Thursday, January 8, 2009

Week of January 4, Thursday -- aprons, poem, garden trivia challenge

The little cares that fretted me,
I lsot them yesterday
Among the fields above the sea,
Among the winds at play;
Among the lowing of the herds,
The rustling of the trees,
Among the singing of the birds,
The humming of the bees,
The foolish fears of what may happen
I cast them all away
Among the clover-scented grass
Among the new mown hay,
Among the husking of the corn
Where drowsy poppies nod, Where ill thoughts die and good or born,
Out in the fields with God.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

More about our apron:

I forgot to mention two things yesterday: Since we are not following a pattern, be careful how you cut your pieces so that the grain looks the same. In other words, it's better not to have the grain of your skirt going one way and the grain of your waist-band going another. You will probably find that your fabric's pattern or "right side" has a horizontal grain.

Also, don't include selvages in your measurements.

Now, we're ready to cut the skirt. We need only one piece for this. This will be the biggest of all the pieces we will cut. After this, we need cut only the shoulder ties and waist ties.

Many aprons of this kind have gathering along the waist band. We are going going for something a little different on this apron.

Cut a trapezoid shape, like the one I've cut and photographed. (Sorry. You have to tilt your head again! The photo is sideways. The smaller end is the waist band of the apron skirt and the longer end is the bottom hem.)

Here's how to measure your skirt piece.

First measure the distance from your waist to the point at which you want your apron to hit at the bottom. This will be the length of your piece. Add to this number 1/2 inch top hem and 1/2 to 2 inch bottom hem, depending on how deep you want your hem to be. I am doing a very narrow hem.

A typical measurement for the skirt length might be 22 inches plus hem allowance, for example.

If you would like to add a ruffle to your bottom hem, remember that will add length. So, take that into account when you determine how long to cut your skirt piece.

For your top width, use the same width as the retangular waist sash piece you cut per the instructions in yesterday's post. For example, if your waist sash retangle is 19 inches wide (eighteen inches plus hem allowances), the top of your skirt should also be nineteen inches wide (eighteen inches plus hem allowances).

The bottom width should be thirty six inches. (If your hips are a whole lot smaller than thirty-six inches around, you can choose a smaller number. For most of us, thirty-six inches across the bottom will be just fine, no matter what size our hips are.)

Use tailor's chalk, a disappearing ink pen made for sewing, or a sewing pencil (or pins) to mark the top width of your skirt. Find the center of this measurement on your material. Measure straight down, using the number you predetermined for the length of your skir, and mark that center point. From that center point, measure out on each side eighteen inches (to make thirty-six total inches) and mark those points.

Cut your bottom width. Then, using yourardstick or by marking the seam, cut straight up from the bottom left corner up to the left point of your waist band. Then, cut straight up from the right bottom corner to the right point of the waist band. Cut straight across to make the skirt's waist band.

This whole process is easier than it sounds.

Here's where you can have some fun embellishing your skirt however you like.

I have cut a square pocket, which I am going to sew on my skirt. I cut it to try to include certain parts of the pattern, plus allowing some for hemming on all sides.

Another way to measure a square pocket, is to measure across your flat hand, as it would be if you stuck it into an apron pocket, and determine a comfortable size square that would fit your hand.

You could trim a pocket with rick-rack or some other embellishment if you like. If you are using a solid material, you could embroider -- either by hand or machine -- your initial to put on the pocket.

Here are some other ideas for embellishing your apron: Embroider your initial on the bodice or somewhere on the skirt, sew two or three rows of rick-rack near the bottom of your skirt, sew a ruffle onto the bottom of your skirt, or sew lace onto the bottom of your skirt. It is also possible to sew a little ruffle or other trim across the top of the bodice, but you don't want to to that until we sew the two bodice pieces together, and we start putting in the straps. Now, is the time, however, to put trim on your skirt if you desire to.

Well, that's enough on our apron project for now.

Here's a garden trivia challenge:

Most of us think of fruits as being sweet tasting produce and vegetables as being things like potatoes, green beans, etc. That's fine when we're grocery shopping. However, gardeners use a more precise definition: Any part of a plant that develops from a flower is a fruit. That means that things like tomatoes, sweet peas, and zucchini are fruits, even though we don't tend to think of them as such. Vegetables are edible leaves, stems, or roots, such as lettuce, carrots, and potatoes. So, how would you classify a pumpkin?

Happy Homemaking!


Seraphim said...

Ooh, interesting.... now, I have never grown pumpkins, but I would imagine that they are probably a fruit as they have seeds...


Elizabeth said...

Thanks for commenting with your guess. We'll answer that question soon!

topaztook said...

Hmm...since I think they're generally considered part of the same family as squash, and there are squash blossoms (which some people eat, but I never have). I would guess that a pumpkin is a fruit.

Ridenour Family said...

I guess a fruit. They have blossoms.