Make Your Own Shop Apron Workshop

IAP Maker Stories

MIT's Independent Activities Period (IAP) offers students a four-week period in January to engage in independent study and explore their interests. This year, a popular workshop offered by one of MAD's staffs, “Make Your Own Shop Apron,” allowed students to create custom aprons from scratch, using waxed canvas.

By Adelaide Zollinger

Feb 1, 2023

MIT's Independent Activities Period (IAP) is a unique, four-week period in January dedicated to providing students with opportunities for flexible teaching and learning, independent study, and research. During this period, students can explore new areas of interest or pursue their passions, taking part in various workshops and events on campus. One of this year's popular IAP opportunities is the “Make Your Own Shop Apron” workshop offered by N52 makerspace technical staff Chris Haynes.

With Chris' guidance, over 30 students made aprons sized exactly to their specifications, complete with personalized pockets and loops designed to hold their favorite tools, allowing them to machine steel, mix chemicals, or work on a new baking recipe while keeping their clothes clean. The aprons were made from waxed canvas, a traditional waterproof material that has been used by explorers and sailors for hundreds of years.

The “Make Your Own Shop Apron” workshop was a chance for students to learn the basics of cutting and sewing a pattern, as well as how to add reinforcing rivets and buckles to a softgoods project.

According to students, the best part of the workshop was the sense of accomplishment that came with creating something with their own hands. They described how seeing a project through from start to finish was a satisfying experience, especially with an end result being something they can wear and use every day. They were all so proud!


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