A great question came up over at the FamilyWoodworking.org woodworking forum (FW is a welcoming and friendly spin off of SawmillCreek.org). Mr. Sean Wright over there wrote recently:

“When in your shop, do you wear a tool belt, a shop apron, or just work clothes?”

“Up until recently I just wore work clothes. Then I picked up a shop apron. I have used it several times, and find it very handy- lots-o-pockets! Plus I don’t get as dust covered as I did before.”

He also posted a poll… and here are the results:

Just Work Clothes: 110
Shop Apron: 56
Other: 16
Tool Belt: 4

There are 6 forum pages of responses and replies – overall a very fun thread to check out. Here are some quotes I pulled because I thought they might give you some thought about what you wear while working with wood:

1) My shop is laid out so that anything i typically need is right at hand…on the wall. Everything has its own spot so there is no losing things in my pockets or apron…they are put back where they are supposed to be.

2) If I think of it, I will wear my Rockler Denim apron that houses pencils and my favorite Starrett 6″ rule. I searched high and low for the perfect apron and the Rockler one was the only one that had shoulder straps, minimal pockets and was flexible enough to bend with me when I was crawling around on the floor working on stuff.

3) I have had several belts over the years, but settled on the Skiller’s system about 10 years ago. I wear it usually when working at a jobsite, almost never in the shop ’cause all my tools are close at hand and pretty organized. Safety eyewear goes on the minute I enter the shop or jobsite.

4) Faragamo steel toed boots, Gucci apron, Calvin Klein Jeans, Tuxedo Jacket, and Michael Jordan underwear. Just what the fashionable woodworker is wearing this fall.

Go check out the thread at FamilyWoodworking.org: Shop Atire?

And here’s a quick little safety reminder regarding clothing (from Andrews University): “Dress appropriately. Remove all ties, scarves, rings, and watches. Roll up long sleeves and tie back long hair. Loose clothing, hair, and jewelry can easily catch in revolving machine parts.”

Here are a couple of other clothing and safety-related articles you might find useful:
Power Tool Decibel Levels Could Be Hurting Your Ears
Using Gloves in the Woodshop
Top Ten Most Dangerous Power Tools

I just found this post at Woodnet recommending woodworking aprons: shop apron