Free pattern site?
A couple of weeks ago I came across a link to a free pattern site that someone posted on this site (not freepatterns.com) which had many pages of individuals showing their creations and offering the patterns but I don’t know where it is! I was sure that I had bookmarked it but it’s not there.
I’m really looking for an apron or smock pattern which closes in the back using trianglar flaps (I don’t know how to describe it better) and I’m pretty sure that I saw something there.
The current issue of Threads has an apron pattern with triangular pieces towards the back that you could modify for the style you want. Also, check out the vintage pattern sites that have been mentioned in several of these threads - I know that some have apron patterns (I've seen ones that slip over your head & arms that have the cross-over back). I'm glad to see aprons come back in style - they were so popular in the 50s, but the "hostess" ones were not useful, as most were sheer & decorative. I have always used just a plain chef's apron (like the BBQ aprons of today) that I've made out of various fabrics (I can't bake without an bibbed apron on or I have flour/dough all over my clothes, especially around my waist, which is at counter-top height). I think I'm the only one in my family who still wears aprons when baking/cooking, but they certainly save your clothes from splashes, flour, etc.
Someone was wearing what looked like a smock at an event recently and it was interesting - the front looked like a no sleeve A-line dress and had pockets that were flat stuffed animals and the back had what looked like 2 triangles that closed it using one big button. The back was open at the bottom below the closing so it wasn't a dress.
My mother and grandmother also always wore aprons and I've been thinking that they really are practical - I'm a very messy cook (when I cook!).
You could draft your own smock-style pattern easily using triangle pieces in back large enough to be buttoned & they'd be open below. Draft a shell-like A-line front with a scoop neck & sew the triangles on the sides (they wouldn't be the equilateral triangles, but the other kind with a right angle & narrower bottom & longer angled side - my high school geometry fails me now). You would sew them so that the right angle would be on the side seam & the right angle at about waist level so that you could button them there. I gave up putting pockets on my aprons, as I never used them & they kept catching onto drawer handles just below the counter top & tearing if I turned quickly.
Now that aprons are coming back (yay!), I just make some as Christmas gifts (for those who cook).
That's a great gift idea. I don't usually sew frilly clothes so those might satisfy the desire for using ruffles and lace on something.
I was looking through my patterns and I've got one that is perfect - it has several separate views (and pieces) so I'd be able to use the pattern for a template for the triangles. You're right, though - I was thinking about 2 of the same size but your idea is much better where one is shorter on the inside or reversing them where the long sides are on the seam and one is edge is shorter on the top and one is shorter on the bottom.
I'm glad you understood what I was trying (ineptly) to say. Will you just put a wide band around the neck to sew to the shoulders & just slip it over your head? Keep us posted on your progress.
Finally - pictures of my finished smock. It really looks like a dress from the front and I put ribbon ties inside at the waist to keep it closed because the only closings are two buttons at the top.
It's hard to photograph black well but it is black and there are daisy buttons on the pockets.
The best thing about it is that I wear it over my bike shorts (which don't show) and it feels as though I'm wearing nothing!
That's cute! I bet you're going to wear it as a top now, instead of an apron, eh? Do you have a couple of daisy buttons for the 2 at the back, too (or is that the front)? I assumed the pockets are at the front.
Thanks! I've been wearing it as a "dress" - it's above the knee (long enough to cover my shorts).
I used black buttons in the back to keep it simple - I had really wanted to create ribbon flowers for the pockets but I didn't want to wait until I was able to finish those to wear it!
It's really the perfect item of clothing - this time of year it's really lightweight but later on I'm going to sew it in heavier fabrics and wear it over a leotard and tights and I'm going to be really creative for the pockets - different fabrics and sizes.
Oh - a dress - that works! With the inverted V at the back hem, though, you'd definitely have to wear something (even slacks) underneath or you'd be showing more than anyone would want to see if you leaned over or bent over, eh? - as the back hem would separate.
Right - but that's why it works so well for me on my bike - anything else doesn't give enough room to ride even if it has a slit.
I came across this - whoever it is does great work but this was what was in my mind - it looks like the way she did it was by sewing the left back to the left side but the right shoulder and the right back to the right side but the left shoulder.
Thanks for the link. I like the cross-over back - no buttons, buttonholes, fasteners of any kind, etc. It would be quick to make & would work well as an apron, but with a lower front neck. The one you made with the back buttons would definitely keep your top in place while biking, though - not so much flexible movement at the back.
That's a great apron and the fabric is too cute. It reminds me of Simplicity 5201, (http://fabricblowout.com/PAT/5201%20CR.htm) only it's shorter and she has different front pocket detailing.
A couple of years ago I was talking with a close friend about aprons and considering doing them as a business. We were discussing the fact that not many people wore them any more. Her opinion made really good sense. She said, " They don't know their supposed to wear them." It's been a couple of generations since they were popular and people grew up never seeing anyone wear them. i'm glad they're back.
I love aprons and I sew them and buy them as souvenirs when we travel. (I'm a messy cook.) Something I never understood though was aprons from the waist down. I rarely splash anything on the bottom half of the apron, mostly on the top. What do you use "half-aprons" for? My grandmother used to sew and wear aprons that looked like sleeveless jackets, with large pockets in front. Not haute couture, but incredibly functional.
Edited 7/28/2007 3:03 pm ET by stitchintime
I think the proliferation of those little half aprons in the 50's gave aprons a bad "rep" because, as you said, they didn't do any good.
You & Ralphetta are right - the half-aprons are useless (as all my splatters happen above the waist). Most of the half-aprons in the 50s were "hostess" aprons, so, when you had company, you took off your dirty work one & put on your fancy (quite often sheer & frilly) apron to serve your guests. Nearly all had pockets of some type, often small & decorative, & weren't used for anything. Everyone had several hostess aprons, used them, & gifted each other with them - they really were a big thing in those days! But, if you were canning or baking, you wore a large bibbed apron that covered very well. Some wore the smock type, but they were too hot to wear when you were canning (which usually took place on the hottest days, unfortunately).
The best "use" of the short frilly apron that I ever saw was in the movie "Love With the Proper Stranger" where Natalie Wood is cooking dinner for Steve McQueen - she's wearing a tight fitted little black dress and when he rings the doorbell she puts on a short frilly organza apron to answer the door!
You're absolutely right! I forgot about that movie - thanks for the reminder.
I have become interested in vintage apron patterns. I found the website http://www.sovintage.com which sells all kinds of apron patterns from different eras. It is like looking at the Sears "Wish Book" that I looked at before Xmas. The preceding poster was correct in stating that the frilly half-aprons were for show as you presented dinner to your family and/or company. I still wear the ones that cover most of my body. lol
I made one a few years back for myself that covered me and had Velcro extensions on the sides. I use it a lot when I cook. When I get home from work, I want to start on dinner and then change into comfortable clothes. That is when the apron comes in handy.Marcy
I don't use aprons myself as my husband is the family member who loves to be in the kitchen; I do plan to make some for him soon. I will say that this thread has reminded me of one of my pet peeves. I get so annoyed when I see employees from various food establishments wearing their aprons in public (more often than not they are on their way to work). They're riding public transportaion, smoking, and everything else you do in your regular "street clothes" . I can imagine what that apron has collected on it's journey to the restaurant. I thought aprons served two purposes. . . to protect your clothing underneath from splashes and splatters as well as to protect what you are preparing from what may be on your clothes. My son sometimes helps in the kitchen and he knows he has to change and put on an old but clean shirt before starting as he loves holding our little dog....(it's a myth; food doesn't really taste better with dog hair in it) There have been sitcoms that show cooks exiting restroom stalls while wearing their aprons. . . . yuck! I'm sure this too is more common than we may care to think.
Have any of you visited this site http://www.kitschnglam.com/default.aspx?f=Home ? Some of these aprons are so nice you'd hate to use them.
Ha, ha! That's a great Website (apron glamour, of all things). Thanks for the info. I love it! I'm always looking for interesting sites for ideas and freebies.
Another thing, so many people don't really cook or don't know how & don't want to learn nowadays with all the prepared foods that are available (even though they may have a gourmet kitchen that they never use - it's all for show.), so they see no need for aprons. We oldies who make so much from scratch know better, eh?
Speaking of gourmet kitchens & people who don't cook, a local chef was catering a dinner in a McMansion & the huge gourmet kitchen had all brand new appliances, pots, every gadget you could envision, etc. The couple who had hired him told him that they'd never used the kitchen in the 10 years that they'd lived there (they had renovated it as soon as they'd moved in), so he was to bring his own pots & pans & small appliances, so as not to make any messes while he cooked & was to leave it as spotless as he'd found it. He asked them if they ate out all the time & they said, no, they ate at home (when they weren't invited out) & showed him their "own" little kitchen - a closet in which there was a microwave, kettle, coffeepot & small sink. See what I mean?
Keep on cooking & sewing!
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