A Day at the Zoo

A Day at the Zoo // Boots & Cats

Recently at work we celebrated our Christmas party, (who says they have to be in December??), and as a part of that we did a ‘secret santa’ gift exchange between the staff.

The catch? Your gift had to be handmade under the theme “A Day at the Zoo”. Oh boy.

Adjustable apron // Boots & Cats

The information I got about my recipient (besides her name) is that she wanted to cook more this year, and her favorite color was grey. I wanted to make her something cute for her kitchen, yet still useful. I found this really easy adjustable apron pattern on the Purl Bee. I enjoyed the sleek lines and the absence of ruffles and ribbons (which I found on MANY online patterns).

For fabrics I chose a soft double woven grey fabric for the apron, a dark grey denim for the pocket and and a light sage green twill for the ties.

Oh dear, double-weave! // Boots & Cats

To add the “zoo” element, I decided to make a little contrasting elephant for the pocket. One problem I hadn’t anticipated for was the fact that double-weave (essentially two different fabrics woven together in the middle) frays like CRAZY. Even as I tried to manually wrap stitch the edges the whole thing was just falling apart.

Top Coat to the Rescue! // Boots & Cats

I didn’t have time to go back to the store for some fray stop, so I took the internet for alternatives. Many sites said that nail polish clear top-coat would do the trick so I re-cut my elephant and gave it a go. Miracle-worker! It instantly transformed my fabric and stalled those frays in their tracks.

Details // Boots & Cats

Just to be safe, I still whip stitched around the edges to keep those fraying threads at bay and added some elephant-y details such as toes, tusks and eyes.

Contrast stitching // Boots & Cats

As I attached him to the pocket, I used a contrasting thread to add some extra details with a simple running stitch.


Then it was time to put it all together. (Note: If you are making this pattern, try to get a twill webbing for the ties like the Purl Bee suggests. I couldn’t find any so I made a tube from fabric, which worked, but took FOREVER to pull through since it was about 150 cm long.)

Voila // Boots & Cats

My first apron! Which is surprising since it is usually a project people do early on, but c’est la vie. The timing on this project was really good, maybe 3 hours? I was really happy with the result and I think the elephant was just the cutest.

One thought on “A Day at the Zoo

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