Today I want to share a little about my family genealogy connection with sewing. I know many of you have mothers and grandmothers and even great grandmas that sew and have a story to tell about how these amazing woman influenced you. Do write about it on comments, I would love to hear.
This beautiful lady on the photograph it’s my mom’s mother, Rosa. My mom was only few months old when her father died, the youngest of 7 children. She grew up around my grandma sewing. Transforming hand-me-downs to beautiful outfits and creatively making everything she could. A true make do and mend strong woman.
|This is me & mom (pregnant of my brother) in matching outfits made by my grandma Rosa.
Before you asked, no I haven’t learned how to sew with her. She died when I was around 10 years old. My mother has a good creative eye for design but she never learned how to sew. By her own words is because she doesn’t have the patience. She doesn’t enjoy the process of making, only wants the object to be ready. I have been trying to get her to sew and we even made a few things together last year. Although I have large extended family, none of grandma Rosa descendants sew.
On my dad side, my grandma Dea has no interest for crafts, sewing or knitting. She likes shopping. My great gran Alce was a fantastic sewist and knitter. From this side of the family, I’m the only girl next in line. My dad had only brothers, and my cousins are also all men. Neither less to say, no one sews either.
I am the sole representative of both sides of my family caring the ‘sewing’ gene. From my whole genealogy tree for the last 2 generations, I’m the only one who has a passion for sewing and handmade.
My family environment was relaxed and I really enjoy playing, and I guess creativity it’s highly linked to play. I remember sewing my Barbie into fabric pieces around 7 years old. Around 12 years old I dreamed of becoming a fashion designer. Of course, life takes you in different directions specially if you are the only creative person in the house and you ‘need a proper’ job.
I moved to the UK in 2005 working for a big multinational company. I have learned to use my creativity into business solutions and turned to be a great differential in my field winning prizes and reporting at high level. Met my fellow soon after I arrived in the country but only back in 2009 I decided to explore that quiet desire to making my own stuff.
What have I tapped into? A sewing fanatic monster appeared in the last 3 years. From not even knowing how to sew a button to making one outfit a week. Having the opportunity to travel the UK to meet other people with the same passion and interests. In the Uk it’s not uncool to like handmade. People only sew in Brazil because they need to or to make money. Maybe it’s changing sightly. I haven’t managed to met any sewing blogger yet to debate this subject.
I often wonder if I didn’t moved to the UK, would I ever explore that latent desire to sew. Has the UK creative environment and quiet lifestyle or my sewing inheritance the biggest influencer? I would never know. Maybe both played a big part of my desire to be creative.
My family in Brazil often make comments how similar to grandma Rosa I have become and how proud she would be of me. I’m privileged to be compared to her. Mum has kept her sewing machine and iron (those with coals) and my great grandma Alce tracing wheel and sewing machine for me. Treasures and memories I hope to keep and transfer to my descendants.
I close this subject with another picture of a handmade dress made by my grandma Rosa. I hope you enjoy learning more about my sewing history. Do share yours!
*update:Your amazing stories on the comments made my heart warmer. It is beautiful how our lives got influenced by our family one way or another. I want to respond individually for all of you but writing this article was a bit emotional for me and I find the same when I read your lovely comments. I got a bit teary reading and trying to respond accordingly so I hope you understand if I just write this note. Thanks for sharing your personal story with me and others… incredibly inspiring to know that so many of you share similar experiences.
Lots of love x