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An Apron for Mr. Noile

Mr. Noile has been spending more and more time with his various outdoor cooking devices.

One of our ancient IKEA aprons.
Much nicer than the current version, BTW!

He wears our kitchen aprons when fiddling about in the open air. I am not a fan of this, as I’m fond of our indoor aprons, and they add a nice bit of color in our kitchen.

So I’ve made him a denim apron, modeled on our well-liked IKEA aprons, which we’ve been using for years.

I traced the IKEA apron onto the wrong side of denim, and then added seam allowances all around. In addition, I made the bib a little wider and deeper, as the IKEA version is a little smaller than is ideal for Mr. Noile.

The IKEA aprons have a pull-through drawstring which is clever, but just ends up looking messy, and often needs adjustment. I’m not crazy about that; I want to put my apron on without having to re-fit it every time. So I’d already added buckles to our existing aprons, both to set the length of the drawstring, and to make putting them on and off quicker and easier.

Sold without buckles, meant simply to be tied.

Also, the IKEA method makes the drawstrings — made of cotton twill tape — a bit of a droopy mess. For Mr. Noile’s apron, I used sturdier webbing, and ran the straps back through a slider so that there wouldn’t be any loose strings. The doubled webbing makes adjustment possible, but without any stray ends.

There’s no belt-like buckle on the neck loop, which requires very little adjustment, and just slips over the head. There’s just a slider, in case re-sizing is needed over time.

For the waist I used the same system to avoid loose ends, but added a buckle that opens and closes.

I meant the buckle to be closer to the right side, but miscalculated the length of the webbing, so it’s longer than I wanted it to be. I never understand why buckles are so often in the center back of anything, when surely it’s easier to have a buckle right where your hand will reach for it.

But I did take a cue from the IKEA construction, and made facings for the bib cutouts on Mr. Noile’s apron. On the IKEA versions, the drawstrings are pulled through the facings; on my apron, the facings make openings, at the bib and waist, into which I inserted the ends of the webbing straps. This meant that I didn’t have to melt or fold under the ends of the webbing, saving steps and also some extra-bulky sewing.

The IKEA aprons have a pocket, but Mr. Noile never uses it, so I left that off. On the other hand, he finds the towel loops very useful, so I ran them across the front.

This particular webbing is actually a dog leash; it’s difficult to find good colors in webbing, so when I see a long leash in a color I know I might want to use one day, I buy it. It’s much  more fun to use a color than merely settling for basic black — and I was happy to have this more subtle burgundy webbing, rather than the more easily found bright red.

Although I traced (and then altered) an existing apron, this was a very fast project. No pattern required, and no alterations that couldn’t be done very simply, directly on the wrong side of the fabric. A win on all counts!

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