Channeling my inner Scarlett

Gone with the Wind is definitely not PC these days, but when I was a teenager my mom urged it on me, saying it was a classic. How well I remember reading it in the backseat of our car during a road trip to see what all the fuss was about. “Not much,” was my dismissive opinion.

That said, it was a semi-big deal in 1976 when it finally aired on TV and I got to see the movie version for the first time. I still gave it a “not much” rating, but thankfully it primed me to more fully appreciate Carol Burnett’s skit Went with the Wind, in which she parodied Scarlett’s drapery-inspired gown.

All of which has everything to do with the latest iteration of the boho blouse …

Since I was having trouble with the patchplay version, I decided to try out the pintucks on some vintage cloth that had been packed and moved five times. Purchased in 1980, there were two yards of it left over after I sewed curtains for the living room picture window in our very first house. Finally, it has found its reason for being.

I’m pretty sure it’s 100% cotton and it needles like an absolute dream …

My fingers are grateful … stitches are a cinch when the cloth isn’t clogged with excess dye and whatever else it is they use to finish fabric these days. Now if I could just figure out where to find more 40 year old cloth.

And while I’m looking back, here’s what we had for lunch today …

The backstory is my fond memory of 1974 shopping trips to Bloomingdale’s in Garden City (Long Island, NY), with my friend Rachel. We must have eaten at their in-store restaurant more than once, because I have a very clear recollection of Croque Monsieur being a favorite.

The version I whipped up today might better be called a Monte Cristo, as it had a distinctly Italian vibe. Lest I forget, it consisted of crusty Italian White Bread from Central Market in Austin, thin slices of Speck (a smoked version of prosciutto), leftover zucchini butter (from this Smitten Kitchen recipe), lots of shredded parm (regretfully not Reggiano … this time), all dipped in beaten egg and griddled in melted butter. Oh, and we did dab on a bit of basil vinaigrette at the table because there was some of that leftover, too.


25 thoughts on “Channeling my inner Scarlett

  1. LA – that stitching makes my fingers hurt just thinking about it; and my arteries clog looking at that delicious ‘toast’. Go well. B


    1. well, for sure I’ve felt more than a finger-tingle or two when looking at your various hammerings and sawings over at!


  2. I love the softness of the colour and the drape of that fabric and as I read could imagine the ease with which the needle moved; and recall the tough times trying to push through all the gunk that can clog a fabric these days. The pin tucks look grand – can’t wait to see how they play out in the final outfit. Lunch looks delicious by the way. That sort of thing makes me very happy – such comfort food.


    1. a belated reply … I do love the soft peach and gold in this cloth, which the camera doesn’t do justice … the pintucks went surprisingly fast, perhaps because I so enjoyed making them … and ditto for lunch, both the making and the eating


  3. Liz~ That Carrol Burnett bit…always loved it! She was such a genius in her craft. I watched every show. The tucks look wonderful, the fabric soft and willing…so pretty. The meal reminds me of the love of Ruben’s my EX and kids had, so long ago now.


    1. it was definitely not a “heart healthy” meal … but boy, did it ever taste good

      and Carol Burnett, as good as she was, had the most amazing ensemble of supporting actors … Tim Conway could reduce me to tears of laughter


  4. Your tucks all look perfect and yes SOFT .. looking forward to seeing to finished piece. Lunch looks and sounds delicious!


    1. so, about those tucks … I stitched one side before lunch and the other side after lunch … unfortunately not the same size, so I ended up having to add a couple of tucks on one side to balance the other … true confessions … ha!


    1. ha! … and now for another confession: I never sewed curtains again … not that I bought curtains, I just didn’t use them … the last curtain rod I ever owned was at the Hill Country house, left by the previous owners and promptly taken down to leave the windows open to the light (although we did have cloth blinds to shield us from the summer sun)


    1. I’m a huge linen and linen/cotton fan, but I wanted to try something new-ish (although obviously I’ve dabbled before as this cloth is 40+ years old) …


  5. Oh that delicious fabric! I can just imagine how wonderful it will be to work with. Your pin tucks are things of beauty. The epitome of happy stitching.


    1. the fabric is going to feel great, but the pintucks and seams have revealed, as soft and open as it is, it is a tad bit heavy … no matter, I’m learning a ton by trying lots of variations on the boho theme …

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Such pretty pintucks! I read it at 25 and then sat down to watch the movie with family. I was the only one awake at the end. Much prefer Carol’s version!


  7. Fab fabric! I can remember making quilts from furnishing fabrics too. 😄 Having had many a Croque Monsieur and Madame in France over the years, I can say yours looks much preferable! 😄


    1. the cloth has since gone through the wash and is surprisingly wrinkle free … given the era, I’m wondering if there’s some synthetic hiding in there, but it sure feels like cotton … I guess I could do a burn test, but that wouldn’t really change anything


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