2021—A Twist

The summer I turned thirteen, my mother taught me how to sew.  One of my upcoming eighth grade classes was Sewing and she wanted to make sure I knew the basics before anyone else taught me so that I didn’t develop bad habits.  Mom was an incredibly talented seamstress and one of the things she taught me was to finish putting in a zipper by hand using silk buttonhole twist.  It gave a couturier finish to a dress, a skirt, or a pair of slacks and I was always proud when my finished garments looked like hers.  I gave up sewing for myself years ago.  The time spent perfecting a garment just wasn’t worth the effort anymore, good fabric stores had become hard to find, and, perhaps most significantly, I discovered the clearance racks at Macy’s. 

My continuing quest to find macro subjects drew me to my sewing cabinet. I still have a bowl filled with wooden spools of silk thread and silk buttonhole twist I used on garments I made years ago.  Ironically to me, the reverse side of the wooden spool pictured above is stamped Belding Corticelli, a silk thread manufacturer that at one time produced its threads in the building in Petaluma that my father’s fishing line business took over in the 1940’s. I am pleased to report that I was able to thread the needle without use of a needle threader but my arms were just barely long enough to see the eye. I shot this image using Nikon’s Focus Shift feature, taking 150 images stacked into a single image so that the entire image is in focus.