Aug 17, 2017

31 Days of Gratitude: Day 17

Day 17:  Workers in clothing factories

Many of us older types grew up wearing clothes made by our moms. They made them in order to save money, not as a fun hobby. In fact, my mom wanted me to have a better life than she, so she refused to teach me how to sew because she wanted me "to have the kind of life where you could just walk into a store and buy something off the rack." (Not a huge amount of logic in this, but that's another story....)

So now I have the life where I can just walk into a store (or click on the internet) and buy something off the rack. The clothing isn't as nice as the outfits my mom made. Those clothes fit better and lasted longer (made big so I could grow into them!). I don't have coats with coordinating linings, or skirts with scalloped hems. But I can buy decent clothing at relatively cheap prices.

Clothing costs much less, when adjusted for inflation, than clothes cost 35 years ago. Of course, the clothes we buy are cheaper now in large part because they are made overseas by workers who get paid very little (although these jobs are often the better paying jobs in some countries). I'm not getting into the morality or the politics of this situation -- the effects on the US worker are well known.

Rather, I'm focusing today on my gratitude for these workers. It's not an easy life to work in a clothing factory. It can be loud and boring and sometimes dangerous. Yet these folks go to work everyday because they are just like our moms -- they want their children to have a better life. I'm grateful to them.


Tricia T said...

Joan, I have enjoyed reading these every day. They really have touched me... and/or made me spit my coffee out laughing - whichever! :). I do love reading your writing. Thanks for sharing it with us.

Diana K said...

Really tough one today. I believe that people everywhere should have the chance to better their lives. Not only the ones who were lucky enough to have been born into a privileged country in the first place. That is all,

Leslie Miller said...

With the price of patterns and material these days you don't save much money sewing your own. My mom sewed for me because it's what moms did back then, and I sewed for myself because I learned to love it.