What To Wear?

Business By FlowerGirlMN Updated 6 Sep 2007 , 1:49am by cheftracy

beccakelly Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:46am
post #31 of 100
Originally Posted by indydebi

I'd like to find something that is NOT a polo shirt. I really resent it that a man-style shirt has become the norm. I hated that when I had a full time job and had to wear them at trade shows. I am NOT "one of the guys" and hate having to look like one.

oh my gosh i was just thinking this!!! i HATE the whole polo/logo thing. i really don't want to offend anyone, and perhaps you have found cute polos. but every job i've worked that required polos/logos made me look unprofessional, not stylish and generally frumpy. part of the problem may be that i have a small frame, and am really small chested (barely fit an A, lol). so wearing a polo that's basically an oversized placemat with arms makes me look ridiculous!! i've gotten ONE employer to order in the "women's" polos. same problem, just slightly smaller placemat, lol. and ive tried the smallest sizes they've offered, and still really bad.

as part of my biz image, im trying to project that my cakes are trendy and stylishly contemporary. so i would dress accordingly. black pants/crops, and fitted white blouse in the newest styles. a little trendy jewelry for effect. that way i personally project the image i want for my business. anyway, off my soap box, sorry if i offended! i really don't mean to!!

FlowerGirlMN Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:49am
post #32 of 100

Oh yes!

I've determined that I should wear nice black pants with denim chaps.. that should say "professional" and "approachable" at the same time..

Also gonna wear a camisole (comfort), nice blouse (professional), catering jacket (food industry), and an old ruffly apron on top (approachable)

Gonna be waaaaarm!!

indydebi Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:52am
post #33 of 100

Becca, one year, my company went with the white oxford shirt ... except they had some ding dong order them and she got volume discount by ordering all MEN's shirts. HELLO???? I HAVE BOOBS!!!!!!!

Which actually became a non-issue because the smallest man's shirt hung down to my knees, and me and another lady (shorter than me!) were expected to tuck these sleeping gowns in our pants!!!!!!!!!

We all looked like crap at the trade show and we all complained LOUDLY about it! The only guy who looked nice was the VP who was sleeping with the secretary who ordered the shirts .... somehow she managed to get HIS size right! icon_confused.gif

CourtneysCustomCakes Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 4:16am
post #34 of 100

There you go FlowerGirlMN. That shouldn't be too much. I can picture it now icon_smile.gif At least you'll be having fun, right?


kathik Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 4:41am
post #35 of 100

Okay, so just to toss this question in the ring....are those of you who are opposed to wearing chef's jackets opposed to the all white coats only? What about something like this on offered at Crooked Brook?

(I am posting the photo and the link, because you can't get a direct link to the individual picture.)



FlowerGirlMN Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 4:50am
post #36 of 100

Ooh, I LOVE that.. hate the color though. Gonna go see if they make it in a fat, nicer-color version!

MikeRowesHunny Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 6:08am
post #37 of 100

OMG!!! Lovely jackets (well some of them - some look like military dress jackets or like they belong on a bellhop!), but what is with the picture of that girl under the 'Maternity jackets' title - she looks about 12 and a Lolita temptress LMAO!!!

Hollyanna70 Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 7:06am
post #38 of 100
Originally Posted by indydebi

(how come we dont' have a smiley icon with gray hair in a rocking chair? I need one of those right now.)

Just for you!!

loriemoms Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 11:02am
post #39 of 100
Originally Posted by peacockplace

Well, Colette Peters wears one and I know for a fact that she's not a chef! (Amazing yes, chef, no)

That said, I've been to culinary classes where a jacket is required by the school. They know we aren't chefs. They know we aren't "pretending" to be chefs. It's just part of the uniform. I have no problem wearing one, but I'd never put the word "chef" on my coat.

I am glad to see someone finally post this! You will hear Duff say all the time that his people are "artists not pasty chefs" and they wear their chef jackets to food network functions.

I wear a white chefs jacket with Simply Cakes on the label. My husband wears a polo shirt with the same embrodery when we do shows and deliveries. I am not a professional chef, but I have taken a number of classes in decorating, have a degree in art, and people pay me to decorate cakes for them. (and sometimes pay me quite a lot!) I feel that makes me a professional cake designer. I like the jackets as they keep my clothes clean, it identifies you to the public that you are a professional, and they are easy to clean up if you get buttercream on you, etc. When people talk to you, they feel they are talking to a professional, trained person they can trust with their wedding cake. I know a number of chefs and I have never had any of them tell me they were offended I was wearing their "uniform" It just isn't that important to them!

Our local hospital, many of the people wear scrubs...from the ones who take your blood pressure to the ones to mop up the floors. I wouldn't call them surgeons because of what they are wearing!

loriemoms Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 11:04am
post #40 of 100
Originally Posted by bonjovibabe

OMG!!! Lovely jackets (well some of them - some look like military dress jackets or like they belong on a bellhop!), but what is with the picture of that girl under the 'Maternity jackets' title - she looks about 12 and a Lolita temptress LMAO!!!

I don't know if you would book any weddings wearing that outfit, but you sure might get some grooms cakes! hahahaha!

MikeRowesHunny Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 11:37am
post #41 of 100
Originally Posted by loriemoms

I don't know if you would book any weddings wearing that outfit, but you sure might get some grooms cakes! hahahaha!

Not if I tried to display my thunderous orange-peel thighs in those hot pants - they would all be running off in the opposite direction icon_lol.gificon_cry.gificon_lol.gif

snarkybaker Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 1:48pm
post #42 of 100

All of my chef coats are designed for women, and I have them in several pastel colors. I also have them custom tailored since I am short.

I am not trying to say who can and who can't wear a chefs coat. I am saying choose an outfit that fits with your overall marketing strategy. Wearing a chefs coat is a visual indicator of a level of quality and professionalism.

The chef coat says you take your work seriously, that you are a pro. If you are looking for a warmer-bride friendly image, it is probably not your best look. On the other hand, if you are struggling to get people to pay your prices, try wearing a coat to your next few tastings/meetings and see what happens.

I would go so far as to say it is a bit of a stretch for an untrained box mix baker using Crisco based shortening to present themselves as a Chef, but that's just me.

Act1Events Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:28pm
post #43 of 100


Gingoodies Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:28pm
post #44 of 100

icon_surprised.gificon_confused.gif txkat... some of those "untrained box mix baker using crisco based shortening (icing)" turn out FABULOUS cakes and are entitled to be treated as "professionals". It does not matter what you wear, as long as you look (as my mom used to say) "neat and clean". It is your work that will speak volumes for you. I say go for whatever makes you feel the most comfortable.!! icon_biggrin.gifthumbs_up.gif

FlowerGirlMN Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:32pm
post #45 of 100

txkat.. I think you may have missed a key issue here.

How is a catering jacket "passing off as a chef", when even the dish washers at local catering companies wear them?

People straight out of highschool working at catering companies wear them... hell, the last wedding I did, the caterer's wife wore one, because she was helping out for the evening - didn't even wear one.

Are they somehow more entitled than the box mix bakers" you just slammed? I don't know if it's a regional thing or not, but I certainly never implied I'd write "chef" anything on whatever I ended up wearing!!

indydebi Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:36pm
post #46 of 100

txkat, I'm a box mix, crisco-only person, and I didn't feel slammed at all by your comment. I understood your point perfectly! thumbs_up.gif

Hippiemama Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:38pm
post #47 of 100

I have received some not so nice messages about this subject. I wanted to clear something up - I in no way said I was offended when people wear chef's jackets. So please stop saying I'm a snob, lol!

I just pointed out that the ones that declare they are Chef whoever (and do not have the training to back it up) are often frowned upon.

I personally see a chef's jacket as practical wear in a kitchen. But if you aren't a chef, don't put chef on your jacket or in other ways claim to be a chef. If you go ahead and put chef on your jacket, don't be shocked when you end up with a negative response.

Hippiemama Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:40pm
post #48 of 100

txkat was not saying that box makers were not professionals, she was just saying they are not trained chefs. Which is true.

leah_s Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:51pm
post #49 of 100
Originally Posted by bonjovibabe

Well, I can't speak for the US, but I know a lot of kitchen porters who do nothing but washing dishes, wear 'chef jackets'. As far as I'm concerned it's a practical piece of uniform worn by people who work in kitchens (as do we, domestic or otherwise!), its point being to keep whatever you're wearing underneath clean, and to protect you around hot things. I'm sorry, but those who get upset by non-degree holding people wearing them are just a little too pretentious and full of themselves for my liking. JMHO.

Well, then count me as one of those too pretentious people too full of herself.

The chef's coat is certainly not just a piece of clothing "to keep whatever you're wearing underneath clean". there is a long and proud tradition full of symbolism to the chef's coat, dating back to the 12th century. There's a reason for the double front, the overlap, the cuffs, the collar--every part of it. Those of us who have earned the right to wear it, do take offense at it being treated as a costume.

If you want to keep your clothes clean, please consider scrubs and a doctor's coat.

diamond Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:55pm
post #50 of 100

i thought this site was about cakes not stupid discussions about chief jackets they wear them on top chief but i feel if you have a business then please wear them makes you look good professional like a business pro icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

snarkybaker Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 2:58pm
post #51 of 100

Ladies...once again you have TOTALLY missed the point. Honda dealerships ( box mix and crisco cakes) look different than Rolls Royce Dealerships ( Colette Peters Cakes). It is not " trying to pass yourself off", which I never said...It is establishing a brand identity.

About 1000 times more people buy Hondas than Jaguars, so that is a viable market. Guys who sell Hondas usually wear a polo with their company logo and a pair of Dockers. Rolls Royce salesmen wear suits, or shirts and ties and cashmere sweaters.

Walmart makes about 100,000 times more money an an annual basis than Neiman Marcus. Most brides are having $10,000 weddings, not $100,000 weddings.

The point I was making is that to be successful selling ( and that is what will make or break you, not the cake) you need to know and understand your market. If you want to sell $3.50/serving cakes, a chef's coat is superfluous. Wear one if you want, but I don't think it suits your business identity ( Mrs. Fields never wore a chefs coat).

If I were shopping for a cake and walked up to someone wearing a chefs coat, asked them about their cakes and prices and found they work out of their basement, charge $3 a serving and don't know what pate a bombe is, I would think of a little girl playing dress up, not a professional.

If I walked up to someone in an ironed blouse and pressed slacks with an attractive apron on who handed me a to-die-for brownie, which she told me are all homemade. I'd react as "this were a smart cookie, who's enterprising and efficient" It's all just marketing, which is the entire point of a bridal show.

indydebi Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:01pm
post #52 of 100
Originally Posted by txkat

The point I was making is that to be successful selling ( and that is what will make or break you, not the cake) you need to know and understand your market. ........ It's all just marketing, which is the entire point of a bridal show.


cykrivera Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:03pm
post #53 of 100


DisneyDreamer Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:07pm
post #54 of 100
Originally Posted by indydebi


When I see someone in one of those catering jackets, my first assumption is that they are a real "chef" with a culinary degree and a lot more expertise that I have. Most people only see the Bobby Flay's and Emeril's wearing those jackets, so that's the league they would assume the wearer was in. I wouldn't wear them because I would not want to mislead people.

If I had spent the money on a culinary degree and had "earned the right" to wear one of those, I'd be ticked if some 'cake lady' showed up wearing one, implying an expertise she may or may not have.

I think if you look nice, and professional, you will make just as good of an impression with those who visit your booth.

Just my opinion ..... if everyone thinks I'm totally off base, please say so, so FlowerGirlMN steps out on the right foot! thumbs_up.gif

I SO agree with you! I have take pride in my education and it does piss me off to see people wearing a chefs coat if they have no formal culinary education!

Lenette Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:30pm
post #55 of 100

I know I shouldn't but I can't resist.

Ummm, "chefs" didn't come into existence with $30K culinary schools. There are many chefs who never attend a formal school but with hard work and training they can stand toe to toe with anyone in their field. They have earned their title as well!

In my conversations with "chefs" it has been stated that they tire of people who have gone to school and then think they know it all. In their opinion it takes many years after school of paying dues and learning on the job that truly makes one a chef. Not just going to school and receiving a diploma.

I think we live in a society where individuals like to feel important. With food network and all we now have this image of "chef" with celebrity status and that changes people's perspectives on who and what a chef really is.

Do what you feel good about and you are comfortable with. And I agree it is about marketing and projecting the image of your company.

This debate about the chef's coat will rage on forever, everyone has a different opinion. We can add it to the list of box vs. mix, licensed vs. unlicensed, dog vs. cat, etc. etc.

Let's all go be happy and bake something sweet! icon_smile.gif

gdixoncakes Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:42pm
post #56 of 100

I don't get it. What does the jacket represent to those of you would be offended? An education? What about a degree or even, merit? If you're wearing a chefs jacket and you feed me yuck and the lady in the clean pink bath robe feeds me the yummiest haute cuisine ever, well then...my money goes to the lady in the pink robe. Doctors don't care when people put on white jackets because people check credentials, not jackets. What about attorneys? They don't care if somebody else wears a suit. Isn't it just clothing? A policeman or fireman wears his uniform to represent himself to the people as a certain official, not to show education or credential. Sorry, but I don't get it. I do understand you want to make a good impression, coming across as clean and professional and smart. So, personally, and it's just me, I'd wear a suit if I were presenting at a show, but what do I know?

Phoov Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 3:59pm
post #57 of 100

I soooooooooooooo respect my friend who just earned his doctorate last month. He chooses not to be called "Dr." because you see, It hasn't changed who he is or the dedication he has to his field of his service. Yes, he's learned some valuable tools of his trade......................................He doesn't need the ego injection. What a guy!

handymama Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 4:16pm
post #58 of 100

Ok, I give. What is pate a bombe??

Lenette Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 4:18pm
post #59 of 100

Your personality and product is what makes you successful anyway.

A warm, friendly personality and a quality product are the most important things in any business.

And Phoov, your friend sounds just awesome! thumbs_up.gif

CourtneysCustomCakes Posted 3 Sep 2007 , 4:25pm
post #60 of 100

Wow this has gone in the wrong direction. I'm sorry FlowerGirlMN. I hope some one was able to give you the answer you wanted. I'm sorry that some people here think others are beneath them. Just because they don't have the training. I've seen people with the training(the right to wear the coat) and they are the most unprofessional people who's food is awful. Where at the same time I've seen the people with out the training run laps around the trained person, in Taste, look and professionalism. We are all people who work hard for to get where we are no matter how we get there.

And the comparison of Rolls Royce Dealers to Honda is way off. My DH works at a Honda Dealer where not only do the sales men wear suits or Casual Business attire( Not polo shirts) The service department (not Mecnanics ) do as well.

I give anyone who goes out there to try to make something of themselves without all the fancy training, and are succeeding High regard. There is something to be said about someone who hasn't had the formal training who can do exactly what the formally trained can do. I think that is a great success. I just think that people one the same playing field with or with out the training (Yes that is possible) should be treated like equal. And the people who are trying to do it with out the training shouldn't be looked down apon but respected for trying. You never know where any of us will be some day.


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