Saturday, March 2, 2013

Sewing: Child's Reversible Fat Quarter Apron (Tutorial and Pattern)


A friend invited us to a tea party this week. Such a fun idea to do with friends and just what we needed after a few weeks of Winter storms. We're so ready for Spring! She said we didn't need to bring a thing, so because I was off the hook for food I thought it would be fun to make the girls some little aprons to wear.


With the rickrack and pom poms these have a dressed up feel but they are easy to wear, perfect for throwing on over school clothes, and double as a full length napkin! I made some just like them years ago for my nieces (along with a matching tablecloth and an apron for their mother), and again for Audrey (here's a peek) with matching napkins when she had a kitchen set to play with.


They are the perfect excuse for buying a bit of fabric you love, but for which you have no other plans! Or maybe you have a bunch of odd pieces in your stash and this would be a great way to use them up. I actually went to Joann earlier in the week and found the six different fabrics I used in their quilting section. All so cute!


I also bought this great big pom pom trim there. Very soft and great saturated colors.


This pattern calls for 2 fat quarters for each apron. I first saw the idea when my friend, Amy, shared it with me years ago. She had purchased a kit at a quilt shop. But you can certainly use some yardage and cut your fabric to the size of a fat quarter: 18"x22"  In fact, if you are using fat quarters you'll need to be sure the pattern on the fabric is oriented the way you want it for the apron. I made the mistake the first time of not checking and I had ladybugs creeping sideways instead of up and down, which is what I'd wanted.



These little aprons fit toddlers and children. You can see ages 2 to 6 here. Audrey's (the pink and orange floral) is the full size pattern. I actually used pieces that were about 18" long for Tess's and Scarlett's aprons, so they are shorter. I was trying to squeeze them out of some half yards I bought and it worked just fine.


The little pocket is formed with the armhole cut out so you use every bit of fabric. nice to have a place to stash some buttons, or chocolate chips, or small toy. Tess is always excited to discover a pocket on something she is wearing.


Ready to sew some?



Click through for the tutorial and pattern.



CHILD'S FAT QUARTER APRON TUTORIAL


For each apron you'll need:
  • 2 fat quarters (or two pieces of fabric measuring 18"x 22" each) quilting weight cotton (NOTE: as mentioned in my post above, you'll need to check the direction of your fabric printing, if there is a direction to be sure the pattern is oriented the way you'd like it, or buy 3/4 yard in a traditional cut to be certain you have enough length either parallel or perpindicular to the selvedge.)
  • 18" pom pom trim (optional--giant rickrack is really cute too!)
  • A scrap of rickrack to trim the pocket -- about 8" will do
  • 2 yards  of 1" wide grosgrain ribbon (a bit more than you'll need)
  • 1  3/4" or 1" button
  • My pattern piece for the Fat Quarter Apron ARMHOLE (which doubles as the POCKET) found here
Download the ARMHOLE pattern piece (found here) and print it at 100%. Be sure your printer isn't set to print "to fit" or "scale."  There is a 1" square on the page for you to check that the page has printed correctly. Cut out the pattern piece from the paper.

Fold your fat quarter in half lengthwise (it should measure 9"x22") and position the pattern piece with the straight edges aligned with the top and side of the fabric (not the fold) as illustrated below. Cut two armhole pieces this way from each fat quarter. You'll have four triangular pieces for making two POCKETS, and the remaining fat quarters (minus armholes) will be the APRON pieces.

If you want to use rickrack, baste a piece of rickrack along the top curve of one of each of the two ARMHOLE/POCKET pieces. Baste down the center of the rickrack.



Pin two POCKET pieces together with right sides facing and stitch all the way around using a 3/8 inch seam allowance, but leave a 2 inch opening in one of the sides for turning. IMPORTANT NOTE: if you are using rickrack you may need to adjust your seam allowance along the top cure of the pocket so that the stitching is aligned with your basting down the center of the rickrack. this way your rickrack will be positioned perfectly.

Clip your corners and turn right side out. Press, being careful to tuck in the raw edges where you left the gap for turning.


Position the pocket on the center of the apron piece, about three inches below the bottom of the armholes. Pin and stitch in place along the straight sides as close as possible to the edge of the pocket.


Baste the pom pom trim along the bottom of one of the APRON pieces. Place the pom pom trim so the pom poms are facing up away from the hem. (After you sew the two APRON pieces together and turn the apron right side out the pom poms will hang down from the hem.) This is a matter of personal taste, but I like a bit of the webbing showing, but you could use a zipper foot and sew closer to the pompoms so that they dangle out of the hem...


Cut two pieces of ribbon 21 inches long for the apron ties, and one piece 16 inches long for the neck. Turn under a raw end on each of the pieces twice (turn under 1/4" and turn under 1/4" again) and zigzag or straight stitch it down to prevent it from fraying.

Baste the raw edges of two of the 21 inch pieces of ribbon to the sides of the apron 3/8" below the armholes. Align the edge of the ribbon with the raw edge of the fabric so the ribbon is lying towards the center of the apron.


Now place the other two apron pieces right sides together and pin around all the edges except for the top. Leave that open for turning. Be careful to keep the ribbon ties and pom pom trim out of the way. You'll have a bit of bulk along the hem depending on the size of your pom poms.


Stitch around all sides (except for the top) using a 3/8 inch seam allowance. Clip the corners. Turn right side out and press well.


Turn the top raw edges of the apron in 3/8 inch and press. Tuck in the raw edge of your shorter ribbon and pin in place.


Top stitch the top of the apron closed close to the folded edge being sure to catch the raw edge of the ribbon.


Create a button hole large enough for your button in the corner of the top of your apron, opposite the neck ribbon. I like to put these at a diagonal. Open the buttonhole using scissors or a seam ripper.


Now sew your button to the ribbon about 1 inch from the finished edge. (Or try it on your child and find where it fits best.) With just one button you can easily twist the ribbon to reverse the apron, and won't have the discomfort of another button on the wrong side of the apron.


Enjoy your Fat Quarter apron!



38 comments:

Emily said...

Darling! Looks like your girls love them!

kristin said...

Very cute! I've been working on a reversible FQ apron for my little GUY but it kind of went on hold since I couldn't finish it before Christmas. Need to get that done. These are so cute on your girlies!

Seaweed and Raine said...

So cute. I love the reversable option and that the pockets are opposite colours/patterns. Hope the girls enjoyed their tea party! :)
Sheree

Melanie said...

So cute! I can think of quite a few kiddos to make these for!

Sandy said...

I must make these for my great nieces. May I please pin this to my Sewing board on Pinterest? Thanks :)

quiltinglady54 said...

Adorable!

O meu pensamento viaja said...

So cute!!!

Anonymous said...

Do you have any idea what the name of the blue/purple floral fabric is? I looked for it on joann.com, but I didn't see it under the quilting section.
Thanks in advance,
Laura

Amanda K said...

liked you on FB

tealeaver said...

I have a question I hope you can help me with. I have searched your blog for the pattern seen in your banner, the third from the left, which looks like a stack of folded crocheted dish rags, and can't find it. Is it on your blog? I love the pattern. thanks for your help. gail
tealeaver@yahoo.com

Wylie said...

I linked to you through Pinterest and Facebook, and shared your tutorial as well. These aprons are adorable, and I would love to have one for my granddaughter! Your girls are so sweet, too!

Anneliese said...

@Anonymous: I'm so sorry, I don't have the name of the navy floral fabric. I do remember the selvedge had Joanns on it so I believe it's an exclusive fo them. I hope that helps! I don't believe it had a name. It was in their quilting section--not the designer quilting fabrics.

Anneliese said...

@tealeaver: Here is a link to the crocheted spa washcloths pictured in my header: http://www.aestheticnest.com/2010/12/crochet-spa-cloth-gifts.html

Anna said...

these are so perfect! the girls looks so sweet and beautiful fabrics too! :)

Modern Day Mummying said...

What lovely little aprons! And the fabrics you've chosen are just divine... Love the colours.

Sophie xo

DKB said...

Love the navy print on the littlest one. Made my daughter a skirt in the same fabric for the first day of,school this year .

Jayne said...

I LOVE these, so cute. They are part of their outfits :)

mary said...

These are so cute. Can these be made for a 10 year old girl? Would I just use more fabric?

Thanks.

Anneliese said...

@Mary: Yes. I would just hold up some fabric or take some measurements and see what size rectangle seems right. or you could add an inch or two to each of the dimension and then cut the pocket a bit bigger--move it out from the corner .5".

Meg said...

One suggestion would be to make a neck tie using a tube of fabric with elastic inside (I even stretch the elastic out full length and stitch down the middle so the fabric gathers. Then the apron automatically adjusts to the size of the child!

vickymyerscreations said...

Love this, found you trough Pinterest (the internet is a wonderful thing!) My godaughter is going to love this:) Thank you:)

Mrs Stitches said...

What a joy to find a lovely pattern which is not a " quick" sewing method. The whole point of traditional sewing is that you get pleasure from the making and pleasure from the wearing - to just get the job done in the shortest possible time - thank you!

Marianne Jeffrey said...

I love that they are reversible, I will definitely try this sometime!

Anonymous said...

I'm new to sewing- I ordered some fabric (1/2 yard- so 18x44 which I think is just two fat quarters from what I have read) but when I got it I realized that the pattern is sideways (for the purpose of this project) in other words, to get the pattern to be right side up, as shown in your tutorial, I would need to consider the 22" side the "top" of my apron, making the apron only 18" long. I hope my question makes sense. I think I can figure out a work around, but future reference, what am I missing here? Thank you!

Anneliese said...

@Anonymous: As you probably learned in your research (this is a good explanation: http://quilting.about.com/od/stepbystepquilting/ss/fat_quarters.htm ) a fat quarter is cut differently than a quarter yard--and has the selvedge on its short end. Depending on how a specific fabric is printed, and if there is a directional print, the pattern may end up running with the length or width of the fabric. So if you were ordering fabric online for instance and it's not clear how the fabric is printed you could order 3/4 yard to be certain you have enough length in either direction. I should put a note in this tutorial about this--it's a great point! I hope you can make your fabric wait.

amber walker said...

Hi!

I was just piping up to tell you that I've used your tutorial to do a pintester movement try over at my blog. Check it out, I thought your instructions were great, and my project turned out to be adorable.

http://www.lovenestdesign.com/childs-apron-from-a-fat-quarter-a-pin-test/

Thanks for putting it out there, and beautiful blog!
Amber

Jamie Conard said...

Love this tutorial! Thank u so much - they are adorable!

Jamie Conard said...

I especially love the pocket!

Donna said...

I am going to make one for my granddaughter! Sooo cute! She is 2 1/2 years old. Would the pattern width stay the same. I was planning to cut the length to about 18 inches.Thanks so much!
Donna

Anonymous said...

I so want to make this! But for some reason the armhole pattern isn't working for me :( is there anyplace else i could print it out?

Anneliese said...

@Anonymous: I just checked the rights and anyone can link, view and print. You could try saving the file first before printing... OR you could "eyeball" it and cut off the corners of your fat quarter judging by the pictures. I'm sorry it's not working for you! your email address isn't visible to me so I can't contact you that way...

Anonymous said...

Is the 3/8" inch seam terribly important? There's a perfect little notch on my machine for a 1/4" inch seam. It's for a 5 year so I don't think the dimensions would be too wonky.

Anneliese said...

@Anonymous: You're right--since this isn't a fitted garment the exact seam allowance isn't too important.

Tori said...

Thank you for this! I just used your directions to make nine aprons for my daughters baking birthday party. They turned out super cute and were really easy to do. Thank you!

Alanna Rusnak said...

These are SO cute! I especially love the fun trim!! I hope you don't mind but I've linked to this tutorial from my own blog. Thanks for sharing your crafty wisdom :) {http://selfbindingretrospect.alannarusnak.com/2014/08/the-perfect-gift-for-your-little-chef.html}

Orla said...

These really are gorgeous, I'll have to give them a go, you make it look easy!

Anonymous said...

I wish I could post a photo of mine - I made it for a friend of mine's daughter and she LOVED it. Thank you for a great pattern/tutorial!!

Anonymous said...

My seven-year-old and I love this. She is going to make it for her sisters for Christmas. She especially loves the pom-poms on the bottom and that it is reversible. Thank you for the idea!

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