Needlework...A Dying Art

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I picked up a new hobby this summer, I learned how to embroidery.  Every woman in my family has embroidered for as far back as my grandma can remember.  Today it's a dying art, but I certainly understand what Minnie's sewing meant to her.  She lived in a world of strict social rules, drab colors, and a cold, demanding husband.  Sewing was her outlet, creativity, and stress relief.  Even when the entire world seemed dark, she could rifle through her sewing to immerse herself in color.  The cabin she created was her escape, and every stitch was a chance to allow her mind to drift to a happier place than the chair she was sitting in at that very moment.  Like a man's toolbox, a woman's sewing basket was her own place.  The women knew Minnie Foster and they recognized that she would use the only creative outlet available to her (sewing) to create the murder weapon and the only space that was truly hers (the sewing basket) to hide the motivation evidence.

My life is nothing like Minnie's, but my sewing box is something I treasure and a place that I consider very private.  Like generations of women before me, I've already begun hiding Christmas lists and personal notes at the bottom beneath my needles and thread.  Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters knew where to look for evidence that Minnie committed the murder because "We live so close and we live so far apart.  We all go through the same things-it's all just a different kind of the same thing (135)."

Both women knew that if their roles with Minnie were reversed, they may have been capable of murder if they felt "trapped" for 30 years. Women clearly had few options and divorce was not one of them. The women knew that there was a good chance Minnie would be convicted of murder, but they chose to help her in the only way they could...Relying on the fact that the men would not think that they were capable of hiding evidence or disobeying, especially since Mrs. Peters was " married to the law (143)."





Brooke Kuehn said:

It's interesting you focused on the importance of sewing in the story. Today sewing is not as popular as it was back in the early 1900's: however, back then it seems to have been a commonality between the women who felt overpowered by men. Therefore, it makes sense that the women would think to look through her sewing for evidence. Maybe finding the murder weapon and the motive in her sewing was the icing on the cake so to speak for their decision to hide the evidence.

Melissa Schwenk said:

I like the spin you put on this story about how important the sewing basket was. I see the attachment that women during this time period would have had, and how men tended to stay out of the sewing basket since it was seen as a "woman's thing". Maybe if the men had been a little smarter in the story, they would have thought of the sewing basket as the first place to look.

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Melissa Schwenk on Needlework...A Dying Art: I like the spin you put on thi
Brooke Kuehn on Needlework...A Dying Art: It's interesting you focused o