"Make It Yourself"

by Sarah A. Gordon

Home Sewing, Gender, and Culture, 1890–1930

Interview with Marian Goodman

Sarah Gordon: You said you did, you had had sewing classes in high school. Did you have to make anything --

Marian Goodman: Oh, yeah. Uninteresting things. You know, they make you baste everything first, and… Ah, I used to get so… 'cause I could make the garments they were trying to have us make twice as fast at home, but I had to go through all of this stuff in high school, yeah. Basting…

Patricia Gordon: They would stitch across pins if you put them in [unclear]…

Sarah Gordon: Right. But you don't have to.

Marian Goodman: I never liked sewing in school.

Sarah Gordon: You didn't like it. That makes sense, because you were ahead of the game.

Marian Goodman: It wasn't anything new to me, right. You had to take… You had to take half a year of sewing and half a year of cooking. The boys took manual training and something else I think.

Sarah Gordon: Woodshop or something. Electric --

Marian Goodman: I guess so.

Sarah Gordon: I've come across dresses that girls made in school. They had to make their graduation dresses. Did you have to do that?

Marian Goodman: No. We made aprons… I can't remember. Uninteresting things, I know that.