Simplicty Sew Simple 1971 Reversible Apron… Success! (Eventually)

I am happy to report that my first experience with using a sewing pattern was… eventually… successful. I used Simplicty Sew Simple 1971 Misses Apron to make a straightforward, no-frills apron. And, I definitely learned some new skills along the way!

Simplicity 1971 Sewing Pattern
Simplicity 1971 Sewing Pattern

As I was determined to make the most of this pattern, I actually made three aprons, making adjustments along the way. The first apron was made to the specifications of the pattern. The second apron was adjusted a little for a better fit. The third apron was made using the better fit and also with nicer fabric. Thankfully the third apron looked much more presentable and was better constructed than my first! So here is some proof that I can make progress!

I have two main critiques of this pattern:

  1. The pattern instructions state to turn the apron right side out at the top of the apron, and to stitch the top closed. Of course for a novice sewer this will look horrible. I turned the apron right side out on the side, where the stitching is not too noticeable.
  2. Simplicity 1971 Sewing Pattern (Sew Simple)
    Adjusted Pattern for Simplicity 1971 (Sew Simple)

    The apron waist ties hang too low, unless you are seven feet tall. Add height to the apron wrap around area to bring the waist ties up around your waist. I am short, and this adjustment made the apron much more comfortable.

Working with this pattern 3 times also helped me understand some details on the pattern instructions which improved the construction of the apron. As a novice, I did not sew the neck strap correctly on my first try.

Apron Neck Strap First Try
First Try: Ugly Topstitching and Neck Strap

I put it on the outside rather than on the inside, leading to a pretty sloppy look.  Additionally, the pattern instructions said to turn the apron out at the top, which is not such a great idea when I can’t even sew a straight line. Invisible seams are definitely the way to go for now!

By my last try, I had improved a lot. I placed the neck straps close to the edge of the fabric to sew them on, so the ends would be entirely inside of the apron once it was turned right side out after the two sides of the reversible apron were sewn together. I think that and experience (and common sense, which I apparently lack) helped me understand this.

Simplicity 1971 Reversible Apron Neck Strap
Third Try: No Exposed edges and no visible stitching

Additionally, I turned the apron out on one of the sides. I don’t see why a beginning sewing project would purposefully have exposed stitching. They should know I suck at sewing and adjust the instructions accordingly. The adjustment made for a much better looking apron.

Maybe this whole sewing thing isn’t completely hopeless…

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