Recently, the stars aligned so a professional seamstress with lots of time on her hands moved across street, and –much like when I realized one of HLB’s myriad young nephews was gay– I thought “You don’t know it yet seamstress/small gay child, but this is your lucky day.”
It was my lucky day too. I’m not sure I can handle another dress that looks great in the photos and turns out to be made of the thinnest imaginable t-shirt material, sewn together by a blind monkey on a roller coaster.
I’m just so sick of the scuzzy feeling that comes with playing along with shops that take advantage of an underserved market by hiking the prices way up and dropping the quality way down, because hey, where else is the fatty going to go?
I’ll tell you where she’s going to go: Across the street.
Dressmaking will never be my strong suit (see what I did there?) but I can design like a house on fire. Actually, I bet I could design better than a house on fire, although I’ve only set a church on fire, so I don’t really have a frame of reference.
Anyway, I’m working on sketches for a half-dozen dresses to tote along on my upcoming trip to the east coast and then Europe: a tweed for travel, a silk for evening and four wool pontes for meetings and general swanning about. Nothing extraordinary, just classic, well-tailored pieces in natural fibers.
I don’t think it’s any secret that what’s appropriate for autumn in conservative Washington D.C. and winter in chic Italy and Spain is not exactly de rigeur here, where the last three meals I’ve eaten have been out of coconuts.
(I’d hit it)
It’s a pleasure being able to design precisely what I want and have it made on my body instead of suffering through an obstacle course of cheap knits, tacky prints and indignity.
It’s guilt-free shopping since the fabrics are from Italian mills, and they’re being constructed by a seamstress across the street, not a seven year-old across the globe.
And even though representing Team Fat American Chick abroad smacks of respectability politics (“No, no! We’re not all sloppy, lazy and slothful! Let me take it upon myself to vastly overcompensate for your ridiculous bias against people like me, because God forbid you look past your prejudices.”) it’s fun to fret over a hemline for dresses that will be immortalized in pictures for decades to come.
Who knows, maybe I finally will release a plus-size collection. Lord knows we need all the designers we can get.
Oh, have you been following my posts at the Manolo’s Shoeblog?
On Tuesday it was “What Miss Plumcake is…”
and today it’s a collection of $1000+ shoes that are all on sale for at least 70% off, plus a brief tutorial on how to perk up your feathered accessories.
Go visit. The comments are quiet over there.