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Thread: Singer Featherweight + a surplus parachute = wedding dress

  1. #1
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    Singer Featherweight + a surplus parachute = wedding dress

    For my mom's graduation from college, her parents gave her a Singer Featherweight. She bought a surplus silk parachute and made her wedding dress. The dress was beautiful. She hand smocked the front of it. Then she sewed 200 loops down the back and covered 200 buttons and sewed them on the dress. The dress had a wonderful long train. I wish there was still a picture. Any way here is a link to the copy of an ad I just saw on line: http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art23275.asp
    NEVER let a sewing machine know you are in a hurry.
    Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts. Winston Churchill

  2. #2
    Super Member valleyquiltermo's Avatar
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    Thats a great story, It would have been nice for you to have a picture of it for your memory book.
    Nice add, wish it was like that now.
    http://www.skillpages.com/DonnaValleyquiltermo
    Sweet Dreams come from under Cozy Quilts made with love.
    Life is short, take time to enjoy it. Play with your kids and g-kids,
    and do what you can for others.

  3. #3
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    Mom had photos in a box in the bottom of her closet in a new house. The house had moisture problems her pictures were ruined. I wonder how many other wedding dresses were made from surplus silk parachutes?
    NEVER let a sewing machine know you are in a hurry.
    Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts. Winston Churchill

  4. #4
    Super Member catmcclure's Avatar
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    $14.95 plus $1.00 shipping doesn't sound like a lot. However, in 1949 minimum wage was $.40 an hour (increased that year to $.70). So that parachute cost a week's pay.

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    My 3 brothers sent parachutes home regularly when they were in the South Pacific. I remember my mother taking them apart and using them, but what I remember is the blood on the handles.

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    Super Member solstice3's Avatar
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    what an awesome story

  7. #7
    Junior Member phranny's Avatar
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    I had an aunt who made her wedding dress from a parachute as well! She lived in Holland at the time, and it was during WW2. She has since deceased, but I recall my mother telling me that story. I was always intrigued, as I used to work in bridal wear.
    phranny ~ I cannot call my day complete. 'til needle, thread, and fabric meet.

  8. #8
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    My senior prom dress was made from a parachute on my mother's old Singer (Mom could make anything we pointed out to her, making a paper pattern and going from there). I remember the prom dress well - the skirt was white and Mom tinted a portion of the parachute a pale pink for the bodice and cap sleeves. I felt so pretty and grown-up. No idea where the parachute came from - probably one of my cousins gave it to us. And man, does that date me or what?

  9. #9
    Super Member Greenheron's Avatar
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    After WWII it was often difficult to get fabrics (and lots of other things) until the country readjusted to peacetime manufacturing......My DDD came home after island hopping across the Pacific and serving with the Occupation Forces in Japan and I was born nine months later, DM had trouble getting diapers. Or enough so she didn't have to launder them every 24 hours. Parachute silk wouldn't have been absorbent but I bet if she had gotten hold of one her baby would have worn silk dresses. We often know the 'big' stories of wars and disasters but the everyday battles are often untold. The women of Europe, whose plight was dire, were quick to repurpose a 'chute.
    Last edited by Greenheron; 04-25-2013 at 11:27 AM.

  10. #10
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by catmcclure View Post
    $14.95 plus $1.00 shipping doesn't sound like a lot. However, in 1949 minimum wage was $.40 an hour (increased that year to $.70). So that parachute cost a week's pay.
    knowing my mom she got the 4.95 with postage included. I'm going to have to show her the ad some time and see what she says.
    NEVER let a sewing machine know you are in a hurry.
    Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts. Winston Churchill

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