Aye, Kalumba!

by Erin on March 13, 2008


Liberty Kalumba

Ebay seller laluthan has, by some arcane process, not only managed to turn up tons of the (discontinued) Liberty twill, but also has some of my favorite, favorite patterns available right now, including the "Kalumba" print, above.

So far, I've bought this in orange (twice), green/lavender (once), blue (in silk! I can't bear to cut into it!), and now, the brown/teal here.

The first time I bought some Kalumba (orange #1) I made it into a very simple and comfortable A-line skirt. Unfortunately, I endowed it with insufficient pockets, which FILLS me with remorse every time I pull it out of the closet. (I was so young then, so unworldly! I thought all I needed was my ID, twenty bucks, and a lip balm!) Now that I'm older and wiser and carry too many personal electronic devices, I need more pockets, so I plan to make MORE Kalumba skirts. Maybe I'll even make one in each colorway, and wear them all the time, like Diana Vreeland wearing the same Balenciaga shift dress (but in different fabrics) every day.

I recommend laluthan highly — her stuff is gorgeous, comes quickly, and she's very good about shipping overseas (fast, too!). And last time I ordered from her she threw in a little scrap of blue twill Kalumba, just because … which is going to make a perfect waistband facing on one of these skirts.

And thank you all, so much, for your sympathetic comments on yesterday's post. Dad never did quite figure out exactly what "that blog thing" was for, but now I think he probably gets it. Obviously, the blog is "for" proving how kind people on the internet can be; I consider it now established beyond all doubt.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Toby Wollin March 13, 2008 at 8:42 am

Ah, an ID, twenty dollars and a lipbalm…now that’s the simple life!!

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xstpenguin March 13, 2008 at 8:46 am

Having the strength to care about fabric and pockets. Now there is Life with a capital L. I’m glad you are there Living it! And those silly people at Liberty thought nobody sews. Humph. One in every colour – yay! Please do.

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tea March 13, 2008 at 9:18 am

I’ll bet your father is very proud of you. I, too, am sorry for your loss. From your description and the photos, your dad seems like he was a bunch of fun. He certainly did a good job raising a bright and talented daughter. It’s rough; in the past few years I’ve lost a number of family members, and it’s never easy. It’s good to take solace in things that inspire you and make you feel energized about life (like Kalumba!) And you are absolutely rightthe Internet is for connecting us to the other wonderful people that we might not necessarily know about just from brushing past them in the grocery store. It feels good to know that humanity is a lot more *human* and kind than some cynical media sources would otherwise have us believe. In fact, I think that might very well be a major reason people blog. So that, instead of being told what to think or being told how others will react or how the masses view things, we can reach out individually and cut to the root of things and not feel so alone in our perceptions of the world or our love of dresses or fabrics or books or other esoteric predilections or what have you.

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paisleyapron March 13, 2008 at 10:09 am

I would like to echo Tea’s sentiments exactly. I am so incredibly thankful for the “blog thing.” How else could we have been introduced to your dad and be able to offer a prayer on your behalf. Thanks again, Erin, for sharing a difficult time with all of us and allowing us to send some comfort as best we can over the internet. I was in tears when I read yesterday’s post, my heart was so full of grief and sympathy. (Then blogger erased my post!) I was struck at how the blogs I read have become an incredible community for me and a world-wide one at that. It has allowed me to connect with people who are interested in things I’ve never heard of; it has broadened my horizons and kept me from feeling isolated and different because I am not your typical suburban mom with three kids. This blog, of course, is most inspiring! I am currently working on three shirtdresses. I don’t think I would have made that my spring sewing under any other circumstance…I usually just whip up some capris and button-downs. But dresses! Pretty dresses! And I won’t have to think about how to put an outfit together! Yay!Too bad I don’t have $50 laying around or one might be in a Liberty print…that Tana lawn is gorgeous.

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Theresa March 13, 2008 at 10:56 am

For some reason none of my computers showed yesterday’s blog until today. What you wrote was beautiful and touching. I am so sorry for your loss.

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Eirlys March 13, 2008 at 3:29 pm

Glad to see you’re straight back in the saddle. Atta girl, Erin!EBay is great fun. Before I tried it, I imagined it was like the Parable of the Good Samaritan – minus the Good Samaritan. But in fifty or so transactions I’ve not had a single instance of daylight robbery. Well, maybe some quite minor deceit, maybe. Just once or twice. But goods not arriving? That never happened. And frequently the kindness of people has surprised and heartened me. One time, a parcel of unordered scraps of yummy Liberty lawn arrived unordered as the seller (who’d I’d bought fabric from a couple of times) had guessed rightly from my eBay handle that I make patchwork. Touching! Most of the fabric sellers I’ve bought through understate the quantity of fabric that they’re selling you, so you have a warm, pleasing sense of having got something for nothing (they’re not stupid – you’ll come back, right?). Then again, there’s often a thrift-store randomness in what you find available, but that’s true of the ‘real’ shops too.I’d echo your recommendation of Laluthan. Katsfabrics is also very good for Liberty lawn – not sure about her postage overseas, though, so you’d have to check that out. She has a really tempting system whereby you can stick things on the slate and pay at month-end. Dangerous!

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katie March 13, 2008 at 11:38 pm

Oh Dear heart,I am so sorry for your loss of your dad. Peace to you.

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lorrwill March 14, 2008 at 12:04 am

Yeah for great blogs! (I mean yours, of course.)

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Anonymous March 14, 2008 at 1:42 am

You and your family have been in my thoughts and prayers all day. Thank you for sharing what you did…Be Not Afraid is such a powerful hymn…may you find comfort in knowing your dad is seeing the face of God…Dena

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kishisland March 14, 2008 at 3:29 am

It’s 1:00 a.m., I just finished going through hundreds of unread emails because I have been away helping my dad take care of my mother, who is 84, just out of the hospital and unable to care for herself for the first time in her long, full, life. I should be getting ready for the Pattern Review West Cost Weekend, but I HAD to take a quick peek at your blog before packing.Oh, just your title, “the first dress and the last dress” stopped my breath for a moment. Your dad was so young! I am so sorry for your loss now and for all the keen losses you’ll feel in the future without him. I agree with others about the special kinship of this medium: I appreciate so much the courageous sharing of you who have blogs and your generosity in offering the rest of us a place to respond and share too.Be very gentle with yourself as you go through this time and take good care.Jan

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enc March 14, 2008 at 9:16 am

This is such beautiful fabric, I can see why I’d want to buy it up and never use it for anything. I love it, too! Once again, that post down below made me cry, and I’m very sorry about your dad.If I could hug you from here, I would.

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