Friday, January 8, 2016

A Gaggle of Holiday Dresses

During our holiday luncheon at Aunt Ada's house -- she brought out her old scrapbooks and photo albums.

It was fun to look back and see our childhood in these old photos. My mother always sewed look-alike dresses for me and my sisters for Easter AND Christmas. There were five girls in my family (and one boy) -- so this was a big job. The style at the time was huge, gathered skirts and puffy sleeves...so that meant hours and hours of sewing.  Mom sewed late into the night, long after all of us were in bed -- only barely getting the dresses done in time for Sunday church.

On this day, at Aunt Ada's lunch -- I learned that my Mom also sewed lookalike dresses for my cousins. WHA?? Uncle Wayne and Aunt Ada had five girls, too. Growing up, we were very close to these cousins, and loved spending time with them. I am sure that, as a child, I knew my Mom was sewing their dresses as well as ours -- didn't I?

But, like Mom's Sunday fried chicken dinner, I never paid much attention. It just magically appeared every Sunday. It was only when I looked at these pictures, 50 years later -- that all those holiday dresses really registered with me....how much fabric it took to make five, six or maybe ten holiday dresses for two families of girls!!
I've seen these pictures before, but never turned them over to see what was written on the back...
We were trying to figure out what year this was, or where it was taken, and Aunt Ada said, "Maybe I wrote something on the back..."
And there it was.."Joyce made these dresses".
I never realized that during those long late nights, when Mom was sewing dresses for me and my sisters -- she was also sewing dresses for our cousins!! CRAZY, RIGHT?
Look-alike blue dresses. I think the fabric was a fine cotton batiste, with gathered skirts and puffy sleeves. Evie, Jackie and Linda. Please note the lunchboxes!! (DON'T WE WISH WE STILL HAD THOSE, GIRLS??) And the hair-dos required a perm AND sleeping overnight in bobby pin curls! This was a high-maintenance childhood...
Even though they lived in this house for many years, it was always (and still is) referred to as the Baxter House. Then or now -- I have no idea who the Baxter's were...
Jackie, Evie and Linda?
Rita, Ronda and Debbie?
Mom sewed matching corduroy robes for Jackie, Billie, Linda and Evie...
As we sat there, that afternoon, paging through the scrapbooks, and looking at what was written on the back of the pictures...once again, I'm struck by the fact that less is more.
And I am seriously wondering what pictures my grandchildren will actually have to reference their childhood? Because I'm guessing in 50 years, nobody will be able to make this old laptop work....so all of this will be lost forever...right??

1 comment:

  1. Your Mom was a truly an artist... with a huge heart!

    ReplyDelete