It’s been lovely to sell soft drapey aprons to people who want to work and feel comfortable all day. Our aprons flow gently around you, move as you do and lay softly against you allowing you the ease of your day. They accompany you as you work, accenting your clothes in a way that helps you look pretty. But we inadvertently left out some Apron users. There are some hardcore apron users out there that we have not addressed. They stand waiting and they have spoken up.
“Why do only the women get a no tie apron, where’s ours?” (from a male customer who represents himself and friends). “We want one too. Just get rid of the ruffle and oh, add more pockets, and don’t add a waist tie. It can’t be that hard.”
You don’t know when you have a silent audience. You only know an audience is there when they speak. We strive to hear even the quiet voices. They have opinions and stories to tell and wants and needs. And more importantly we are more than happy to craft out a new collection. Designing is the core of our business and the funnest part. ( I know, funnest isn’t a word, but shouldn’t it be??)
Looking for heavy weight denim was easy, getting to know it as a new fabric is a fun adventure. It’s like meeting a new friends with weird excentricities. It’s stiff like cardboard. It doesn’t flow across the sewing machine table. It takes pressure to cut. When you pick up pieces to move from machine to machine, the pieces hang from your hand like frozen laundry that has been hung outside to dry in winter. There is no flow to any design that it will accept. It’s as if we are making aprons from boards, stiff pieces of unyielding material. I know, I’m being dramatic but that’s what it feels like compared to the delightful soft hand of homespun, flax and cotton.
In response to the silent subset of our audience speaking up, I am designing apron shapes from stiff unforgiving panels of cloth. Obviously there will be no new pocket designs here except squares. There will be no pleats, no ruffles and no fancy curves, unless someone wants to look like they are wearing the triangle shape of a bell tower……Ok that could be fun with the right hat…..
The audience for the intended design has to be kept prominent. There are the people who are using sharp tools, paints, and hot things. They want a cloth apron but with the added protection available. These are my tough guys…and women. It is a joy to craft this collection. It is a challenge not only to work with this fabric but try to take a stiff square and infuse some amount of personality to it and still have it serve its wearer.
And then there’s marketing. How to portray the heaviness of these aprons. How do you warn people pictorially that the apron will weight twice what our mainstream apron weighs? And should it come with a weight warning? Depending on size, they could weigh over 2 pounds and that is before you fill the pockets.
Good times. Fun adventures. Samples are in process, models are chosen, we are getting near the finish line of this new collection.