A strange question perhaps, but what were you reading at aged 8? My fave author was Roald Dahl, so Danny the Champion of the World and the like was my favorite book. The reason you ask, is that the book I received at 8 for Christmas was ‘McCall’s Sewing in Colour’. Home dressmaking, tailoring, mending, soft furnishings!
As a fairly in-depth technical text-book its a stretch for an average 8-year-old but add in dyslexia (OK we didn’t know that was why I was struggling but small text was always a big issue) So this book other than the obligatory ‘Oh that’s wonderful, thank you’ ( See I was well brought up with good manners) but have to say this book never had more than a quick glance.
Now my Mum was excellent at sewing, and her sister too, so there was some pressure for me to ‘like it’ as well. Anyone with kids will know that is a sure-fire way to send you kids running for the hills and this is what happened to me. Mum tried to show me how to sew and I had a dabble on a hand turned wheel of an elderly Singer machine where I made a few dolly clothes but wasn’t that keen. This brief attempt was enough to cause this book so I steered well clear after that.
Recently though I have returned to sewing and now my hands are too shot for hand sewing (forgive the pun) I have a sewing machine and after pottering with bags for a while decided to try skirts. Remembering this book was in the loft, yes I kept it, even though I couldn’t read it, since my Mum & Aunt were so keen it seemed rude to their memories (They have both passed away now) to ditch it. So I dug out this book to see if with the coloured overlays I could make any sence of it.
Blimey! You sure can see a change in how books of this kind are presented. Today this would almost be considered a serious textbook! Lots of serous text a few line drawings and not so many colour photos. Very 1960’s. Think Star Trek original series and you will imagine the eye-popping colours, bold colour choices for bedrooms n bathrooms!! Terry toweling shower curtains in paisley anyone?
How about you, what were you reading at 8 years old, and what was your first sewing book like?
Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon