rags into aprons

Now, I'm going to show you how to make an apron out of a towel. (As if you couldn't figure it out yourself.)

This project was inspired by an apron my Grandma gave me that she and my aunt made years ago. (I have that right, right Marie?) They cut a regular kitchen towel down the middle and added a band. Smart.

It's really a brilliant idea. When I'm in the kitchen, I use towels to wipe my hands on, not my apron. (Go figure.) This just takes out the middle-man.

Really, towels are the best thing to make aprons out of cuz they're already hemmed and the perfect size.

It's really cheap too. I'm thinking around $3 for the whole apron.

I bought some pink towels at Wal-mart that came in a bundle--2 wash clothes, 2 hand towels, and two full towels. Total cost for all, $5.

Now, before I begin, let me tell you, I'm about as much of a sewing amateur as anyone. I sew on a little, blue mini Kenmore machine. And I don't know how to do much, but I do alright. (I'd do more alright with a bigger, more functional machine, but I haven't earned that just yet.)

I right notes on my machine because I hate having to keep referencing the owner's manual. It's very useful.


Half the time, I really don't know what I'm going. Who cares though.

So. (Or should I say "Sew"? Ba-da-dum! I'm here all week, folks.)

To start...

You can use either a hand towel or half a regular sized towel for the apron.--trimmed to desired length. I used half of the towel cuz I'm wider this way <--------->

But if you're thinner, the hand towel would work really well. A bit slimmer and I would have used it.

If you buy the $5 bundle that I got, you could really get 6 aprons out of it. Not bad, right?

Ready? Here comes the most confusing apron towel tutorial I've ever done...

First, do your pinning. Pin the ribbon of your choice on that little decorative strip on the bottom of the towel.

(Sorry about the day-glo pink. They aren't this bright in person.)


Then run the needle over it, twice, like a railroad track.


If you used the big towel, you'll have a rough edge at the top where you cut it in half.

That's where you will pin your band--but on the opposite side that you stitched your decorative ribbon on.

(Are you confused yet? Let Common Sense be your guide if you're lagging behind.)

In this case, I didn't let anything go to waste. I used the "ribbon" that was tied around the bundle. And it's perfect for the waist band.


After you've stitched that on, fold it over once and stitch it twice like you did the decorative ribbon on the front.

Little tip, roll up your fabric as you're feeding it into the machine.

(See how I folded it over?)


Okay, so now you should have the main part of the apron done.

Now we're going to do the pocket! Always my favorite part.

Take a wash cloth (again, not wasting anything from my bundle) and make two lines of basting stitches along where you will be putting your ribbon.

See those two rows? After cinching this, I'll be putting ribbon over the top.


Have you ever cinched before? It's so easy, but you wouldn't think it. At least I didn't before I learned.

Take the two strings from one side and start pulling and sliding the towel.


See it gathering?

After you've gotten it as gathered as you want it, sew your ribbon over the top and add a bow or something cute. Buttons are always a favorite.

Optional: I put one side of a piece of Velcro in the pocket and attached the other side of the velcro to some of the scrap piece of towel, so I could have another thing to wipe my hands on while I'm cooking.


Then pin the pocket to the front of the apron, wherever you want it and stitch it on.

Here's my first pocket.


Here's the pocket on my second apron. (One towel, two aprons.)


In the end, I decided to just make a bow out of the black and white polka dot ribbon to put on the pocket. I liked it better...

...and added an alligator clip to the flower to make it a hair accessory.





The first one took me about an hour and a half to 2 hours cuz I had to figure out the thread tension and what needle worked, etc.. (FYI, a 16 needle worked the best.)

This apron would be the most awesome in the winter since it has a little bulk to it...nice and cozy. Yes, an apron can be nice and cozy.

Little tip: the combination of terry cloth and a seam ripper is deadly. I spent many minutes having to pull out screw-ups and it about did me in. (Also why the first towel took me so long.) Go slow and practice on some scrap towel before hand!


  1. Amy you are so talented. You could have a blog everyday like Julie and Julia. Everyone would become your fan because you do so well at it.

    P.S. I love the hair bow.

  2. That is so awesome!!!! I am thinking that will make great Christmas presents!!!

  3. OMG, Your great! :) Dang see now I need to get a sewing machine :P Crap. That is so cute! :) and would make great little homemade gifts too! :) Im so impressed!

  4. To Wade & KatiAllen - It originally was a Christmas present to my sister-in-laws (including Amy's mom). Amy did a much better job than I did. But this was something very easy for a 13 year old to do. I didn't put a pocket on.

    Amy - Grandma loved what you did. She did say you needed to work on you spelling and grammar though.

  5. That is such a cute idea. I love the flower you put on it. You are so talented. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Thanks everyone.

    I like my pants too, Bonnie.

    The only spelling error I have is in my sewing machine note. And I'm well aware of it. I was aware of it the moment after I wrote it. Steve mocks me every time he sees it. And I tell him to bite me. (I got tired of this exchange and just wrote him a little love note right next to my error to save time.)


If you can't say something nice, say it behind my back.