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Last Updated on August 16, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 312

The Narrator

The narrator is a fanciful young girl who is entranced with the things the seamstress Amanda makes. She is scared of the potential witchcraft the woman might wield but also admires her beauty, talent, and power. One day, she asks Amanda for a beautiful outfit. When she gets it, her mother makes her take it off after it scares her sisters. Later, she has to give it to her mother when she is caught wearing it outside. As she grows up, the narrator forgets the outfit until she finds it in a storage box. She keeps it as a valued heirloom until she loses it while moving. To her, it was proof that Amanda loved her enough to make something for her that was special.

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Amanda is a local seamstress. Her work is extremely popular, with clients coming from far and wide to see her. Sometimes, she lets them think she doesn't speak English and then jokes about their poor Spanish once they leave. She chats with the narrator about local gossip and the people they know. One day, she makes the narrator a very detailed and intricate outfit. It includes cat fur, chicken feathers, and bird bones. People believe Amanda is a witch, but there's never any evidence that she is one.


Veronica does the embroidery after Amanda makes the dresses.

Librada and Soledad

Librada and Soledad are toothless elderly women who the locals believe are witches. They are friends with Amanda. Librada comes to deliver a message to the narrator's mother. After she leaves, the narrator touches a slimy substance; her mother thinks it's evidence of Librada's witchcraft and cleans the narrator thoroughly. Amanda later asks them why they'd blame Librada.

The Narrator's Mother

The narrator's mother is superstitious enough that she never burns the outfit (believing this could have magical repercussions), even though she takes it away from the narrator.

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