Introduction: Upcycled T-shirt Apron

About: I like to make crap out of other crap. It's exciting and therapeutic, but to pay the bills I teach math.

Here's a great way to use an old favorite T-shirt that may have stains or torn sleeves or something--a handy apron! It's useful for teaching, cooking, crafting, grilling, or just as a fashion statement. It's not as quick to put together as my grocery tote, but it's still pretty easy and takes under an hour.

Step 1: Layout and Cutting

Bigger T-shirts work best for this project.

Lay the shirt out flat. Cut the biggest rectangle you can from the front.

The length will basically be just below the neck to the hem (don't cut the hem) and the width will be arm seam to arm seam.

Step 2: Folding the Pocket Area and Finishing Sides

Fold the hem up to the bottom of the graphic. You can adjust this for a longer or shorter apron.

Or if you don't want pockets, cut to your desired length and hem.

Once you have a fold that gives you your desired apron/pocket lengths, fold both sides under twice. I make my folds about half an inch because any smaller and they just roll or unfold and frustrate me. The joys of working with jersey knits.

Press and pin your folded sides, then sew.

Step 3: Turning That Big Pouch Into Pockets

Now that you've folded and sewn the sides, the fold you made created a big pouch. To turn this into pockets we will sew vertically.

Even numbers of pockets are easiest. Sew a seam in the very middle of the apron from the bottom edge to the top of the pouch. That makes two pockets. Split each of those into two pockets by sewing a seam right down the middle of each.

Now you have four pockets!

Step 4: Making Waist Ties

Cut the sleeves and neck from the back of the shirt.

You need 6"-wide strips. I made 2 by cutting rught down the middle, then matching up the cut edges and cutting a 6" strip through both layers. For larger waists make 3 strips.

Sew the strips end to end. Press the seam(s) open.

Step 5: Preparing Waist Ties

Looking at the underside of the waist strip, fold the long edges over a half inch and press.

Then fold the whole strip in half lengthwise and press.

Step 6: Attaching Waist Ties

Open the folded strip. Center the apron on the strip and overlap it so that the top edge lines up with the half inch fold you made on the edge of the waist.

Fold the waist strip back over the apron. Pin in place. Also pin the fold closed along the ties.

Starting with the righthand tie (as it's facing you), sew the end from the center fold almost to the edge. Leave the needle in, lift the foot, turn 90 degrees, and sew all the way along to the other end, closing the open edge of the waist ties and attaching the strip to the apron.

When you get almost to the end, leave the needle in, lift the foot again, turn 90 degrees, and sew the end.

You're done!

Trash to Treasure Contest 2017

Participated in the
Trash to Treasure Contest 2017