Nothing says homemaking like an apron. Some cheery pattern, a bit of flounce or even strictly utilitarian, the apron tells the world you are in the business of working in your home. The true purpose is to keep your clothing tidy, especially in the days when laundry was truly the hardest chore in the house, but for me, the apron has taken on newer significance. Putting on an apron feels like joining the ranks of the women who took pride in the homes they made for their families. It is a physical reminder for me of why I do the things I do and why those things are important. Plus, it also keeps flour off my clothes! So, three cheers for the apron. Vintage or reproduction aprons are all around. Check eBay or your local thrift stores. For those who sew, check out http://www.thecalicocat.com/ for some cute 1940s inspired aprons. McCall's also has a nice pattern with several variations. And check out this great blog: http://angrychicken.typepad.com/angry_chicken/aprons/index.html
Some final thoughts - not mine, though - about Aprons. An anonymous work called Grandma's Apron:
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 old aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids; and when the weather was cold, grandma 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, it 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, Grandma walked out on the porch and waved her apron, and the men knew it was time to come in from the fields for dinner.
It will be a long time before anyone invents something that will replace that old-time apron that served so many purposes.