What is the plural of chef's hat?

Sometimes we all wear our Chef's hats. 

Sometimes we all wear our Chefs' hats.

?

Thanks! 

Original Post

Hi, Veganismo, and welcome to the G.E,

@Veganismo posted:

What is the plural of chef's hat?

Sometimes we all wear our Chef's hats. 

Sometimes we all wear our Chefs' hats.

?

Thanks! 

The plural of 'a chef's hat' is 'a chef's hats'. If you want to pluralize 'chef', you can use 'chefs' hats'.

a) Sometimes we all wear our Chef's hats.  (There is only one chef who has many hats).

b) Sometimes we all wear our Chefs' hats. (There are many chefs, and each chef has his own hat).

Interesting, thank you.  

I can see how the "chef's hats" plural means something like we, as non-chefs, sometimes wear the hats owned by our chef.  

I guess it seems odd to me because chef's hat is a thing like buyer's remorse.  There are many ways a buyer can have remorse like they paid too much, the product broke, etc.  So we could have multiple remorses (although my grammar checker highlighted remorses here), and hence buyer's remorses, or buyers' remorses.  Here, I can see that if we have one buyer with multiple remorses, it would be buyer's remorses.  But in general, if we are writing of the many ways in which a buyer can have remorse, it would be buyers' remorses (I think).  

So, the complete sentence I was struggling with was: 

"Let’s face it, although sometimes we are ready to roll up our sleeves, sharpen our knives, send the dog to bed and put on our chef’s hats, other times (maybe most of the time) we just want a delicious and nutritious meal without too much fuss."

It's strange because...none of us are actually chefs (this is for a cookbook).  There are, in fact, no chefs here.  But there are...chef's hats!  (or chefs' hats).  A non-chef sometimes wears a chef's hat, and that is what is happening here, to "we." 

Maybe I'm just too far in the weeds here because it seems that the possessive singular "chef's" is more of a description of the type of hat than it is a literal possessive form.  If a chef wears a baseball hat, you would not call it a chef's hat (I guess you COULD...but it would be confusing because "chef's hat" is a description of a particular type of hat more than it is signifying ownership by a chef).  

Anyway, I appreciate all thoughts on this.  

 

 

 

Hello Veganismo,

@Veganismo posted:
"chef's hat" is a description of a particular type of hat more than it is signifying ownership by a chef)

 

This would be my first interpretation too. A chef’s hat is, as I understand it, a type of hat for cooks, chefs, or any human processors of food working in the kitchen.

@Veganismo posted:

What is the plural of chef's hat?

Sometimes we all wear our Chef's hats. 

Sometimes we all wear our Chefs' hats.

?

I think the answer is “chef’s hats” with a small “c”. The examples you cited, “buyer’s remorse” and “writer’s block”, are good reference, except that “remorse” is uncountable so I don’t think we can say “buyer’s remorses”, but “many writer’s blocks” should be fine and work in the same way as “many chef’s hats”.

@Veganismo posted:

 

So, the complete sentence I was struggling with was: 

"Let’s face it, although sometimes we are ready to roll up our sleeves, sharpen our knives, send the dog to bed and put on our chef’s hats, other times (maybe most of the time) we just want a delicious and nutritious meal without too much fuss."

So I see this whole sentence as perfectly grammatical, and humorous too.

By the way, I think a “chef’s hat” can also be called a “chef hat”. I googled them. “chef’s hat” has 89,700 results; “chef hat” has 817,000 results. This at least shows they are both commonly used names. I’m sure you can see the advantage of using a noun modifier without a possessive “s”: “Sometimes we call wear our chef hats.” We don’t have to bother with the trouble we faced from the beginning anymore when we ourselves are the writer or speaker. I don’t think it works for “buyer remorse” or “writer block” though, not yet. It’s a word-by-word case. But who knows in the future? The noun modifier word formation trend is changing every decade. 

(I’m not a native speaker. I’m a teacher of English in Hong Kong. I’m sure a native speaker may tell you more about the usage of “chef’s hat” in their country.)

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