Monday, March 5, 2012

Vintage Tablecloth Overhaul Pt 1: DIY Apron

Good afternoon, loves!
I hope you had a wonderful and refreshing weekend. I got to celebrate with my best friend who is having a little girl this Spring. Her baby shower was off the charts gorgeous (and I would expect nothing less from her!) and I may or may not share pictures. The cookies alone were adorable enough to continually make me "awwww" for about 20 minutes as I arranged them on plates. I'd love to have her guest blog some time to show you how to decorate with style. That girl has creative abilities that blow my mind.
I'm starting a two part series today based on a stunning vintage tablecloth that I picked up at my favorite antique store. It was absolutely beautiful and as soon as I saw it, I knew it was the perfect weight and pattern to be repurposed into an apron. It had several stains on it, so being used as a tablecloth wasn't necessarily the best idea and it needed to have a new use. For seven dollars, I couldn't have gotten a better deal. There was tons of extra fabric, and I'll show you what I did with that tomorrow. 
before
You can use this technique to make an apron from any old tablecloth you have, or go pick one up from a second hand shop if you want a vintage feel, too. You can also make it into a half apron, which I absolutely love, but since I DID ONE RECENTLY, I decided to go with a full on apron this time around.
It was surprisingly easy to make this apron, and I'll
include some tips for cheaters (like me!) along the way.
(1) Cut it. Lay your material out and trace/cut out the initial shape of your apron. If you have an apron already, that would be awesome. Just lay it down and trace it (plus seam allowance, 1 inch border around everything). If not, cut it about 1.5 yards long by 1/2 to 3/4 yard wide (measure around your body and see how much you want to cover). Then, measure the distance from your waist to where you want the apron to hit on your chest. Use that measurement to cut out the top half of the apron. You'll want the top of your apron to be about one foot wide. Cut away the excess material.
(2) Notch it. I added two little notches so that I could pin the hem. The first is going straight down from the side of the top of the apron. After I made the notch, I folded the top area in and pinned. Then I added another notch where the waist meets the top so that I could fold the waist down to pin. I treated the corner areas with fray check as well. 
(3) Pin it. Create a hem all the way around the apron (except where it's already hemmed! yay! Pin it down, run it through your sewing machine.
(4) Top it. Finish your top here. I wanted to make an angled top, so I flipped the apron over and folded the corners in as you see above. I pinned it, sewed it and then trimmed the excess. Next I added the tie closure on top. I used bias tape, hemmed down. I actually used one long piece of bias (1 yard) and sewed one side to each corner of the top. Then I cut it in the middle and sewed the ends down.

(5) String it. Lastly, you'll add your waist strings. I attached more bias tape (1 yard each) to the sides of the apron and then hemmed the ends. You can also use a thick, sturdy ribbon in place of bias. It's much easier. 

I can't wait to show you the little kitchen towels tomorrow. I actually think I like them better :) The post is all written and ready to go, too! It's killing me!
On a separate note, I'm about to write a second blog for today all about the next contest + announcing the winners from last month. I'm still hoping to get a few suggestions for a prize in, so it isn't too late to send me an email (la.vie@aol.com) or post it to FACEBOOK.
All the best and as always, thanks for reading!

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