Kids' Cooking Aprons & Hats

by Kathy Gleason, Demand Media
    Wearing an apron can help children feel like big helpers in the kitchen.

    Wearing an apron can help children feel like big helpers in the kitchen.

    Whether your concern is having a sanitary kitchen -- or you're just looking for an adorable photo op of your tot dressed as a future chef, aprons and hats are actually a good idea for anyone working around food. These items protect clothes and cover the hair. To set a good example, wear an apron while cooking yourself. And if you really want to get pictures that will make your child cringe as a teenager, get matching aprons for you and your child.

    Types of Aprons and Hats

    Depending on the age of your child and how often you intend to cook with your little one, there are several options for cooking attire. You can buy aprons and chef's hats that are made of cloth and washable -- or you can purchase disposable items. Disposable aprons vary in quality, as some are just thin-weight paper, while others are designed to look and feel more like cloth, but are still made for just single use. If you're child is regularly going to help you in the kitchen, consider cloth. If this is for a one-time cooking experiment or demonstration, you might want to just make your life easy and get disposable ones.

    Where to get Cooking Hats and Aprons

    While adult aprons are generally pretty easy to find in department stores and even some grocery stores, chef hats and aprons made for kids are not always as easy to come by. You might have to shop online for these items for your future chef. The good news is that many websites carry young chef gear -- and you shouldn't have much trouble finding exactly what you need.

    Making your Own

    Some moms might like the idea of making their own aprons or hats for kids. If you have some basic sewing skills, this is totally doable. To sew a basic apron, simply cut a long rectangle from whatever fabric you choose, like cotton or a cotton and polyester blend. Fold the edges of the raw fabric over all the way around, pinning the fabric in place every few inches to keep it in place. Fold raw edges toward the back of the fabric for a neat look. Sew all around the rectangle, either by hand or with a sewing machine, so that the cut, raw edges of the fabric don't show and are at the back of your work. Remove each pin as you come to it. Then sew long ties to either side of the middle to tie around your child's waist, and another set of ties to the top edge, to tie at the back of the neck and help the apron stay up. If you'd like to make a chef's hat for your child, search sewing pattern books or look online for a simple pattern.

    Personalizing Cooking Attire

    If you're the crafty type, whether you purchase you child's apron and chef hat or make your own, consider embroidering your child's name onto the items, or a design you think she'll enjoy like a heart or puppy. Even if you're not handy with a needle and thread, you can use iron-on transfers, which are usually available in craft stores, to add a bit of style. To increase the chances of your child actually wearing her cooking apron and hat -- and not just using them to dress up the family dog -- choose colors and patterns she likes, or even let her help pick out his own culinary wear.

    About the Author

    Kathy Gleason is a freelance writer living in rural northern New Jersey who has been writing professionally since 2010. She is a graduate of The Institute for Therapeutic Massage in Pompton Lakes, N.J. Before leaving her massage therapy career to start a family, Gleason specialized in Swedish style, pregnancy and sports massage.

    Photo Credits

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