Ellen Bennett was a nineteen-year-old cook working in Mexico and attending culinary school. She got an inspiration to create amazing apparel for chefs. Today her LA based business focuses on creating high-end durable aprons, chef gear, and other kitchen fashion. And she does it with panache which isn’t French for breakfast.
Each product is handcrafted from start to finish using top grade American canvas, raw Japanese selvage denim, and European linens. Made in LA, these unique pieces are built to last — each fabrication detail carefully considered and tested to handle the rigorous hustle and bustle of a professional kitchen. She believes when you look the part, you feel the part and thus perform the part like a boss.
Aprons in 4,000 kitchens.
After working at LA based Providence restaurant, she felt the traditional white apron was too uniform and dull. No one ever thought about making custom aprons that people would be happy to wear and would give them confidence in their daily hustle.
Check Out The Apron Squad
It takes twelve people to make one of her beautiful aprons. Each one has structure, stitching, and beautiful design aesthetic. She uses Instagram to celebrate her loyal fans who she refers to as the apron squad. She encourages her raving fans to celebrate their hard work and passion for food. Apron squad members include Mario Batali and Martha Stewart just to name a few celebrities.
Every package she ships to customers always comes with a little, extra gift to support the community she serves. Sometimes she promotes products of others like any loyal member of a tribe would do.
Her apron factory is a place for an immersive brand experience. Filled with slides, swings and a fun work environment – it is an ideal setting for clients to promote her business on Instagram. She hosts events at her factory to get publicity and celebrate companies like Shake Shack when they came out to LA. Ellen has a head for marketing and PR.
Three Lessons from The self-proclaimed badass Apron Lady
- Serves a community (the kitchen squad). She is providing products for a small niche – people who work in professional kitchens. But that niche has helped her create a profitable, multi-million dollar business.
- Creates a distinctive, high-end product in an uncrowded market. Being part of that community, she had a good sense of what was missing and what she would enjoy.
- Brings your emotions, joy, and happiness to your work every day. From press reports and interviews, Ellen brings her human being to work, not some corporate bureaucrat. She merges work and fun and the product is a success.
There is nothing uniform about her marketing.
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Photo courtesy of Hedley & Bennett, all rights reserved