Make It for Yourself or to Give as a Gift

Fabric remnant and denim from old jeansThis handy apron is made from cotton fabric remnants or repurposed cotton fabric and the legs of old blue jeans. Four pockets can hold everything from garden gloves to plant markers, sharpies and your phone. The flapped pocket ­secures with velcro to keep your phone from falling out—even when you’re bending over. The downloadable GQ Gardener’s Apron Pattern gives you cutting diagrams, and slightly more detailed instruction.The only other supplies you’ll need are basic sewing items (thread, pins, marking pens, scissors) and self-adhesive Velcro®.

STEP 1. Apron Strings and Body

You’ll need enough cotton fabric to cut two 13 x 22” panels for the apron body, and two 4” x 20” ­panels for the apron strings. I used a steel ruler, quilter’s cutting board, and fabric-marking pen (that washes out) to measure and draw cutting guides. I cut the fabric with my good Gingher shears, but a rotary cutter would work very well if you’ve got one.

Apron Base marked for cutting Denim

Cut fabric ready to sew

Apron Strings

With wrong-sides together, stitch a 1/2-inch seam lengthwise and on one end, leaving the other open so you can turn in right-side out. Press seam open, clipping at the corners, and pull through for finished edge. Set aside. Repeat for other string and set aside.

Apron Body

With wrong-sides together, stitch 1-inch seam on ONE long end (top) and press open. Pin one apron string on the on each side of the right side of the fabric, right at the sewn seam and baste in place. Match the two halves of the body with right sides ­together, and stitch a one-inch seam on both sides taking care not to catch the apron strings; leave the bottom open. Press the seams and turn it right-side out. Fold in one-inch of the bottom, press and pin. Top stitch it on all four sides, 1/4-inch from the edge and set aside while you create the denim pockets.

Attaching sewed apron strings to base

STEP 2. Denim Pockets

One adult-sized pant leg will give you more than enough fabric to work with. Cut the leg off at the  crotch. I avoid using the knee area if I can, because it is usually faded and dirtier than the rest of the denim. The back of the leg tends to be more evenly colored.

Pocket Base

Cut one 7″ x 19″ rectangle, and use a fabric marker to mark a line down the center and at the 5-inch point from center on each side. This will be your guide to stitch the pockets to the apron body.

Turn under 1/2-inch on all four sides, pin and top 3/8-inch from the fold, making sure you catch the hem. Set aside while you construct the pocket flap.

Pinned pocket panel, ready to attach to base

Flap sewn on three sides, ready to turn

Pocket Flap

Cut two pieces per pocket, starting with 5″ x 5″ squares and angling in on the sides as shown. With right sides together, stitch a 1/2-inch seam on both sides and the bottom, leaving the top open. Clip at corners, press open seam and turn right-side out. Fold in 1/2-inch at the top and top stitch closed and along the other three sides 1/4-inch from the edge.

Set aside in preparation for assembly of the apron.

STEP 3. Apron Assembly

Center the denim pocket panel on the fabric apron from side to side, and top to ­bottom. Pin in place and top-stitch close to the edge. Tuck the top of the pocket flap behind it, so it can fold over at approximately the 2-inch mark. Stitch it to the apron at the fold line, being careful not to catch the outer pocket.

Pocket panel pinned to base, ready for stitching

Pocket flap set in place

Pin the flap out of the way while you finish up.

To create the three pockets on the denim panel, stitch a straight line from top to ­bottom on each side. Position the line on the right side close to the flap; position the other the same ­distance from the left. The third line should be centered between the two. Be certain to backstitch a few times at the top openings to strengthen the integrity of the pocket and insure the stitching does not pull out.

 STEP 4. Finishing

Velcro ready to sew on pocketTo make sure your phone stays safe and sound in its pocket while bending over to plant or weed, add a strip of sticky-back Velcro® to the inside of the flap and it’s ­corresponding spot on the pocket.

Your apron is ready to use. The pockets can hold gardening essentials like gloves, shears, lip balm, a small notebook and pen, and, of course, your phone.

Gardening Apron Holds Tools and More

Team the apron up with a pair of gloves, nail brush, and bar of specialty hand soap, and you’ve got the perfect gift for the gardener in your life!

Comments on how to improve these instructions would be most appreciated; I’m still new at this. If you have specific questions, feel free to email me via the Contact page on this site.