Pardon My Apron

by jennifer


I love aprons, but I don’t like to wear them for cooking exclusively, especially not the really nice homemade ones.

So what’s a crafty woman to do?

Wear them as outer wear, that’s what.

After thinking for weeks that I really should start wearing aprons out of the house to work and wherever I please, I finally did it. I made a new apron (a very basic khaki-colored number with a quilted front pocket made from a mix of brown and blue prints) and wore it to work over a dress shirt-style dress (a $10 clearance rack find at Sears.)

To some, I probably looked like a waitress who got mixed up with some quilters on the way to work. but I didn’t care. I was met with many confused looks throughout the day, but actually scored a few compliments. Overall, it proved to be a great social experiment.

Here are some of the most interesting responses:

* “Is that an apron?” asked the woman who sold me a tuna sandwich after my workout at the YMCA.
Yes,” I said. “I like to make aprons and decided to start wearing them out.”
“Oh, that’s cool.” she said, looking a little confused. “You look kind of Amish.”
“Thanks,” I said, amused.
Amish people rock when it comes to crafts, so her remark was fine with me.

* At the office, a male co-worker and fellow journalist asked me a series of questions about my apron, which I actually appreciated. Among other things, he wanted to know if I was trying to make a fashion statement. At first I said no, but then recanted a bit. I’ve never considered myself particularly fashionable, (I habitually wear running shoes with dress clothes.) but I guess I am making a statement when I wear one of the biggest symbols of female domestication to my day job. The cool part is that I did it voluntarily. I can wear an apron to cook or to do whatever the heck else I want and I LOVE that. We’ve come a long way, baby, and aprons, frankly, are for wherever we want to wear them.

* I had the same apron on over my jeans when I went out to grab the mail a couple days. A neighbor who doesn’t normally talk to me actually stopped her car and asked: “Are you making dinner?”
“We just finished it,” I said, stifling a laugh.
She didn’t know I had just made mac & cheese out of the box (no apron required) and had been wearing an apron all day. (She also didn’t know that the front pocket is lined with black and white fabric imprinted with “Three Stooges” sound effects: “Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk,” “woob, woob, woob” and “Why I oughta!”)

So I love aprons and I don’t see that changing any time soon. I will continue to make them and buy them. If you love aprons, too, you should venture out sometime with one of your favs and see how the world responds. (Then tell me about it.) And if someone gets up in your grill about publicly displaying your affinity for aprons, smile your best June Cleaver smile and enjoy a good laugh once the passionate individual is out of earshot.

Perhaps we apron fans should join forces and have an International Wear An Apron Wherever Day. Just a thought. What do you think?

P.S. I’m working on my next podcast… so stay tuned.

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