Preservationist Helen Gage to display apron collection at East Ridge

Preservationist Helen Gage, of the Bethel House Bahamian-American Museum, will be a guest speaker at East Ridge on June 24 at 3 p.m. and will display and discuss her collection of folk art aprons. At the same time, she will talk about the history of the Bethel House in Perrine. The public is invited to attend this free presentation.

Known as the Apron Lady, Gage began collecting in the late ‘70s. Her collection has grown through acquisitions from yard sales and church bazaars, thrift stores and gifts from friends and families.

“I may spot one that is unusual and add it to my collection, now in the hundreds,” Gage said.

Many of her aprons date from the ‘30s and they demonstrate the ingenuity of women in how they create a kitchen smock from available materials. The aprons in the collection are made from a wide range of material and are made from patchwork prints, gingham and beautiful floral patterns.

“Aprons are enjoying a resurgence in popularity,” Gage said. “After World War II, housewives wore them to look pretty in the kitchen.

Today, younger women are re-fashioning them to wear over jeans as a fashion statement. Just look on Pinterest and Etsy for fashion ideas.”
Gage is also credited with leading the move to restore the Bethel House, built in 1937. After an 11-year preservation effort, the historic house was moved to 18201 SW 102 Ct.

East Ridge, at 19301 SW 87 Ave., is a life-care community for retirees offering living with benefits, opportunities and friendships. It is situated in a 76-acre tropical environment and offers independent and assisted living, respite care, skilled nursing care and rehab.

For more information, call 877-340- 5486 or go online to

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