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The History of Aprons
Apr 11, 2017

The History of Aprons

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Before aprons became the symbol of the 1950s housewife, they played tremendously important roles in many professions for centuries, even millennia.  From a simple garment to an essential protective layer, from the staid to the designer fashions, aprons have come a long way – and they are currently at the center of a renaissance as a chic and practical accessory for the modern woman.

Since ancient times, aprons have been used as the simplest of coverings.  When the Bible tells of Adam and Eve stitching together leaves to cover themselves, they were in fact creating the first aprons in history.

Aprons evolved into a practical way of shielding one's body from more than just prying eyes. Heavier aprons made from leather, canvas and other thick materials were worn by craftsmen dealing with sharp implements or hot objects. These apron wearers included such burly professionals as butchers, welders, glassmakers and blacksmiths. In fact, many craftsmen who work in these industries today still wear an apron to protect their fragile bodies from the dangers of their workshops.

 

The Emergence of Culinary Aprons

 

The cook's apron, in contrast, has been crafted from lighter materials, but has served much the same purpose. An apron serves as the cook's first line of defense against messes. It serves as a shield for their clothing and their skin, deflecting hot liquids and sharp edges. For centuries, it was a singularly utilitarian garment meant to absorb the mess of chores. Aprons were frequently included in the uniforms of many household servants, from cooks to maids.  It was both a symbol of their status and a way to keep the rest of their uniforms clean from grime.  

 

An apron also served as a convenient carry-all when gathered up, perfect for bringing in vegetables from the garden, eggs from the henhouse or firewood from the woodpile.

 

The iconic image of a woman in an apron standing dutifully at the fire or oven comes from the last century. It was not until the middle of the 20th century that the apron became closely associated with a homemaker, complete with frock dress and pearls, waiting with dinner for her husband to come home. When the feminist era struck, aprons were in large part abandoned, along with bras, as symbols of feminine suppression.

 

 

The Apron Shoppe:  The Future of Aprons

 

Today, aprons are enjoying resurgence as a practical and fashionable garment (thankfully, brassieres have enjoyed the same resurgence).  At The Honest factory, we are proud to bring both fashionable style and practicality to these versatile garments.

 

Aprons have a retro appeal for many women, and designers have created stylish designs that recall past eras.  Aprons are also available in a wide variety of designer patterns and styles to suit the taste of every modern woman.

 

As for the future of aprons, you very well may see The Apron Shoppe showcasing its designer aprons on a fashion runway near you! 

E-MAIL:honestex@hontmai.com

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