A Kalkatroonaan Kalle

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | A Kalkatroonaan Kalle

GET A LOAD OF MY HALLOWEEN COSTUME. I mean, seriously, right?! WHO IS THAT?! 

I don't know who it is, but it is most certainly not the person usually stomping around these parts. This chick is so...so chic. So SOLID.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | A Kalkatroonaan Kalle


Maybe I had everyone else's fabulous, in-progress Halloween costumes in mind when the overwhelming urge to first choose, and then sew this neutral cotton hit me. Maybe I was bedazzled by the parade of beautiful Kalles out there in the blogisphere. Maybe, specificallyLauren & Sallie's denim hued versions in linen & chambray made that trendy little edison lightbulb go off for me: I had the power to make the costume for the ever-present role of "Woman; Chic; Yet Not Overdressed For This Audition."

All of those Maybes are true; especially the last one. As I pinned it for button placement, I realized I preferred the clean look of it. However, I didn't think ahead, and went for the exposed button placket, so...I'm sewn in here. Those wrinkles in the front are from mine own hands! (Yeah. I personally steam myself when auditioning, but apparently y'all don't rate.) In my October post over at Mood Sewing Network, I asked for a better option than stitching myself closed whenever I have to lawyer up, and got some wonderful suggestions: a strip of buttonholes, a small hidden zip near the neckline (essentially making it a pullover), and invisible snaps-- G of Lin3arossa suggested adding a single exposed snap at the neck. Which sounds super chic!


But I can tell you who I hope I am; from ogling my peers in casting offices...a well heeled attorney on insert popular edgy tv show here. For real, this neckline & shape is everywhere in NY! Specifically, calls for lawyers. 

I changed up the curve at the side seam to conceal the leg a bit more--though too much leg is really not a problem; TV lawyers have different rules, dontcha know. I once played a high powered attorney in an insanely fun David E Kelley show, whose closet consisted of candy colored, teeny jersey swingy dresses that barely concealed my rear. The show never made it to the light of day, sadly. The fantastic costume designer and I had a BALL trying on dozens of outfits and picking our favorites--teeny dress was tops on the list. Ah, wardrobe! My Disneyland.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | A Kalkatroonaan Kalle

Sewing had firmly set up shop in my heart by the time I shot that pilot, and I devoured that rack of beautifully curated clothing like a carnivore digs into a porterhouse. If this had been on offer, I would have exclaimed over the shoulder cuffs. They slope so beautifully. They make me want to rip back into this silky artsy McCalls jammie and redo those wings...

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | A Kalkatroonaan Kalle

But I'll save that for another day, as right now I want to sew about 80 other things. Happy Halloween, hope you're in costume today! (But you know me. I hope you're in costume EVERY day.)


Good Morning Monday

Aaaaaaanyhoo! This is a dress I made! FROM SUPER LONG AGO, LIKE SPRINGTIME LONG AGO! 

I was reminded today that I forgot to share it with you here, when Pattern Review announced the talented sewists moving through to the final round of the PR Sewing Bee... a round in which I'm the guest judge. (Yes, I'm surprised too.) But it's gonna be fun! I'm gonna be on those entries like white on rice! There are some stitches being THROWN DOWN MAN. Did you see the sleeves round?!

I was also surprised to be asked to speak at a PR weekend on an illustrious panel, last spring, to which I wore this very dress. Hence the lightbulb moment regarding the  MIA posting of this 6 yards of Ankara.

This is probably what I looked like for most of that highly entertaining day: pointing at seams on my dress. Hey guys, this pattern has really awesome godets that you totally can't see in this crazyface wax print lemme just point em out for you!

You'd see them better if I'd carried my contrast piping down into the skirt, but that's a loooooottta piping, as I maxi-fied this pattern (Cynthia Rowley for Simplicity 1802, plus a self drafted princess seamed bodice).

I might don it again tonight, for a reunion concert I'm about to jet to rehearse for. Anyone remember Lennon on Broadway? Yep, one night only at 54 Below. It sold out before we could even tell people where to get tickets! YIKES! 

Well, that's all for the moment, nice to have a short and sweet post once in awhile, 'innit? Be well, hope you're twirling on this Monday.


Declaration of Intent: Commenting on Your Comments.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Declaration of Intent: Commenting on Your Comments.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Declaration of Intent: Commenting on Your Comments.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Declaration of Intent: Commenting on Your Comments.

This skirt, made over the course of one day in early June, became an instant favorite of mine. I reached for it every chance I got. Sadly, it fell into abandonment just as quickly as it took to stitch it, because the last time I wore it, I was in an unfortunate situation with a difficult, offensive personality. And it takes a lot to offend me. I wore it as armor, but it suffered battle scars. In the space of one day, this once adored garment became a tinged reminder of that event.

I gave it a cooling-off period, and the memories of that obnoxious personality have now faded, just in time for the crisper weather which this heavy metallic yardage is actually best suited for (I mean, should Mother Nature decide that we get to keep seasons).

Beautiful People, I'd like to keep this space as a favorite spot. I don't want to have to give this small corner of the web a cooling-off period. But lately, I've been giving it the side-eye, wondering what offense I might unintentionally provoke.

I've recently had a nice little run of offending folks, unawares. From the description of my closet, to the use of the term spirit animal. The latest in a string of self-set booby-traps happened last week, in the form of a typo.

This gorgeous, clear blue-skied week, we woke up daily to the next atrocity that somehow impossibly overshadowed the previous impossibly terrible thing, which overshadowed the last thing, and the countless things before it, and it feels insurmountable. There are too many things in this world that we cannot fix, so we focus on the things we can fix. I GET IT. But we lose sight of the people behind the things we're fixing.

I'm not easily offended. I'm confident. I'm vocal. I'm strong. Which is not to say that others are or are not any of those things. But those qualities in me, coupled with the fact that I'm (racially speaking) a little bit of everything and not enough of anything, make up a person who wears what she wants, says what she wants, and doesn't get too concerned about what others think of her.

The latter part of that sentence hasn't been the case lately, mainly because the last thing I want to be perceived as, in this quivering world, is an agent of more sadness--even unintentionally. So I spend hours worrying and responding (hopefully, thoughtfully) to over a hundred comments on months worth of posts where landmines loomed unseen.

YEAH, SO WHAT. Blog comments. What a silly, inconsequential worry in the face of the world we live in.

But it is a worry, small as it is. A worry that I do not have the energy to carry, especially when the conversation ends out in the ether of the internet, and I’m left wondering if my thoughtful responses have even been read by those that started the ball rolling. I've considered turning off the comments altogether, but in this age of mindless, unconnected interacting through screens, the sewing world is an anomaly--we want to have a discussion. And blog discussion, despite being down elsewhere, is still very much happening here.

So, I'm not going to turn the comments off. I’m not going to delete comments. I’m not saying you shouldn’t have your response and share it (although in this age of public "calling out", the occasional private "calling in" might be a more productive choice). Speak your mind! This is, contrary to unpopular belief, a free country. But, if your very first comment here is about the ways in which I have hurt or offended you, or if your comment's sole purpose is to tell me how I am wrong with no explanation, or even if I just don't have the energy: I am going to give myself the option to pass on putting myself into a tailspin. I will instead direct you to this post, specifically, this last bit:

It is impossible to live a life where you offend no one. Although it is my wish that you have a Great Good Time while you're here, I also understand that my sense of humor, sense of style, and sense of English may not be everyone's cup of tea. (Or coffee. Or gin. Or room temp water.) But if my off-color humor doesn't suit you, if I misstep, if I use a word that is a trigger for you, if there is a new word in our ever-changing lexicon that I misuse, it is most certainly NOT my intention to hurt or offend you. I intend to make you laugh. I intend to inspire you to live colorfully. I intend to provide you a breather in the middle of the madness.

And once in a while, I'll even talk about sewing.

eta: Thank you all so very much for your thoughtful words! I'm at a loss at how to respond to everyone, but if we run into each other in a bar, drinks are on me. (And apparently, we'll need them, as we'll be preparing for possible fisticuffs. It'll be the best dressed bar fight ever.)