Recently I read ‘A Perfect Fit’ by Jenna Wiseman Joselit. It’s a very interesting book, I’d recommend it if you are interested in clothing and fashion from an everyday what-people-wore perspective. It focuses on clothing and fashion between the 1890s and the 1930s, and how and why it affected people specifically in America. Rather than fashion being an individual expression of personality, fashion was about a universal social and moral responsibility.
Obviously this book mentions home sewing and I wanted to share with you a quote from a young seamstress which was very funny but also hit a nerve. I’m sure we’ve all been there at some point:
“The directions were easy to follow and I suceeded in saving a great deal of cloth”. But when it came time to try on the garment, it “wrinkled here and there in a strange way that puzzled me. I took it off and looked at it, but could discover nothing wrong; again I put it on and took it off in despair, and finally after taking in a seam here and letting one out there, and pulling and smoothing all to no effect, I became disgusted and threw the waist across the room and shed bitter, bitter tears.”
Some women clearly lacked the requisite skills, or else they found sewing much too tedious.