The vintage victory apron

When I haven’t been busy with homeschooling/mom life this year, one of my big projects this year has been following along with a vintage skill-building challenge of sorts. So I’ve been learning how to do things like canning and making sourdough bread. In addition, my husband and I have been getting into gardening over the past two years, which has been a great mutual hobby for us. And it’s been an interesting challenge to see how much food we can cram into a townhouse yard.

It’s still TBD how much we’ll actually harvest. But since it looks like we might get a decent number of tomatoes, and I’ve been scrambling for bowls when needing to pick from our blueberry bushes, I needed something to use for harvesting. So I found a tutorial of sorts for a WWII- era “basket apron”. The idea is that it uses drawstrings to turn it into a giant hands-free pouch. I figured that Doug would like that it folds up smaller than a basket, too!

This ended up being a good stashbusting project for me. The main part of it is a green denim left over from some chair cushions that my mom had made years ago. She gave the rest to me with the thought of little boy pants, but my boys really only like to wear knit pants. The lining was a gift from one of my church/book club friends, who gave me a bag of quilt cotton pieces that she’d had sitting around for years. The greens matched perfectly! And the drawstrings were part of a pack that I bought when making Hudson pants a few years ago. Not the best match since they’re white. I thought about tea staining them, but I figure the odds of them getting naturally dirt-stained are good.

Aside from the drawstrings, it looks like a normal apron. The pocket was my addition. I figure it’ll give me a place to put the blueberries next year. (We only have two bushes, so it was really a handful at a time.)

And here it is, all tied up into its “basket” form. A second addition here was making some belt loops from the print to anchor the ties. I probably should have interfaced them, but they are quadruple topstitched, so that’s something.

And then the fruits and veggies just sit in here.

Overall, I found this to be a satisfying project. The most time consuming part was that I ended up hand-reinforcing the eyelets. So now it’s just waiting for green tomatoes to ripen so I can really test it out!

Just for fun, one of my very few successful sunflowers. I planted a whole pack, but only 2 came up because it’s a terrible spot for weeding and they choked my flowers out.

The mid-year update

So it’s been a hot minute. (Or several, as we’re in our typical hot and oh-so-humid part of the summer. But I’ve got several things to show, so it’s catch up time. I’ve been putting this off because of the struggle of getting good photos, but let’s face it, I’m not in a life stage where I can prioritize that. Here goes with the very imperfect ones I’ve gotten.

The first, finished back in March, is a return of an old favorite TNT pattern, the Sewaholic Renfrew tee. I used an Art Gallery knit that’s been in my stash for some time, and it doesn’t have quite the recovery that I’d wish for the bands. But it does go well with the colored denim jeans in my wardrobe. It also took a lot less fabric than I thought, so I still have about half a yard of fabric left to use!

My most involved project lately was this dress for my daughter. I used McCall’s 8267, with a few modifications. I made the 4T size, so it’ll fit her for awhile, but it ended up being extremely long on her. So I shortened the sleeves and hand-stitched two tucks into the skirt. The theory is that I can take them out as she gets taller.

The second modification was to add pockets! I put them in the side seams, just free-handing a pattern piece. And I think that just might be her favorite feature, because she calls it “my oonicorn dess wif the pockets.”

The construction wasn’t difficult, just a little time consuming with the appliqué and making sure the mane pieces for the skirt lined up with it. I wasn’t sure at first if it was worth the effort, since she seemed happy to look at it but completely uninterested in wearing it. But once I finally did convince her to try it on, about a week or so after finishing the tucks— and after she discovered the pockets— she really did end up liking it! She frequently grabs it out of her closet when it’s clean, so I’m feeling much better about taking another attempt at kids’ clothes.

After that, I made three different views of the Santa Fe top by Hey June Handmade. The first was using most of the leftover blue fabric, and some of the white, from the unicorn dress.

The second was from a flamingo print and coordinating solid that my mom recently passed on to me. She’s been babysitting my niece full time, and so she’s been getting even less sewing time than me. I wasn’t sure how this one would turn out, since the knit was heavier and less drapey than the other two pieces, but it seems to sit fine. My husband has commented a few times that he particularly likes this one.

It’s all about the bathroom selfies with this pattern, apparently.

The final is a second tie-dye print. I bought this one last year as part of the big 40th birthday haul, intending to sew it up. But then Halloween costumes took longer than I thought and I didn’t get to it. So I’m glad to have it done this year.

Except for the shot with my oldest’s tinkering supplies in the background. This is as good as it gets here.

I’ll do the final project for now as a separate post, because it needs a little more explanation. And this post is already pretty long.