For my cousin Anna’s third birthday party I decided to make her an art smock. (I had originally planned on sewing her a dress but after my aunt gave Eli a nice annoying toy I changed my mind.) I had made Eli an art smock for his birthday last year from the book One Yard Wonders which turned out wonderful. Whenever Anna (my cousin) comes over to play we almost always break out the messy art supplies. She especially loves painting with Jello.
I used Simplicity 2295 (also sold as Simplicity 0477 around the holidays) to make the apron although I don’t think it would be very hard to dream up your own pattern. (I don’t usually spend the effort to dream up patterns when I can often purchase them on sale for .99.) If you are sewing for a girl this pattern is great. Besides the art smock it also includes a pattern for a cooking apron, two tote bags, and a couple pretend kitchen play items. The art smock or bags in the pattern could also be made for the little boy in your life.
Elijah and I had a great time picking out all sorts of art supplies to go along with Anna’s art smock. I thought sewing a tote bag would be a great way to keep all of her art supplies together in one place. It also meant that I didn’t have to drive to town to buy a gift bag. I figure by the time I loaded up Eli and went to the store and drove back it would equal about the same amount of time it took to sew this little tote bag. (I sewed view D.)
Somehow I ended up with an extra pocket piece (#11) from the art smock. Rather than let that piece of fabric go to waste I decided to use it as a pocket on the bag. I folded the pocket in half lengthwise and finished three sides of the bag (not the folded edge). Then I sewed it onto the middle of the bag about 3″ from the top of the bag prior to sewing the actual bag together. I sewed down the middle of the pocket in order to make 2 pockets but you could make the pockets however you like. These could also be made to hold crayons by sewing seams 1″ apart. (This would be step zero if that makes sense.)
I accidentally sewed the bag at 5/8″ instead of 3/8″ so my handles ended up being quite small. Somehow I always seem to miss the small italicized directions. :) Overall I was very pleased with how this bag turned it out. I have no doubt that I will be making this bag again in the future.