As husband and wife, we always knew that together there was something different that we wanted to do…

Our careers had taken us from the cellar kitchens of London to the classrooms of West Yorkshire. Busy working for other people and with a growing family, it didn’t seem possible to throw anything else into the mix, but that is exactly what we did!

You could be forgiven for thinking that the shops and amenities of Hedon are contained solely to the marketplace in the centre of town, those in the know will tell you to travel the short distance to Souttergate, the oldest street in Hedon, where you will discover the delights of Apron Strings Culinary Studio, our family run business offering something different to be shared by all.

The shop and studio were formerly, Frames of Hedon, Jess’s childhood home and her Father’s business until he retired after more than 35 years of trading. As one chapter was ending another was just beginning…

In September 2020 we set to work to transform the old picture framing shop and workshop into a new shop space together with a fully equipped and operational kitchen, where the workshop once stood. It was important that we designed a space that was adaptable to suit the purpose of all the services and products we offer, ensuring each part of the business had its own space that could be blended when necessary.

Despite being in the grips of a global pandemic that brought many setbacks and constraints, we were ready to open the doors on December the 5th 2020 when our next chapter began.



Paul Johnson

Director and founder of Apron Strings Culinary Studio, Paul is first and foremost a talented chef, training at The Ivy and Ritz in London. Paul has cooked for prime ministers and celebrities, worked in fast-paced kitchens, and dedicated many years to the industry working as a high-end chef.

After leaving the rat race of London life behind, Paul and his wife Jess ventured back up north to Yorkshire where he discovered a passion for teaching! Paul had the opportunity to set up an apprenticeship programme in Halifax at Dean clough which led him to become a commercial tutor at The Cooking School, before becoming a chef lecturer at Bradford college training aspiring chefs and the next master chefs in the making.

Jess, Paul’s wife describes him as ‘the frontman’ and ‘the creative mastermind’, amongst other things!

Naturally charismatic, Paul is personable, attentive, and delighted to be sharing his passion for fine food with you.

Jess Johnson

Jess is the co-founder of Apron Strings Culinary Studio and works alongside her husband, Paul looking after the day- to- day running of the business. Jess is also a private tutor and former secondary school teacher training at the Institute of Education, London. Her time in education has proved invaluable especially when helping to set up the cooking school side of the business, offering an in depth understanding of the way people learn. Her skills in organising, planning, and liaising have come in handy too.  

Paul describes Jess as ‘his voice of reason’ and his ‘best and worst critic!’

When she’s not answering your emails and messages, Jess is Paul’s chief taste tester! You could say that together, they are the perfect pairing!