Aprons for the 21st Century Cook

Reader Contribution by Heidi Hunt

Some of the previous blog posts in this topic, 21 Century Homesteading, have been reminiscent in nature –county fairs, homemade tomato sauce and visits to the general store. You may wonder why we continue to report on these ‘old fashioned’ topics. In the July 13, 2007, blog, What is Homesteading, we described homesteading as being all about self sufficiency wherever you live. And in today’s high-tech world, doing things for yourself, by hand is sometimes thought to be old fashioned. But isn’t that what self sufficiency is all about — doing things for yourself, by hand whenever possible? So, what does this have to do with aprons.

When you think of aprons, you are probably imagining Donna Reed (from the 1950s) in her shirtwaist dress, covered by a frilly apron, cooking dinner for the family. Today’s apron wearer is more apt to be a man barbecuing ribs on the patio. But aprons, whether covered with barbecue sauce or flour from the week’s bread making session can be an essential accessory to the 21 century kitchen.

Remember how excited we were when polyester blend clothing hit the fashion world? Wash and wear — skip the ironing all together. It was a snap to do laundry, compared to dealing with all-natural fabrics such as cotton and linen, which always required ironing, and took more time to dry in the dryer or on the line. Well, polyester is out now and natural fibers are in — again. So, if you want to cut down on the amount of necessary laundry — use an apron and keep your natural-fabric clothing clean for another day’s wear. You’ll save time and energy.

You can find all kinds of new aprons — bib, bistro and barbecue — online and in kitchen stores. But if you want to be fun and funky, explore the aisles at flea markets for used aprons in great retro fabric. Wherever you acquire your aprons, start using them! It is just one more way to care for yourself and the planet.

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