26 January, 2012

Work Apron


A new work apron is the only thing I have sewn this January.
Pitiful, but the sewing room is a disaster after the frenzy of holiday sewing and someone needs to go clean it up.
I always need a new apron for work. Up until now I was using a 'pattern' that had a single strap around the neck. By the time I put my three pens in the pocket as well as my work gloves, the weight starts dragging on my neck.
I decided a few months ago that I would create a new pattern - a smock apron. The weight would rest on my set of shoulders rather than my single neck.
More even distribution, if you will.

I used my swedish tracing paper to create a paper pattern. I measured the hip width of my original apron and tapered it up to my shoulder width. I pinned it to my shoulders  several times until I thought it was the right width, right coverage and correct length.
Then I folded my paper in half length-wise to make sure both sides were the same. This is where I cut out the neck hole. I basically cut out a 'U' neckline and cut a bit more until I was satisfied.

I pinned it to my double-layered fabric and cut it out. I used a thrifted denim fabric.

For the bottom pocket, I cut another piece of fabric - pocket length and matched my rounded corners at the bottom. I then serged the edges together.
I hemmed the top of the pocket length AFTER I serged the edges necessitating me ripping a few stitches out to get it hemmed. After hemming the top edge of the pocket, I used my coverstitch machine (twin rows of stitching) to create the  pocket divider in the middle.

I had about a package and a half of black double-fold bias tape which could be enough(?). The only navy blue I had was a narrow double-fold bias tape and I wanted the 1/2" look on the edge.
I started sewing down the bias tape on the raw edges which was very easy as I was sandwiching just a single layer between the bias tape and it didn't shift at all.
As it was, I was 4" short. A trip to Joann's is in my future this weekend.

I did use the narrow navy blue bias tape for the ties. I sewed the fold shut and then attached them at my waist spot on each side of the front & back of the apron.

However when I got to work, placed my three pens and gloves in the pockets and put my ID badge and name tag on -- the weight in those pockets caused the back to creep up - making the front start dragging. Not good!
When I cut out the neck hole, I made the front and back the same. Next time, I will bring the back up to the neckline so it won't creep.

I thought about it for a few days and I think I have a solution (it's been a week already!). I am going to add a strap across the back just under my neckline which will act as a stop when  it rides up against my polo collar.
Right now, I untie one side and just lift it off and up over my head. I think I will make the strap with a snap just in case my head gets is too big to lift the apron up and off of my big head of hair.

When it rides at my shoulders, it is very comfortable to wear.

I have noticed that the denim is already wearing at the waist so I still have to add a wearable piece of art at the middle.  I will zigzag stitch it on and when it starts looking sad I can easily slide my seam ripper down through the zigzag stitches and sew on another pretty add-on piece. This little add-on takes the brunt of my work and I won't have to sew an entire apron next time.

I have had  the most delightful day with my mom and her kindle, the sun has been shining, and I cleaned the house thoroughly and then the light went, which leaves you with photos taken with a flash and other bad photography problems but hey - it's a work apron.

This new smock-type apron took about two hours to sew and three months of pattern gestation in my head.
And only after I was forced to admit my previous apron looked sad, very sad.

Oh - the upper pocket is for my IPOD so I don't have to listen to anyone who is mean & cranky.

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