May 30, 2016

A MEMORIAL DAY TRIBUTE... Dad was so young when he joined the Army that his Mother had to sign for his enlistment. Over 36,000 American lives were lost in the Korean Conflict, but the Good Lord brought my Father safely home to live out his 81 years. He lived to see his children and grand children grown, and to see his great-grand children. What a Mighty God we serve!

 Rest in Peace James "Rattlesnake" Coley!

May 24, 2016


...I was introduced to Marcy (the sewing actress) through Sew way back in 2011.  (Take a peek at 3 pages of her work at this location). Soon after I started dropping by Oonaballona of Kalkatroona on quite a regular basis.  The visits were always electrifyingly informative and delightful ~ and kept me going back for more. There you will find class and sass wrapped up in one neat package - highlighted by superb photography focusing on a self-made wardrobe that utilizes every color, print and design pattern in the book.  Her amazing style once sparked a world-wide internet tribute called Oonapalooza ~ (70 makes total, how grand was that?) ~ you can view the Oonapalooza roundup here and here.  Marcy is a member of the Mood Sewing Network, and the first place winner of Project Sewn 3 (she earned my vote every week of that season); just to name a few places in her sewing dossier.  Kalkatroona is a real place ya'll that I could go on and on telling you about, however; in all fairness, you should take a minute to visit there yourself.  But before you click on over there, here's a little introduction to what you'll find...

I love all of the color and artistic flare of your designs.  What things excite and inspire you in your sewing and the designs that you create?
MARCY:  Thank you, Faye! Color is my candy, and fabric is my biggest inspiration! I love fondling bolts of fabric and wondering what they could become--and my initial thought is almost never what I follow.

Have you had formal training or are you self taught?
MARCY:  Self-taught, with the help of the internet ;).

What are your favorite items to sew?
MARCY:  Things that are meant for celebration. Sewing is fun, so I mainly sew the things that are meant for fun!

What garment or project has presented the biggest challenge to you?
MARCY:  Hmmmm…I guess when a project challenges me, I either power through it, or set it aside for a little breather. I don’t think of projects as challenging, I think of them as Things That I Will Conquer.

What garment to date would you call your masterpiece?
MARCY:  Here’s where you’ll get an idea of the size of my head (or of my delusion?): whatever I’m currently working on is The Best Thing I’ve Ever Sewn. Of course, there are ups and downs in there…

I’m always extra proud when the insides are as beautiful as the outside, and my birthday/anniversary Burdastyle Bombshell dress is in that category. Sadly, it has yet to be worn out (unless you count the outside of a barn on a warm Christmas morning).

Are there any sewing techniques that you have not mastered yet, but plan to work on?

MARCY:  Welt pockets! I have yet to make a welt pocket.

                      If you could only have five (5) patterns, which five would that be and why?

MARCY:  Yikes! Well, if I think about it in terms of the sewing process, which is of course the juiciest part, I’d choose the By Hand London Anna dress, two of the older Simplicity Project Runway patterns (in the blue envelopes—so many options!) and two Vintage Vogue reprints. That way I can either knock it out quickly, mix it up, or get lost in all of the delicious tricky details!

You’ve been part of the Mood Sewing Network for several years, can you tell us a little about your experience?  How did you get involved?  How many garments have you submitted under that program?
MARCY:  One sunny day, I received an email, and I think I responded within seconds! MSN has been so great, in fact I think being a part of the network really stepped up my sewing game. I was shocked to be included in the group-- there were (and are) so many talented sewists in the group who had been sewing for years, and I wanted to sew at their level, so it drove me to learn more.

I was contacted by Mood out of the blue, I had no idea my blog was even on their radar. At the time, I’d only been sewing for 3 years, and only with mystery bargain priced fabric! So, it was a real eye opener to be able to choose fabric, know the content, learn about how to handle the fabric—instead of the $2 a yard guessing game I’d been playing. I’ve sewn over 50 items for MSN.

Living so close to the garment district must be very beneficial.  What other stores or shops are your favorite that you would suggest we explore when we visit the City?

MARCY:  Fabric wise, my favorites are Chic Fabrics, Metro Textiles, Elliot Berman, my beloved Janky Store, and of course Mood. You must have a Gray’s Papaya hot dog if you’re in town, but you’ll have to trek to 72nd and Broadway for that. MOMA is a favorite, you can get lost in there for hours, and if you’re downtown, Pearl River Mart is a wonderland!

I think that I remember you adding a new sewing machine to your arsenal not too long ago.  Can you tell us a little about the equipment you use?

MARCY:  I’ve got several machines in our small NY apartment: A Riccar 2000 (Ricky Riccardo) a Pfaff 1171 Tiptronic (Lucille Ball) and the newest guy is a Pfaff Creative 4.5 (Gorgeous George). I love all my machines for different reasons, they all have their personality quirks! I no longer own a serger, sadly—I literally put my 1985 Elna DC Pro (Murderous Ellie) out on the street after a part went flying off the machine into the general area surrounding my face. That’s a personality quirk I’m not about to deal with!

I also have a Wolf dressform, given to me by a friend. She fits my measurements almost exactly, and I can’t imagine sewing without her!

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