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Modern day chef coats are available in a multitude of styles and colors to suit anyone’s tastes. But it wasn’t always that way things were. Whether you’re a chef, cook, or simply appreciative of food, you’ll be interested to know how the chef ensemble evolved over time.
The chef coat and chef uniform developed mostly out of necessity, with each feature having a specific purpose. Many Chef Coats and jackets are double-breasted and easily reversible to conceal stains and spills. The chef coat’s double-layer of cotton is meant to insulate chefs against the heat from ovens, grills, and stovetops as well as guard them against hot splatters and hot liquids. The knotted cotton buttons found on many chef coats were designed to hold up to frequent wash and dry cycles, as well as stress and wear and tear from daily use. Chef coats must be sturdy and practical. To accent a chef coat, chefs sometimes chose to wear a neckerchief. Nowadays chefs wear neckerchiefs to enhance and achieve a more “finished” chef look. These neckerchiefs evolved from the cloths chefs used to drape around their necks to wick away sweat while they worked in extremely hot kitchens.
The chef coat took on a more modern look beginning in the 1800’s, when chef Marie-Antoine Carême changed the standard chef coat color from grey to white, believing it demonstrated cleanliness of the kitchen. Carême also pioneered the beginnings of double-breasted jackets and differences in hat sizes. Chef coat sleeves are now available in a variety of sizes as well; pastry chefs wear short-sleeved chef coats and chefs wear ¾ length sleeved chef coats for ease and comfort. Chef Coats are also available with French Cuffs, which add two layers of protection against grease spatters and hot liquids.
Even in this day and age, the chef’s uniform is still a symbol for cleanliness and professionalism. There’s a little piece of history in every chef coat and chef hat as modern day fashions are still similar to the ones that originated more then 400 years ago. Since the 1980’s, non-traditional chef coats and chef attire have become increasingly popular. Many new options include pinstriped pants, denim jackets, or novelty printed attire such as flags, pasta, and chili peppers. Chefs can now express their individuality and enjoy comfort at the same time.
You might choose to take advantage of the new styles, colors, sizes, and options available in chef coats and attire. Whether you prefer traditional white chef coats or multicolor pasta patterned pants, there are styles and options for everyone. The chef uniform is still evolving and we’ll have to wait and see what exciting chef coat options the future might hold.
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