Friday, June 1, 2012

Fat Quarter Friday: Reversible Apron

This week's fat quarter project is a reversible apron, and we all know that if you're in the business of domestic intrigue, an apron is a must. This project is kind of fun because you could adapt it pretty easily from four fat quarters to three if you lose the pocket and pick up some bias tape, or down to two if you then skip the fact that it's reversible.

4 fat quarters

Step 1: Take the two pieces you want for the main apron piece and square them up so they're exactly the same size. Then fold them each in half hamburger style and stack them one on top of the other. Use something circular like a plate to round one of the loose corners. Set them aside.
Step 2: Take your fat quarter that you want to be your pocket and bias tape and lay it out so that the shorter ends are horizontal. Cut three 2" strips. Save the other piece for later.
Sew the three pieces together end to end so you have one long strip. Iron open the seams.
Iron the strip in half, right sides facing out.
Then open the strip up again and iron the two ends up toward the center. If you want your bias tape to be awesome, iron one side all the way up into the crease and the other side about 1/8" away from the crease.
Fold the strip back on that original center fold and iron again. If you did the fancy step you should have one side that is just a smidgen bigger than the other.
Step 3: Take your remaining piece and cut it in half. That made my pieces 10.5"x11" but the size isn't terribly important, you can adjust it depending on how deep you want the pocket to be.
With the wrong side facing up, iron in the edges with a 1/4" seam all the way around both pieces.
Fold each in half and iron in place.
Then stitch around each with a 1/8" seam to secure the edge.
Step 4: Lay out one of your main apron pieces and place your pocket where you want it. Mine ended up being 4" from the bottom and 3" from the side. Pin in place and then sew around three edges, leaving the top one open. Repeat on the other apron piece with the other pocket. Then lay your two pocketed apron pieces right sides facing out.
Step 5: Now take the bias tape you made and pin it to your apron pieces. Make sure that the two pieces go all the way into the center fold of the tape. Then sew it in place with a 1/8"-1/16" seam. If you made the tape with one side bigger, sew with the bigger piece on the bottom.

Step 6: Take your fat quarter that will be your tie and square it up. Arrange it so that the long sides are horizontal and cut off 7". Set it aside.
 Step 7: Take the remainder of the piece and cut it into 4 equal pieces.
 Sew two of the pieces together at the ends so you have two long strips. Iron your seams open.
 Fold the strips in half lengthwise with wrong sides together. Pin.
 At one end of each strip mark a 45 degree angle down to the corner. Sew each strip leaving the non angled end open.
  Turn the strips right side out. Use a turning tool to poke out the points and iron. Top stitch around each tie.
 Step 8: Take your 7" piece from before and with it wrong side up, iron in 1/4" seams along all four edges. To make things easier on yourself later, go ahead and stitch the ironed edges in place. I stitched about 1/8" away from the edge. This will keep your seam neat, and also act as a stitch guide for you later on.



Fold in half lengthwise.
Now we're going to test for fit. Place your strips inside the folded piece until the straps hanging beyond the edge are the length you think you want them. pin in place and test fit by tying around your waist. Adjust the straps to the length you want.
When the straps are just the right length, trim off the excess, but so that about 1/2" hangs inside the flap and pin in place.
Step 9: Lay out your main apron piece and your tie like so. Trim off any excess bias tape. Your apron piece should be bigger than your thick part of the tie by about 4".
Take your apron piece and sew a gathering stitch (stitch length of 5) 1/4" from the top. Tie the strings on one end together. Pull on the bobbin thread on the other side and gather the fabric until it is about 1/2" shorter than the wide part of the tie.
Lift the flap and place the main piece inside about 1/2", put the flap back down and pin in place. You're now going to sew around the three sides of the wider part of the tie, the two sides and the bottom.
You're all done. Try it on.
Yes, try it on both ways. Now go make me a sandwich, woman! (Just kidding, I'd rather have some baked goods.)