My special tailor made coat from 1981…


Back in 1981, at the age of 18, I started my first full-time job. I was travelling by train to my place of employment which was located in the city. When winter came it was pretty cold walking from the car to the station & then on the platform in the freezing cold wind, waiting for a train. I decided I needed a good warm coat to keep me warm and didn’t like what was on offer in the shops at the time so decided to get one hand-made by a local tailor. I went with my mother to a fabric store called ‘Spotlight’ and chose a nice dark blue woollen fabric. The next step was to scour pattern books and I eventually found the perfect one in a Simplicity Pattern book. My Mum was a pretty good sewer, but said that the pattern I’d picked out was a bit too involved for her so we found a tailor that was located about 15 minutes drive from our home. She was an older lady (who ran her tailoring business at her home), very particular & bossy, but my mum smiled and could tell she was very experienced at her work. She took my measurements and I gave her the Simplicity pattern and blue woollen fabric. She said it would take her 2 weeks to make and would cost me $45. I had paid only $20 for the fabric, so I was happy to pay a total of $65 for my nice new coat. Mum and I went to collect it and when I first laid eyes on it, I was elated, it was just as I had hoped it would be. It fitted me perfectly and I wore it every chance I had. I look back and remember thinking that I looked good in it, (no-one else would have taken any notice, but that didn’t matter), in my eyes it was extremely special. For years it has hung in my wardrobe; sadly size 10 no longer fits me, but I cannot bring myself to part with it. It holds so many warm memories of all those times I wore it to keep out the cold. I am sure there are many of you out there with a similar story; I’d love to hear what items you can’t bear to part with.

(My special 1981 coat is shown in the photo above, being worn by my eldest daughter)

Tracey 🙂

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