Thursday, March 29, 2012

Women's History Month No. 29

“I know what liberty is because I know what slavery was.”

Anyone who's watched Project Runway knows that it is no small task, designing, cutting, fitting, sewing, and finishing a garment. I don't know for certain, but I'd be willing to bet that the gown pictured here was created by its stately wearer, Elizabeth Hobbs Keckley.
Go with what you've got. Build on your skills. Follow your bliss. This crazy world buzzes with motivational phrases such as these. Tiresome after a while, I know, but Lizzie Keckley lived the wisdom they carry. What did she have?
Skill with a needle and thread. That she combined with determination, compassion, and native intelligence to become an indispensable friend to a high-strung, pressure-cookered First Lady
Mrs. Keckley created glorious gowns for her, too.
And most importantly, she used her skills to earn her way out of the trap into which she was born through no fault of her own: Human bondage.
As a sought-after seamstress, Mrs. Keckley purchased her son's freedom, too. Hard enough it is to work for a living. Imagine doing that to earn enough money so that you and your child might be free.
And what was Mrs. Keckley's work? BEAUTY.

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