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Duty Apparel

New Year 2024

This afternoon, I was perusing clothes on a selling-platform website and saw a category that I mis-read as:


Woke and Duty Apparel.


I laughed, and clicked out of this American website. Let me be perfectly blunt here and say that the state of attire-affairs here in the USA is abysmal, and has been for at least 20 years.


Actually, the starting point of this horrendous state of domestic dressing is the post-Cold War era, those 1990s in the USA that achieved the outsourcing of jobs, then companies, then entire industries.


I take comfort in the fact that we, the People, weren’t the only ones being kicked to the corporation-curb when it came to the atrocious adornment of the human body.  The corrupt culprits of the once profitable anti-Americanism got to preen themselves on-stage in hideous synthetic Chairman Mao suits, or spandex dresses that left nothing to the imagination but should have, for the sake of the imagination.


Later this afternoon, I purchased material for my duty apparel from a brand new site online.  The 100% cotton quilting fabric was chosen with specific dress designs in mind.  I’m taking a page, or some photos, from the past, conceptualizing contrasting prints and shades, with collars and details that were all enthusiastically invented for Dear Daughter.

At the time, I’d sewn a patchwork quilt with lovely and lusciously thick cotton flannel.  That quilt was so beloved by my Bootsie that it literally came apart at the seams.  I’d extra material from that project; and I used it to create a dress for Dear Daughter.  The dusty-blue floral print on an ivory background, with an ivory contrasting collar was pretty and comfortable, and memorable indeed!


The seamstress-wheel has come full circle for me, after a quarter of a century of being too busy to create my own apparel.  I’m calling this 100% organic material, aka natural fibers, the makings of My Duty Apparel that I’ll craft with my own two hands to liven up my wardrobe.  The woke attire puts me to sleep.

In the late 1990s, I was home-schooling, home-churching, home-sewing, home-making, and, not home-bound, but home-free, at least where creativity was concerned.  I was a one-woman wrecking crew, not putting up with the ghastly stuff sold in the brick-and-mortar stores or even the trendy catalogs that had begun to ominously display those formless plasticky imported wares that I refused to let myself or my children wear.


As the mother of two quickly growing children, I believed, and still do, that it is the duty of the mother to inculcate in her offspring the bona fide ethics of self-reliance, independence, appreciation of virtues in self and in others, and the rejection of non-virtues in self and in others.  Part of imparting a self-directed moral compass is the duty of citizenship.  And the duty of citizenship does not brook the purchase of products made from slave labor.

It’s very telling that the very people who strut their morally superior stuff on the political stage are the putrid perpetrators of so much perfidy, with private lives filled with so much squalor that entire cadres of thuggish professional cover-uppers are hired to squelch the truth from ever reaching the buying and voting publics.


The wool didn’t get pulled over the eyes of decent, hard-working Americans during the past 20-30 years. It was synthetic fibers, phony post-recycled fabrications that are the all-too symbolic emblems of the shambolic state of raiment in the once well-dressed industrialized world.


Perhaps major portions of a generation of little tykes have come of age never knowing the beauty of a dress or the warmth of a vest made just for them.  I made sure my children weren’t part of that pitiful lot of “kids” who grew up, coddled and stuffed to the gills with the crass materialism of imported goods that arrived on our shores at a very high price in more ways than we’d like to know.

Dear Son wanted me to make for him a fleece vest with a deer or buffalo print.  He looked none too happy wearing it, and I was none too happy with the severely limited options for sewing clothes for a male child.


Dear Daughter fared much better in the femme-couture department, but I’m of the mind that a little girl receives more than just a handmade dress from the nimble fingers and artistic mind of her mother.  She gains a sense of wonderment that can never be taken from her, or go away, no matter how hard the adult work-day has been, or how monotonously fatiguing the complaints from others around her.


As is usually the case with many of my maternal decisions, I put myself last and shorted myself when it came to devising my own dress designs.  Polyester was the cheaper choice of necessity for outfits that did not remain long in my closet!  Thus, my duty apparel of the future will right those less-than-right choices of the long ago!

My investment selections today are of 100% cotton textiles from a collection called “English Garden”, with the particular motifs dubbed:  Bachelor Button in Earl Grey, Currants in Biscuits, and Climbing Rose in London Fog.


Just the names alone excite my mind!


This time of year is for looking back, but it’s also for looking forward.  I’ve a duty to dream.  The New Year awaits dreams to come true, for me.  I’m one of those forgotten Americans who had almost given up on dreaming.


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