Sartorial Screenings Turns the spotlight on- Stage Door!


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In 1937 there were a lot of women wandering the RKO lot freely and they all saw the sign for free lip waxing and one thing led to another- STAGE DOOR!!!!

This is Terry Randall- she is a wealthy socialite who promised granddad that she would make it to broadway because she has determination and hearty pioneer verve. She has just arrived at the legen (wait for it)  dary footlights club hotel for aspiring actresses. she brought 45 suitcases mostly stuffed with furs and books by John Bunyon. 1

Terry is immediately struck by how jaded and grumpy the world-weary gals are. They have seen the stained backsides of the casting couches pillows if you know what I mean.

Lady Footlights- played by Constance Collier gives her the tour. Here’s a chair that Mrs Fisk threw up on, an original sconce from the stage version of ‘Thats no Lady, that’s my wife’ and various other artifacts that make the cramped quarters, thin stew and bathroom hogging worth the rent. 2

there is a lot going on here- like Altman with more ruffles. 3

The hollow eyed Spector of anemia on the sofa is Kay- she was like Dame Judy for a hot minute- but now she’s like Vanilla Ice- she has an owl chorus following her at auditions  going  ‘who? who?’ Now she is out of work, out of money and Lady Footlights will only let her in the lounge area to smell the food and dust- but not the Helen Hayes wimple from the White Sister, oh hells no. 4 Terry saw her play the 3rd rhino to the left in Lion King 2 seasons ago and wants to encourage her. Honestly, Kay needs a vitamin and a steno course.

Jean is Forced to share a giant room with Terry the pretentious baggage and also Terrys literal baggage. She is an expert at snark and tap. She is working on a routine for the nightclub circuit with  Annie- while trying to avoid going on blind dates with Lucille Ball and her never-ending stream of pacific northwest lumberjack serial killers. A free meal is great, but…. 6

When Jean isn’t uk’ing it up, she is taunting the amazing Gail Patrick- who is always on the receiving end of furs, chocolates and doo-dads from her ‘Aunt Susan’ who sends a car for her with a ‘don’t wear your knickers, niecy’ note attached every 3rd night. Jean probably won’t strangle her with her hosiery- it’s her last decent pair.

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Meanwhile- Eve actually leaves the house- I assume henry the cat will demand couples counseling- and watches Terry just schwantz right past the big theatrical agents secretary and get herself a role in a big play! It’s the much talked about ‘Melancholy Mists of Autumn’. They march home and announce the audacity- it was Kay’s role! The first play Kay had had a shot at in 2 years and Terry stole it!!!!

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But Kay is a serious trooper- she hides her pain and even tries to help the stiff Terry have an emotion. 10

Things are looking up all around- except for Kay, but that’s the plot. Annie and Jean get an audition! The kind that leads to a job!9

This is great! jean even meets a fancy producer type! Who just happens to be Gails Aunt Susan! 15

Oh no good can come of this! He’s an oily customer that sends a car around for young ladies and then slobbers all over them- like Harvey Weinstein with lower cholestral! 12

She makes it thru dinner and then comes the show! My mother would have called it dating a foreigner- all Roman’ hands and Russian’ fingers! Jean barely escapes with her scanties in place!

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Gail tries to warn her- that she is just one of a chorus line, but it just stiffens….her resolve to date him anyhoo.

Terry is finding out that maybe acting isn’t all in the head- she is tearing up the writer and directors nerves and chewing up scenery. 18

Her producer tries to comfort her! But she’s seen how Jean is being handled and wants to teach him a lesson!19

She spots a picture of his supposed family that keeps him from committing and knows it’s hooey! So she acts all drunk and slinky when  Jean stops by- better to let her think it’s Terrys fault than let Chester Cheata’stache break her girlish heart!

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Lumberjack Update!!! Lucy has found the man of her flannel dreams and is going back to Wisconsin. Cuz no personal dream is stronger than a womans urge to make Bay-Bays. I hope her fab coat isn’t too much for DeepKneebend Wisconsin.

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At last it’s opening night for ‘Autumns Glistening Wind’ and Terry is a basket case. All nerves, no talent, you knows? Lady Footlights has been coaching her. 25

Jean got free tickets and Alf is a repeat, so she’s going to see Terry- mostly to grow stale jujubes at her…..but she hears something…..it’s Kay.26

Oh wells. Jean goes back to her room to loot Terrys closet. Kay? well, Kay spends the evening- performing a little balcony scene with St Peter! 23

Jean hot foots it to tell Terry- I mean what are friends for, right? untitled

Thru the pain Terry is finally able to feel and she performs the play perfectly- like an aging Barbara Bach or some other noted performer. But she is unable to perform again and leaves the theatre- forever. MV5BMTU1MzY4NzE0Nl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMTc4NTUyNw@@__V1_SY1000_CR0,0,1333,1000_AL_

Next season the Footlights club welcomes another brave, idealistic group of actors in training and as usual- some go far and some end up being made into Pierogis by Lady Footlights. No one knows what happened to henry the cat.

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photo credits: little me! Google images.

Wearable Wednesday Jenny Fax


Poor Annette never got past the lobby once the crowd arrived.

This makes me think of that old vaudeville heckler joke-

‘What’d ya do with the money?’

‘What money?’

‘The money your mother gave you for design school’ (throw tomato at catwalk)

‘Quick birders! To the left of the trail! The fringed spotted bellied booby!’

Are those matching oven mitts?Or is the skirt on backward?

‘All rise! The high court of Oz is in session!’

‘Don’t worry Estelle- no one will know you’re wearing your swimsuit under your dress! We’ll sneak out during study hall!’

‘Tickle, tickle, tickle!’

‘Psst- Flo- you’ve got a little loo paper on your heel!’

Photo credits: Vogue.com

Hey- Hey! I finished something!


Well, you know I’ve been a-sewing, but I ain’t been a-showing. This week- forgive me in advance- I’m a-showing two tops. Yes, two! Burda 6354 and Butterick 6594 have that blousey, large-lunch forgiving shape I love and lots of options for color blocking or just making the gaudiest print even more hard to look at. I of course chose the latter. 6354

As you will soon see, I attempted to stand as awkwardly as the models for comparison.

Thoughts?  I’ll make this again. Maybe a touch longer. My little Mary Todd Lincoln shoulders of course made me edit the neckline. I get hunchy, you knows? So after I put this on Ms Holloway and did some snipping, I ended up not needing the button closure loop at the back. It wouldn’t have saved me from a back seam tho- the waist detail peplum action goes from kidney to chole.

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This fabric has been sitting. I have a very good friend out there who knows that I need to wear more springy tones and leave my browns alone, so this is sort of a muslin. Next time I’ll also add a bit more ease in the sleeves. Bell-ringing in my tower has given this little hunchback some powerful arms. You should hear me do Pink Floyd- it brings tears to the congregants.

want to see the front? Ok, full disclosure. My water company is feuding with he city over a sewer repair that they want us to pay for. So yesterday, on my day off- my water got cut off- because the city hadn’t ponied up. It was grim in the dachshund den, I tells you. I bathed like it was Jack London’s house in the Yukon. I heated all our ice cubes on the stove and gave myself what I shall forever think of as a penguin whore bath. Sorry for the visuals but I promised you no rose garden.  So no makeup was happening. Never fear- I used filters like the cool bloggin’ instabraggin’ gals do. This one is supposed to make my face look slimmer.

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Ready for round 2? Still picturing a tepid ice cube frenzy in my kitchen? Stop it!! You make me blush!

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When I first saw this pattern I thought- ‘yech- it’s Blossom! Grab the slouchy socks I’m gonna hurl’ but the shape looked like it could be very comfortable and oh what possibilities and look, the shoulders come pre-sloped!

Gentle reader, I made it. In a brown fabric! Of course. This one is definitely a weekend top. Comfy, mildly interesting and that’s about it. I used a bias tape for the neckline instead of a self facing. This pattern feels like a good way to use up ‘meh’ fabrics. I was concerned that it would be monster gathering in front and scream ‘fertile peasant’, but it’s not too hovery.

I swear on Debbie Reynolds gently used tap shoes- this is almost my last piece of brown stash fabric! Honest Intestine! I swear!

This next filter is a Kardashian favorite- nose contouring, sculpted eyebrow, engaging pout….

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photo credits: pattern review, little me.

Wearable Wednesday Loewe


I think this was shown in a car wash-

Does anyone remember those ‘I ran into Tammy Faye Baker’ t-shirts? Still funny, I tells you.

When all else fails- slap some birds on those hips!

‘Sister Gruyere! Kindly remind the alter attendants that they have a cassock to wear under that!’Rhonda was the most accomplished shoplifter- no one knows how she steals whole hams so easily!

Is she being attacked by another shirt?Eeee! Florence it’s behind you! Run!! Raggedy Ann never said what happened to Andy-Alice- you are so brave in the face of full lace chafing-Photo credits: Vogue.com