Monday, September 19, 2011

Apron Challenge : Let's Begin

On Wednesday, September 9th, 1959, the Milwaukee Journal ran an article in the Women's Pages and Society section entitled "A Calendar of Aprons."  My grandmother dutifully clipped the article and stashed it away for reference.  I'm not sure if she ever made an apron following the directions given in that article, but I've been rereading it for months now.  And I just can't resist anymore . . . I do believe a challenge is in order.  :)

The idea is, of course, to make a different apron for every month.  "To a woman who likes to sew, making aprons is a curious mixture of whimsy and practically, fun and work," the article begins.  "Materials can be cheerfully sturdy . . .or lacy and delicate," it goes on to read.  But the best part is that the seamstress can "indulge herself in a flurry of rickrack, frilly lace, braid or saucy fringe."  I must have an apron trimmed in saucy fringe!!

So I will challenge myself to create a new apron for every month.  I love vintage aprons and wear them every day.  Admittedly I like the style that has a bib front, but for this challenge, I'll let loose my reins on function and focus more on form.  I would love for some of you to join in!  Sew up your "saucy" aprons, post them on your blog and link back here so we can all enjoy!

Directions as explained in the article (paraphrased):

Use one yard of fabric.  Cut the body of the apron 19" by 36".  The waistband should be about 5" wide and 21-22" long.  Extend the waistband on either side with a tie measuring 4" wide by 36" long.  All measurements allow for ample seams and hems.  Sew on all trimming and pockets before gathering and attaching the apron to the waistband.

What could be simpler?  Even if you haven't done much sewing in the past, this project isn't too overwhelming and can easily be tweaked to fit your own style.  I'm going to try to use what's on hand (my make do and mend mentality coming through again).

The illustrations as shown in the article follow the seasons: 
January - Christmas bells on green.  
February - red hearts on white.  
March - green shamrocks on white.  
April - Easter eggs with polka dots.  
May - flowers on red with rickrack.  
June - frilly white lace.  
July - red, white and blue.  
August - sailboats on blue with rickrack.  
September - apple on polka dots.  
October - leaves on brown.  
November - pumpkin with vegetable print.  
December - poinsettias on red and white stripe.  

I guarantee that I shall not follow these suggestions each month because my calendar does include other events not centered around the holidays.  Take for instance,  lambing season or car show season.  There's hay making season and (one of my favorites) curl-up-with-a-good-book-and-read-all-season season.

So I will let this settle into your head for a couple weeks.  I do hope that some of you will take the challenge and whip up a pretty apron for the coming months.  I'll be sure to post my first creation in October.  So even if you put me off for now, just wait till you see that fringed apron . . . you'll be in like Flynn!  Did I mention that I love crazy huge rickrack?  And dingle balls . . . gotcha thinking now, don't I?  Happy Sewing!!

Join up!


  1. This sounds like fun - I'm in! My gears are turning for some spooky October ones....keep us posted with a link and maybe a button to add to the side bar. Will we do this for 1 year? I think it would be fun. And, maybe we could do a give away for fun one month or an apron exchange? Just let us know. Blessings from Ringle, WI

  2. This sounds great! I have some smallish pieces of vintage fabric that I didn't know what to do with. I think I will use some of it to make some aprons!!

  3. Okay, I set up a button and public album to share our pics. Please let me know if these aren't working (this being my first official challenge and all). Can't wait to see what you do! I've already started digging in the stash... :)

  4. Oooh! Me too! I LOVE aprons. I can't get enough of them.

    Now to work on an October apron. I think I have one in mind already....

  5. I'm in! This sounds like fun and it might encourage me to get my sewing machine out again...I've added your button to my sidebar. Thanks for the challenge!

  6. I have no idea how I came across this post... I don't think I've ever read your blog!
    Anyway-- I was just thinking the other day. "Boy! I need to buy some new pullover blouses for casual around the house, running errands perfect with jeans T-shirts! Why, what does that have to do with your apron post? Well, because all my good "T's" are messed up with stains and spots and holes. Then it hit me. If I'm going wardrobe shopping... I better get out the aprons. Well, most of mine are worn out and old. So... that got me thinking. I need to make some aprons!

    Then I found you. Now I'm super stoked... and WANT TO MAKE some aprons. An apron a month sounds cool. Did I mention... I don't sew. Much.

    This will be fun!

    I'm linking up so I can keep an eye out on you and your Aprons!
    Nice to meet you, Pat

  7. I just came from Patti's lovely space, and it is such a wonderful idea, that yes, I am in! My aprons need a bit of revamping :-D

    maria b.

  8. Thanks for all the enthusiasm, Ladies! I think aprons must be like dishtowels or hot pads. We use them for so long that just the mere thought of getting new ones makes us giddy. lol Can't beat the "high" of fresh, clean hot pads! I hope you all have fun!

  9. Okay I've been thinking about what style of apron go make and this challenge sounds like the perfect way for me to get started. Can't wait to see what others will come up with.:)

  10. Sounds like fun...I love aprons. Unfortunately, I have no idea how to sew. Sad reall..oh well, will enjoy all of yours:-)


  11. What a riot! I have a red-and-white check apron my grandmother made about 50 years ago. She cross-stitched snowflakes on it so it would have a Holiday theme. You helped me remember her creativity and spirit -- thank you! Best wishes! Donna in NC

  12. I think I'm in. Sounds like a fun project for an apron collector like me.

  13. working on my second apron! The first one was lots of fun.

  14. I am late but would love to join in! :D
    She Bear (from FL)

  15. I'm late to the party, too, but I'm in. Sounds like fun!

  16. This has TOTALLY peaked my interest. I hope you dont mind... I linked this post in my blog that is posting Wednesday about doing an apron challenge! LOVE your style!

    PS... I have ALWAYS felt like I was born in the wrong era. :)

  17. Has anyone made any aprons? Just found this through Frugally Sustainable blog hopping around. I see lots of aprons and am always experimenting with styles! I'd love to see others!

  18. Okay Bo Peep,
    I'm in. How and where to post images once done?

  19. Ooh I love this!! I just found your blog (and this challenge) through a blog hop ~ lol I had a couple different ones going, and now I can't recall where I found yours! :) As far as sewing goes, I'm just a beginner, but I would LOVE to participate in this (even though my year of aprons would be totally off from yours)!


Thanks for your thoughts! Come back to visit again soon!