Our Pick-a-Pocket apron was designed by a member of our Graphics team at Coats & Clark, Tracy Bynum. His motivation to learn to sew is an interesting story so we asked him to share.
How I got started sewing:
I few years back, Beth (my wife) came home with an ever so slightly, used sewing machine from a neighborhood garage sale. Beth did not sew at the time (and still doesn’t) but thought she might learn someday. Besides, she got a great deal on the machine. The sewing machine went into our bonus room and was forgotten about until a few months later when I signed up for a second mission trip to Haiti through our church. That’s when things got interesting. For whatever reason, I felt a strong urge to make 40 dresses for little girls in Haiti. There was only one small problem. I didn’t know how to sew. I knew that dresses had to be made and I was the one for the job. I made a simple pattern (did not think to purchase one), got some fabric and was on my way. As the next few months passed, I was in full production mode toward creating forty dresses. It was amazing! That was just my first adventure in sewing.
What’s happened since the Haiti trips.
I love getting outdoors to exercise and work in the yard. In addition to tending our lawn, I volunteer at a community garden in our town. The Patch on Main Community Garden was started in 2015 and has just opened for the 2016 season. We have 30 plots, a handful of newly added raised beds plus a new greenhouse under construction. Gardeners enjoy growing things to enjoy plus participating in educational seminars at the Patch on Main throughout the growing season. We’re always looking for ways to get people involved and to make gardening fun. That’s what inspired me to make aprons. I looked at my fabric stash and envisioned a simple style of apron made from a combination of solids and prints. I thought it would be fun to randomly give away handmade aprons to the people at the garden just to say “thank you” for participating. I’ve created variations suitable for both men and women. It is fun to watch expressions on faces of people in the garden when you present them with a free apron and tell them to have a great day. “Sew” rewarding!
I’m not sure what I’ll create next but I can’t wait to see where it leads me and who I meet along the way – Tracy Bynum
Pick-a-pocket Garden Apron
Skill level: Experienced Beginner
Designed by Tracy Bynum
Crafting time Evening
Finished Project Size One size fits most, 13 1/4″ x 19 1/2″ (33.66cm x 49.53cm)
Dual Duty XP All-purpose or cotton thread, Jeans thread (optional), coordinating colors
1/2 yd (45.72cm) apron front fabric
7/8 yd (80.01cm) pocket lining/ties/apron lining fabric
1/3 yd (30.45cm) pocket fabric*
Plastic template material
Basic sewing supplies
The featured fabrics are from FreeSpirit True Colors- Joel Dewberry.
*Note: If you choose to make the pocket or pocket lining from the same fabric as the apron front, there is enough yardage allowed to do so—just cut the pieces side by side across the fabric width.
From the apron front fabric, cut:
1 rectangle, 13 3/4″ x 20″ (34.93cm x 50.80cm)
From the pocket lining/apron lining/ties fabric, cut:
1 rectangle, 9 3/4″ x 22″ (24.77cm x 55.88cm) for the pocket lining
1 rectangle, 13 3/4″ x 20″ (34.93cm x 50.80cm) for the apron lining
2 strips, 2 1/2″ x 40″ (6.35cm x 101.60cm) for the ties
From the pocket fabric, cut:
1 rectangle, 9″ x 22″ (22.86cm x 55.88cm)
All seam allowances are 1/4″ (.64cm).
Assembling the Pocket
- With right sides together, match the upper edge of the pocket and pocket lining rectangles. Sew across the upper edge. Press the seam allowances toward the lining.
- Flip the pocket lining to the pocket wrong side, matching the lining and pocket lower edges. Press. Note that the lining extends above the pocket evenly to form a trim. Baste the layers together at the sides and lower edges.
Assembling the Ties
- With right sides together and matching edges, sew the long side and across one end of each tie.
- Trim the corners, press the seam allowances open and turn the ties right side out. Press with the seam along one edge.
- Edgestitch the ties along both long sides and the closed end.
Assembling the Apron
- Pin-mark the lower center of the apron and the pocket. Position the pocket over the apron right sides up and baste the ends together. Match the centers at the lower edge and baste a 2″ line across the bottom center. Note that the pocket is wider than the apron.
- Measure 6 1/2″ (16.51cm) in from each end and mark a line parallel to the apron side edge through the height of the pocket. Stitch on the lines, backstitching at the upper pocket edge for reinforcement.
- Fold a pleat in the pocket along the stitched vertical line until the pocket lies flat against the apron, press firmly, then baste the lower edge to hold it in place. This creates a 1/2″ (1.27cm) deep pleat. Stitch along pleat fold 2″ (5.08cm) from the lower apron edge.
- Trace the template provided onto plastic template material and cut out. Align the straight edges with the lower corner of the apron/pocket. Trace on the curved line, then cut through all layers. Repeat for the opposite lower corner and both lower corners of the apron lining rectangle.
- Baste a tie 3/8″(.95cm) from the upper apron edge on each side, matching the raw edges to the apron edge and placing the seam toward the bottom. Pin the tie length out of the way.
- With right sides together, place the apron lining against the apron, sandwiching the ties and pocket between the layers, and matching all raw edges.
- Sew around the apron edges leaving a 5″ (12.70cm) opening along the upper edge for turning
- . Be careful not to catch the loose ends of the ties in the stitching.
Click here to download printable pattern.