1.05.2020

Re:Fashion ...from Quilt to Gown!


Re:Fashion ...from Quilt to Gown! | oonaballoona by Marcy Harriell

This right here is something I’ve been wanting to make for years now. A quilt dress. Mind you, I did NOT want to make the *actual* quilt. Though I do have roughly ten bags of wax print scraps stored up for a rainy day, this squirrel does not have the mindset (yet) for quilting.

Re:Fashion ...from Quilt to Gown! | oonaballoona by Marcy Harriell

But my mom likes to surprise me with all manner of technicolor goodness. And plants. Her thumb is green as the day is long. Sadly, the technicolor goodness has a much better chance of survival around these parts (watering is key, I’m finding out). However, I’d been wanting to hack into this Kantha quilt since it entered our domain. I couldn’t see cutting up such a beautiful gift from my mom, but then the perfect reason presented itself in Re:Fashion Season 2...

Re:Fashion ...from Quilt to Gown! | oonaballoona by Marcy Harriell

Said reason is revealed in the full episode on Bluprint, which you can, right this very hot minute, watch completely free! As in NO “free trial sign up,” NO “cc info needed,” just enter an email address and you can binge EVERYTHING on the site through January 7th.

Re:Fashion ...from Quilt to Gown! | oonaballoona by Marcy Harriell

I won’t say much more about this dress here, since you can get the whole story right now, even if you don’t subscribe to Bluprint. But I know we sewists love our static close-up shots, so I made sure to ask for some in our photo shoot!





OH HOLD UP A MINUTE WHO’S THAT THURRRR IN A FAMILIAR FABRIC

Re:Fashion ...from Quilt to Gown! | oonaballoona | Rob and Marcy Harriell

HI HANDSOME! MATCHING ME LIKE IN MY DREAMS! He is actually down with this sort of thing now! Well, to a degree. I mean, he’d *rather* a subtle hint of a pocket square. He went big for me this time. But couldn’t you see him in a technicolor blazer? A brocade blazer? A BROCADE BLAZER WITH A SEQUIN BACK PANEL AND ME IN A MATCHING SEQUIN BALLGOWN?! CAN YOU IMAGINE?!!!!!

Maybe in season 3.....

For now, catch seasons 1, 2, and everything else these Handmade Harriells have on Bluprint for free through January 7th. Just search “Harriell” on site to pull up all our madness.  And remember —- everything else is bingeable as well; cooking, carpentry, oil painting, ballet, crochet...and yes, actual quilting ;).

39 comments:

  1. It is gloriously technicolor and perfect.

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  2. ahh, takes my breath away. mmmmm...colors....

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  3. Absolutely love it and the tie is amazing.

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  4. Amazing. I am totally wanting to make a long jacket out of one of my quilts. It WILL happen. Oh, and we will get you over to the dark side of quilting one of these days!

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    1. Oh please do! The fact that you stitched the quilt yourself will make it all the more special!

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  5. That dress is absolutely beautiful !!!!

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  6. Wow! This dress, great block placement, love the movement. This technicolor perfection screams Let's go have some FUN!!! Beautiful, and the tie is sassy! Love it all.

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    1. Thank you Alice! It was meant to make people happy, so I’m glad to hear it’s screaming just what I intended.

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  7. Absolutely inspired and stunning (the tie, too!)

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  8. I am normally a positive person, but this one socked me in the gut. Let's see...you cut up a cultural icon that could have lasted generations to make a dress? I suggest you read up on Kantha cloth and big stitch quilting, and I believe it was Ralph Lauren who cut up a so called "cutter quilt" in the seventies to make a woman's blazer. The outcry was huge. Self promotion is one thing, and there is nothing wrong with that. However, we quilters who take the time and creativity to produce something lasting for our loved ones or for charity would beg to differ. Enough said. I don't expect this little missive will be included in you comments, but it needed to be said.

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    1. Tina, sorry to hear you’re not feeling positive about this, as it was meant to bring nothing but joy. If you watch the episode you’ll see the “reading up” was done well before cutting, and hear the reason for making this gown out of a Kantha quilt—which is also known as a blanket of protection, made from cherished scraps of sari and given to loved ones. Though this quilt wasn’t made by my mom, it was given by her, and it seemed the perfect fit for the technicolor armor I needed for a tough occasion.

      I expect the things I stitch to last generations, just as you do. Words last too. And unless you’re truly hurting someone, I don’t delete them here.

      (Though I do monitor comment on posts over 30 days old, because, robots.)

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    2. Life is ephemeral...and you bathe it in technicolor light! My gramma gave me precious,handmade items in the 70s. She encouraged me to never pack them away unseen, unheard, unappreciated. I made crop tops from Aunt Mathilda's crocheted and embroidered pillowcases and Gramma loved telling me stories about 'the old days' when she saw me wearing them. Decades later, I made some of them into dresses for my granddaughters. I still carefully lay a knitted bedspread (made of crochet thread!) over my bed and feel at one with my great-great grandmother who made it in the 1880s during the cold winters in South Dakota. Your sari silks and quilt live on. Beautifully.

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    3. I disagree with Tina. If I gifted an item to someone precious, I would want them to do with it what would bring them joy. I would rather see it used than put in a closet to pass on to someone else. And I think that you have now created something that can be passed on...a new legacy, to someone precious to you (when the time is right). Bravo for thinking outside the box and creating something you love.

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    4. Actually, people preserve wedding dresses for generations just as much as they preserve quilts, and frankly, too often quilts get stored in closets, basements and attics (improperly) and become lost to future generations. Making a beautiful piece of wearable art from the Kantha quilt allows for the rich heritage of the culture to be carried forth and also for Marcy to highlight the specialness of her mother's gift to her in a unique and very lasting way that is individual to her and gives her strength. I think it's a perfectly acceptable use of the Kantha's quilt inherent intended purpose, while also modernizing the artform for the next generation to appreciate the work and artistry of the hand stitches and textiles that make up the gown's story. As a quilter for over 25 years who learned from someone who quilted for over 60 years, there is no wrong way to use a quilt as long as it used with love.

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    5. @lisa how WONDERFUL! I love how you’ve given new and extended life to these family creations. Next time I’m back at my MILs, I’m going to convince her to let me use a great grandmother’s quilt. I immediately wanted it as a bedspread and she yelled in terror and put it in a trunk 😅

      @violetismycolor, I feel exactly the same! Though...If someone wanted to get rid of a handmade gift, I’d hope they’d reach out to me first 😁

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  9. THis is remarkable! One question. How did you handle the weight as it hangs as a gown?

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    1. Thank you! You know, I haven’t noticed the weight, so I want to say it’s not that heavy—but, I’m used to stage costumes that weigh a ton so my meter might be off ;) The bodice is lined and boned, and the skirt is unlined (though the Kantha quilt is already backed! But these quilts don’t have a layer of batting.)

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  10. Wow, this is so interesting. (In a good way. I know "interesting" isn't always good.)

    I am currently working on a coat. I couldn't find a lining fabric that I like so I bought a quilted bedspread to cut up for a lining and the whole time I was buying and then cutting it I felt so unconventional. I guess that just goes to show how hidebound I really am.

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    1. Lynn, I think what you’re doing, and what you sew, is the exact opposite of hidebound!

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  11. Just so lovely. Beautiful, respectful, joyful.

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    1. Thank you, Sandra! Those descriptors are exactly what I was going for 💗

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  12. Loved that episode! I binged all of season 1 and 2…and can't wait for Season 3!!!

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  13. Wow, this dress is beautiful! I love the bright colours.

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  14. I love this idea. I had a couple of saris made for me for my son and daughter-in-law's wedding in India. I was also gifted a sari's worth of silk by one of my daughter-in-law's relatives. I have been wondering what I can make out of these things. I was thinking of some sort of A-line jacket, but now you have me pondering. Any ideas?

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  15. Oh, and where did you get that gorgeous lacy zipper?

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    1. Sorry I missed these questions! I’ve made the Vogue 1493 jacket to match this dress, and loooooove it. Still haven’t documented it here, but it’s in the depths of my IG! The lacy zipper is from Pacific Trimming here in NY, but they do have an online presence:)

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  16. I love your work, your joyful spirit and what results out of your hands and of course your imagination!

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  17. So I'm minding my business & watching TV when I see this shock of red hair- OONA!! on God Friended Me! Loving it- & so happy to see u again.

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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!