she stitches the gown in layers of purple, four different shades of dark and hand-dyed to suit her exact criteria. it all but ruins her eyes; she stares so long, so hard at the stitching in fading light, rousing herself when she truly cannot see any more.
embroiders patterns across in gold, luscious patterns crafted in her mind but failing to come across on fabric. the embroidery makes the fabric stiff, awkward to wear. she wears it anyway, so stubborn to think she’s finally created something for herself. wears it daily, for pride and delight, ignores all the sarcasm that bleeds through others’ comments.
she cares for it tenderly; launders it all by hand, painstakingly works loose threads back into place. doesn’t notice the dye staining the water.
the gown becomes aged, progressively shabbier; gold threads get muddied, dark purple turning pale sickly gray.
embarrassed one day, she burns it.