From kitchen to kitsch: A history and exhibition of aprons
At least since the Renaissance, women have worn aprons for protection or decoration, yet costume historians often ignore these garments. A study resulted in an exhibition of aprons from the seventeenth century to the present and a manuscript on aprons from 1830 to 1920. The manuscript contains an analysis of aprons' fabric, fiber content, and color; apron skirt width, length, shape, edge treatment, and decoration; waistband width, construction, and decoration; band and tie construction, style, attachment, length, shape, and decoration; bib style, width, shape, support, and decoration; shoulder strap style, width, and shape; pocket shape, size, number, and placement; and alternate styles by decade. Fashions occurred in apron styles, which can help collection staff, private collectors, and conservators to date aprons. ^ Much overlap occurs in infant's, children's, and misses' sizes. Dress-like aprons also contribute to the misidentification of objects in collections. Further research topics include a more in depth study of nineteenth-century apron styles, especially for children, and a comprehensive study of twentieth-century aprons. A material culture study linking social change to apron styles also would be of value. ^ The recent resurgence in apron sales has created an awakened interest in the garment. The exhibition manuscript explores the research, conservation, and display of historic and contemporary styles. I curated the exhibition "From Kitchen to Kitsch: An Exhibition of Aprons from the Seventeenth Century to the Present" for the Quinn Hall Textile Gallery (April 2012-December 2012). Defining "aprons" was equally problematic in the exhibition as well as the research.^
Design and Decorative Arts|History, Modern|Textile Technology
"From kitchen to kitsch: A history and exhibition of aprons"
Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access).