Christmas Story 2017

Nanny and her momma Miss Lottie both wore aprons, especially when preparing a meal; it was basically made to protect your clothing from splatters while working in the kitchen but contrary to old southern rules, there are industrial ones for everyday wear and nicer ones to show off on holidays.  You can purchase new aprons in some specialty stores and find vintage ones at yard sales and online at site that sell everything from junk to antiquities. 

 

Nanny made her aprons from scraps of dresses she produced from her endless set of paper patterns, and completed them on her trusty old sewing machine; in the early years it was an old foot pump model but when I was about ten years old Granddaddy Scott surprised her with a brand new Singer machine.  She enjoyed the modern Singer model and became an expert at working button holes. 

 

There was a learning curve but Nanny was determined to efficiently operate the new electric model and insisted that I watch the process in hopes that I might one day became the accomplished seamstress she and her mother were.  Sadly, I do not remember many of those lessons but I still have a great amount of appreciation for those who are able to fashion garments.    

 

Nanny pinned her creations and my job was to remove the pins as Nanny patiently sewed the seams and hems; she cautioned me to be careful not to get in the way of the "foot" and put all those pins into the pin cushions so they did not rust or get lost.

 

Nanny insisted on aprons that had large and deep pockets because she carried all kinds of things around with her while doing daily chores and household assignments.  Some of her secret items included a safety pin, a piece of yarn, and a small pocketknife; she was ever ready when she needed to mend or fix something.  She used the pockets when she picked a few peppers for the table or found a handful of pecans.  And yes, there were situations when she carried a handgun but we cannot talk about those kinds of things in my column, however she was always prepared for whatever situation she encountered.

 

One year for Christmas momma purchased beautiful material and commissioned a friend to fashion several phenomenal aprons for my great-grandmother, Miss Lottie.  She was a quiet lady who never smoked, drank alcoholic beverages, and did not speak discouraging words about anyone.  In fact, she was described as a "God fearing woman" by all who knew her. 

She carefully unwrapped the beautifully adorned package and had tears in her eyes as she examined each custom-made apron.  The gold one with a black ruffle was her favorite and she modeled it for the Scott Clan that memorable Christmas day.  Once in a while we saw her wearing one of the aprons but she usually saved them for special occasions, especially at family Christmas gatherings.

 

Happy birthday Jesus and Merry Christmas to all. 

Brenda S. Brown 

 

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