Birthday Aprons

I’ve been sewing a few things here and there. My goal is to give homemade gifts ~ as much as possible ~ to friends and family for various celebrations.

As is standard operating procedure for me, I’m late.

I’m on kind of an apron kick right now, so I made an apron for JG. Her birthday’s the same as mine, in January, and I gave this to her in May. So, right on time!

I used a vintage kitchen-y border print, along with two other fabrics from my stash.

kitschy kitchen print

I thought of J when I saw the fabric. She has lots of red in her ’40s-era kitchen, and this seemed like it belonged there, with all her red cookware and utensils.

Here’s the apron; I used the border for one ruffle and the main print for another. The main print also serves as the ties and back of the apron.

i can see lucy ricardo wearing this beauty

I also made some potholders and pot grabbers. Okay, so I don’t know what they’re really called. But they’re cute and really handy.

two standard potholders and two grabbers

For the potholders, I just cut squares, batted, quilted, and bound them. For the fingertip grabber thingies, I used this tutorial from Crafty Asian Girl, found on Pinterest. It’s a great way to use up scraps. The original has one pocket, but I’m a klutz in the kitchen so I made two, and insulated them both.

Unless you have asbestos fingers, I advise springing for some insulated batting like Insul-bright if you plan to make these or other hot pads.

there are pockets for your thumb and fingers

how’s that grab ya?

Next up, a birthday apron for MG. Her kitchen is of similar vintage, and has charming sage-green beadboard cabinetry. She and her son both love orange (her son to the point that any other color might as well not exist), so these colors were a natch:

perfect colors for a retro apron

MG is an eco-green kinda girl, with a clothesline in the backyard that she actually uses, so this Retro Clothespin Apron by Dawn Stewart at Spring Water Designs seemed like a good fit.

I sewed the apron a couple of days ago, and gave it to her today (MG’s bday is in December, so I’m only a tiny bit late). Here’s the finished product:

so many uses! so spiffy!

I like soooo many things about this pattern:

  1. It’s a half apron, because sometimes you don’t need a bib;
  2. The ties are long enough to wrap around the back and tie in front;
  3. The pockets are actually a single giant pocket that goes from waistband to hem, so you can put a laundry-load’s worth of clothespins (or your cell phone, spatula, dishtowel, etc.) in it. I love pockets;
  4. There are no exposed raw edges in the apron, so it looks professionally made;
  5. It’s easy to make.*

I may get around to making some potholders for her, too. Hopefully before her next birthday. But that’s not until December so I have months to worry about that. I did make a little drawstring gift bag; I figure M or her son can use it to carry around miscellaneous necessities.

lunch? legos?

*The apron’s actually so easy to make that I’m embarrassed to say  I emailed the designer, Dawn Stewart, when I couldn’t figure out the pattern instructions. She responded (so graciously) that she was out of town for a day or two and would be happy to clarify anything upon her return. But, if I needed to finish the apron right away, I should  feel free to give her a call on her cell phone. That’s right, she gave me her cell number so I could annoy her on vacation.

I am relieved to say that wasn’t necessary. Before she responded, I decided to make a mini version in an attempt to figure it out on my own. In doing so, I realized that I had skipped a vital step. I let Dawn know what a doofus I was, and thanked her profusely.

i’m not sure they make clothespins this small

And now my neighbor’s grand-daughter’s Barbie gets an apron, too.

More soon,


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