Covering usually the front of the body, an apron is basically a garment that is worn by professionals over other clothing. The word came from the French word “napron”, which means “a small piece of cloth.” However, “napron” later became “apron” via rebracketing. Aprons are made of different materials, including canvas, cotton, nylon and leather. With its roots dating back to the Middle Ages, traditional leather aprons with pockets is still quite a popular choice among professionals across various industries.
An apron protects your uniform or clothing from substances that might splash onto it during an activity at the workplace or home. In the olden days, tradesmen were called “apron men” as they used to wear an apron habitually to safeguard their clothing. For several centuries, aprons have been in use inside kitchens to help cook or chefs protect their clothing from oil splashes and food stains. Ideally, aprons should be worn in situations, in which people may to protect their garments from substances that may damage or stain them.
While aprons are used in many professions, here are three most common ones:
Initially, aprons was worn by male professionals – butchers, masons, barbers, blacksmiths, etc. – with each profession having its own specific style and colours. In the late 20th century, it’s recognised as a garment to be worn by women inside kitchens. Today, you are more likely to find bearded, tattooed and muscular male chefs wearing an apron than women in kitchens. Men, who work with drinks and food, have embraced aprons, specifically leather aprons, quite gracefully in the last couple of years.
There are many different styles of aprons with the most common one being the full-length apron, which comes with waist ties and a neck loop. If the neck loop isn’t fixed, you may need to tie it first. You apron should cover your outermost clothing, but it shouldn’t restrict you in any ways. You should then cross the waist ties and tie them at the front to form a bow. The waist ties shouldn’t be tied tight enough to make you feel uncomfortable, but it shouldn’t be kept too lose to hamper your day-to-day work.
Depending on personal taste and specific requirements, a person can choose from the following different styles of aprons:
Personalized aprons are quite popular these days. Here’s how an apron can be customized:
The thickness of an apron is based on the purpose it is to be used for. For instance, a welding apron is expected to provide complete protection from molten metal and sparks, hence it’s usually thick and made from full grain leather. On the other hand, aprons for light domestic tasks are relatively thin and made of light cotton.
How you can wash an apron largely depends on the type of material used to make it. A traditional leather apron should never be washed. Aprons with leather neck hoops or straps are usually washable, but the leather elements need to be treated with some conditioner after the wash to restore the lost oils. It’s suggested to go through the reading instructions on the apron before you wash one. An apron should be soaked in a mild soap solution for half an hour before washing it. Stubborn marks and stains can be removed by applying lemon juice and further rubbing salt over the stained area. For tough stains, rewashing may be needed.