cooks’ essentials

THE GREAT COVER-UP

Kitchen aprons that follow form, function, and fashion.

WRITTEN BY NATASHA BOURLIN
PHOTOS COURTESY OF MANUFACTURERS

Aprons are as diverse as any other attire these days. Manufacturers have homed in on the needs and desires of both at-home and professional chefs and have outfitted them accordingly. Looking for something durable and easy to clean? Comfortable? Environment friendly? Functional, with a plethora of pockets? Full coverage to best protect clothes, or something fashion forward? Whatever your preference, these designs each include at least one, if not more, of the options on your wish list.

Multitasking

Multi-purpose tasking

Wearing this apron made by Raw Materials Design feels a bit like when you’re wearing your favorite pair of jeans. Not only does it offer full coverage and functionality, with many convenient kitchen-tool-sized pockets, but it’s incredibly comfortable and easy to clean. It’s made in the U.S. from 100 percent domestically sourced and manufactured cotton. Made by a family-owned company, in a design inspired by the owner’s grandmother, the aprons are made to be durable, with a handmade, craftsman feel. From the moment you tie it on, it’s like meeting a new friend with whom you instantly click. And it’s eye catching as well. $60; Rawmaterialsdesign.com.

Denim Chic

Denim chic

An attractive apron for the eco conscious, the Now Designs Denim Renew is made from recycled plastic water bottles that have been transformed into wrinkle-resistant polyester. Combined with a touch of cotton, the fabric also is comfy and easily cleaned. A leather neck strap is adjustable and can be removed for washing. $29.99; Cooking Gallery in Reno and Truckee; Find Cooking Gallery on Facebook.

Fearlessly Feminine

Fearlessly feminine

A California-based, woman-owned company whose cuts and prints all are copyrighted, Jessie Steele makes aprons fit for even the most finicky of fashionistas. Even if you’re not much of a chef, you can distract your diners by sporting these adorable aprons; one even features a handy attached towel. Since 2002, the company’s wide variety of retro-inspired styles and patterns have understandably been coveted by celebrities and featured on big and small screens, including in Sex and the City 2. $31.99; Jessiesteele.com.

Bright colors

Bright Colors

Made from 100 percent cotton with a substantial front pocket for holding handy kitchen utensils, an adjustable neck strap, and towel hook, this apron from Kay Dee Designs is available in bright, fruity colors. For more than 60 years, the Rhode Island company has specialized in kitchen textiles, and creates heavy-duty aprons in many sizes and styles to fit any chef. $19.95; Nothing To It! Culinary Center in Reno; Nothingtoit.com.

Bulletproof gear

Bulletproof gear

Named for a mythological Norse god, BlueCut’s Odin is quite an advancement in apron technology. Woven from the same materials used to make bulletproof vests, Kevlar, and tough selvedge denim, the fabric looks like liquid metal. It’s the sleek, armored SUV of aprons. The fit is masculine and great for guys, as it is not terribly curve friendly. It comes in several sizes, including one for tall chefs. Kevlar enables it to not only be highly heat resistant — ideal for cooking over super-hot stoves or grills — but also nearly impermeable by pointy objects. It may not be the most comfortable of aprons at first, but the initially stiff fabric will break in after some washing and wearing. This apron enables any grill master to strut around the barbecue saying, “Yeah, I carry knives around in my pockets, ’cause I can…” $179; Bluecutaprons.com.

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