"Oh What Class Hostess Apron"
Move over "kiss the cook," there's a new apron in town.
I am not a chef; in fact I can't even say I cook. I have been known to reheat food from time to time and I make a mean cheese and crackers. That being said, I may enroll in a cooking class just to rationalize wearing one of the fabulous creations by Annabel's Aprons.
Sewn with a modern sensibility, shop owner Ann Parish designs fun and unique aprons for the hostess that believes chic clothing does not have to be hung at the kitchen door. Whether you are into color or something more subdued, Parish has the apron for you. Definitely girly, her aprons bring a touch of flair to what could be an otherwise mundane kitchen accessory. You may not even want to take it off when the guests arrive!
My favorite apron is the "Oh What Class Hostess Apron" -- a favorite of Parish's as well. I love the modern fabric and the contrasting prints. The small bow at the top also gives it a nice touch of femininity without feeling like you're completely made of sugar and spice.
Parish answered a few questions over email about her work and art.
The Daily Page: How do you motivate your creativity?
Parish: My motivation to create is sparked with the idea of combining colors and design to make a uniquely and aesthetically pleasing product that people will be as excited to wear as I was making it. The hum of my machines is like music to me. I drown in the noise and my thoughts take me wherever I care to go.
Describe your workspace. Are you at the kitchen table or in a dedicated work area?
I love my sewing room! It was converted from a spare bedroom, with a nice big closet to store my ever-increasing supply of fabric... shhh don't tell anyone about my addiction!
What is your favorite piece and why?
My favorite apron would have to be the "Oh What Class Hostess Apron." Black and white is so classic and sophisticated. To me this apron is an extension of your outfit, as you wear it to serve your dinner guests.
What advice do you have for people interested in starting an online store? How do you make the separation between your store and your day job/personal life?
If you are thinking of starting an online store, think carefully of your product, what it is, how it's made, how you will promote your business. Don't let people think it was an afterthought, like you made a few things and threw them up online to see what would happen.
It would help to know what your friends and family thought of your product. Would they buy it? Would you buy it? That is the basis, where you start, then modify, as you need to. I have adjusted to meet market demand.
Most importantly, though, since people can't physically touch your product to help them with their purchase, you need to take good quality pictures. Get an overall shot, but get some nice close-ups showing the detail or your work. And lighting! Lighting is crucial! Bright, clean pictures will help immensely!
What is your favorite local shop in Madison?
My favorite local shop in Madison is JoAnn's, of course. But Hobby Lobby comes in a close second!
Etsy is an online marketplace whose mission is to "reconnect makers with buyers." These explorations will connect you with the makers in your neighborhood.