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Sunday Best: This elegant coat, made by Seattle seamstress Clara B. White, tells a quiet story of faith and service

By Moira Macdonald, The Seattle Times on

Published in Fashion Daily News

A year ago, if you wandered into the Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI), you would have found a treasure trove of outfits there. The exhibit "Seattle Style: Fashion/Function" opened last spring, and while it was full of eye-catching gowns, it was this simple, elegant coat that stayed in my memory the longest. Seattle seamstress Clara B. White made the coat for herself, meticulously stitching its details (velvet diamond appliques, satin-ribbon trim) and tailoring its softly flared skirt and shawl collar. White, who arrived in Seattle in the 1920s, likely wore the coat to services at First African Methodist Episcopal Church, where she taught Sunday school for 60 years. It's a reminder that garments sometimes tell quiet stories.

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