"Resign yourself, Catherine! Shops must be visited! Money must be spent! Do you think you could bear it?" - Northanger Abbey

Monday, January 14, 2013

Aprons from History

I never thought choosing an apron design would be so hard....but when you have to incorporate 'stripes' into the design you start thinking how you can do this and stay historically accurate.
I have my time limit Pre-1938. So I start looking for patterns and images on pinterest.

Lets start with aprons from the 1930's...
There's a servants uniform

And this one which is I'm guessing for the housewife
Source: etsy.com via Lady on Pinterest

they both tie round the waist and have a 'bib'

Then I take a walk back to the 1920's
photo: www.antiquepatternlibrary.org/html/warm/B-SW002
Showing both waist and a tabbard type apron.

Then 1899-1919

Source: google.com via Lady on Pinterest

This one from 'Grand Hotel' has a bib and some lovely details like the frills and tucks.

 Then 1830-1899

Alice has an apron

Then the early 1800's

Both with and without 'bib' waistline high.

Pre 1800's

Soooooo....what to choose? There are a few elements to consider:

  • How much fabric do I have to play with?
  • What do I need an apron for? (Cooking/sewing/cleaning)
  • Does it need a bib?
  • Does it need a pocket?
  • What hight should the waistline be?

Who'd have thought aprons would be so complicated!


  1. I love a good apron--one with a bib, because I'm such a spaz when cooking at home! It's funny, my reenacting apron is so all-purpose--clothes protector, but also potholder, napkin, hand towel...the list goes on.

    1. And they are quite good if your cold for extra warmth.