Hi, I'm Angi
Welcome to my corner of the internet! My passions include travel, photography, books, music, Japanese language and culture, Italian language and culture, and art.

Here at Abbott Lane you'll find my thoughts on these topics and much more. Thanks for stopping by to visit!

That Magical, Mystical Machine

Sewing is changing me y’all. As a plus sized shorty under 5’ tall, finding clothing that fits well is a unwinnable hellscape. But as I'm learning to sew, and looking at patterns and images for inspiration, I’m coming to the realization that I can make anything I want, and it will fit! It's really empowering. And transformative. I can take any crazy fabric, slap it together with (almost) any pattern and I can make something fit exactly to my needs. It's alchemical!

My current closet is filled with something I’d describe as the Out of Work Art Teacher Who Dabbles in the Dark Arts look. It's defined by mostly black, asymmetrically hemmed oversized tops, and a resting bitch face that instantly turns testicles into sawdust. I lived in New York for almost eight years, and black (along with a highly defensive, brooding glare) is The City’s official uniform. Plus black hides dirt well. I’m a rough and tumble kinda girl. If it needs to be ironed, or is all white, or is fussy, or needs to be dry cleaned, I’m probably not that garment’s best candidate. By the end of the day I’ll have undoubtedly sprayed coffee all over my front parts, and sat in a mysteriously soggy bus seat during my commute. Wearing black undoubtedly rescues me ON THE DAILY from public humiliation and a multitude of concerned side eyes.

Volume in my garments has become a more recent friend. I’ve never been skinny, but I’ve put on some weight in the past five years or so, some of it due to health conditions (thanks no thanks fibroids), some of it because of powerlifting, and some of it due to reaaaaally enjoying the shit out of comfort food and nice wine (fuck dieting, I’m in my 40s, Black women’s bodies are policed enough without me putting in extra effort, and I’m here to Live My Best Life). I’m still trying - lazily at best - to figure out what silhouettes suit me. In the meantime, the solution has been to choose garments that are comfortable and that don’t take much thought to wear.

But looking around the sewing-sphere, I suddenly feel myself gravitating towards all things twee and precious, like a character from a Wes Anderson movie (if he were to actually ever cast Black people). Fit and flare dresses, skirts with ka-RAZY prints, things with an actual, real waistline (WHUT?!?), and colorful patterns are all drawing my lustful gaze. I still love a good sack dress; my love of shapeless garments was well-honed as an Art History major and I consider myself a true art fart, but I feel myself warming up to the idea of taking more risks and trying to have a bit more fun with my clothing.

Frocks and Frou Frou is a blogger I used to follow waaaay back in the day, lost sight of, then started following again recently. She sews many of her own garments, and I absolutely love her style - she totally rocks everything she wears. And if the very blood coursing through my veins weren’t an acrid mix of battery acid and bile, I’d readily copy her style, tout de suite! 

Instead my plan is to gradually incorporate some skirts made with cute, feminine fabrics into my wardrobe until I'm more comfortable. Sometimes I feel I’m far too cynical and grim to pull this look off convincingly, but one never knows until one tries. Maybe sartorial whimsy accompanied by misanthropic villainy will become My Thing.