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Cross-Back DIY Apron Pattern to Sew (with Printable Template)

Although we haven’t dressed like twins since childhood, we really wanted a matching pair of aprons to wear while crafting. And now you as well, can match along with us by following this DIY apron pattern.

DIY apron pattern

A Stylish and Practical DIY Apron Pattern

Disclosure: This project is sponsored by Canvas Etc. All opinions are our own. Also, this post contains affiliate links for you shopping convenience. You can read our full disclosure statement here.

We’ve once again partnered with Canvas Etc. to create these utility aprons that we plan to wear in our workshop, studio and while gardening.

When we initially received the 100% cotton canvas fabric we thought it might too stiff and heavy for this project but after just one wash and dry, the fabric feels soft and the perfect weight for these aprons! And since we couldn’t decide on just one color, we selected these two rich hues, a gorgeous mustard yellow and a soothing blue.

The apron comes in one size but because of the cross over straps, the fit accommodates all different body types. It wraps comfortably around the hips and falls longer in the length for extra coverage and has these deep angled pockets for holding tools and supplies. You can also make the matching kids apron pattern.

Woman wearing a blue cotton utility apron hanging a mustard colored one made from a DIY apron pattern

Remember to save your scrap fabric as you go: the small pieces can be used to make these canvas ornaments or this scrap fabric heart garland or even these scrap fabric pumpkin decor!

Materials Needed (for one utility apron, one size):

Driftwood buttons with two holes available on Etsy by Sustain My Craft Habit

 How to Make this DIY Apron Pattern:

Keep reading for the full how-to instructions for making this beginner sewing apron. If you’re unclear on any of the sewing terms, you can refer back to this other free apron sewing pattern for clarity.

We’ll be sharing the how to video for this apron on our YouTube channel soon so you can easily follow along as I sew.

Pre-wash and dry the cotton canvas prior to cutting and sewing. Remove it promptly from the dryer to minimize wrinkles and creases. If you find it the fabric has too many wrinkles to lay out smoothly, than give it a quick iron before starting.


Fold fabric length in half with right sides together, matching selvedges and place on a smooth, flat surface.

Laying out the cotton fabric from Canvas Etc and printable template for this DIY apron pattern by Sustain My Craft Habit

Using a straight ruler or measuring tape, measure and mark with removable chalk the apron pattern onto the fabric following the pattern dimension guide provided. As always, take your time with this step to avoid any mistakes in cutting. Alternatively you can print out the pattern onto 8.5″ x 11″ sheets of paper and tape together. I saved myself printing the body pattern but I did print off the neck facing, shoulder straps, pocket and pocket facing pattern pieces.

Since the neck facing pattern matches the shape of the body pattern along the neck edge, I also used the neck facing to help lay out the body pattern.

Cut along all the solid lines (the dash lines represent the sew lines).

Be sure to mark the notches for the strap placement along the top edge of the body pattern. Single notches represent the front and double notches represent the back.

Mark all dots (for pocket placement) on the pattern (pocket pattern AND body pattern) using a piece of washable chalk or wax. Poke the center of the dot with a pin, lift pattern up and mark on the fabric where the pin meets the fabric. This step will help you position the pockets properly later on.

Optional: You can also add a decorative button to each pocket opening.  In order to do this, cut 2 narrow pieces  out of the scrap selvedge edges at 6″ long each to use as button hole loops.


Shoulder Straps

With right sides together, sew the two sides of each shoulder strap together lengthwise. Turn stitched straps right side out and press seams flat. Put straps aside.

Neck Facing

Do a narrow hem stitch along the lower edge of the neck facing piece to clean finish and prevent fraying edges. Put facing aside.


As an added touch, we added a decorative fabric loop to each of the pockets. This is totally optional so only add if you wish (this step is not included in the PDF sewing pattern). Cut two strips of fabric (along the selvedge of the fabric) about 6″ long. Fold the selvedge strips in half to form a 3” loop and align the cut edges with the center of the pocket edge. Baste stitch in place.

Adding button loops on a DIY apron pattern

Align the pocket facing with the top edge of the pocket and sew together. Understitch the seam. Clean finish the pocket facing edge with a narrow double turn hem.

Fold in the facing along the seam and iron all other edges of the pocket in by ½”.

Ironing the pocket flap of a DIY apron pattern

Position the pocket onto the body of the apron, with small dots aligned.

Positioning and pinning a pocket into place on a DIY long apron

Edgestitch pocket in place along all 3 sides of the pocket. For added reinforcement, add a triangle stitch to both corners of the pocket opening.

Edgestitch pocket in place along all 3 sides of the pocket. For added reinforcement, add a triangle stitch to both corners of the pocket opening.
Assembling all the pieces:

Align the shoulder straps to the right side of the apron body matching single notches at the front and double notches at the back.

Pinning the shoulder straps in place on a hand-sewn DIY full apron

Be sure to criss-cross the straps at the back! Baste stitch straps in place.

With right sides together, align the top edge of the body pattern and neck facing as shown.

Stitch together with a ½” seam allowance. Finish with an under-stitch.

Sew the ends of the facing to the body with a 1” seam allowance. Clip the seam allowance at the corners to reduce bulkiness. Turn facing over and press seam flat.

Finish the sides and bottom hem of the apron with a ½” double turned hem.

Ironing cotton canvas for how to make a simple apron pattern


Lastly, we added driftwood buttons to each of the pockets to finish off the apron. Again, this is totally optional so only add if you wish (this step is not included in the PDF sewing pattern). Using a sewing needle and matching thread, attach the button to the apron above the pocket loop. Reinforce the back of the button with a piece of scrap fabric.

Handmade driftwood button on a DIY apron pattern

And lastly, iron all seams and stitched edges.

We’re quite happy with how our DIY apron pattern turned out. They’ll be perfect for crafting, in the workshop or garden. While we went with the wheat and blue cotton canvas, we’d really like to make some in the natural and pewter colors available from Canvas Etc. as well. We’d love for you to check out the apron sewing pattern along with other PDF downladable patterns in our Sustain My Sewing Habit etsy shop.

If you’re looking for more of a kitchen-style apron instead, you can refer to this free apron sewing pattern, which I made for my hubby last year.

Like it? Pin it for later!

Collage of images for a DIY apron pattern project

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Tuesday 12th of January 2021

I'm a beginner (only my third project) and this was such a fun challenge to make! I took about 6 inches off the bottom and added a small two-part chest pocket. My fiance is a baker and I'm going to make one for him next and after reading the other comments I'll cut his straps a bit longer.

Rebecca Payne

Tuesday 29th of December 2020

Happy New Year!

Carlo the Skunk

Saturday 19th of December 2020

Made a short version using patterned waterproof canvas. I cut a big slit in the front so the fabric would pull apart when I am seated. I omitted the buttons but added a scissors pocket and snap tab to prevent them from falling out. Also added a pocket on the chest to hold pencils and other small accessories. I am a 5'9" male, chest 42". I recommend making the shoulder straps an inch or two longer to allow shoulder movement. And some type of tie in the back if you want to reduce some flapping back there.

Pamela Wile

Friday 4th of December 2020

I'm curious how you would put this apron on? I need a video :)

Camille Ocampo

Friday 21st of August 2020

Do you have a video available?

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