It's not perfectly sewn. In fact, I made plenty of mistakes along the way. It's a bit too short, it pulls at one shoulder, I didn't finish the seams, you can see my hem stitches from a mile away and there is a hole in the front seam.
But it is still perfect.
It is perfect because I made it, myself. It is perfect because I didn't ruin this beautiful fabric or break my mother-in-law's sewing machine (although I came awfully close). It is perfect because I can actually wear it. It is perfect because I actually like it.
It is perfect because this morning I walked into the post office and the postmistress said, "What a nice dress!" and I said, "Thank you, I made it myself!" And I was beaming, after that, for about an hour.
It was perfect to put this dress on today, this everything-blooming-at-once, humid, breathless spring day, with white shoes and pink lipstick, and walk out the door, free and easy as you please.
I wore this gold necklace, which belonged to my grandmother, because I have been thinking of her a lot as I worked on this dress. I have been thinking of her, too, as I unpack more of the little girl clothes that my mother saved for so many years in her attic, waiting to see if there would be a granddaughter to pass them along to (my sister has two sons).
And I think about her when I look at home-sewn clothes from the 1960s and 70s and wonder: What kind of woman sewed this dress? Who was she? Was she happy? And I think about all the things I have sewed in to this dress: songs, worries, spring afternoons, the chatter of my daughter in the background as the sewing machine whizzed along. And I feel like I will always see those things when I look at this dress — this dress that is perfect to me.
Fabric: Rummage sale ($0.25)
Pattern: Salvation Army ($0.25)
Notions: +/- $3