I am feeling sooooo lucky this week! I received the best gift ever from my friend Anne. She has been sifting through her mother's things, getting ready to sell the family homestead, and she actually took the time to set aside a box full of vintage sewing patterns, craft supplies, and pamphlets that she thought would be up my alley.
I am loving this apron kit from craft kit company, National Handcraft Institute (the name is so official-sounding!), dated 1974. They used to bombard people with postcards advertising various cheesy crafts available for mail order. Anne's mom apparently sent away for the kit but never got around to making it. Well its 35 years later and I just finished it!It's such a simple project, you can do one with no kit if your feeling crafty. It came with a 22"x34" rectangle of a deliciously 70's whimsical border print, a 18"x4 3/4" rectangle of electric avocado green for the waistband and a matching 28"x7" rectangle to be cut lengthwise for the ties.
To finish bottom & side edges of apron & ties- turn fabric 1/4" and press, turn again 1/4", press, then machine sew. I actually didn't hem the bottom of the apron because the selvedge was nice enough. For the tie ends, you can fold at an angle (above) and sew if you want to get fancy.The ties need to get sandwiched into the sides of the waist piece. Fold waist rectagle in half lengthwise & press. Then fold up 1/2" seam allowance on one of the long sides & press again. Now fold in half lengthwise, backward, against the fold. Line up the tie ends with the side edges of the waist piece (see left). Take a little tuck in the tie to make it clear the a 5/8" seam allowance on the edge that will attach to the skirt. Sew the side waist seams closed (see right) with ties sandwiched inside. Turn right side out & press.
Gather the top of the skirt part by running two rows of machine basting stitches (longest stitch length) along the edge, 1/2" & 1/4" from the edge. Pull threads from the back side and keep pulling until the length of the gathered piece matches the flat waist piece. Try to evenly distribute the gathers. Once it's the right length, you can tie a knot in the threads to keep them from coming undone. Pin in place and sew skirt to the unfolded edge of the waist piece using a 5/8" seam. Now you can press the seam and pin the folded edge of the waist piece to the back. All the raw edges will be inside the waist piece.
I sewed the skirt to the waist with a 5/8" seam, but only folded a 1/2" seam allowance on the back side of the waist. This is so I can close the waistband using the "stitch in the ditch" technique. I want the back of the waistband to hang down about 1/8" past the waist seam, so I can sew it closed by stitching in exactly in the little crack where the two fabrics meet. I quickly hand basted the seam closed first so there wouldn't be any shifting while sewing.
Look how professional that looks! You could hand whipstitch it closed, but this way is quicker & more secure.
Oh, and these coordinating coasters were in the box too! I'm ready for entertaining. Fondue anyone?