Vintage Apron Sew Along Part 1 – Cutting Diagrams, Skirt, and Ruffle Trim

Note: These instructions are for the printable PDF pattern available in my Etsy shop.

Now that you’ve got the paper pattern printed and assembled, here are cutting guides for your Main fabric and Contrasting fabric.

NOTE: This pattern uses a 3/8” seam allowance unless otherwise noted.

Let’s get sewing!


1. Here is our SKIRT piece, with the top center marked with a pin.


2. Here are two types of pre-finished RUFFLE TRIM: fabric and lace. (If you are using double-fold bias tape or want to make your own RUFFLE TRIM, you’ll find instructions for those at the end of this post.)


3. Line up one end of the RUFFLE TRIM with one corner of the SKIRT.


4. Pin the RUFFLE TRIM to the outer edge of the SKIRT, right sides together.


4.1 If your RUFFLE TRIM is fabric, it will look like this when pinned in place.


5. Stitch the RUFFLE TRIM to the SKIRT.


5.1 Here is the RUFFLE TRIM sewn to the entire outer edge of the SKIRT.


6. Open the seam and press toward the SKIRT.


6.1 Like so.


7. Topstitch close to the seam.


7.1 The finished hem should look something like this.


8. If you’d like to add the optional ric rac trim (you could also use lace, ribbon, etc. ), mark a line 1″ from the seam you just topstitched, all the way around.


9. Using the mark you’ve just drawn as a guide, pin the trim in place.


10. Stitch the trim in place. The easiest way to sew ric rac is to stitch straight down the middle of it. I’ve used contrasting thread here to show where I stitched.


10.1 By using thread that matches your trim, the stitching is barely visible.


11. If you’d like to attach an optional POCKET, placement is somewhat flexible. I like to center the POCKET between the center and outer seam of the skirt.


11.1 Keep the top corners of the POCKET an equal distance from the top of the SKIRT to keep it from looking crooked after assembling the apron.


12. Once you’ve determined placement, pin in the wrong side of the POCKET to the right side of the SKIRT.


13. Topstitch the POCKET in place.

You are finished with the SKIRT now! Time to move on to the BODICE and HALTER TIES!

Instructions for making your own RUFFLE TRIM from scratch:

  1. For a 3″ ruffle (like the one shown in the instruction photos), you will need 20″ of additional contrasting fabric (approximately 2/3 of a yard).
  2. Cut the fabric into five strips measuring 4″ each. Sew the strips together to form one long strip of fabric.
  1. Hem the bottom edge of the long fabric strip. After hemming, gather the top edge using one of the gathering methods shown here.
  2. Gather until the top edge measures approximately 100″. Now you can attach the RUFFLE to the skirt, as shown at the beginning of this post.

Instructions for double-fold bias tape:

Find the WRONG side of the bias tape. If your bias tape has one side that’s slightly longer, that is the WRONG side. Otherwise, pick the “uglier” side.

Unfold the WRONG side of the bias tape so the raw edge is exposed. Align this edge with the WRONG side of the SKIRT hem.

Pin the bias tape in place.

Stitch the bias tape in place, keeping your stitches well away from the fold in the tape. That means ignoring the 3/8″ seam allowance.

Here’s what the stitching looks like from the RIGHT side of the SKIRT.

Because we stitched well away from the fold on the WRONG side, the RIGHT side of the bias tape should completely conceal the original stitching.

Pin the RIGHT side of the bias tape in place.

Topstitch the bias tape close to the edge. (You’ll probably want to choose thread that matches your tape.)

Here’s what the topstitching looks like on the WRONG side.

Time to move on to Part 2 – Bodice and Halter Ties

Looking for another part of this Sew Along?

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