Monday, September 07, 2009

The Sewing Machine.

Many hours of her life were spent hunched over that Kenmore machine. She had three other sewing machines and a serger, but the Kenmore was her "good" machine. I grew up hearing the constant rhythmic whirring of the needle. In a lot of ways I took it for granted that She could sew because I knew no different. Sometimes She sewed for me. Sometimes for herself. She was always sewing. It was what She did. Who She was. She made and sold Cabbage Patch doll clothes for quite some time back in the 80s. One of her best customers had doll outfits for every season for every doll - from Halloween costumes to catholic school uniforms. All made by my Mom. She hated doing alterations. Yet She did them for me. A hem here, a tuck there. She was self taught, and could sew anything as long as she had a pattern. And oh did She have patterns!! So many cute little girl dresses and sun suits and nightgowns. All patterns She had saved and had planned to sew for my girls one day. I can still see her sitting in her wobbly chair at the machine, snipping thread and pulling fabric. Glasses perched on the end of her nose as her thin hands worked meticulously to pin and unpin.

For over a year now the machine has been silent. A big hunk of cold iron sitting quietly in my old room, exactly as She left it. The cabinet top open, the machine threaded with gray thread. The foot pedal tied to the leg of the cabinet so it wouldn't wander. The cabinet is worn and badly scratched from years and years of use.

I finally brought it home and now it's sitting in the corner in my bedroom. I don't know how sewing machines are made today, but this one is darn heavy and it was a task to get it here. It makes me sad to see it there. Another reminder that She's gone. Do I know how to sew? Not really. But today as I cut my fabric and pinned the hem, I can hear her stern voice telling me "You're doing that wrong!!!" I never learned because She would yell at me when I made a mistake. She had no patience whatsoever. I did make a robe in home ec, but that was many years ago!! I figured where ever She is, She is laughing at my feeble attempt.

My seams are not straight and it is far from perfect. But I would say it's wearable. I think She would be proud.


  1. Cute! I can't believe how big Veronica is and so cute! Just like her big sister, Valerie.

  2. aw girl that is a great job i love it. it is so cute on her too. i love to sew it my peave away from things. but i have not done it in a while cause of the two houses. but i think this coming week i am going to go get me something and sew.hugs