Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Oven Mitts Fit for a Former Betty Crocker

It's Shameless Commerce Tuesday, and today I'm featuring one of several new oven mitt listings in my Etsy shop, Pasque Flower Creations.  I now have 52 oven mitts in the Oven Mitts section! (To see more of my shop listings, check out the scrolling widget in the upper left-hand corner of the blog.)

This oven mitt features fabric from the Everything Nice collection by Pink Light Design for Robert Kaufman.
I love this cheery print with the bright pink, aqua, and olive green throwback colors, and the girly vibe.  The charcoal gray background makes the bright colors to pop --- and it will hide inevitable smudges that seem to happen when grabbing an uncovered pan from the oven.

I chose a pink polka dot (I'm partial to polka dots) for the lining, binding and hanging loop.

I love this retro-inspired print!  Perhaps because it reminds me of the time, a long, long time ago, when I was South Dakota's Betty Crocker Homemaker of Tomorrow for 1971.  The Betty Crocker Search for the All-American Homemaker of Tomorrow was a nationwide scholarship competition.  Between 1955-1977, General Mills awarded over $2.1 million in scholarships to young "Betty Crockers."  I will be forever grateful for the generous scholarship thta paid for my first two years of college at South Dakota State University. (I actually did start out as a home ec major, but I veered WAY off course and ended up in law school.  In a sense, I've now come full circle, making home sewn items for my Etsy shop.)

But let me make one thing perfectly clear.  I am not now, nor have I ever been, an ideal homemaker, as my friends and family can attest!!  I have a saying posted on my frig: "Martha Stewart doesn't live here."

So how in the world could I have won the Homemaker of Tomorrow scholarship?  Well, I was active in
4-H, took home ec classes in high school, and participated in FHA (Future Homemakers of America). This was before Title IX, so there were very few extracurricular activities for girls.  But most importantly, I was pretty good at taking standardized tests.

I took the Betty Crocker test (authored by the same testing company that wrote the ACT) and wrote a timed essay. I first won the school award, and a few weeks later I received a telegram telling me I had been selected as the state winner.  It even made the "big city" TV news!

My sweet home ec teacher, Mrs. Kiner, was my chaperone for our expense-paid trip to Washington, DC, and Colonial Williamsburg.  Mrs. Kiner had never flown in an airplane until our trip.  In addition to the scholarship and the trip, I got an allowance of $25 to help defray the cost of a formal gown.  I sewed my own, of course, but I was totally outclassed by my roommate from South Carolina, whose store-bought southern belle gown, complete with hoop skirts, rivaled Scarlett O'Hara's!  She went on to win the national award -- an additional $5,000 scholarship!   Even that sum seems like a drop in the tuition bucket these days, but back in the 60s and 70s, that paid for all four years at a state university.

The highlight of the trip for me was meeting my state senator, George McGovern -- a staunch opponent of the Vietnam War, and a staunch proponent (with Republican Bob Dole from Kansas) of the Food for Peace program.  He went on to run for President in 1972, but he was defeated in a landslide. And the rest, as they say, is history.



  1. Ooh, I LOVE that fabric :) and that is awesome about getting the scholarship!! Ha - the saying on your fridge is great ;-)

    1. Thanks, Duni! That fabric just makes me smile.

  2. Congrats on the scholarship! What a neat story about your home ec. days making the full circle :)
    Love the fabric. And you're right about the dark fabric being a smart choice. Jesse decided to use my oven mitt to get the cast iron skillet off the grill...UGH!

    1. Oh, no!!! Try Oxi-Clean. If that doesn't work, I could send you a free replacement. It looked so cute hanging on your cupboard door.

    2. Great, I'll try the Oxi-Clean.
      I appreciate the offer, but it was totally our fault (well, Jesse's...lol) He's been warned not to touch it again :)

  3. As much as I love your chevrons, I do believe that these are my favorites!

    How fun to meet your state senator!

    1. Thanks, Sher! I am afraid my chevron days are numbered -- although they still get the most favorites.