29 Sep

As part of preparing for the Apronalong, I stitched across the ends of my ticking prior to laundering it because it frays something awful. It’s also a considerably paler blue than the vintage fabric and doesn’t go with it as well as darker ticking would have done, so I’ve hatched a cunning plan to address that differential; of which, more later. While I had the sewing machine stoked up, I decided that, although it’s obviously not prone to fraying much at all, I’d also stitch across the end of the vintage fabric. Just to entertain myself, I measured how much of it there is: 12 yards. That’s quite a lot of fabric! And you might ask why I have so much in my stash?

Great Aunt bought the fabric to make her uniforms when she started as a student nurse many, many years ago indeed. Before she’d even cut the fabric, the hospital changed the check on its uniforms (going to a larger, slightly lighter blue). Great Aunt was left with, well, enough fabric to make all her uniforms and, well, not a lot else for which it was really suitable. But, being the thrifty woman she was, she hung onto it. She gave it to me some years before she died. I’d planned to make shirts for Boy (when he was quite young) but hadn’t done so, hence the fabric has languished in my stash for a long time, too. I’ve just given it a shake and, well, yes, there’s a lot of it!

12 yards is a lot of fabric! (Sorry for the slightly soft focus. I used my phone because it was handy)

Patterns for aprons? I plan to use the same one I use for all the aprons I make. It’s from an old Woman’s Day handcraft book and what it provides is a basic template, much like this one of Anne‘s or this one from The Purl Bee (which Karen has also suggested). What you do with it really is entirely up to you. What I intend to do this time is make reversible aprons: one side vintage fabric, the other side ticking. This will mean wrapping my head around rather more arithmetic than I’m comfortable with, but YoungB has a calculator and I’m sure he’d love to patronise me by using it to work things out for me! No, seriously, it’s not going to be that difficult.

I will, however, need to think more than usual about how I make the aprons because construction is not going to be as simple as my usual method calls for. I’ll have to plan hems (on thermal-backed curtain fabric, hems are unnecessary) and when and where and precisely how I’ll attach straps or loops and so on. And if I decide to use D-rings, which side will I put them on? (That’s not a deal-breaker, since it’s going to be the “wrong” side at some point, whichever side I choose.) Then there’s the question of pockets. Both sides? One side only? Stripes the same way? Stripes a different way? Oh, the choices. I’m all but paralysed by them!

Hope you’re having a good weekend and that you get lots of sewing done. (I’m now making nice progress with the White Caps Cowl, because every time I walk past it, I pick it up and do a few more stitches. That’s not to say I’ll finish it soon, but it’s progressing.)


Posted by on September 29, 2012 in Sewing


Tags: , ,

7 responses to “pinnies

  1. Calico Stretch

    November 17, 2012 at 11:33

    Gosh I am behind on my blog reading – you know aprons are great things and I need some more. They’re brilliant for kids too and I think there will be some belated and frantic christmas sewing going on in my house in the next few weeks. Making aprons. Thank you for reminding me!

    Have you considered dying the 12 yards, well some of it?

  2. Felicity from Down Under

    November 17, 2012 at 14:51

    Ooh, I hadn’t thought of dyeing but that might be a really good option, thank you! Do you think it would work okay on checked fabric? One way to find out, I suppose. I sense a new career in the offing.

    • Calico Stretch

      November 17, 2012 at 16:24

      I have no idea as have never dyed anything ever. Have a gander at as Stephanie has done various posts on successes and otherwise of dying various types of fabric. The other blog / person to check with is MrsC at Actually both are very knowledgeable about it :O

      • Felicity from Down Under

        November 17, 2012 at 16:27

        Thanks for those tips, I’ll check out their wise words. I’ve never tried dyeing (not fabric, anyway, for whatever reasons) but in the days when we used to paint our shoes, I could see why being able to change colours was a good idea. The fabric is cotton, so I imagine it ought to take dye OK. I’ll have to do some more research as to whether the checks would be problematic.

      • Calico Stretch

        November 17, 2012 at 16:28

        Do blog about it if you do get around to it!

      • Felicity from Down Under

        November 17, 2012 at 16:31

        Yes, I will; though I warn you that with one thing and another, I’m probably not going to venture into new realms just yet. It’s likely to be next year. 🙂

      • Calico Stretch

        November 17, 2012 at 16:52

        Fair enough


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