Utility/Japanese-Inspired Gardening Apron

I’ve been thinking about making one of those Japanese utility aprons for the longest time. Now the weather is heating up too its likely I’ll be spending longer and longer out there.

So I got my pinterest on. It seems there are two ways of doing this: prepare a big rectangle and two little rectangles for the straps. Or there’s the second way which I chose. I reckon this way looks a bit more professional and less thrown together. Also, I was supposed to start sewing my pair of self drafted jeans last week….o, and I got a new sewing machine for my birthday so I needed some serious practice.

I used this fabric,  the closest thing to denim I could find at a bargain basement price…..big mistake! This stuff thinks it’s on the bias….all the time. It was a little tricky to work with.

I was going go go all Chinelo Bally and draw the pattern straight on thd fabric but i chickened out! I started off with a great big bit of that burda tracing paper and folded it in half. I marked on CF and the length to the underarm and CF. I used  random bodice patten piece and traced around the relevant bits till I got a pattern resembling the ones I’d seen on pinterest. I decided to close the dart-y looking bit between the front and back bodices which opened up to give the skirt section a more A-line shape. 20160505_101436

I cut out the paper pattern and tissue fitted it to dollyP…

Paper fitting on dollyP

.A bit had to tell really but it looked ok and I got stuck in to cutting out the fabric.

I cut out the pocket pieces and even remembered to interface the tops and the neckline of the apron too. I was feeling a little nostalgic about my college days when carpenter jeans were all the rage so I made a few hooks by putting  long strip of fabric through the bias binding maker and topstitching it down. I couldn’t find little S hooks so I used carabiners and these clip things instead.

I decided to use snaps to open/close the apron so I marked the position and interfaced the wrong side. I used 10mm Prym snaps because thats what i had,  I think next time I would used a 15mm staple or add an extra snap.

Sew first then topstitch. Put the little metal bits on order and check they work before getting the pliers out

In my topstitching excitement I totally forgot to finish the ends of the straps properly so I turned the strap RST and sewed as close to the edges as possible. I turned them back out, pressed and pretended it never happened.

Snack pocket….not in the original plan

My new machine also sews those little tacks at the edge of pockets so I got busy with those too except, again, in my excitement I tacked down the second (accordion) pocket. Well, silver linings and all, as it happens, it makes a perfect spot to keep your mobile.

So here is dollyP modelling

And here I am flouncing around the garden.

I think if turned out pretty well despite a few careless mistakes. It was really useful practicing my topstitching and it was fun playing with my fab new machine.

Cost: 1.3m at £1.50 per metre, Gütermann thread £1.70

Time: 4 hours including drafting and all that

After I finished I discovered there are even easier options, Simplicity 1133 is very similar but it is finished with bias bindings so I might try that next time!


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Utility/Japanese-Inspired Gardening Apron

2 thoughts on “Utility/Japanese-Inspired Gardening Apron

  1. Looks good! Very practical and useful I am sure. I have made the simplicity one for my art class (not blogged): but I am lazy seamstress who would never draft something if there is a pattern available.


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