The principal of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress underneath because she only had a few. It was easier to wash aprons than dresses besides they 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 cleaning out a few dirty ears. From the chicken coop the apron was used for carrying eggs, chicks and sometimes half hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.
When company came those aprons proved to be ideal hiding places for shy children. And when the weather was cold Grandma wrapped it around her arms. Those big ol aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over a 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 carried in the 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 onto the porch, waved her apron and the men that were working in the fields knew it was time to come in for dinner.
It will be a long time before someone invents something to replace that "old time apron" that had so many purposes. ~Author unknown
My sister sent that e-mail forward to me years ago, I hung onto it, knowing there would be a time to share.
I love my aprons, they keep me from looking all crusty. I often put one on about 3 pm and don't take it off until dinner is served or later. For another good article on the apron go here.