Memory of Nation


Barbara Hana Irovič (1948)

  Barbara Hana Irovič (1948)
Mum had me take tailor training. I could not choose

Tailor's job

“I only went to school for eight years. Then my mum had me take tailor training from our neighbour. It was not about what school I wanted or what I liked. The neighbour was a seamstress so mum had me learn from her to sew for myself. And now I have no time to stitch on a single button. My skirt lining is torn off; I have been wearing it like that for three days and it catches on my knee. Hopefully it will last today and tomorrow and then I must do it. I used to sew all night long, there was a lot of work to do, but now it’s all done in China. The fabric is so weak it falls apart – I do more mending than new stuff these days. So many things I have mended since the Chinese started selling their stuff here! I often tell people, there is used stuff in shops and it’s intact, so you don’t have to mend it, that’s better for you. I mend it and then it rips apart again after some time. They say, why wear intact clothes to work? I tell them, I will not do this for free, you can buy trousers for 100 dinars, and if there is a big hole or more holes, I will charge even more than 100 dinars. But they do as they will. Mended clothes are better than torn ones. It rips apart, I mend it, then it rips apart again and so it goes on and on. My mother in law used to say, everyone acts the way reason teaches them.”

  • Born in Kruščica in former Yugoslavia on 18 May 1948
  • A member of the Czech minority in Serbia
  • Went to the Czech primary school in Kruščica
  • Took tailor training
  • Works as a tailor and sexton in Kruščica
  • She still speaks Czechs and visits the Czech Republic often
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