Kim Becker {aka MommyKnows}
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DIY – Create a Craft Apron from Old Jeans – Sew Incredibly Wrong

in DIY / Tutorials, Family, General

I am the proud owner of a sewing table (will miracles never cease?). ME, the me that was once proud to open beer bottles with her teeth … SEWS! Not well mind you, but I do sew. I digress, back to the table, this table was my great-grandmothers, her daughter, my great-aunt had it until her passing on Good Friday and my lovely cousin gave it to ME! I am thrilled to pieces with it. Thanks Lorraine!


While I was in the shower this morning, Georgia pulled the table and the machine into the kitchen and begged me to sew her a dog. I couldn’t find the brown cashmere sweater that I had planned to turn into a dog, so I talked her into a craft apron instead.

denim apron

These old jeans of Sam’s were handy.

denim apron

I intended to follow the instructions in this magazine ‘sew simple‘.

denim apron

Right from the get-go, I had to break the rules.

The instructions are for an adult sized apron, using adult sized jeans. The length would have made it an ankle length garment. Basically, I just started cutting.

denim apron

An old dress of Lizzy’s is going to be the waistband and ties.

denim apron

I gave up on the instructions completely when I got the to the waistband. With the changed dimensions, it just wasn’t working.

I just folded, cut, ironed and pinned until it looked like it was going to work. This was my first ‘attached’ waistband and it was a FREAKIN’ HUGE wee bit of a disaster. The top stitch missed the denim (DUH) on the top seam, so I ended up zigzaging over the waistband twice. Once to make sure it was attached and once to make it look better (not sure that worked).

This also about the time I stopped taking step-by-step photos. I was to busy swearing and sweating. Hayley finally reminded me, “MOM … it’s for Georgia, she won’t care about your sewing!”. I freakin’ know that Hayley … BUT, I CARE!!

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, “I sew like a drunk driver!”

denim apron

In the magazine photo, the pockets and belt loops were removed and sewn on intact. My machine even with a brand new denim needle just wouldn’t go through all those layers of fabric neatly. I ended up cutting all the folded seams off the pockets and belt loops and zigzagging them onto the skirt, along with a cute little heart.

It was right about this stage I considered taking a Valium. The STRESS. If only I could follow instructions. What is it about sewing and instructions?! Or is it me?

denim apron

Oh well, not so bad in the end. A wee bit messy, but I’ve heard practice makes perfect.

denim apron

Of course, ‘Georgia, Georgia quite contrary’ had to be forced into the apron for photos. Miserable cuss!

To the moon Georgia, to the moon!

MK xo
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83 comments… add one

  • Sarah @ May 29, 2009, 4:19 pm

    The apron is sooooo cute, though, that I’m sure it’s well worth the effort =)

  • Madeline May 29, 2009, 8:09 pm

    It’s freakin’ adorable! I’m the same way with sewing. I can’t follow instructions for my life, so I always end up making it up. Somewhere between reading, processing, and applying my brain fritzes out.

    Madeline’s last blog post..The Best Seat In (Or Out) Of The House

  • Cindi May 29, 2009, 8:57 pm

    I personally don’t think you give yourself enouogh credit!
    I could not open a book and look at the pattern and sew such
    an adorable apron. Very cute…..Love the table!

  • Naomi May 29, 2009, 10:04 pm

    You totally should have just made one for yourself… Roo’s the same way. Little ingrates!

    Naomi’s last blog post..Excuse Me

  • jenB May 30, 2009, 12:41 am

    It is fantastic, but the valium away for more important occasions!!

  • Eileen May 30, 2009, 1:45 am

    Oh my gosh – so dang cute! I’ve always wanted to learn how to sew. It’s taken me years to get over the fact that the boys in my 7th grade Home Economics class had a fight with MY bag of stuffing and I got a bad grade on my pillow because it wasn’t puffy enough. I still wonder why I didn’t just tell the teacher what happened. (Maybe I’m still not over it.)

    I think the floral dress fabric definitely kicks it up a notch!

  • Joi May 30, 2009, 7:25 am

    Okay, so amongst all the swearing & did notice that you tiny mess of a child has adult size scissors on her child size body with her child size apron and child size brain that will want to run, right? Just kidding – sure you did.. I hope you did.. You did, right? haha LOOKS GREAT! I have to make some now!

  • Carey May 30, 2009, 12:34 pm

    It came out very cute! I would love to just pick up some fabric and create something, but I have a hard time remembering how to do the basic stuff on my sewing machine. Half the time(ok..most of the time) I dont even know where to begin.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Carey’s last blog post..

  • nikkapotamus May 30, 2009, 2:56 pm

    Don’t you love how that happens. You spend all afternoon (week, month, year) making something SO ADORABLE for your kid, and then she doesn’t even want to look at it.

    I think it’s super cute, and am ready to try one of my own, even without directions-that’s what makes it so much more fun!

  • jamie May 30, 2009, 5:33 pm

    I have a terrible, terrible time following directions myself! Gets me all the time. ;)

    I will, however, be very sad when my children stop wanting me to make things for them. sigh.

  • kategvt May 31, 2009, 9:43 am

    long time no read! u are such an artiste! i like the one u made more than the magazine apron! neat idea!

  • Cat Supply May 31, 2009, 10:00 am

    I also bought a sewing machine lately something I thought I would never do! Who am I suzy home maker?!?! but it looks to me like you are nine steps ahead. How in the world did you make such a cute apron. I love it and I think you may have inspired me to dust off the sewing machine and try again!

  • lace May 31, 2009, 12:37 pm

    Such a cute apron. This might have to be on my list. Just finished a superhero cape for my niece the other day. She put the thing on and was wound up the rest of the day.

  • Joi May 31, 2009, 1:52 pm

    OH..I think you should put the full pocket on and sew inside the hem of the pockets.. It looks like that may be how they did it, the edges won’t be sewn down, but they look that way on that picture. You could also put on a heavy sewing needle – green top one. Although, your zigzag is adorable!!! Just telling you in case you wanted to try the other way. Did you see H’s outfits on facebook that I made?

  • Ashley June 1, 2009, 12:19 am

    It is insane to me how unbelievably crafty you are! I turned on Mom’s sewing machine for the first time to make a soother clip and just about lost my hand! All my husband (who’s mother is a professional seamstress) could say was, “Good thing you handle those gas pedals better than that! Why don’t you move over I can do it.”

    Anyways, I think I’ll leave the fabulous sewing to you. Do you take orders?

  • Ashley June 1, 2009, 12:19 am

    It is insane to me how unbelievably crafty you are! I turned on Mom’s sewing machine for the first time to make a soother clip and just about lost my hand! All my husband (who’s mother is a professional seamstress) could say was, “Good thing you handle those gas pedals better than that! Why don’t you move over I can do it.”

    Anyways, I think I’ll leave the fabulous sewing to you. Do you take orders?

  • diaper cakes June 1, 2009, 2:13 am

    what a great job, it is just beautiful.

  • Outdoor Living Furniture June 1, 2009, 2:17 am

    you always make such lovely things, wish I was this talented.
    lovely pictures too :)

  • management Institute indore June 1, 2009, 3:06 am

    thanks for the sharing .Thanks for the info on the plugins. That’s what makes bloggers so great, you all share so freely.

  • Beth June 1, 2009, 3:04 pm

    I love it! I sew the same as you – I start with following the directions but by the end have, more often than not, made up something on the way when I couldn’t understand the instructions. It is fabulous! And, you are brave to give your daughter such big scissors! My little one likes to cut her own hair.

    Beth’s last blog post..Fabric & Pattern Testing

  • Baby Carriers June 1, 2009, 5:15 pm

    Tell your inner perfectionist to take a hike, cuz that looks GREAT!!! Apparently you’re a good problem solver (stupid jeans needles are never good enough!), and very creative (I love the heart and the pretty fabric for the waist band). Anyway… well done!

    I want a dedicated sewing table! I hate hauling the darn thing in and out of the closet!

  • Cindy June 2, 2009, 10:52 am

    Creative way to re-use an old pair of jeans. The apron is great. Georgia’s cute even though she gave a hard time for the photo shoot.

  • Nancy @ Chicago Pontiac Dealership June 2, 2009, 2:30 pm

    How adorable! I’m always looking for things do to with old blue jeans. Have you tried to make the purse? Blue jeans are great for recycling because they are so sturdy, have building pockets, and are always fashionable!

  • One Scrappy Gal June 2, 2009, 3:03 pm

    I think it’s precious! You did a great job!

  • debbie June 2, 2009, 3:54 pm

    That is too cute for words! The model and the apron.

    debbie’s last blog post..Where to Find Parenting Advice

  • Pozycjonowanie June 4, 2009, 7:17 am

    I’ve done the same this mothers day. I know it’s hardly a man’s task, but I’ve known how to sew since I was 12 or so. Now I know that no gift is more precious than the one you’ve put your hart into making, so with this in mind I’ve decided to give my mum something that’ll remind her her son loves her, every times she uses it or looks at it.
    The one I made was much simpler, and the only decorations I put in was a pair of dolphins (she loves them).

    Pozycjonowanie’s last blog post..Hotel Góry StoÅ‚owe

  • Maria June 4, 2009, 9:11 am

    I always love reading your post. That was a cutie apron you made.

  • andie June 4, 2009, 12:33 pm

    i love it! so cute :) have to try this myself. thanx :)

  • Online Printing June 6, 2009, 12:26 am

    Is this your first time to use a sewing machine? That’s okay… I think everyone always do bad on their first time. Practice makes perfect dear! :)

  • Steve - jordans June 6, 2009, 2:13 pm

    @Online Printing, Are you serious? I think she did is pretty well and I like that apron. In fact it suits very well.

  • Wine Cheese Baskets June 8, 2009, 12:25 pm

    are there any sewing classes for 11-12 yr. olds in Miami-Dade in Florida? and if there is then tell me where it is

    Wine Cheese Baskets’s last blog post..Wine- boost up every occasion

  • Baby Pushchairs June 10, 2009, 8:47 am

    That’s a really good idea! My Mum was always great at sewing and coming up with ways to use old bits of material.

  • Georginia Henovis June 10, 2009, 10:25 pm

    I am always a fan of this site.
    This is where i can get good tips and ideas.
    I have tried this one but i was using my old blouse in making the apron.
    For the Jeans i made it into a shoulder bag.

    Georginia Henovis’s last blog post..Wedding Photography

  • Giselle June 11, 2009, 12:09 am

    this post really hit the spot! i remember my mom doing the same thing for me when i was little.

    I might make one for my niece just for traditions sake! :)

    thank you for the detailed post!

    Giselle’s last blog post..Kefir Agua Or Kéfir de Agua And Water Kefir Grains

  • Kristelle June 12, 2009, 12:45 am

    That’s a nice skirt or apron? I love her wearing that!

    Fat Loss System

  • shelly June 12, 2009, 11:08 am

    completely adorable! i love this

  • Beverly Lewis June 15, 2009, 8:42 am

    This is really great! You give me some refreshing idea of what to do with my old jeans. :)


  • Juicy couture handbags June 17, 2009, 11:22 pm

    The apron looks wonderful. You are an inspiration to me as well to be more creative in my sewing (or lack thereof). Great job though. Better than I could have done.

    Juicy couture handbags’s last blog post..New Juicy Couture Park Equestrian Bag

  • Juicy couture handbags June 17, 2009, 11:23 pm

    I am inspired by your design. I love the idea and I wish I had that same kind of talent. Keep up the good work with your sewing. You will only get better.

    Juicy couture handbags’s last blog post..New Juicy Couture Park Equestrian Bag

  • John @ Chicago MBA June 18, 2009, 8:48 am

    Very creative work indeed.

    @ Online Printing – If you think that stitching is a first time, well, that’s just ridiculous. She did a great sewing job!

  • baby shower invitations wording June 18, 2009, 9:21 pm

    Nice job! You are using scrap jeans to sew another one. I’m proud of you and you are actually showing sign of saving earth like recycling. But would it be dangerous to put knife over there?

    baby shower invitations wording’s last blog post..Classic Pooh Baby Shower Invitations Ideas

  • staph Treatment June 19, 2009, 2:25 am

    It’s adorable! I’m the same way with sewing. I can’t follow instructions for my life, so I always end up making it up. Somewhere between reading, processing, and applying my brain fritzes out.

  • franchises June 19, 2009, 4:10 pm

    My sewing skills go as far as brownie badges! Looking at those scissors on there, reminds me of my 4 year old girl from the other day. she stared out the morning with lovely long blonde curls, and by lunchtime she had chopped the lot off! I could have cried :(


    franchises’s last blog post..PFU Recruitment

  • arka June 20, 2009, 8:39 am

    a good idea once. I will try it out. thanks.. :)

  • Novelty Aprons June 20, 2009, 12:51 pm

    This is an ingenious idea. You should think about selling these – I for one would be interested in buying for my site.

  • sc Photographers June 21, 2009, 12:25 pm

    I guess the big question is do you still open beer with your teeth? Can’t wait to see the photos from the cruise.

  • Wedding June 22, 2009, 8:56 am

    Excellent sewing! Now that’s what I call skills. Your creation looked good to Georgia though. Anyway, practice makes perfect. You see, you created something pretty though not gained enough skills yet. You have a future in designing!

  • web design leeds June 23, 2009, 3:52 am

    once again, great work

  • Marc June 23, 2009, 12:37 pm

    that design could have been a very trendy skirt!

  • Donna June 24, 2009, 7:28 pm

    Thanks for sharing. That is a wonderful idea, very cute and functional.

  • Jim - Sample Personal Statement Essay June 25, 2009, 6:23 pm

    I’ve said it before and I will say it again, “I sew like a drunk driver!

    You’re too hard on yourself. Actually, we share the same problem when it comes to following instructions. But just like what you’ve said “practice makes perfect.” And don’t you worry because the apron is really adorable. It’s very cute and funky! Don’t you think it will make a perfect gift for any person who loves to stay in the kitchen?

  • Brand Ambassador June 26, 2009, 8:25 pm

    There are lot many things that you can create with a torn pair of jeans but that apron is something that only females would think and I really love what you have created.

  • DVD Movie Copier June 29, 2009, 2:46 am

    This one is lovely. I wish I am also that creative to make such wonderful craft ideas. Pics are also lovely, thanks for sharing.

    DVD Movie Copier

  • Sea Fishing Rods June 29, 2009, 1:07 pm

    what talent! your daughter look gorgeous in it.

  • TIN LIEN June 30, 2009, 6:39 pm

    So beautiful, but i have not enougth time to do that.

  • mrbrrown July 1, 2009, 8:31 pm

    great idea! very resourceful!

    mrbrrown’s last blog post..Stainless Steel Espresso Cups

  • Mark142 July 6, 2009, 12:04 pm

    Good idea would never have thought of something like this.

  • Ruri July 14, 2009, 11:37 pm

    The result is not really bad. It seems you follow the instruction correctly because it look similar with the instruction photo.

    Ruri’s last blog post..Managing CFD Risks When Trading

  • julie July 16, 2009, 11:38 pm

    I love this craft apron.. I feel frustrating when it comes to sewing, I really like and admire people who can saw their own things. My Mom actually do our curtains and she’s good at it..

  • Thainee July 20, 2009, 5:00 am

    Well done with the apron, I wish my sewing skills were this good!

  • cheap ed hardy August 4, 2009, 7:38 am

    Well done with the apron, I wish my sewing skills were this good!

  • AdRock August 11, 2009, 1:30 pm

    Many times I wish I had someone who knew how to sew…dang button alway poppin off for no good reason. LOL.
    Watches Reviews

  • Jess October 13, 2009, 9:03 am

    Georgia looks so adorable! you actually di quite well you know!

  • Issacs Maez April 14, 2010, 1:37 am

    beautiful advice and sharing,I will buy one this fantastic jeans for me .thanks

  • Lynn May 14, 2010, 12:09 pm

    That is some amazing work! Thank you for sharing!
    .-= Lynn´s last blog ..Best Budget Sewing Machine, Brother LS2125I =-.

  • Free Traffic Site June 11, 2010, 11:56 am

    Great!!! A very kind of you to post this one. You can help many people to save money because of this.

  • Tall 36 jeans June 24, 2010, 9:26 am

    This is nice, looks easy to do…, thanks for sharing this…

  • Sewing Supplies July 26, 2010, 9:16 am

    Thanks for sharing this info, project looks good!

  • horsegames September 3, 2010, 3:16 am

    nicely made, it is an art and she is looking really great in that.

  • Michelle Neddo September 13, 2010, 7:06 pm

    This is darling! Forget the instructions–yours came out beautifully, drunk sewing and all! :)

  • MommyKnows September 13, 2010, 9:30 pm

    @Michelle Neddo, Thank you Michelle! I’m am getting a wee bit better, but I still swerve-sew! ;) It is very frustrating.

  • Mindy September 14, 2010, 5:29 pm

    How great! I’m going to have to try one!

  • Jenn October 23, 2010, 1:03 pm

    Thanks for this post. Love the apron! I, too, have a hard time following sewing instuctions…I love to make it up as I go!

  • hunter air purifier December 27, 2010, 6:00 am

    most have a flat spot on it put a wrench on it and turn out…if not use a pipe wrench .make sure you use teflon tape on the threads when replacing to the elbow or it will leak in the wall and you won’t know it till the wall comes down

  • closet organization January 25, 2011, 6:21 am

    Being a Newbie, I am often pointed online for articles that can help me. Thanks One.

  • Chloe@Brothers Sewing Machine February 18, 2011, 8:57 am

    I love it! definitely give yourself more credit – who needs instructions anyways when you’re armed with creativity :)

  • Cheap Sewing Machines February 21, 2011, 10:10 am

    I have to say you are very talented in sewing and of course a very good designer as well. I absolutely love the design. Also your model looks very cute with it. Very good job and nicely done!

  • suzanne at February 28, 2011, 4:31 pm

    That is really cute! And so is your little model :)

  • ankara escort August 18, 2011, 6:06 am

    thnk you for sahring

  • Pozycjonowanie Poznan November 3, 2011, 11:48 am

    so cute! my sister love it ;)

  • Linda M March 14, 2012, 1:10 pm

    Hi, I love your apron and just wanted to let you know I included it in a post on my blog at Thanks, and thanks for sharing your tutorial!

  • Zeek Reward August 5, 2012, 2:34 am

    Hi, Neat post. There is a problem with your website in internet explorer, would check this… IE still is the marketplace chief and a huge part of other folks will omit your great writing because of this problem.

  • Margo September 16, 2016, 2:26 pm

    Georgia’s adorable and the apron is the cutest ever! I raised 4 sons and one daughter, she was child #3 and gave her brothers a run for their money growing up. I made all of her clothes (I was taught hand work when 7 and the machine at 8) I loved to sew back then. Her outfits were gorgeous, the mother of one of her friends called me one day and asked me did your really make Blanche’s dress and it only cost you $15 dollars? Yes, then she showed me one of the tackiest dresses I’d ever seen for a 13 year old (the style was like a 5 year old’s dress and she had paid $60 for it at Battlesteins’s (a very expensive store back in the 70’s.) Blanche rebelled and went to wearing jeans because it seems that her friends embarrassed her by asking “will you get your mom to make me one”. So Georgia isn’t really a miserable little cuss…she just didn’t like being singled out. I made my sons clothes (shirts).
    They splurged once and got some fancy Britannia jeans back then, that had twin needle sewing on them for accent. I drafted a pattern off of them and made them some jeans. Then when they hit 15 & 16 they went to work that summer washing dishes in a 5 star restaurant making $1.50 an hour and they taste in jeans changed instantaneously! They bought Penny’s plain pockets! They were not about to throw their hard earned money away frivolously! Don’t give up, Georgia will come around, just don’t make my mistake, don’t make her dresses so different from every one else’s and she’ll love them…kids are uncomfortable being so different in their styles that they stand out.

    BTW there’s nothing wrong with you regarding instructions, honey….you simply march to a different drum…once I learned how things went together, unless it was an extremely “technical” type of pattern I never paid attention to the instructions either, and there was almost always a little something different about the garment when I got through! Be proud of your individualism! You think you may sew like a “mad woman”, but you are really talented…don’t belittle your talents so…look at all you accomplish…you know what would freeze over before this gal climbed a mountain, and you can bet your bottom dollar I sure as heck would not go back down on skis! I used to be terrified just riding in a car going up one…we’d be on the outside lane around a curve approaching a cloud and it was straight down lord only knows how many hundreds or thousands of feet and & me sitting there praying in the spirit under my breath because was so scared I could hardly breathe…

    I’ll be 79 next month and while I no longer have Margo’s Montage open for business I finally have 4 great granddaughter’s that absolutely adore everything that G’ma Margo makes!
    I think that you are a fantastic mom, your children are blessed having a mother like you! Have a blessed day!

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