5.13.2016

New York, Go Sit In The Corner.

oonaballoona | a sewing blog by marcy harriell | true bias colfax dress

Although Mother Nature is doing her best to give us a cookie after the time-out we've been in, New Yorkers ARE NOT HAVING IT. We punished children, we who have done time for our transgressions, we are side-eyeing this sunny olive branch and blowing a raspberry at the general vicinity, taking it out on the parent who rightfully made our disrespectful planet-torturing-asses sit in a corner for the first few weeks of Spring.

Nothing will make us spurned brats happy! Case in point: a trip to buy flowers is always a reason to smile, no? And when it's 72 degrees and blue skied as you please, and the local farmer's market transforms a block of Broadway into a patch of technicolor blooms, pleasant folks should be a given!


Sorry, my boss says anyone with poofy hair is banned from the market, sorry the sales gardener lamely jested. Ah! I thought. A jokester! A slightly tired jokester, but nonetheless! I LOVE JOKESTERS!

I grinned, ready for repartee with my new friend. Well then I'm about to implode, because my hair is reaching Marie Antoinette heights of poofdom today. I was rewarded with a pained half smile, and an allowance of two brief grunts on pricing before he poof! disappeared.

Boss man was in the truck, chilling in the shade. Lounging, even. Maybe that was the reason for the less-than-stellar atmosphere. Employee number two appeared, a fellow curly haired girl. AHA! We kinky chicks have an Instant Secret Club connection, borne out of years of learning how to deal with the mass of unmanageable coils springing from our noggins! Surely we will share a smile and the usual exchange! But the I love your hair which, by rule, leads to yours too what do you use instead produced a blank, cold stare. The natural progression of Hair Product Suggestions left unfulfilled, I asked instead for a spot to place the large amount of plants I was about to purchased. She waved at an area and walked away.

I spent a good hour navigating their small patch of market, alternating between wrangling flats, cajoling stunted answers out of Employees One and Two, and politely persuading shoppers to please leave the flats that I'd already selected alone. Because that was my job, you see, to be the employee to my customer.


People were actually angry with me when they couldn't have my plants. Multiple people. PEOPLE WHO WERE THERE WITH ME THE WHOLE TIME AND KNEW I WAS SETTING THINGS ASIDE. When one co-shopper, who'd already tried to pick from my flats, reached once again for a loner in my bunch, I said, you know what, actually that's okay--you can have that one, I'm planting several boxes and that little guy has no mate. She blinked at me as if I'd cursed her out. No, really, I smiled reassuringly, you've made my decision for me, he should go with you. I'm not even sure she said thank you. She sort of just crept away with her prize.

Maybe my hair really was alarmingly poofy.

The final straw was slapping down 200 bucks for five flats of happiness, only to have 4 customers steal from my flats as I tried to find one of the suddenly MIA employees to bag up the order.

I lie, the final straw was a little ole lady, a sweet little ole lady, who grabbed one of my already paid for plants, and took it to one of the suddenly very available employees. I went off to find a replacement, and realized that was the last one. Hilarity ensued, as Sweet Little Ole tried to charm me into giving her the plant. But, you see I've already paid for this--I'm sorry, this is for my building, so I really do need a lot of plants, I explained.

She squeezed her soft eyes into a endearing grin. Well, a building? I'm just one little person, so I'm more important, she sang. As I sighed and prepared to repeat myself, I was reminded of my grandmother, and how much she loved flowers. My eyes searched the market for a solution, as Sweet suggested we shoot for it. Rock papers scissors at the ready, Employee Number Two finally found her voice and ended the debate, and suddenly Little Ole dropped the act and yelled WELL I'M NOT GOING TO ARGUE WITH YOU I DON'T HAVE TIME FOR THIS I'LL JUST COME BACK TOMORROW THANKS A BUNCH HONEY.

Suddenly she didn't remind me of Nan anymore.

oonaballoona | a sewing blog by marcy harriell | true bias colfax dress

I then positively careened through the market, Marie Antoinette on a bad day, losing all cheer and turning full New Yorker, slamming my paid-for flats out of reach of e-v-e-r-y-o-n-e. I AM DONE, I glared at the employees, ordering them to get me bagged up.

Suddenly both employees were at my side, protecting the flats, hailing cabs, saying things like you've been so nice this whole time, we're so sorry, mean customers suck, blahblahblah, but I couldn't find a smile for them. I had been there a long time, and I had been nice the entire time. But nice did nothing for me.

It was a silly little annoying hour, nothing earth shattering, but I find that the small things are indicative of the bigger state of things. At the end of the day, the boxes planted, I thought I'll be surprised if these plants don't collapse under the weight of all that irritation. I was fed up with nice. Now, no, I don't abhor the word "nice" in the way that some people do, the word has not fallen out of vogue for me, I'm just getting tired of that misunderstood, pleasant little word not being returned.

Especially when I got home and realized Little Ole made off with the plant anyway.

I told Ruggy, in all caps, HUMANITY IS GOING TO DIE OF BEING INHUMAN. People die of that all the time, he said. But we're going to be the few. The proud. The humane.

...OKAY FINE IF WE HAVE TO.

Oh hey, I made a dress! This is True Bias' Colfax dress, and the creator, Kelli, a truly nice (and super chic) lady, just happens to be a friend--a friend who passed her new pattern on to me in case I wanted to try it. Well I do and I did! AND IT IS NICE!!! And I should have worn it to the flower market as I intended, but I just didn't trust Mother Nature enough to go for it! SURELY THIS GODDESS DRESS WOULD HAVE CHANGED THE ENTIRE EXPERIENCE. I lengthened mine to maxi proportions, and reversed the placket. I plan to wear it a ton this summer, on the days that Mother Nature feels like rewarding us. I'd like to say I'll wear it to that same flower market, but methinks I'll find a new spot for my slightly abused green thumb...

55 comments:

  1. Ugggh! what a pain! Everyone's just grumpy and crabby.
    But surely that fabulous Goddess Dress is sweet consolation. Making it a maxi was a stroke of genius. It's the perfect summer power dress.

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    1. summer POWER dress... like a power suit for fun! i like it!

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  2. Holy moly I LOVE the dress! Maxi length is perfect! And that fabric!!!

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    1. thanks teresa! i think i found it at fabrics for less (now chic fabrics). it's a drapey rayon, my fave;)

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  3. AAAARRGGGHHH! NOOOOOOO...she didn't get the plant...what a little stinker. Shopping for window box planters should only, ever, ever, be a sunny and joyous experience. In a word, it should be nice.

    You could come to Canada. Nice...especially in garden centers and farmer's markets...is perfectly en vogue.

    LOVE the print on your dress and the maxi version really sings!

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    1. i mean, everyone's down on canada for being nice and i'm all WHAT'SWRONGWITHTHATSNARKERS?!

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  4. you are a maxi goddess! love this so much. sorry about that cranky lady who stole your plant :(

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    1. you are a pattern goddess! wish i had the skin of steel to wear it outside-- i mean, you've photographed multiple colfaxs in snow !

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  5. Oh man, I thought it was just me feeling this way. I swear people operate in their own bubbles and have no clue of what is going on around them. But if you call them out on it you are the jerk. So sorry your day of planting was ruined. And people wonder why New Yorkers are "unfriendly".
    But the dress is amazing and I love the maxi idea!

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    1. we ought to make a club. the "pleasesorryandthankyou" gang. or the "yourmamashouldtaughtyoubetter" gang. i don't know, just spitballing here...

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  6. UGH! That is horrible. INHUMANITY IS UNACCEPTABLE!

    I love your hair! What products do you use? ;)

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    1. thank you! right now i love dr. bronner's hair creme, in both lavender & peppermint, and i use their rose castille soap for shampoo. alaffia makes several great conditioners, which i buy in the huge economy size, because, massive hair ;)

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  7. This maxi is meant for summer hotness. :)

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  8. What kind of a world is it where people are not nice back to our Oona? Really! Photos of planted out plants please?
    Love the dress. Kaleidoscope love!

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    1. they're recovering from all that turmoil! i think they'll be back to full strength in a day or two, i'll snap a pic ;)

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  9. Great dress, great fabric, great pattern placement on your body. Sorry about your day...I hope her plant has bugs on it that spread everywhere in her place...kills all her other plants...heeheehee (wicked laughter)

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    1. ACK!!! que evil!! :))). i bet that plant is lying on the side of broadway, wondering why it didn't make it home with someone after all that arguing...

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  10. Well, you know, but ... RUGGY! Someone to talk to; the voice of reason. Aw, man. If it makes you feel better, my walking commute takes me through the financial centre of London in rush hour and - man, alive - those 'buy coffee, sell tea' peeps need to stop sharpening their elbows and start learning a thing or two about personal space and manners. Cities! Can't live with them, can't live without them.

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    1. ALWAYS RUGGY.

      i avoid our financial district like the plague. we have the same thing with hot dog/pretzel vendors--there's about an inch of real estate left for actual walking, i'm surprised the peeps in suits don't hulk out and revolt!

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    1. Oops! Signed in under husbands name!!

      this dress is delicious Marci! Love it!

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    2. well hiya scott;)! and thank you margo, i love your stuff so much! i comment in my head to you so often when i sew, i can never remember if i actually typed it or not...

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  12. First Off, that dress looks awesome. Great pattern placement!

    Secondly... sigh... NYC... I do wonder if overpopulation just leads to generally crankiness... me thinks it does...

    Thirdly.. did I see you in a back season of Nurse Jackie?? With a Staten Island Accent to boot?

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    1. thank you, yes, and yes! also yes, thought to be honest i didn't know i had narrowed it down to staten island ;))))

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  13. Some people are just jackasses. And I'm always amazed at rude employees--I am just bitchy enough to let them know that I don't have to spend my money there as I walk out the door empty handed too. Thankfully, it doesn't happen very often! Hope your plants are all beautiful and happy in their new home! And that dress--wowee! It looks like it will be perfect for those sticky, nasty days in June/July/August. :-)

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    1. yeah, 20 minutes in i thought *why am i just not walking away*, and then i remembered: it was buy the plants then or wait another week. they HAD me, yo.

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  14. I was not expecting you to say that the little old lady ended up stealing your plant after all of that. What a drag. That kind of stuff drives me crazy and would make me want to find a different place to buy flowers. At least your day was filled with lots of other flowers, a wonderful husband, and a gorgeous new dress.

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  15. I hate those days. Just hate them. Makes me wanna chain smoke (no I don't smoke anymore, but damn that's a trigger.) argh. On the other hand, you make a damn sexy maxi dress!

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    1. hahaha! makes me wanna drink & sew!!! thank ya :)

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  16. Shame on all those people who does not appreciate the funness that you exude. Everyone must have had a bad day that day and took their frustration out on you. Perhaps when they reflect upon the day like you did they will remember the little spark that tried to create joy in the world and they rained on your parade. And then miraculously the tiny little flower bloomed and blossomed and spread joy throughout NY. By the way, that dress! You were it well. You need to sashay all over New York in that dress
    Bobbi

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    1. you put that so beautifully, bobbi! hopefully, they remembered it and tried to err on the side of spreading joy the next day. and i promise to sashay when that thermometer reaches 80 ;)

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  17. Looking good is the best revenge!

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  18. I've seen a saying somewhere about plants that if you are given one, it will thrive, if you steal one, it will not live long. I wish I could find it again. I don't recall what it said about buying them.

    Love the dress!

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    1. ooooo, what a saying. i'll have to ask my mom about that one, she's a master gardener and i bet she's heard it!

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  19. Dob't give up on being nice!
    It is not overrated 😊
    loved the dress too.

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    1. thank you! i won't. i'll just get highly annoyed every now and then ;).

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  20. What is it about the peeps in NYC? Nice, civil, kind are not words that I apply to the citizenship. Every day I take a deep breathe, suck it up, and refuse to bow to their level...though since I'm technically a senior citizen I would have tripped "granny" up as she departed with my paid for plant! ROTFLOL!

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  21. Smiling and being nice enhances the inner you and your soul...don't stop...in the end it's just plants...things...that can be replaced and laughed over. One day we will all be old and need a flower to cheer us up! Love your new dress...wow!

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  22. Ay caramba!! What a day! I used to sell flowers at the farmer's market at Brooklyn Borough Hall and man, sometimes the people that came would really get me down. Trying to steal, trying to scam me (the old trick where they ask for change and try to rip you off), the CONSTANT haggling over already-inexpensive plants. Oof! But there were also many lovely regulars that made me smile every day and I gotta say, the plants themselves are just so healing and restorative. I've just finished clearing out my flower bed today and girl-- I will just say this: BUY PERENNIALS! Then you won't have to go through the madness each year! ;)

    On to the dress: o, the maxi! O, the glorious maxi! I hadn't thought of this as a maxi as I'm usually one to show a li'l leg in the summer, but this is magical!

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  23. Don't worry. I'll bet you those plants had diseased roots and karma came and rescued you and punished that selfish old bat.

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  24. "But we're going to be the few. The proud. The humane."
    Big hugs to Ruggy because that's what it's all about. That sentence brought tears to my eyes and the rising whirl of anger to a thudding halt
    Nicole


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  25. Love the dress in this fabric as a maxi!!!!!

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  26. Wonderful of course, the color and the design, love it.

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  27. this dress is everything!
    Id hae killed the old lady
    frankie
    http://knitwits-owls.blogspot.co.uk/

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  28. So the old lady stole your paid-for plant? Damn, she is not winning good karma points.

    You're a fabulous storyteller.

    Great dress. Perfect for the upcoming summer. I'm tired of El Niño raining on my parade here in Cali.

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  29. OOOOO! Your flower market story just pisses me off SO BAD! I long to get revenge on your behalf. Somehow, from all the way out here in flyover country. People are just so... so... I can't even come up with an appropriate word for that little old lady.

    Oh... lovely dress. A pretty dress always makes me feel better.

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  30. We are nice because of who we are, not because of how we are treated. That's the only way to survive humanity with our integrity intact. Then, we can walk away unruffled by their totally human behavior. New York City is the supreme challenge to our integrity. Been there. Tried that.

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  31. Pshaw on the customers and sales people - may the fleas of a thousand camels nest in their armpit hair! ;)
    Amazing hair, looks lovely (says that white gal with spaghetti-straight hair that's jealous of you *lol*), of course the dress is terrific, and I'm sure the plants are inspired by you daily! :)

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  32. Karma being what it is, i am sure that shyster old lady will soon have something of hers taken. In the meantime, you were nice to others under trying circumstances, proving you have both character & beauty. Love that dress on you.

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  33. Oh my gosh, darling, what a day. You need a break from mean people --- come visit us on Cape Cod, where we're much nicer. September and October here is lovely and less crowded!

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i thankya truly for taking the time to comment, i love a good conversation-- and hope you know my thanks are always implied, if not always written!