Yesterday I had the greatest privilege to go to church with my parents and my 82 year old grandma and sit down afterwards and talk over pastries and coffee at the cute little church cafe. My Grandma isn’t your typical sweet little old lady. Cute, she is. Her smile and laugh has an amazing child like quality that makes you laugh along with her. Although, I don’t think it’s possible for her to laugh without landing a quick smack on your arm! I just assume it’s a love tap, but that woman is STRONG, I’m afraid one day she’s gonna laugh so hard she’s gonna haul off and really hit me! =)
She is always decked out from head to toe, hat, matching suit with rhinestones down her jacket and skirt, with stockings and kitten heels. I remember growing up she’d have all her shoes dyed to match every outfit. The woman has admirable style! Last time I went to visit her she was set to go in her skinny jeans, floral blouse and flats. Cool and casual.
When we were in the cafe I was updating my dad on all things By kimB, my mom was engaged in an interesting conversation with Grandma.
At one point my mom interjected to grab my attention because it was really a conversation that I should be in too. My mom filled me in on the happenings so far. My grandma had been talking about how when she grew up on the farm, down in the south, her mom was a seamstress. She would take the old flour sacks and make them into dresses and clothes for the kids. She never used a pattern, measuring tape or any of the fancy modern amenities that we all swear by now days.
Grandma continued on to tell us how her mother taught her how to sew as well and whenever someone had a baby they would come to them and have them make them some baby clothes. Sitting at the table she sipped her coffee and lifted her hands and said with her slightly aged voice and still a hint of that southern drawl,
“They’d sit the baby in front of us,” motioning with her hands, “I’d look and could tell just how big to make it,” she’d say with her hands getting bigger and smaller.
Growing up in such humble means they didn’t let anything go to waste. They always found an alternate purpose for everything. Everything was made themselves on the farm and the only thing they bought from the store was the flour, and on occasion, some margarine so they could use the paper it was wrapped in, to wrap their own home churned butter.
It was one of those moments when you realize that who you are didn’t happen on accident. During the conversation I was very clear that I am who I am for a reason and By kimB wasn’t just made from thin air. I came from this family line. And although their version of conservation and re-using everything was born out of necessity, the ways in which they implemented their creativity is something that I get to enjoy today, and everyday doing what I do.
And thanks to many women like my Grandma and Great Grandma we get the luxury of going to the fabric store and finding the perfect pattern for whatever we want to make. Unfortunately for me, I’m now convinced it’s in my blood to be utterly confused by patterns. I can confidently say it’s not my fault! That’s just how we do it in my family =)
(Really great excuse, I know!)
I’m so grateful to have had the chance to talk with my Grandma. I learn something every time I talk with her. She’s got so many stories to tell and has been through so much. I love catching a glimpse of how she see’s the world, it’s inspiring.
Maybe one day I’ll gather some flour sacks and flashback to the days on the farm with some flour sack dresses…maybe not, but it’s a good thing to remember where you come from every once in a while!
What a great way to start the week!
Thanks for stopping by! And if like me you are one of the blessed few with a living Grandma call her up and let her tell you some stories. You never know what you’ll find out!
*****Each product is handmade and re-purposed from second hand clothing and fabrics and is completely one of a kind, I couldn’t duplicate any of these bags even if I wanted too! It’s my way of going green and staying in style.
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