Michael and Sherri Bearman of Michael's Fabrics in Baltimore are two of the loveliest people I know. I've known them for years since living in Charles Co MD for many years before moving to the Asheville NC area. I remember talking on the phone to Michael the week their son Phillip was born. With them you are a person not a credit card number.
Sherri and Michael have been aware of my health situation. Since I will be traveling to Baltimore I called and told Sherri what was going on - she was delighted that I got into JH, then hearing about the hotels and logistics, she offered to check to see of they could help in locating/recommending a hotel perhaps where they are located. They don't care if I buy anything or even if I'm well enough to come by, they just care about me and those are the people who will get my enduring business forever.
Over these past months of medical hell, wonderful people like the Bearmans in Baltimore, other sewing professionals around the country, and many caring individuals who read this blog and a sewing board have commented/written or called or sent notes to check on me. Incredibly, I have had absolutely no support from any of the sewing community here in Asheville - none of the people at a certain local fabric store where I was a great customer for years, nor anyone who lives in the area has ever contacted me - actually it's just the opposite, I've been shunned.
I also got an e-mail response from Sharon Lyon of Casual Elegance Fabrics last week. My reason for writing was that with their emphasis on cap sleeves I was thinking about sewing an updated French Country Dress. I have the pattern and was looking for some fabric advice. Since reading the latest newsletter, I was thinking linen but she said that she "really didn't think linen would be a good choice for that dress, although a really light weight linen/blend would be a possibility. Since there are just a couple of tucks on both sides on front and back, a heavy fabric would not do well with the tucks. A stable knit, as long as it wasn't heavy, would work great. I really like that dress. One summer, a few years back, I lived in that dress!" I think the design is really interesting, especially how Loes maintains the structure using the pockets. I would make it knee length since the length in the pattern photos look frumpy looking on me. I also attached a photo of the Bergman Jacket tweak (previous blog post) with how I used the mesh from CE. Sharon wrote that she almost forgot about my fabric question since her attention went to the photo of the jacket that she loved. How nice of her to say that.
So what about sewing? With all my problems I had to do something Monday to see where I was in all this so I cut out a simple cowl neck tops - same pattern I used in the black and tan coordinates I sewed for my sister last summer. This time I used the same black and white dot/stripe knit I've made the tops/cardigans from. It's so easy to make. I left the hem raw and did pretty well in terms of stitching down the seam allowance on the neckline and armholes. I made it for my son's GF who got the Sewing Workshop eShrug in the same knit and the lace one. I gave it to her yesterday and she was thrilled. I'm going to lengthen the pattern and do a knit dress. Won't that be a great look!
And so it goes. To think about not being able to do the things I enjoy the most is devastating. I wish I had the sensory capability to do more sewing, not because I have to, but because I enjoy it. I have plenty to wear and I still give a lot of my things away. Fortunately I sew coordinating groups and new pieces that coordinate with others so that I have many choices when I walk into my closet, no matter the weather. Unfortunately that black and tan group of coordinates I sewed and sent to my sister in Texas last summer went up in flames with everything else in April, and I have not been able to be as productive as I was last summer to replace them. My plans are to stick with the simple designs like the Shapes patterns. I'm thinking a Shapes Four Good Measure top in a sheer fabric. Louise Cutting and Linda Lee were way ahead of the fashion game when they published that line a couple of years ago. The Four Good Measure silhouette is everywhere from Neiman Marcus to Anthropologie and more this spring.