All About the Buttons

[Photos and Text Ari Seth Cohen]

I ran into this lovely woman on my way uptown and I asked her if she worked in fashion because of how stylishly she was dressed. She told me she has been a seamstress her whole life and that her mother was a seamstress as well. They used to sew on buttons together, “That’s why I am looking at your buttons, so closely,” she replied. She told me that her name is Louisa with an “A” and that she has lived in New York her whole life, but that her family was from Genoa. I couldn’t quite make out how old she said she was but amazingly it is between 95 and 97. When I asked her about her lovely hat she said, ” I made it, anyone can make a hat all you have to do is roll the fabric back and add a few buttons.” What an inspiring lady!