Thursday, November 15, 2012

DIY: The Turkey Apron with Special Guests: Kindergarten Turkeys

 Do you know what it feels like to have children point and laugh at you? 
Chase you down in the hallways, look you from head to toe and run away, giggling? 
Call you names? Like "big turkey lady" and (for the not-quite-gettin'-it set) "chicken girl"?

If you do, then you probably fall into the "crazy art teacher" category. 
If you don't, well then, you're missin' out. Big time.

 I bring to you the DIY Who-You-Callin'-a-Turkey? (said in your best "whatchu talkin' 'bout, Willis?" voice) Apron. And a welcome to my world.
 Now I don't normally go in for the holiday stuff in the art room for a coupla reasons. One, my little artists have enough projects going that by the time their procrastinatin' art teacher realizes there's a holiday approaching, there isn't time to create anything. And two, I'm not a big fan of holiday art. I guess I created too many hand-turkeys as a kid that it kinda left me with a this-ain't-art feelin'.

This week, however, my kindergarten friends managed to finish up their masterpiece which left me with one 1/2 hour art class to fill before our Thanksgiving break. Because we had just finished a project including shapes, I thought we could use our shape knowledge to draw our own turkey. The librarian loaned me this gem by the author of the Captain Underpants series. Being a vegetarian, I totally appreciate it's anti-turkey-eating storyline. 
I can't decide what I love more, those little dimply knuckles or that colorful turkey.
 We chatted about the shape of a turkey's head being like that of a small circle while his body is a large one. Details of the face were added as were feathers and his little legs. The kids had previously used oil pastels and recalled that you can overlap lines, hence the details created on the feathers.
 After reading the book and discussing how to draw the turkey, we were left with just enough time to create our own turkey-tasticness.
Love those knobby knees.
Can you say perfectionist? This girl is it.
Early finishers added an environment and some turkey friends to their background.
"Mrs. Stephens, you're a turkey!" To which I reply, "Who you callin' a turkey, turkey?" And it never gets old.
But enough of about the kid's creations, lemme show you how to turkey-ize yourself! I know you are dying to impress your friends and fam with your very own Turkey Apron. To create one, you'll need to rustle up the following supplies:
Please pardon the dirtiness of my apron. It's several years old and seen many a messy art class.
  • Yard and a half to two yards of a heavy neutral color fabric. Denim would work. I went with this gray fabric I had in my stash.
  • Variety of felt with corresponding colors of thread.
  • Buttons
  • Something for the belt and the loop around the neck. I went with some woven ribbon I had thrifted.
Need more apron-inspiration? Check out my DIY Art Teacher Rock Star Apron.
  1. I began by laying another apron on top of the fabric. I cut around that apron, leaving about an 1" for the seam. The seam was ironed under and hemmed.
  2. I then traced that same apron onto a large sheet of paper. This allowed me to sketch out my design and try it on in front of a mirror. Once I had the drawing complete, I used it as the pattern.
  3. After cutting out the pieces of my paper pattern, I cut them out again, this time with felt. To tack the felt in place, I used Witch Stitchery. 
  4. I set my sewing machine to the applique stitch and went to town. That part's easy. Just have plenty of thread on hand as you'll use plenty of it with that stitch. 
  5. Add the buttons, the belt and the part around the neck and Bam! You're a Turkey!
My turkey butt itches. Hat courtesy of my P.E. teachin' buddy.
I'm hoping you'll give this turkey apron a go. If you do, please let me know, I'd love to see what you created. If not, I totally understand. Only a crazy art teacher would walk around in a get-up like that. 

Happy (soon-to-be) Turkey Day!


  1. I have been wearing my new holiday apron purchased at World Market and the kids just love it. Oh by the way, I am also wearing my clogs to give you a visual idea. One staff member told me I need to be yodeling on a mountain. :) So enjoy wearing your aprons from one apron loving teacher to another- Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. I've gotta get myself to a World Market and see their selection! I keep telling myself I'll have time to make a Christmas apron, ornaments, dresses,etc...I think I've gone nuts. Now I'll just have to get me some clogs ;) Have a great Thanksgiving :)

  2. You rock that turkey apron! :)

  3. This is a terrific idea for my Toddler school, going to try and whip this up tonight!! Thanks for sharing!


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