Christiansburg woman makes dresses for children in Haiti
Patricia Dillard has lived in Christiansburg for almost 60 years. She's nearing the age of retirement, but isn't slowing down when it comes to helping other people.
The upstairs of her home has been transformed into a seamstress's studio.
"I could do this all day," Dillard said as she pushes the fabric through the sewing machine.
Her fingers move effortlessly, a sign she's had years of practice.
"I was 14 when I made my first dress- which fell apart," she laughed. "But it was a beautiful dress. From then on I kept improving myself."
She still makes beautiful dresses to this day, but she's not making them to sell.
"The biggest thing I'm doing right now is making clothes for places like the homes, and other places I can give to little kids around here and to friends. And we're sending a package to Haiti."
This past April, Dillard sent 25 dresses to an orphanage in Haiti as part of hurricane relief efforts.
Her passion project started when her friend's fabric shop closed.
"This is Ms. Blevins, Phyllis Blevins," Dillard said holding a framed picture of her friend. "She donated to me all this fabric and it's the 'wonderfulest' thing that's ever happened to me."
Dillard and Blevins are still friends. They share a desire to help people which is why Dillard is using Blevins' fabric to make dresses for others.
"This is gonna be something I'll probably be doing after retirement, you know? And it might be my future."
Patricia Dillard turned to the sewing machine and got back to work. She's planning on sending another shipment of dresses as soon as she can finish them.