Iron-On and Doodled Apron


Good Morning! CT Member Sandy here to share another project for Hybrid Monday. I don’t know about you, but when I paint and get my “craft on”–I get messy! I have really muddied-up my crafting apron; so I got to thinking…  Since I have recently moved into a new place with a craft room all to myself (*squeal), it is time for a NEW apron. That is how this HYBRID project was “born”. If you’ll notice, I even made it look somewhat painterly and broken-in with some pan pastels, so I won’t have a melt-down the first time I get my new apron dirty. I want to USE it, right? Here’s how I utilized some of Deena’s kits to make my own, stylized art apron.


  • Pre-made canvas apron purchased from Michael’s or other craft store. *You bet I used a 40% off coupon, too!
  • One of my FAVE kits of Deena’s because it is full of whimsy…Happier Elements. It’s an oldie, but a goodie. I also used Word Art from A Kind Word-#Everyday Hashtags. The sun and red flower is from the More or Less 2013 P&Co. Designer Collaboration Kit.
  • Software program to set up your desired design theme: Photoshop, PSE, Silhouette, etc.
  • Iron-On Transfer Paper: I used the Silhouette Iron-On Papers for Light Fabrics. (The first time I’ve used this brand)
  • Scissors or Silhouette to cut out designs to be transferred.
  • Extra Fine Sharpie Markers: Black and a few others if desired.
  • Inks, Pan Pastels, Acrylic Paints: something to add color and background effects.
  • *Optional: Flower, button, any wash ‘n wear embellishments desired.*

As mentioned earlier, I love the doodled, colorful, and fun elements of birds, trees and flowers in the Happier Element Kit. I just had to use that bird nest and the floating notes as well! I went to town designing a composition to fit within a predetermined 8×10 inch area on my apron. As long as I stuck to that space, I could fill it with whatever made me feel happy. Grabbing some WA from one kit, and embellishments from others, I made a vignette of sweet baby birds with their mama bird, singing a sweet song. The doodled tree was perfect for the look I wanted to carry throughout my design. Deena is such a talented artist; she draws everything herself!


Step 1: DESIGN. I used my Silhouette to place all the designs for my print out. I layered, overlapped, and adjusted size to the proportions that looked good to me. Once it was complete, I read the instructions on the iron-on package to learn how to properly use the product. As you can see in the first upper slide, this is how I wanted my finished design to look. On the second slide, it shows that same design in reverse, according to the manufacturers directions. I had to do a little shifting of the WA and notes into more open areas, but they didn’t affect my overall design. I selected the large bottom piece, which are all touching each other at some place in the layout, to outline and create cut lines. I also established cut lines around the sun, WA, and notes. Now it’s time to print your design onto the iron-on transfer paper (again according to the manufacturer’s directions).


Step 2: CUT. Unfortunately, I have been having a problem with my Silhouette reading my registration marks correctly lately. I have GOT to get that one figured out…soon! So, I resorted to using my fine-point Fiskar spring-handled scissors. I LOVE these scissors. I simply cut around my entire design, as I had my Silhouette programmed to do. It really wasn’t that big of a deal, either. Once the largest, and connected, part of my image was completely cut out, I placed it onto my apron as planned. Again, since I haven’t used this iron-on paper before, I stayed close to the edges of each image; I didn’t want a white globby mess or film on my apron. Have you seen that look before? NOT PRETTY! I placed the recommended cloth over my image, and pressed the design onto the apron. For the most part, it actually melded pretty well with the canvas…hmm. I could really use some tips from anyone proficient with this product though. Some places it worked perfectly, and others, the ink color stuck to the ironing cloth, resulting in a poor transfer. OK, back to business. Continue adding further designs and adhere them to your apron until the entire design is on there.


Step 3: WANNA BREAK IT IN? If you look at the placed image of the tree and birds (before they were ironed on), you will get an idea about how CLEAN and pretty it looked, after the image was melded into the canvas. HOWEVER, while I was ironing on the sun, my iron was too hot and it scorched the material some. It wasn’t awful, but I wasn’t happy about it. Welcome to “real life” crafting here! That’s when I got the idea to throw some color on as a background…just like it was all part of the plan. I broke out some Pan Pastels and added different colors throughout the area to make it more colorful, (hide the scorch mark), PLAY, and as mentioned before…purposely give my crafting apron a “painterly look”. That way I won’t curse or cry when I get paint on it for REAL!


Step 4: DOODLE. To continue Deena’s theme of whimsy and art, I pulled out some fine point Sharpies and went to town. I used the black pen to outline all the elements and add additional doodles and designs. With some colored markers I filled in spaces and added more doodling. Have I mentioned how fun this was??? Here you can see a more close-up photo of the tree and birdies. My finishing touch was to add a crocheted flower over the sun for texture and contrast, topped with a vintage button. Remember, this is your project…your vision…your art apron.  Choose designs that make you happy and inspire your creativity! You can apply these techniques to wall art, handbags, pillows, really anything you can dream up. Most of all…HAVE FUN!



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