One of the challenges of being a home inspector is how to carry the various tools I use on the job: flashlight, circuit testers, camera, thermometer, pens, etc., etc. I couldn't keep everything in my pants pockets, although I did try (and ended up dropping my nice expensive flashlight into a toilet as I leaned over to peer into the tank).
I posted my dilemma on a home inspectors' forum and someone suggested I get a tool apron, like carpenters use. So I went to Home Depot and searched through their offerings, not finding anything suitable. Even an online search didn't yield anything.
Then a lightbulb went off, and I remembered this:
This is the old workroom apron I made years ago when I was still doing window treatments. It was made using a pattern from Kitty Stein, and as you can see from the general condition of the apron, it was well-used. But would it work with inspection tools? I tested it and decided that, with a few modifications in pocket sizes and placement, it would work fine.
The only problem was, I couldn't find the pattern. It is probably somewhere in the sewing room, but I'm afraid it was probably purged sometime during one of the last two moves. But no matter; I traced the existing apron and recreated the three pieces as best I could.
And here's the finished product, loaded and ready to go:
Of course I embroidered it with the company logo!
The green fabric is cotton duck cloth. Since it wasn't quite as heavyweight as the canvas I used for the old apron, I backed the pieces with my old standby, drapery lining, just to give the pocket panels a little more body. Construction was simple: pocket pieces were pinned wrong sides together and bound with bias tape along the top edge. I sewed some channels just in the bottom pocket, then more extending to the second tier. Then the three panels were sewn together along the outer curve, and then the outer edge was covered with bias tape.
To wear the belt, I attached 2" belting to the back of the apron with a few lines of stitches and put in a parachute buckle.
All I need to add to the belt is a loop for my flashlight, and I'll be ready for action!
The belt will get its first "field test" at this afternoon's inspection. I'm pretty confident that it will be up to the task, and I won't have to worry about dropping stuff anymore!