May 13, 2014

Blueprint Fabric

I was amazed to learn this interesting piece of family history from my sister on Sunday evening.

We were talking about the May crowning that will take place on Wednesday at my grandchildren's school mass, and about my grandson's his First Holy Communion a week ago, when my sister shared with all of us what kind of fabric our mother used when she made her First Holy Communion dress.

 During the war my father was a draftsman for the United States Navy, while my father was not an enlisted man, my father, mother, sister and brother lived in housing at the Great Lakes naval base. I was not born yet, I am fourteen years younger than my sister, but that is a story for another time.

This is a photo of my father and his co-workers in the draft room.

This is my sweet sister on the day of her First Holy Communion wearing the dress my mother made for her. What type of fabric was used to make this dress? This dress is made from blue print fabric.

My father asked if he could take home the unwanted and unusable blueprints from the draft room, permission was granted. After he brought home the blueprints my mother would submerge/soak the blueprints in water until all of blue color was gone and a thin piece of white fabric remained. 

So my sister's communion dress was made from the blueprint fabric sewn by our beloved mother.

What a fascinating story, I'm so happy she shared the story with us.


  1. This is a wonderful story, Paulette, with wonderful photos to accompany it! I think Tom Brokaw was right - in calling them 'the greatest generation.' That was a time when large families lived in small houses, loved each other and loved God, were close-knit and frugal, and felt grateful for what they had. Now our society has turned its back on God, have 1.5-2 children, live in a huge McMansion, feel deprived and resentful. I love these stories of your family!

  2. Our parents were resourceful! Your mom and dad were brilliant coming up with this cloth idea. Who would have ever thought! And your sister's dress was beautiful! When I discussed a craft project with my own mom, she reminded me that she did not do as much crafting as she would have liked because she never had the money for the supplies back 50 years ago. Putting food on the table for us kids was way more important than "crafting" and shopping. Times have definitely changed. I am happy with then and now. Linda@Wetcreek Blog

  3. That truly is amazing. They lived in the era where you used everything.

  4. What a sweet piece of family history; and so much love in your parents actions! I love these kinds of stories.

  5. Got inspired about your family history and the making of communion dress for your sister!

    It happened to visit your blog. I'm very much impressed and enjoyed reading your posts and pictures. I'm following your blog now to come back to your site again. I'm glad to invite you to visit my blog, leave your valuable comments and follow my blog at "Join this site".