Friday, March 31, 2017

SOLSC Day 31 - Grandma's button

Slice of Life Story Challenge -- 
Day 31 (The last day of the challenge)
Grandma's Button

This is my jewelry box from my childhood. It  has a faux leather covering -- some kind of paper, actually, that has had many scrapes and gouges taken out of it over the years. It has a lock which no longer works, and a music box inside it...which also no longer works. But I still love it just the same.

I've had the jewelry box ever since I can remember. When I was young, I owned only a few pieces of jewelry, which of course I kept in this box. I kept other treasures in this box, also...birthday cards sent to me from my grandparents, prayer cards, religious medals, a handmade bookmark that I think I won as a prize for something in school (my memory is pretty fuzzy on that one), and Girl Scout pins, to name a few.

But the most important thing that I kept -- and still keep -- in this box is a little bundle of material which contains a very precious item...AND some precious memories.

Inside the bundle is a piece of cloth with two buttons sewn on it, with the needle and thread still attached. There is also another piece of cloth (on the right, in this picture) which is protectively folded around the precious item. 

< Here is the precious item that was being guarded so well by everything else.

A close-up picture reveals that it's a button. 

A very old button. 

A very special button.


Beautiful, isn't it? They don't make buttons like that any more.

Grandma (my dad's mother) showed me this button when I was about 11 or 12 years old. She explained to me that the button was from her wedding dress, which had also been her mother's wedding dress. She might have also said that the dress had been her grandmother's wedding dress as well, but I can't remember for sure. It's been too many years since that day, so I don't remember every detail as I once could.

I do remember some details vividly, however. I remember that I was visiting my grandparents (who lived across the street from the school I attended) one day after school. I remember Grandma opening a desk drawer in the living room of her house, where she took out some buttons, needle and thread, and pieces of cloth. I remember her sitting down with me and teaching me how to sew the buttons -- the two buttons in the previous picture -- onto the cloth. When we were finished, she left the needle and thread still attached to the material, and told me to keep all of it. 

And then, she gave me the special button. The one from her wedding dress.

Wow. Out of all of Grandma's grandchildren -- and she had many -- she gave the button to me. I felt so honored, even awed.

Grandma told me that she had one other button from her wedding dress, and she intended to give that button to my cousin MarySue. Again, I felt so special, because MarySue and I each had 4 siblings, and we both had older sisters...yet Grandma had chosen the two of us to give the buttons to. Not the oldest girls in the family, which was typically done for special things, but us. I felt so important.

(Just a side not here -- I showed Grandma's button to my cousin MarySue last year, and asked her if she had ever received her button from Grandma. She had no idea what I was talking about. I related the story to her, and we tried to figure out what had ever become of that other button. We speculated about it, but there is most likely no way that we'll ever know. I'm glad that I was able to tell MarySue the story, though, so at least she could know that Grandma had been thinking of her.)

Before I left Grandma and Grandpa's house  that day so many years ago, Grandma took all the pieces of cloth, buttons, and needle and thread, and bundled it all up for me to take home. When I got home, I put the button bundle into the safest place I knew -- my jewelry box -- and that is where it has lived for all these years ever since.

Grandma's button.

My button.

Just thinking of it makes me happy.

JudyK   March 31, 2017



  1. What a beautiful memory. My mom had an old tobacco tin where she kept buttons. Some were extras, some were buttons she removed from old clothes. I loved sticking my hands in it and feeling them. They weren't as fancy as your Grandma's button, but it connected me to my mom.

    1. I remember ladies always had some kind of a container full of buttons back when I was a child. I always thought those buttons were cool! Most people don't have big collections of buttons any more because most people don't sew. I myself don't have a jar of buttons....maybe I need to change that. :-) ~JudyK

  2. Yeah! I was hoping you'd write about the button. It's beautiful and so is the story you tell about it. What a precious memory of your grandmother. Sounds like she really wanted you to feel special.

    1. Thanks, Vanessa! I'm not sure what my grandmother's motivation was, but it really did make me feel special. ~JudyK

  3. What a beautiful story! Thank you for adding the pictures so we could see the button. And congratulations on finishing the SOLSC!

    1. Oh, I had to show the button so everyone could see for themselves how special it is. Can you imagine a button being made like that today? No way! :-). Congratulations to you too, Amanda! :-). ~JudyK

  4. What a beautiful story! Thank you for adding the pictures so we could see the button. And congratulations on finishing the SOLSC!

  5. Judy~
    Congratulations on all of your beautiful slices.

    1. Thanks so much, Cath! Maybe you'd like to try writing a blog? It would be interesting to share/compare our stories. :-) ~Judy


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