Hooked on Needles

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Recycled Jeans Make a Great Apron!

I have always been somewhat of a pack rat and saver, especially when it comes to things that are still useful in some way. However, I will be the first to admit that when a pair of jeans splits a seam or just plain old wears out from being so well used, it is no longer useful...as a pair of jeans, that is! But there are plenty of other things all that wonderfully soft denim could be used for. All it takes is a little imagination and creativity, or falling upon someone else's clever idea.

That's what happened to me yesterday when I came across Lucy's website called My Byrd House in my search for quick and easy apron patterns. I really was not thinking about recycling old jeans for this project, but then I thought Why Not? I have plenty that I've been saving for just about forever, and who knows if I'll ever get around to actually making them into that quilt I had originally started saving them for.

So down to my sewing room I went, and here is what I came up with...

Recycled Jeans ApronOne leg of an old pair of jeans, two small pieces of fabric from a giveaway I had won a while ago, and 3 or 4 snippets of time during the day in between everything else, and here it is. What do you think? I just love it!

Recycled Jeans Apron This is my daughter, just home from all day at school then a 3 hour shift at work and then 2 hours of band practice. She was pooped, but took the time to model the apron for me. When she took it off, she said she thought I should just keep this one right here at home since it was so cute and she would use it herself. I guess she likes it too! I just don't know that she will ever have time to actually use it though! Maybe in another 4 years when she graduates from college!

So there really is no magic trick for making this apron. Just cut off a leg of an old pair of jeans and cut it up the inside seam. Shape it in a way that you find pleasing, with the hem of the pant leg at the top. Using scrap fabric, make pockets and trim as you like. In this case, I had a 21 inch square of two fabrics. I chose the paisley for the pocket and the trim at the top to cover the chunky hem of the pant leg. With the square of the polka dot fabric, I used this handy method for making bias binding, and made about a 200 inch strip of 2 inch bias binding. I used what was needed for the side edges below the armhole curves and the bottom in one continuous piece. Then I cut the remaining piece in half and used each piece on either side of the apron to finish the armhole and continue up and down as the ties for waist and neck.

It was so fun and simple, and I have lots of ideas floating around in my head right now for more aprons that I want to make. I may just empty that shelf of all those old jeans after all!

Happy Stitching!

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  • That is so cute what a great idea!!!

    By Blogger Jane's Fabrics and Quilts, At May 6, 2009 at 11:10 AM  

  • That apron is just too cute!. You amaze me. I love your blog. The tutorial for the bias binding really wowed me. Now if I just had a few of your tools like that really nice ruler and that beautiful cutting board with all the nice lines on it. Oh yeah and a nice little sewing room to put all my stuff in. Now you've given me another project to try. :-)

    By Blogger Quietspirit, At May 6, 2009 at 12:55 PM  

  • Thanks Jane and Quietspirit, for your nice comments. I have to say that having the cutting mat and the ruler saves so much time in making the bias binding and in cutting fabric in general. I waited a long time to get those tools, saving my pennies and then waiting for a good sale. That's the only way I can justify making big purchases like that. It's worth the wait though and makes me appreciate having them so much more.

    Another thing I forgot to mention in this post is how my bias binding came together this time. It was so perfect, I couldn't believe it! The lines came together exactly and I had just the right amount for the job at hand. I think the key to this method of making bias binding is using the right size fabric square for the amount you need, and also using a straight edge that is long enough to draw your complete line at one time. I used my metal yard ruler that hangs over the workbench along with our other woodworking tools. It was just the right thing for the job, along with an extra fine Sharpie to get a perfectly straight and fine line for cutting. Of course, my camera was not handy and I hadn't thought to take pictures of the process because I had already done the tutorial. But it sure was nice to have the binding work out so perfectly. If you haven't tried this method, you really should. It's fast and fun and saves so much time!


    By Blogger Mary Grace McNamara, At May 6, 2009 at 2:15 PM  

  • Very cute ~ I might have to give that one a go ... I love aprons ;-)I might have to hit Goodwill (in my spare time - ha!)

    By Blogger Adrienne, At May 7, 2009 at 7:51 AM  

  • Great idea for an apron! I shall have to try it out sometime... though, I am not an apron wearer myself, but my one daughter is... Must get that from her Gram! 8-)
    Happy stitchings MG!

    By Blogger Myra, At May 7, 2009 at 11:44 AM  

  • Love the Apron idea! I've been looking around for an apron, my old one is cream colored and has a Christmas picture I crafted on many years ago - Hard to wash, and not looking very nice anymore. I might be able to use this idea! Thanks - stranger =)

    By Anonymous Jane, At May 7, 2009 at 11:48 AM  

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