November 24, 2010

S is for Seamstress

Guangdong, 2010

Not haute couture, but an honest living. These seamstresses sit outside on the side of a little market from 9 am to 11 pm just about every day of the year, fixing whatever needs fixing, at night under the glare of the fluorescent lights. We've been their regular customers for some years now. When we need something taken in or hemmed the bill may come to a whopping Yuan 3 to 5 (45 - 75 US cents).

This links to ABC Wednesday where the letter of the week is of course S and to Sepia Scenes.

23 comments:

Sylvia K said...

Amazing and yet we complain!! Terrific post for the S Day, Francisca! Hope your week is going well! Enjoy!

Sylvia

Jacob said...

Okay ... in the next few days you're going to find a package at your doorstop with a bunch of pairs of jeans...they need about 2 inches on the pants legs, OK? ;-)

Hi F. Funny, but I was just thinking yesterday how I wished I knew someone who could do a bit of tailoring (e.g. hemming)...

Hope you're doing well. Really busy, I betcha!

Kay L. Davies said...

Wow, I pay $10 a pair to get slacks hemmed. I'm going to move to Manila.
Oops, can't, my husband is still working, and is only licensed in Alberta. Too bad.
Perfect word for S day, and a word that doesn't get used much any more here in your former world (Canada).
-- K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

photowannabe said...

An honest living but certainly not much pay. I have a pair of trousers that need hemming. Wish they were closer.
Terrific post today. What a long day they work.

Dina said...

I'm glad she is smiling.

Pat Tillett said...

That is really cool.
We are so far from that here. everything is much too complicated.

Gigi Ann said...

Very long work days. I hope they get a day or two off each week.

EG Wow said...

They work such long hours. I feel so spoiled when I hear stories like this!

Leslie: said...

I sure hope you tip them! I hesitate to get clothes altered because I sometimes could get something new for the same price!

Linda said...

An interesting piece for S. What long hours and low pay. My great grandmother was a seamstress when she came to the United States. She worked in a sweatshop for long hours and little pay.I hope these women have days off and receive tips.

Roger Owen Green said...

Sew what? (Sorry.)
Love the sepia feel. Most clothes in the US are NOT made in the US, and I fret that most of them are produced by underpaid folks.
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Cildemer said...

Surely a sour living, alas!
Thanks for sharing.

***
Have a sweet SWedneSday****

tapirgal said...

Do they work for themselves, or do they have to report to someone and share the wages?

Ann said...

we just had a discussion at work, the designer gets all the glory, the poor seamtress get all the work.

Cezar and Léia said...

It's very interesting, people need to be creative to make some extra money.
Léia

anjoe playhouse said...

They help you and you help them ;-)

maryt/theteach said...

They work so hard I'm sure! Good shot! Mr. Linky is up now! :)

Birgitta - foto CHIP said...

Practical service to have around - a pity it is so far away :)

http://fotochip.blogspot.com/2010/11/sepia-scenes.html

Annie said...

They work so hard for what is a pittance to us. And daily. We should never complain. And yet I see a sense of community in the the smiles of the two women, the curious look of the man to the left, and a lack of awareness of the camera in the more distant individuals as they focus on the work at hand.

Andrea said...

That can pass also as a scene in the Philippines, in the small markets.

Linnea said...

I'm catching up on your photos! Wow! You've been on the move! Never a dull moment. Wonderful stories you're telling here. Thanks for stopping by!

Lui said...

Hi Francisca! In the Philippines I can have an intricate workshop apron for around $3 (PhP150) and any ordinary repairs below PhP100. But you should know. You lived here. ;-)

Btw, has anybody provided the name of the yellow flower? My neighbor said the birds planted it in his garden so he does not know what a Periwinkle is. :-0

T. Becque said...

This is a great photo showing us life.