Sunday, October 10, 2010



Studio, kitchen, garden

At last! The birthday aprons are finished

Sewing was commonplace to me decades ago when my children were young. I made dresses for the girls and matching pants for the boys. I used to sew neckties and give them as gifts till I thought the family would rebel If they received just one more tie. I sewed Vogue designer dresses for myself as well. It all started with the aprons though. The first project I learned at school, was how to make an apron. It’s funny, aprons went out of vogue and have now come back full circle. There is even a magazine named Apronology.

I saw several aprons in Apronology that really appealed to me so I checked out the various artists' work. When I saw Calamity Kim's submissions, I knew I was hooked and wanted to make some aprons. Kim is a seamstress and fiber artist. Her work is stellar. She is so inspiring. She shows you step by step how to make aprons on her wonderful blog.

Leaf I used on the aprons

We have a fall birthday bash each year and I decided to try to finish an apron for each of the birthday girls. I worked extremely hard in keeping them a secret. I had to be sure to lift them off of the floor, where I had to work on them, each time anyone came to the house. I wanted them to be a surprise.

I frantically sat at the machine day after day, embroidering and piecing together the flowers and leaves. I really wanted to use flowers from Woodloft garden, my home, but it was late in the season and most had died out because of the summer draught.

I must have used 4 spools of thread and many bobbins as well. The office, where I sew was strewn with thread that wrapped its way around my entire body at times. I am so glad I was able to take advantage of the beautiful sewing machine the kids got me for my birthday a few years back.

Kelli's finished apron

There was a lot of trial and error involved with the making of the aprons. I started with Kelli, my oldest daughter, and placed a piece of quilt backing to the digital image of her face only to find that it scrunched up completely when I sewed it. After that, I decided not to place anything behind the faces but to quilt only the flowers and butterfly. The whole time I was sewing, the girls on the quilts made all sorts of faces at me as I pulled and stretched them as they glided along under the needle.

Kirsten's finished apron

Nakisa's finished apron

I found some fantastic gloves that begged to be added to the aprons. They were all polka-dotty and flowery and matched perfectly.

The apron surprise was a success!

I'm really pleased with the results and I hope I have the fortitude to complete aprons for our entire family of gals, including one for myself!

Be sure to check out Calamity Kim's blog You'll be glad you made the visit.

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  1. Wow, what an amazing gift! Is there ANYTHING that you can't do? I am completely in awe of you and your talent....

  2. I'm totally impressed with these three aprons and it looks like the gals enjoyed them as well. I can't believe how much work you put into each of these. You are so inspiring in your sewing. I only wish I could sew something like that, but I know if I did, I would get all frustrated and never sew again. Best left to you (grin).

    I, too, have noticed a renewed interest in aprons. I am glad you brought that up, and I'm going to check out your link. I am always on the lookout for fiber artists.

    Congrats on a successful party with three happy daughters.

  3. You sew too? Cheryl, you never cease to amaze me with all your talents. What else are you hiding somewhere?
    Your girls aprons are superb, and special because you put your heart into their gifts. I love the gloves you found to go with them too.

  4. Your aprons are amazing Cheryl, you are wonder woman aswell as healing woman. Wearing an apron like that would even make housework fun and the gloves are just perfect!!

  5. Cheryl wonderful aprons you've made to your daughters and very personal with their pictures on, what a great idea and a perfect gift.

  6. These are wonderful. Love them! Great keepsakes for your daughters - I would hate to spill anything on them. I remember having Home Ec in school in the late 50's (girls took home ec, boys took shop - I would have preferred shop). First sewing project was a "sloper" dress (mine was yellow), and next was baby doll pj's. I did make an apron for my Mom in Girl Scouts - we made snap on decorations for various occasions (Xmas, Thanksgiving, Birthday, etc.). She kept it always. Even used it! Anyway, I was always a sewer, making stuff for my son; puffy sleeved shirts, Turkish embroiders tunics, sweaters I designed - he finally asked me to stop at age 4 as he was embarrassed to wear them around his friends - he wanted jeans and T-shirts. Made all my own clothes for years. Does anyone do that now?

  7. An Heirloom!
    Not a better gift in the world!
    Those lucky girls :o)
    But I am sure they know...
    The aprons are practically vibrating with all the love you put into them.

  8. My dearest Cheryl ... is there anything you can't create??? My goodness, you are one multi-talented lady!!! The aprons are gorgeous, as well are your daughters! What a wonderful heirloom to treasure for the years to come. And those kitchen gloves are just too cute!

  9. They're lovely. I used to sew, crochet, make intricate Indian threaded beadwork, but my eyesight and the vanishing nimbleness of my fingers won't allow it I take joy in others' works of art.

  10. OMG, Cheryl!!!! These are AMAZING!!!! Ahhh, yes! The very first thing we learned in Home Ec was how to sew an apron. **Sigh!** What goes around comes around1!! LOL!!! But nothing was quite as creative or as wonderful as your for the girls. I'm sure they'll be treasured!!!! Hugs, Terri xoxoxox

    PS - LOVE those polka dot gloves too!!!

  11. These are wonderful!
    What talent you have Cheryl :-)
    Lovely photo too....

  12. These are great! What a fun and practical gift too. You are such a talented lady! Great to see all the girls enjoying their presents.x

  13. How very special these are, What a wonderful personal gift for your gals.

  14. Oh, I remember the apron I made in home ec....and then like you I sewed for my children and I sew alittle for my grandaughter....

    The aprons are wonderful and you can tell your left your heart all over them....I know the girls are so definitely need to make you one too....

  15. I admire your sewing skills - these are wonderfully creative and beautifully made. What fun!

  16. Clever clever YOU! What special gifts!! Thanks for sharing your amazing talents with us.

  17. Hi Cheryl, You are so inspiring and very talented!! I am in aww... Your daughters are beautiful... reading your blog has touched me and I wish you the best! Thank you.... :) I love sculpting and your work moves me too...
    Blessings, Cat

  18. Cheryl these aprons are brilliant and what an
    amazingly special gift from the heart. I love the addition of the gloves too - perfect touch.



  19. Way cool. Love our process here. Sewing was never my thing...But the construction looks pretty straight forward. NOw if only I had a sewing machine!

  20. They are very original!!!! lucky girls they are. I just planned to post in my weekly ...weeks before christmas some aprons this week. Should it be okay that I also take a picture of one of yours?

  21. So, this is wonderful...and it's also funny...because I'm gearing up for APRON creations and you are gearing up for LACE!

    Don't ya just love creativity!

    Glad you came by's always such a pleasure!

    ciao bella





  23. WOW!!! Spectaular aprons and what a fab gift for your friends! You are an amazing woman!

  24. WOW ao beautiful pieses and what an amazing gift, you are such a friendly person and very talented woman!
    Hugs Anja

  25. Very impressive! Your talents are amazing! I'm sure your girls will treasure them.

  26. the aprons are completely adorable! what a great idea and so much fun. you are one multi-talented woman!! xoxo

  27. Very weet and so creative. I love your aprons! By the way, thanks for stopping by. I so appreciate it.

  28. Hi Cheryl! Those aprons are so cute! What great treats for your girlies! Love the matching gloves too! :)


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