I was feeling completely hopeless as a seamstress after my attempt to make Margaret’s wedding dress.  The test dress (thank goodness I didn’t start right in on the $60/yard Chantilly lace) looked suitable for picking potatoes during the depression, and we could tell that even if it was fitted perfectly, the pattern would not enhance my daughter’s considerable beauty.  But — thanks to talented local designer Barbara Heinrich at Local Motion, Margaret wore this lovely dress on October 15, stretchy lace over a navy slip.

Cora, siblings Joe and Margaret, and newest family member Jeff

“That’s OK, Mom,” Margaret said, “You could still make a dress for Cora.”  Well, I could, but I spent time instead on the wedding video, and we ordered Cora a sparkly dress.

Yesterday Cora was playing with the doll house as I switched some bobbin thread on the nearby sewing machine.  “What are you doing?” Cora asked as she crawled in my lap to peer at the presser foot.  Soon, I felt redeemed as a seamstress.

“I’m changing the color of the thread,” I told her, and then it occurred to me — “Cora, would you like to make some clothes for your doll?”  Yes, she wanted a jacket.  I pulled out some fabric from the closet, Cora found the “baby,” and I started to cut some pieces, guessing at the dimensions by setting the doll on the fabric.  I showed her which pieces were the front, the back, and the sleeves.  She sat on my lap as I sewed the small pieces together. “Cora, you have to move your head or I can’t see what I am doing. These are the shoulders,” I explained, “Where are Grandma’s shoulder seams?”  We needed decoration and I opened a drawer.  She picked yellow rick-rack; I picked the turquoise trim.


“I’m going to learn to sew when I’m bigger,” she announced, and “You sew better than Auntie Margaret.” This is true. Margaret’s toolbox of talents is considerable, but she never added fiber skills. I’m hoping to catch the granddaughters early.

Bonus photo: Margaret and her friends, after getting makeup and hair done before the wedding.  It was a perfect day.



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