Ramble On

Fabric Gallery, Williamston, MI. A place to absolutely *die* for. We had exhausted our sources for fine fabrics in and around The Planet Ann Arbor. There’s a small shop in town with some nice stuff. But it has a small inventory and the owner is one of those shopkeepers that won’t leave you alone long enough to let you make a decision. Joann Fabrics, even the big one out on Carpenter, is just underwhelming.

When I was a teenager up in Siberia, the only way I could get clothing that even remotely resembled whatever latest fashion was in Seventeen magazine was to make it myself. Natural fibers were actually pretty widely available in those days and we usually bought them on the second floor of the J. C. Penney store. An occasional special excursion took us over to the Canadian side to the long-defunct Textile Shop on Queen St. They had all kinds of stuff you couldn’t get at Penney’s and I think it was in the basement that they had all the really fancy stuff: satin, silk, velvet, sequin trims, etc.

The Textile Shop is where we bought the fabric for my first formal dress. The Commander made it for me out of some sky blue ribbed satiny stuff with triple-puffed sleeves made with white sparkly gauzy stuff and some wide bands of silver sequined trim tying it all together. I was a high school sophomore and I was going to the, uh, Military Ball with my boyfriend. Yes, I had a boyfriend in the ROTC. He was a pretty crummy boyfriend* but I was devastated when he broke up with me. He eventually came around with that old “I think I made a mistake” story. I was way beyond him by then, like “yeah, you did, but you are way too late.”


He didn’t go to college and never left Siberia but since I spend quite a bit of time around there and The Comm lives there, I occasionally hear 4th-hand stories about him. One is that he owns some kind of car shop. Another is that he works for the tribe. Either one of those scenarios could easily be true. But I rarely think of him and though I wish him well, I don’t really care what he’s doing. I never see him up there. Apparently he doesn’t frequent the Lockview Laundromat or any of my other typical haunts. 😉

I don’t still have the boyfriend (thank god) but I do still have the dress. A few years ago, I tried to palm it off onto Elizabeth for the Commie High prom. I guess I thought she might think it was kind of retro or whatever. The kids were not impressed! “Moom? I can’t believe you ever wore this!” Or whatever. I think she did eventually abscond with the silver dress I made when I was about 22. And I’m happy about that. It was a cool dress too! 🙂

So. We had a *great* road trip today! Fabric Gallery in Williamston. A little internet cafe across the street. Gray, rainy December weather. Memories that I usually don’t dredge up. Hanging around with Mouse. And as we were getting off the exit onto the Planet after our trip, I put my turn signal on a half mile or so early to make up for all the times I didn’t use it at all today. 😉 Love.

*I highly doubt that any of my old boyfriends know where I am or where my website is. Er, actually, if they ever even *think* of me, they may guess where I am, because I have wanted to live on the damn planet since I was a kid and made no secret of it. I just doubt that they do. And that’s okay. 🙂

2 Responses to “Ramble On”

  1. Pooh Says:

    I don’t remember seeing either of those dresses, but I do remember visiting at Xmas. You had made a dress of dark green velvet w/ gold trim. Instead of the empire waist that was so popular at the time, yours had a fitted bodice, natural waist and full skirt. It was gorgeous. I was quite jealous. (Probably both of the dress and the occasion to which to wear it.)

  2. kayak woman Says:

    I still have that dress too. For the life of me, I can’t remember *what* occasion that one was made for but I do remember wearing it later on in college for a winter performance of some sort. It was much more useful than the blue puffed sleeves number.