What do a sailor and a sewing machine have in common?
A lot more than I imagined.
When I wrote up my profile for my Etsy shop, I posed that question, the answer being that I sewed in memory of a sailor.
What I didn’t realize was that sailors actually sewed sometimes!
Sailors of the Steel Navy had a constant need for someone to sew. Men with a sewing machine and skill could make money creating fancy variations of standard uniforms, proudly worn by sailors on liberty. These custom made uniforms adhered to Navy regulations, but featured higher quality material and embroidering. Sewing was also an essential skill in the maintenance of the ship. Repair work on hammocks, canvas awnings, and even the sails of early steel ships required a nimble hand.
(From A Sailor’s Life in the New Steel Navy, www.steelnavy.org)
It’s always been easy to love a man in uniform. But a man in uniform who also knows his way around a sewing machine?
I’m on board with that!