As part of my planning for this summer's art camps (don't worry I haven't lost my mind, I do realize that its only April) I decided to create some art aprons for the kids. In the past kids have brought aprons or worn old clothes, but there's always at least one kid that decides to wear their brand new t-shirt despite the warning that art camp = awesome messiness. Since I usually have around 10 kids a week, making art aprons really isn't a huge undertaking.
Before starting I decided to look online to see if there were any templates or suggestions that would fit my needs. There a quite a few examples that create kids aprons from old tea towels, but I felt that the fabric would be too thin, and paint would seep through onto the kid's clothing thus defeating the purpose. There were also some that included hemming the apron to create a pocket, but I instantly had visions of myself searching for lost art supplies that kids have tucked away. I liked the idea of repurposing rather than buying new fabric, and decided to try using old terry towels. The only example I could find of an art apron from a terry towel didn't really fit the child properly. Realizing that I wasn't finding what I really wanted, my mom being the awesome lady that she is, dug out an old apron from my childhood.
|These measurements include a 1-1.5 inch allowance on all sides.|
Using this as a template, I cut up the towels getting 1 or 2 aprons depending on the size of the towel and its style. Be aware that trim on towels bunches the fabric and will make your apron look weird if you include this part of the fabric when you sew it. Since these art aprons will be covered in paint and other art materials and the terry towel is a thicker fabric, I did a very basic sewing job not bothering to create perfect hems or to pin the fabric. Instead I used a zigzag stitch to stop any fraying.
For the ties I bought fabric rope at the dollar store, similar to shoelaces, for $1.50 a package. I used fabric rope since it will create knots that are easy for the kids (and myself!) to untie. A package of 20 ft gives you enough for 3 aprons. Simply tie a double knot on each end and wax the ends to stop fraying. Instead of feeding the rope through the fabric I instead laid the rope onto the armpit areas of the apron, folded over the fabric and zigzag stitched the fabric to make the loop for the rope to pass through.
Overall, it took a bit of time to figure out the best way to create them, but once I got going these art aprons were pretty much a snap to make.