Cooking with My Husband (Well, Sorta)

Here lately, I’ve been cooking with my husband in mind. Every time I tie one of my new aprons on, I either 1) remember different times he wore the shirt now made into an apron, 2) try hard to remember ever seeing him wear it, or 3) laugh about how mad he got the first time I tried to get rid of all the ugly western shirts he would never wear.


I recently made room in my husband’s side of the closet by re-purposing some of his old shirts.

I hand picked some of his old ratty-looking ones but mostly ones that he would never wear because they weren’t his style and couldn’t stand to let me get rid of them.


When I went to the Women in Ag conference in Spearfish Canyon last fall, one of the evening activities was making aprons out of old button-down or snap shirts. I didn’t actually make one there but took the cool idea home with me. I didn’t have a pattern, but figuring them out on my own was easy using an apron I already had.

This particular shirt is nearly new looking but my husband’s had it hanging on his closet rod since we were dating.

One time he saw this shirt along with some other shirts equally as obnoxious looking in a box that I planned on putting out of their misery on a yard sale a girlfriend and I were having. He got really mad that I had priced his perfectly good shirts so cheaply compared to what new ones cost. The fact that I never saw him wear them didn’t matter. I took a risk and cut them up instead, to make into aprons.

I pinned an old apron I had, over the top of his shirt and cut out the front and back, making sure I didn’t cut through the pockets (I didn’t cut down the sides of the shirt, I just left what was already sewn together and cut only 1 ½ inches or so in order to pin the ties in place then stitched over it).


I cut out wide strips out of the sleeves and made the ties and neck strap then turned the shirt inside out, pinned the neck straps and ties in place at the corners,

sewed up the edges, inverted, pressed and top stitched. I took off the tags and re-sewed them on the front.


These went together in a couple of hours.

 This one he’d cut the sleeves off once the elbows were shot and turned it into a haying shirt (trust me, he has PLENTY more; I didn’t leave him shorted) so I had to improvise for the ties and neck band with material from my scrap pile.

Making shirts into aprons was so fun and easy that I made some to give as gifts for my girlfriends. I got old shirts from my girlfriends’ husbands so they had something useful that was made from a shirt their husband used to wear.

I wear aprons a lot more now than I used to and I think of my husband every time I wear them. Having new aprons to wear has motivated me to cook supper by 1.98%! but the best part about making these is now my husband’s old shirts are actually getting worn.  

10 responses to “Cooking with My Husband (Well, Sorta)”

  1. Pj Tomer Avatar
    Pj Tomer

    Cool idea for sirts. I’ve used mine like that for years in the kitchen. It’s just that i never used straps and such, but they work great when you’re cooking:-)

  2. Janet Avatar

    I like your project. Rural Woman comes up w/ some pretty neat ideas as well as the great educational topics.

  3. Michelle Avatar

    I love this idea, so cute!

  4. Sydney Silva Avatar
    Sydney Silva

    I have a local community thrift shop I love to support. Sometimes they have these shirts for $1, sometimes $5 for a grocery sack full of anything. I’m going to do these and then gift some back to them so they can sell them as aprons and make $$ for the community outreach.
    It’d be more work but I think using 2 shirts, i.e. left front is a pinstripe, right front a wild plaid, would be really awesome. Lots of possibilities, thanks for the inspiration!

  5. Audrey Cahill Avatar
    Audrey Cahill

    Lov this idea. Going to try this as a gift for Christmas for my sister & daughter & daughter in-law. Going to follow up with more ideas you post. Live in small farming community in the thumb of Michigan.

  6. Audrey Cahill Avatar
    Audrey Cahill

    What is your web site?

  7. Leesa Wallace Avatar
    Leesa Wallace

    I am always looking for new ideas. I am going to make these for gifts. Thanks

  8. Debbie James Avatar
    Debbie James

    Would you be able to send this pattern for our Home Ec. class – would be a nice project.

    Debbie James

  9. Carole Avatar

    Fantastic idea,I like to paint in oils and this would be better than wearing the shirts I buy in charity shops,as they don’t go far enough down my legs. Can’t wait to make one now.Thank you for sharing!

  10. Vanessa Evans Avatar
    Vanessa Evans

    Hello. So your apron is double thickness? front and back sewn together inside out then turned? I like that you cut off the collar. Thanks

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