American Artisans: Hedley & Bennett




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American Artisans: Hedley & Bennett Aprons

Hedley & Bennett is the nineteenth in my Sunday series featuring American Artisans. There are so many exceptionally talented craftspeople, designers, and small companies across this country and this is my chance to introduce them to you. These artisans are creating beautiful, useful and delicious products that elevate the experience of everyday cooking, dining, and entertaining. They’re using skills, techniques, and materials that might otherwise be lost in our era of mass production. Their work makes me happy, and I hope it does the same for you.

American Artisans: Hedley & Bennett customizable aprons

American Artisans: Hadley & Bennett aprons

Hedley & Bennent is based right here in Los Angeles — they make bright, beautiful, customizable aprons built to handle anything you can dish out in the kitchen.  Like so many innovative companies, this one was created to solve a problem… founder and designer Ellen Bennett was working as a line cook and absolutely hated the non-functional, dull-as-dishwater aprons she was required to wear.  One day she designed her own version for the chef’s kitchen — and the business took off from there.  Now everybody from the hottest chefs and restaurant kitchens in the world, to Food Network stars, to savvy home cooks like you are sporting them.

American Artisans: Ellen Bennett of Hadley & Bennett aprons

Each product is handmade in Los Angeles from start to finish using top grade materials such as American canvas, raw Japanese selvage denim and European linens. These unique pieces posses a quality as high as the clothes they’re meant to protect.  Built to last, each fabrication detail has been carefully considered to handle the rigorous daily use experienced in a working kitchen.”

Photo courtesy of Hedley & Bennett; taken by Mary Costa

I have to admit that for most of my life I’ve never bothered with aprons, but in the last couple of years I’ve seen the light and I suit up before I do anything in the kitchen.  I bravely face splattering onion rings, and polenta geysers, and I don’t think twice about pitting cherries or drizzling chocolate.  A good apron is protection from the flame of the stove or grill, too, and they can stand in for a dish towel or a pot holder.  If you cook, bake, can, ferment, mix drinks, barbecue, or just clean up after it all, you need a great apron.

Photo courtesy of Hedley & Bennett; taken by Mary Costa

Like so many of the creative people featured in this series, Ellen wasn’t satisfied with just making something sturdy and functional…Hedley & Bennett’s aprons are handsome.  They custom dye fun, cheery colors in their L.A. workshop and they pay attention to details like brass hardware and fully adjustable straps.  They’ve got several different styles of pockets, including a leather one for hot or sharp tools, and one specifically for your phone so it can stay safe and snug while you work.  The cut is unisex, but the look ranges from feminine to rugged depending on the fabrics.

American Artisans: Hedley & Bennett aprons

I don’t know about you, but I think there’s something decidedly sexy about a man in an apron!

American Artisans: Hedley & Bennet batender apron

An important theme runs through the artisan companies that I’ve featured here — quality materials matter. Hedley & Bennett sources fabrics that tread the line beautifully between luxurious and durable — heavy canvas, beautiful chambray, and classic denim.   They also use recycled materials, (another American Artisans theme)   The apron pictured below is made from recycled Sprite bottles!  I never get tired of seeing something beautiful made out of something that would otherwise become landfill.

American Artisans: hedley & bennett apron made from recycled Sprite bottles

On the Hedley & Bennett website, you can create your own custom apron from scratch (including custom embroidery), or browse their selection of full aprons, bartender aprons, bistro-style aprons, and even aprons for kids.   I’d love to know what you find on their site–what’s your favorite apron style?  What color would you choose?

American Artisans: Hedley & Bennet red apron

*Hint hint…Mother’s Day is next Sunday, May 8th and Father’s Day is June 19th!

23 Comments

  • Reply
    Sara
    May 2, 2016 at 8:00 am

    Wow, these are some really nice aprons. I have to admit that I don’t wear an apron in the kitchen but after seeing these, I should!

  • Reply
    sherry klusman
    May 2, 2016 at 4:31 am

    What a great story. I love aprons…..must be something I picked up from watching my grandmother in her kitchen. Sweet memories! I would love to have any of these excellent aprons. The pockets are beyond grand!

  • Reply
    Chris Scheuer
    May 1, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    I want that red one! Actually any of them, there’s such a nice variety!

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 6:26 pm

      I can see you in the red one Chris!

  • Reply
    Susan
    May 1, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    What a wonderful success story! I love their aprons and see on their website that there is at least one Milwaukee restaurant that uses them :) I love the red one!

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 2:04 pm

      I loved looking at the restaurants that use them…I even perused the menus — yummy food as well as good looking staff!

  • Reply
    Jandi
    May 1, 2016 at 12:45 pm

    Oh, the Georgia apron is yummy! Very feminine.

  • Reply
    Emma
    May 1, 2016 at 12:20 pm

    I much prefer buying from companies that are transparent and you can see the people behind the brand :) these aprons are really lovely!

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 12:52 pm

      I agree Emma, and this one seems to get involved in all sorts of good works, too.

  • Reply
    Robyn @ Simply Fresh Dinners
    May 1, 2016 at 11:12 am

    I LOVE these, Sue! I’m headed over to their site now to do some shopping. I’ve wanted a good apron for ages but I’ve never seen the beautiful quality ones like they have here. Thanks for the great hook-up!

  • Reply
    Beth @ Binky's Culinary Carnival
    May 1, 2016 at 10:49 am

    Funny that you posted this. I was just looking at my selection of T shirts that are all spotted with oil, cherry juice, all the things you mentioned, and thought to myself why don’t you wear an apron? My Mom always did. I’m going directly to Hadley and Bennett website and hinting to my sons for Mother’s Day, lol!

  • Reply
    Stephanie Dunphy
    May 1, 2016 at 10:16 am

    My son just asked for an apron for his upcoming birthday. These are really great aprons and I love the color names. I’d select Black Sesame (sold out) or Peppercorn. I’ll definitely take a further look and the entire web site because you know…Christmas is coming.

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 10:42 am

      I think these are such great styles for men, and as they say on their site, they work for so many different activities beyond cooking. I’m starting a xmas list too :)

  • Reply
    Lucy
    May 1, 2016 at 9:46 am

    What gorgeous aprons! I love that they use recycled materials. Putting one on my wish list for my next birthday for sure :)

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 9:51 am

      I’m so blown away that anyone can make a fabric from soda bottles, it’s mind boggling!

  • Reply
    Debi at Life Currents
    May 1, 2016 at 9:02 am

    These aprons are so beautiful! And I love this series that you are doing. Keep up the great work!

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 9:51 am

      Thanks Debi, I hope people are enjoying it, I am :)

  • Reply
    Christine | Vermilion Roots
    May 1, 2016 at 8:51 am

    These aprons look really nice! I should put this on my wish list.

  • Reply
    Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours
    May 1, 2016 at 8:01 am

    I love these aprons! I ditched all my branded aprons a while ago as they really did not make me happy, and I felt like a walking, cooking advertisement for whichever brand they were from.

    These are fab – and look as if they will last for ever and become like an old friend the more you wear them. I think I’d have the stripy one, love the detail in the bias cut pockets.

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 8:14 am

      I think you’re so right, and I like the striped one too!

  • Reply
    monique
    May 1, 2016 at 5:35 am

    Now I want to hang my aprons like these! Beautiful!

  • Reply
    Tricia @ Saving room for dessert
    May 1, 2016 at 5:34 am

    I want one! In green please, or red, love that red – oh I would take a gray one and not complain! Very nice post. Heading over to visit their website – thanks Sue!

    • Reply
      Sue
      May 1, 2016 at 7:15 am

      I like the very first one, in the striped denim. I’m a big believer in DARK fabrics in the kitchen for obvious reasons ;)

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