Group enjoys lunch, style show


A style show of colorful feedsack aprons was a hit with United Women of Faith following a salad luncheon June 10 at Trinity United Methodist Church in Mount Gilead.

Trinity’s United Women of Faith President Noni Wheeler welcomed 22 women who represented churches from Cardington, Edison Boundary, Williamsport and Mount Gilead Trinity. The blessing of food was given by Anne Cotton before the women enjoyed a variety of salads and desserts.

Quilter and seamstress extraordinaire, Marcella Garverick, gave a presentation of the history and use of feedsacks, which were used for making clothing, dish towels, and other items around the home. Flour and sugar were sold in feedsacks and were popular for use making dresses, shirts, curtains, aprons and quilts.

Flour and sugar were kept in barrels until 1864 when the cotton feedsacks came into use. Garverick said it took three feedsacks to make a dress and two for most aprons. Homemakers prized fabric which could be used for dresses and curtains, and there were also prints with boots and saddles for boys clothing.

The uses of feedsacks were especially popular in the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s until about 1960 when they stopped making the prints. The use of the feedsacks in making clothing was very important during the Great Depression and the World War II years when fabrics were more expensive and families were trying to save every way possible.

Garverick displayed various prints she had from growing up on the farm as well as fabrics and feedsacks she found at antique stores and flea markets. She showed the DeKalb sacks her mother used for dish towels and clothespin bags. That was an era when most women hung out their clothes to dry. DeKalb was the brand of feed used on their farm.

Feedsacks were stitched with string and when the sacks were taken apart for sewing items, the string was saved and used for tying quilts, knitting and crocheting. Nothing was wasted in the depression and war years.

Women had “sack and snack” exchange parties where they would gather to exchange sacks and get patterns they needed. This happened when they might have two sacks of one pattern and need a third for a dress while another person would have a surplus of sacks.

Garverick referenced the book “Feedsack Secrets: Fashion from Hard Times” by Gloria Nixon for some of the historical part of her presentation. Many of her stories came from her own experiences and women commented their mothers and grandmothers had aprons much like those displayed.

The program closed with Carol Begeman, Marilyn Dabney and Robin Brucker modeling vintage aprons from the 1930s and ‘40s. Some were aprons from Garverick’s family and others were ones she had collected from vintage shops.

Each woman went home with a heart-shaped favor sewn by Garverick made from a vintage feedsack pattern.

Alberta Stojkovic is a correspondent for The Morrow County Sentinel. She can be reached at [email protected].

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