Embroidery Library

Sweet Stitches Apron
(with oval applique)

 

Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron

Seeing photos of what you make with the designs is the best part of our day. One of our customers, Lyn, showed us a darling method of combining prints with a neutral applique piece to highlight the embroidery.

We showed her work on our Facebook page, and hundreds of embroiderers gave it the "thumbs up" - and asked for more details about how the process worked.

Read on for more details, and for the recipe on how to use this technique in your projects!

 

Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron


Supplies Needed:

**One yard print cotton fabric (for front of apron and ties - I used quilter's cotton)

**3/4 yard cotton fabric (for back of apron - I used quilter's cotton)


**Small piece of cotton fabric (for applique piece - I used quilter's cotton)
 
Supplies Continued: 

**Medium weight cutaway stabilizer

**Temporary spray adhesive

**Air-erase pen or dressmaker's pencil (for marking)

**Double-sided fusible web

**Scotch tape
 



Designs Used:

I used the large size of the Christmas Cookie Trio on my apron. You'll notice the designs I used extend a bit outside of the oval applique shape. That brings a contemporary look to the apron. You can also stitch a design in the center of the applique piece (I'll show an example of this at the end of the tutorial).

I used a Christmas design, but this apron is great in all seasons. The Food and Wine category is filled with delicious designs for aprons!

Finished Size:
About 23" wide by 33 1/2" high
 

 


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron

 

Prepare the front of the apron by cutting a piece of the print cotton fabric to 24" wide by 32 1/2" high and lay the fabric flat. Measure and mark 7 1/2" out from the top right corner along the top edge of the fabric.

Measure and mark 12 1/2" down from the top right corner along the right edge of the fabric. Draw a line from the top mark down to the bottom mark.



Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Cut the fabric along the line you just drew.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 

Fold the fabric widthwise (align the long side edges together) and trace the shape of the trimmed curve on the opposite side of the fabric.

Trim the fabric along the line you just drew.



Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 

Now that the front of the apron is ready, it is time to prepare the oval applique fabric.

The oval applique pattern pieces are sized to work well with most 6" x 10", 5" x 7", and 4" x 4" size designs.

Below are links to several sizes of the oval applique pattern pieces. Make sure to check the size of the embroidery design you're stitching to ensure it works with the oval size you've selected. Decide what size oval applique size you want, click the link below, and print out the pattern:



Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 

If you are using the 11" wide piece, it will print on two pieces of paper. Cut out the shapes, align and tape them together. All other sizes will print on one piece of paper - print out the pattern and cut around the shape.



Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Here's an easy way to decide on the size: first print a paper template of the embroidery design. If you�re new to using templates, click here for a quick tutorial. Trim around the template and align it over the applique pattern piece. Hold it against a window so that you can see the pattern piece through the design template. We are allowing the design to extend outside the shape a bit, so we chose a pattern piece that is somewhat smaller than the design. You can embroider outside or inside the applique piece, it�s up to you.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Cut a piece of cotton fabric (I used quilter's cotton) a bit larger than the pattern piece. Add a piece of double-sided fusible web to the backside of the fabric. Pin the pattern piece on top of the fabric and trace the shape. Remove the pattern piece and cut out the shape.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Add the oval applique shape to the top portion of the front apron fabric. Center it side to side by measuring equal distances in between the side edges of the shape and the edges of the fabric. Leave at least one inch of space along each side of the shape.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Secure the applique piece in place by stitching a zigzag stitch around the entire outer edge of the shape. Activate the fusible web by pressing the applique piece with an iron (follow the instructions on the fusible web packaging).


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Now it's time to prepare the fabric for the embroidery design.

Align the design template over the applique piece as you did earlier. Using an air-erase pen or other marking tool,
mark the horizontal and vertical axis points. Also, poke a hole in the center of the template and mark the fabric. Remove the template and draw lines connecting the marks.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Spray a piece of medium-weight cutaway stabilizer with temporary adhesive and smooth the fabric on top. Hoop all the layers together by aligning the marks on the hoop with the lines on the fabric.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Attach the hoop to the machine and load the design. Move the hoop so that the needle is directly aligned with the center point on the fabric. Embroider the design. When the design has finished, trim away the excess stabilizer on the backside of the embroidery.

To prepare the back fabric piece, lay the front piece on top of the fabric, right sides together, pin in place, and cut around the front fabric shape. Remove the pins and set the back fabric aside for now.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
To create the ties, cut two pieces of the cotton fabric to 3 1/2" wide by 24" long (for the top ties) and cut another two pieces of fabric to 3 1/2" wide by 36" long (for the waist ties).

For each piece, fold the long side edges in 1/2" and press. Also, fold one short end in 1/2" and press. Then fold the long folded edges in to meet and press the fold. Sew a 1/4" seam along the folded end and side edges of each piece.


Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Lay the front fabric piece flat with the right side facing up. Add the top ties (shorter ties) along the top edge of the fabric with the raw ends of the ties 1/2" from each top corner and extending about 1/2" out past the outer edges of the fabric. Pin in place.

Add the waist ties (longer ties) along the side edges of the fabric with the raw ends of the ties aligned with the bottom edge of the curve and extending about 1/2" out past the outer edges of the fabric. Pin in place. Also, pin the ties in the center of the fabric so they will not be sewn over later on.
 

The final step is to add the back fabric piece to the apron. Align the back fabric on top, right sides together, pin in place and sew a 1/2" seam along the side and top edges only - leave the bottom edge open for turning. Turn the fabric right side out and press the seams. Then turn the fabric of the opening in 1/2" and press. Top stitch a 1/4" seam along the entire outer edge of the apron and you are done!



Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
 
Stitcher Lyn shared her colorful and creative aprons. She used the Help Wanted, Welcome Friends, and Live Laugh Love designs -- cute and clever choices for any day of the year!

Beautifully done, Lyn, and thank you so much for sharing your work!

Free project instructions to make a kitchen apron
Make an apron unique as you!

I used the medium size of the Sweet Christmas Frosted Cookies Diamond to demonstrate using a design that fits within the oval applique shape.

Have fun playing with the shapes and placement. Regardless if the design is placed inside or outside the shape, the results are spectacular!

Click here for a printable version of these project instructions.

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Products used in this Project:

Christmas Cookie Trio $4.99 - $5.99

Available in 2 Sizes:

9.41" x 4.61" | 6.86" x 3.37"

Help Wanted $2.99 - $5.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

8.69" x 5.86" | 6.85" x 4.62" | 3.86" x 2.62"

Welcome Friends $2.49 - $3.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

4.87" x 4.86" | 3.86" x 3.85" | 3.36" x 3.35"

Live Laugh Love $2.49 - $3.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

5.01" x 3.91" | 3.86" x 3.02" | 3.36" x 2.63"