October 14, 2020

All About Aprons

By Carson Eddy
All About Aprons

What is an Apron?

An apron is a protective garment worn over one’s clothes and primarily covering the front of the body. There are several apron styles, are made from a range of fabrics, and used in many different settings, from homes to restaurants, artisan workshops, to flower shops and more. Aprons are popular for everyone!

Brief History of Aprons

Aprons have been worn since ancient times.  Egyptians are depicted, in artifacts, as wearing apron-like garments during rituals and ceremonies. The word itself comes from the French word napperon which means a small decorative tablecloth, like a placemat.

During the Middle Ages and Renaissance, a person’s trade was indicated by their apron style: barbers wore checkers, butchers wore blue stripes, butlers wore green and upper-class women wore beautifully embroidered washable aprons to protect their expensive gowns.

During the 19th century aprons were a popular and essential accessory worn to protect costly clothing that was not easily cleaned.  Today clothing may be less expensive and easier to care for but aprons remain an essential accessory for men, women, and children.

Apron Uses

Aprons today can serve many purposes depending on the fabric they are made from. Cotton and linen aprons are best used for kitchen and garden projects that involve working with dry materials. Linen is an excellent choice because it dries quickly and is naturally dirt-repellent. Leather aprons are popular for working with heat and fire, whereas rubber or nylon aprons are essential for working with chemicals, liquids, or paint.

Apron Styles

Bib Apron
A bib apron, also called a chef’s apron, is considered the most popular apron style today. It provides full coverage that protects the front of torso and from neck to knee. Bib aprons often feature side or front pockets, and adjustable ties at the neck and the waist.
Waist Apron or Half Apron
A waist apron or half apron is a common style worn in the hospitality and catering industry. This style of apron covers the body from the waist to the thigh or the knee, and usually comes with front pockets and adjustable ties at the waist.
Cross Back Apron
A cross back apron, also called a pinafore apron is the most versatile apron. They are easy to put on and take off and fit a wide range of body types. Cross back aprons are a very popular Japanese apron style. Cross back aprons provide the fullest coverage.