
Waistband (1/2 yard) Cotton Print 3
Thread for Topstitching Buttons, rickrack, ribbon, or beads for accents
Stitching and knitting gauge (optional)
Finished Sizes
KITCHEN APRON: 28-inches long
COCKTAIL APRON: 23-inches long
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Source: Vintage-Style Aprons from 'Oh Sew Easy' - Craftfoxes

Step 1

1. To round the bottom corners of each pocket, place 2 pocket squares right sides together, and fold in half. Use a chalk pencil to draw a quarter circle in the corner of the raw edges. Cut on the chalk line through all layers.
2. For each pocket, open the fold, and stitch the pieces together, using a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Leave a 3-inch opening in the center of the top edge.
3. Trim the points from each corner. Be sure not to cut so close that you cut the stitching. Make 1⁄8-inch deep clips along the curved edge so the seam will be smooth when the pocket is turned right side out.
4. Turn each pocket right side out and press, pressing under the seam allowance of the opening. Whipstitch the opening closed.

Step 2

Top Band
1. Make a Clean Finished-Edge Hem on the short edges of the rectangle.

Step 3

Main Body
1. Make a Clean Finished-Edge Hem around the entire main body of the apron.
2. Pin the pockets to the main body 2-1/2 inches from the sides and 2-1/2 inches from the top edge.
3. Topstitch each pocket to the main body, stitching 1⁄8 inch from the edges of the pocket. Leave the top edge open.
4. To make a gathering stitch, set the machine stitch length to the longest stitch (usually 5). Stitch across the top edge of the main body piece, 3/4 inch from the edge.
5. Remove the fabric from the machine, and cut the threads, leaving long tails. Knot the thread tails together at one end of the stitching. At the opposite end, gently pull the bobbin thread (the bottom thread) to gather the main body until it is the same length as the top band (18-1/2 inches). Even out the gathers. Knot the thread tails together to secure.
6. Set the sewing machine back to a normal stitch length.

Step 4

Put the Apron Together
1. Fold the top band in half crosswise, and mark the bottom edge of the fold with a pin. Fold the top edge of the gathered main body in half, and mark the fold with a pin.
2. Place the top edge of the main body on the bottom edge of the top band, with right sides up. Overlap the edges 1 inch, and match the center pins. Pin the overlapped edges together.
4. Press under 1/2-inch on the top edge of the top band, and then open the fold. The pressed line will be your guide as you insert the edge into the waistband.
5. Fold the top band and the main body in half crosswise and mark the center of the top edge with a pin. Fold the waistband in half crosswise and mark the center of the bottom (open) edge with a pin.
6. Place the top edge of the top band in the open edges of the waistband. Match the center pins, and align the pressed line on the top band with the bottom edges of the waistband. Pin the layers together. Topstitch along the bottom edge of the waistband.
7. Add trims and embellishments as desired to match your fabrics.

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