The Jean Apron Tutorial

This is the tutorial that was featured on Ashley's Simply Designing. Thanks for the spotlight!

Here's the JEAN APRON tutorial. {this would be so cute in a darker wash as well!}

I have decided that I really really like this apron. It was fun, easy to make, and feels like I could smear dirt on it and not have to worry about it. The other thing I love...big pockets. These were my husbands old jeans and I've decided I love guy pockets.

What you need:
Some old jeans - preferably ones bigger than you normally wear
Other fabric (for neck and waist ties) - two 4"x44" pieces & two 3 1/2"x44" pieces

Step 1 - cut apart your jeans
Cut the front and back of the jeans apart, leaving the side hem connected to the front of the pants. Cut the back legs apart.

*I started with one pair of jeans (my own) and decided they were too small to cover well, so I went for my husbands.

Step 2 - cut the crotch a little bit
Just cut enough up one side so the other will lay on top. If you cut too far, then they won't overlap.

Step 3 - decide how long you want your apron
Hold them up to your waist at your pants-line (or about at your hip line) and decide how long you want your apron to hang. You won't be hemming the bottom, so this will be the true length.

Step 4 - piece in the gap
Using the bottom of the pant legs that you just cut off: cut, position behind the front, and pin in the middle of the two sides.

Step 5 - finish the bottom front
Sew the middle piece in by sewing directly on the 2 hem lines already present on the edges. I did sew on both just to make it stronger. Make sure to sew up the crotch to seal the seam. Cut off excess from the back middle piece.

Step 6 - cut the top
You have already cut apart the back legs of the pants. Using the pant leg that has no side hems, lay it down on the ground and lay your bottom front piece on top.

Decide how long you want the top (take a guess) and center the top band of the pant leg in the middle of the waist band. Make them run parallel, even if that means the pocket is slightly crooked.

Pin on and hold up to check the length/fit. If it needs to be moved up or down, do it and pin again. It's okay if they don't meet up on the edges (this picture shows they do, on the one I really ended up making, they don't).

If desired, trim the sides of the top to be symmetrical. (for example - I would trip the left side of the top to match the right side).

Step 7 - make your neck ties
Cut two 4" x 44" pieces, iron in half, open, iron both sides in to meet the middle line, then iron in half again.

Tuck one end of each tie inside: open one end, fold down, close on the ironed lines, pin. This should seal all raw edges.

Step 8 - encase top sides with home-made binding/neck ties
Unpin one side of the waistband (connected to the top of the apron) and place the neck tie binding around the raw edge.

Begin sewing on the short side and then all the way up the front side of the apron, sealing the binding as you go.

As you get to the top band, make this pattern (below) out to the edge and continue up the length of the neck tie. This will secure the neck tie.

{how to: sew up to the top edge, turn your piece and sew along the top out to the side of the apron, turn down and sew until you reach the bottom edge of the top band, turn and head diagonally up to the starting point, straighten needle and continue up to seal the binding}

*Note - if there is a belt loop in your way, use your seam ripper to remove it.

Finish sewing the neck tie ends on the short end (that was previously tucked in). Repeat with other neck tie.

Step 9 - sew top and bottom apron pieces together
After neck ties are connected, sew the top and bottom pieces of the apron by following the top seam on the waistband.
You will have to do each side separately. In this picture the left side is sewn and the right is not. I sewed the right until it just overlapped the left.

I left the button and zipper alone...I'm thinking I'll turn the zipper into an extra pocket. Surprise, surprise!

Step 10 - make your waist ties
Cut your two 3 1/2"x44" pieces. Right sides together, sew a short and the long end together. Flip right sides out and iron flat.

Sew around both long sides and the tucked in finished end with your machine. I think this gives a very finished look to your ties and keeps them stronger.

Lay your waist tie, with raw edges lined up, at the end of the waist band. Sew 1/2" in from the end.
Fold over so the waist tie points away from your apron, sew along the edge of the apron to secure the tie.

Leave all other edges raw (the sides and bottom of the bottom half)

You're done! (with the basic jean apron...continue reading for more ideas)

Step 11 - So I couldn't stop there. I added some ruffles in a coordinating color, securing with matching fabric from the ties.
Then I decided the top needed something, too. I traced a flower pattern on a piece of felt, cut out the petals, pinned the coordinating fabric to the back of the felt, and sewed around the petal outlines. Then I sewed around the edge of the felt and fabric, securing them together. I wanted the top pocket to be usable, so I pinned and hand sewed the swatch on, following the line around the edge I had just sewn. I made a felt flower for the center and hand sewed that on as well.

Also, I sewed some buttons onto the pockets. Since the jeans were worn, the front of each leg was a little billowy. So I wanted to make it look like it was done on purpose. I tucked each of the pockets in, enough to create a cute gather, pinned, and sewed. Love it.
I love how it turned out and I'm so excited to get some good use out of it. For more aprons, go to my apron list. You too could look down and see this.

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