The Cobbler Apron- Old style for a new age

Many times people will ask what a cobbler apron is. The term dropped out of use a long time ago by the general public. Old school thinking has most folks thinking of some guy in a shop fixing shoes. The imagery tickles me because it is a story book image. Cute, but now the real stuff of old fiary tales.

Simply put a cobbler apron is a style of apron that is shorter than a regular apron and fits closer to the body. It is ideally suited to no frills…roll up the sleeves…let’s get it done chores in and outside the home. It is an abbreviated, effective garment for protecting clothes. It is the most efficient use of fabric in covering key body areas. It can tie, have no ties, zip up, button up, snap up and these days be closed with velcro. Depending on the time period, some styles were more popular than others.

Cobbler aprons regardless of decade have always been designed to allow the wearer maximum unconcerned movement. I think they can be compared to Sport Utility Vehicles popularly called SUVs. A simple change to a truck created a new vehicle that has exploded in use for a variety of purposes. And so it is with this apron. It like the SUV can be used in many ways depending on the need.

I used to wear cobbler aprons in my classroom. It just made sense. I didn’t work with elementary school kids and I didn’t teach art or any classes like that. I taught history, but had to deal with getting pen, pencils, markers, chalk and a bunch of other staining agents just like teachers working with the little ones. When one stains a costly sweater, blouse or pants it is a crap shoot if dry cleaning or washing will get it out. I’m speaking from experience when I say I’ve done my share of trying to wrestle a spot out of a favorite sweater. More than a few things have gone into the donation bin due to such acciddents. Still wearable, but with a stain I couldn’t get out or live with.

I wore an apron everyday and the kids were so used to seeing me in them, they would ask where my smock was if I wasn’t wearing one. I tickled me because you wouldn’t think middle school kids would have noticed. It was refreshing  and a compliment that they did.

I find it enjoyable creating these timeless classics in non-traditional patterns uncommon to the time the style was popular. It adds a funky twist that many of my customers enjoy for themselves and for gift giving. I call it funky utility and there is magical fun in the creating.

In future posts, I’ll get more deeply into the style history.. I have had several engaging conversations recently with young women interested in the story behind the different style cuts.The apron featured on this page is the Louisa 1940s No Tie Cobbler apron and it is one of  my hottest sellers because it is a highly functional easy wearing apron. We’ll discuss her finer points in the next post.

February blessings to all