For the wedding of Salvatore and Sophia I did all the gowns. The engagement was six months long because it took me six months to do the dresses; those I would create from scratch, those I would have to alter, and those for which my “magic” need be invoked.
It was a glamorous affair, and talked about for weeks afterwards.
After a year of marriage, Sophia was pregnant and I had to alter many of her dresses in a kind of ‘temporary’ way, I would open the side seams, insert folded material which would expand when needed.
After nine months, she gave birth to a daughter she named Andrea. And two months later appeared with most of the dresses I had altered.
She was angry that her waist an inch fatter, angry that her life was boring.
Andrea was not a year old when she, one of many, died of diphtheria.
To my eyes Salvatore was more shattered than Sophia. He put his second, Rico Mancussi, in charge of the butcher shop for over a month while he mourned.
Many people lost children in those days. It was not strange for a woman to bear nine children and only five survived to attend Kindergarten.