The History of Aprons

The History Of Aprons

The History of Aprons (below) is often cited and shared as “unknown”, but a little bit of research found the original poem serving as the baseline for “The History of Aprons”.  The original poem was written by Tina Trivett in honor of her own grandmother.  We have included Tina Trivett’s poem titled “Grandma’s Apron” as well. We do hope that you enjoy both of these and that they bring about wonderful memories.

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The History of APRONS

I don’t think most kids today know what an apron is. The principal use of Mom’s or Grandma’s apron was to protect the dress underneath because she only had a few. It was also because it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and aprons used less material. But along with that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.

It was wonderful for drying children’s tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears.

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids..

And when the weather was cold, she wrapped it around her arms.

Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the hot wood stove.

Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.

From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables. After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.

In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready, she walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men folk knew it was time to come in from the fields to dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that ‘old-time apron’ that served so many purposes.

Send this to those who would know (and love) the story about aprons.


Mom’s and Grandma’s used to set hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool. Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw.

They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron.

I don’t think I ever caught anything from an apron – but love

Grandma’s Apron

A poem by Tina Trivett

The strings were tied, it was freshly washed, and maybe even pressed.
For Grandma, it was everyday to choose one when she dressed.
The simple apron that it was, you would never think about;
the things she used it for, that made it look worn out.

She may have used it to hold some wildflowers that she’d found.
Or to hide a crying child’s face when a stranger came around.
Imagine all the little tears that were wiped with just that cloth.
Or it became a potholder to serve some chicken broth.

She probably carried kindling to stoke the kitchen fire.
To hold a load of laundry, or to wipe the clothesline wire.
When canning all her vegetables, it was used to wipe her brow.
You never know, she might have used it to shoo flies from the cow.

She might have carried eggs in from the chicken coop outside.
Whatever chore she used it for, she did them all with pride.
When Grandma went to heaven, God said she now could rest.
I’m sure the apron that she chose, was her Sunday best.

Do you have any memories of your family members wearing aprons?  Let us know in the comments below! 

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Be sure to leave us a comment below to let us know what you thought of this post.


  • Joy

    I have such fond memories of my Granny’s aprons. I can still see her taking it from around her neck at the end of the day and hanging it on a hook in the kitchen for tomorrows use. I watched her as she made her aprons, on the old Singer peddle sewing machine. Memories….

    I wish I had her aprons and often wonder whatever happened to them. They may be gone, but the fond memories of those aprons live on in my thoughts and heart.

    • Shawna

      I remember my Mamie and her magical apron. It dried my tears, wiped my skinned knees and brought in vegetables from the garden. I made aprons fir all my Christmas gifts this year and included the poem. I was told that the apron was nice but the poem brought back so many memories that it was a double gift
      I will continue to include the poem with any apron I make and give away. After my Grandmother passed away. I found her fancy aprons. They were fir show. 2 different woman. My daughter took the and start he’d the extra heavy and used them as curtains in her kitchen

  • Trish

    Brought back many memories of my Mom and my Granny cooking! My Aunt Sue worn hers backwards because she always wiped her hands on her behind! My Mom saved several aprons for my daughters who are in their late thirties now, but when they were young they wore those aprons everyday!!

  • Carmen Stineman

    Can I use your “History of Aprons in a mixed media collage I want to create. I didn’t want to misuse it due to copyright laws, so I am seeking permission. Carmen Stineman

  • Geraldine Ricci

    I’m organising a mother’s day event in the retirement village where I live. May I please make copies of your poem – and obviously acknowledge you as the author – to use on the day?

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