A pinafore, for me.

Helen’s Closet patterns put out the York pinafore a few months ago. I am usually unaffected by the  adoration that accompanies the release of a new pattern. I almost never wear dresses or skirts. I certainly haven’t worn a pinny since I was a young girl.

And yet, I am moving into a semi-retired existence combined with a small amount of volunteer work. I am stocking my wardrobe with garments that are a bit interesting, suit my creative self and are also work appropriate. So I bought the York pinafore and hummed the “Grand old Duke of York” throughout making it.

I used a denim with some stretch bought specifically for this pinny. I had intended to use some of this border print denim I bought in Singapore. Except it isn’t denim. It is a lighter weight cotton and not suited for this dress. I also had to buy fabric to make bias binding. So much for using up stash fabrics!

The instructions are written with beginners in mind. They are clear and perhaps excessively long.  This is not a difficult make with only three pattern pieces. The instructions for making bias binding are not so good. The explanation for double fold bias still has me scratching my head. I used my brain and a bias maker.

The differential feed on the overlocker helped me gather the edges of the curvy pockets in for easy hemming and sewing to the pinny front. I realised that the denim was rather dark. There was so much of it, the pinny was going to overwhelm me, in the style of brutalist architecture. It needed some bright contrasting top stitching. Choosing the colours was fun:








I pinned the pockets VERY carefully and anchored them with navy thread. I did the top stitching with my coverstitch machine. Rainbow variegated thread went in the left needle and blue variegated thread in the right needle. I decided to top stitch everywhere.

I top stitched the pockets, side seams, shoulder seams, armholes, necklines and eventually ran out of the rainbow thread while doing the lower hem. I managed to make it across the front (just) and switched to a red variegated. Adding it was incredibly easy. I tied it to the rainbow thread and watched carefully as the knot went through the machine, then through the eye of the needle. No breakages!

I like the effect the top stitching has in breaking up the denim.


Denim $15.oo + bias binding fabric $5.00 = $20.00

Pattern – on sale – $AUD 15.00 + printing $4.00 = $19.00

Total = $39.00

Top stitching thread – from a pack of Mettler threads bought sometime late last century. Used up the remainder of one spool – yay!

Do it again? – maybe. I have several tops to wear with this. But no tights or leggings. Thinking they are next!

About Accordion3

I sew, ride a bike, bake, read a lot of books and sometimes skate. I also play several instruments, one of them is the Accordion.
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6 Responses to A pinafore, for me.

  1. Lizzie says:

    Looks like a good simple pattern. I really like pinafores and tunics, worn with tights or leggings, so go for it!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ciara says:

    I love pinafores, but the silhouette of the York just doesn’t do it for me. I’ve been trying to figure out what it evokes for me & I finally hit on it: it reminds me of the long denim coccoon dresses my mom started wearing after she converted to Islam. But I like how you dressed it up with the variegated thread! Good call!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Accordion3 says:

      Hi Ciara – interesting comment about the cocoon shape. I straightened the cocoon shape a bit as I’m not fond of them either, and I was worried that this denim would be too stiff. Having worn it a few times I like this version a lot.


  3. Janine says:

    You have done a great job and a denim pinafore will be very versatile. I love the variegated top stitching thread and it really does break up the darkness.It’s a great feeling to use stashed treasures. I have a boucle pinafore dress which is 10 years old and I wear it regularly for work with lots of different tops underneath.

    Liked by 1 person

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