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Am i the only cranky one???

sarahkayla | Posted in General Discussion on

An observation – each time you add bells & whistles to this site it gets quieter and quieter around here. I see all the nifty tools, except very few of them seem to be genuinely useful. This seems to be turning into a sewing machine with an attached flashlight, can opener & scanner. I miss the old simplicity.

Am i alone in my crankyness???



  1. carolfresia | | #1

    Hi, Sarah,

    It IS kind of quiet here, isn't it?  I hope Gatherings folks aren't intimidated by the new software--it looks different but should really work better than the old version, and almost all of the previous discussions have been moved here.

    Do you have any new topics you'd like to get started? As a New Yorker, you're right in the fashion center, and fashion fabric center, of the country. What have you seen that's especially interesting lately? Anything you think home sewers would be able to adapt and use? Any good, wearable trends we should know about?

    Carol Fresia

    1. GhillieC | | #2

      Re-registering, passwords, all that kind of stuff puts people off.

      As you can see I fouled up this registration and don't know how to change it. My profile wants to know my star sign. Why, oh why?

      I have forgotten how many passwords I have forgotten.



      1. carolfresia | | #4


        I'm not sure I know how to help with correcting your registration, but if you'd like to change it or alter some info. (BTW, you don't have to put in your star sign! That came with the software and we all kind of giggled about it. Though there are times when you might want to know, I suppose...), I think maybe the SYSOP can do it for you. Let me look into it--I don't think I have those privileges, and I haven't tried to do anything like that before.


        1. Theodora | | #5


          To change your name back to what you want it to be, look to the upper right hand corner of your screen. See the purple link called my forums? Click it, then at the next screen look over to the left side of the screen. Click on "My Preferences." Then you should be able to change your screen nickname to what ever you want, and  to make any other changes you want in your preference (well, not all the changes we'd like to make!). Then you can save the new preferences. Your name may not appeared changed until you have logged out and then logged back in the next time.

          1. carolfresia | | #6

            Theodora, thanks for giving Ghillie the directions--I wasn't sure what she wanted to change, but probably anything that matters can be changed through "My Forums," as you say.

            Now, back to talking nicely to my plants.


      2. User avater
        SYSOP | | #7


        Theodora's suggestion to go to the Myforums button to change your preferences is correct. IF you have been unable to change the items you would like please email me directly and I will look into it for you. To email me click on my "nickname" at the top of this message and then selcet the email option from that page.MarkP.s. thanks Theodora for you help.

    2. sarahkayla | | #3

      Dear carol -

      thanks for your reply. As for topics of interest, I read almost all of the posts because you never know when a nugget of information will prove useful, even when they are buried in topics i know very little about. I value the folks on this forum for the fact that they are busy problem solving rather than doing cookie cutter sewing.

      As for my expertise living here in new york - I live a life very unlike that in the fashion magazines (tho i do have a neighbor who works for one of the magazines and sometimes leaves a load of fashion mags outside my door) I live on the Upper west side whre fashions on the street are more April Cornell/J.jill/ Eileen fisher than Chanel/versace etc. (I just got the J.Jill catalogue in the mail, I had to laugh, it all looked like my usual uniform) I'm deep in momhood and also manage to squeeze in my own sewing business where I make art quilt like judaica.

      I buy most of my clothes from either sample sale places or from elegant consignment stores so i am always a pastiche of chic from a few seasons back.I tend to wear clothing that is dead plain but cut well. Yes i live in new york so I wear lots of black & white. I've been dying to go to the new show at FIT - the theme is red. But I've been too swamped for the past month to be able to get there - perhaps i will once the kids are back in school - I may just drag them all there tomorrow. My older son who is now 11 loved the judith leiber show that was at FIT six years ago. We used to go between daycare & picking up his older sister from the bus. I prefer the FIT shows to those at the costume institute because the clothing isn't behind class and you can see the detail as well as the wear on the garments. The clothing looks more real at FIT. I have been amassing a small collection of coutoure stuff from the salvationarmy and from consignment stores, all of it fits me and all of it cost very little. my goal is to donate it to FIT whan i die.

      One of the only bright spots of 9-11 is that it might slow the contraction of the fabric district. The redevelopment of the times square area - just a few blocks north, has crept into the fabric district. A distressing number of wonderful stores have closed. The building B&J is in has been bought by the new York Times. It really makes me worry about the econimic viability of the district. in the short run it is great - i buy fabric at a steal. in the longrun - the outlook is not good. Yes I can buy mail-order but there is something wonderful about having a face to face relationship with the people who run the stores. many of them have been helpful to me since i got started ten years ago.

      I love the community of crafts people that this site represents and has given me the opportunity to meet. I understand that you needed to go with a uniform format for all the sites here but three windows before you can get to the discussion seems excessive....


      1. Sanah | | #16

        Hi Sara,

        I read your post with great amusment.  I, too, live in NY -- Wmsburg, Bklyn -- a hop and skip across the bridge.  I love fabric shopping at Paron's, BJ's, etc. but, being such a fabricholic I can't stand the site of all that fabric.  I thought I'd gotten around it by turning to mailorder.  Alas, I'm ashamed of the fabric I've amassed -- although it's all catalogued, properly stored, and waiting to come to life. 

        You mention BJ's building has been taken over by the NYT.  Is BJ's gone?  Is the area shrinking -- fabricwise?  I hope not.  This is what I get for being a navtive NYer and not taking the 20 mins to hop the subway and support all those fabulous fabric shops.  Now, I can't squeeze in one more piece without actually sewing something. 

        I admire your industriousness, too.  How many times did I promise myself that I'd attend one of the FIT shows or hit the consignment shops for some goodies.   You've inspired me -- I'm gonna plunge in, even if my fabric is too precious to cut!!

        1. sarahkayla | | #17

          Thanks for your nice message -

          B&J is still there - several other places are gone. I have a wait & see attitude about the whole district. If the economy doesn't boom too fast it has a chance of survival. the realestate boom of last several years has been terrible for the district.

          I did see the Red show at FIT, all the clothing was red. It was an interesting concept, the clothing was lovely but the show as a whole didn't blow me away. My husband works nearby and suggested that he tag along. I'm glad i didn't invite him. the show was a solid B. Not something to take someone who wasn't a real sewing junky. There was a display area of just valentino. the new stuff was a yawn but the old stuff, late 1950's was interesting ( a skirt covered by huge fabric roses & then topped by twisted & gathered tulle - kind of a tornado of red roses. Sdometimes a show will blow off the top of my head, and I understand everything i ever knew differently. Sometimes it is just a collection of a whole lot of pretty stuff. this was a pretty stuff show.

          I walk past the FIT gallery every sunday, (when they are closed) so I had built up all this unwarranted anticipation for the show. Oh well... I did get some cute african fabric in the funky fabric store across the street run by two old folks who remind me of my grandparents. I'm planning to make a sleeveless dress to live in this summer. it is a saphire blue with a gold filligree print.

          Maybe the next FIT show will be amazing.


  2. apoo | | #8

    no you're not. Jumping through all these hoops just to post/read a message is making me cranky too. I'm used to message boards, but this one seems really complicated. Do I have to register/subscribe to each discussion? I posted in the Threads feedback, but the discussion I was interested in was the Lorain Croft article. I would also like to go back and review the rest of the postings on this subject before I posted this message.

    Hey, I'm from ny too--I lived on the upper west side. It's great to go to the garment district and find lots of everything: fabrics, zippers, buttons, stuff you never knew they made. I'd gotten spoiled, and now that I live in California I don't have the same choices.


    Edited 4/7/2002 3:10:44 AM ET by april

    1. sarahkayla | | #9

      hey april!!!

      where did you live??? I live on broadway just north of 96th street. i keep hoping the neighborhood doesn't become too chic.

      i rally love all the teeny oddballstores in the fabric district. there is a guy who sells wonderful buttons out of a store the size of a gym locker. There is an amazing Jerusalem style kosher schwarma place you enter through a loading dock - the food is heavenly. There is a lobby newsstand that sells an astounding array of european fashion industry magazines, a dustly looking place that sells 36" wide tie silks for $1 a yard. You never know what sample sales are going on when you show up. I once was walking past a store on 38th street whn a man called me over "we have beautiful clothes for you in back" Well, against my better judgement i walked in past all of the ugly polyester and sure enough in the back were silk seperates from ann Taylor at $10 a piece. I got wonderful coffee & cream colored wide legged silk pants. you just don't get that in a mall.


      1. JudyWilliment | | #10

        I live in a small city on the other side of the world.  I can only dream of living in a place like that.  I'd walk over hot coals to have those kinds of shops near me.  Just to make me even greener with envy - what else is great about NY?

        1. sarahkayla | | #11

          What else is great about New York??? first a disclaimer - i don't work for the chamber of commerce or the departmant of tourism...

          There are great ethnic cheap eats. In my neighborhood, which is not a tourist destination you can get, chinese, indian, peruvian, greek, middleastern, afghan, thai, ethiopian, french, chinese cuban, caribbean and italian food (we're talking within an eight block radius0 if you expand the circle a bit you get kosher chinese, kosher deli, moroccan, ...most of it is pretty reasonable - and this neighborhood isn't even known for being much of a restaurant neighborhood. We do however boast a new but quite amazing french bakery. it is quite pricey but fabulous. My kids save up for stuff like their lemontarts which are made with lots of real lemon as opposed to concentrated lemon juice. there is a line outside their door every morning before they open.

          There is a church half a block away decorated by L.C.tiffany. No one knows about it. It is really wonderful.

          You can walk all over manhattan and ener new worlds every couple of blocks. you hear folks talking every conceiveable language. People , despite their reputation for rudeness are remarkably kind. When i used to travel the subways with teeny kids i was shocked by both how often and who would help me. Once when my now 11 year old was a new born and his older sister was barely three, i was heading out to visit my inlaws in Queens. i had the baby strapped to my chest, a diaper bag & a stroller and a depressed & shellshocked three year old. We had to go down two flights of stairs to switch trains at times sq. my daughter refused to walk & insisted on being carried. As i was trying to lift my daughter - a woman going up the stairs,took one look at me and asked "where are you going? i told her . She then took my three year old - who hated being touched by strangers, tucked her under her arm like a piece of luggange and proceeded to carry my daughter two flights down the stairs (in the opposite direction of where she was going) I( have been helped by bums, rummies and fancy folks too.

          We live in a 1909 apartment building. There are tons of kids living here. Our doorbell is constantly ringing. I never know who or how may kids will be at my house at anytime. The age span of the kids who hang outin my house is from 13 down to four. They all include the whole bunch at birthdays. It is better than my childhood with a back yard, here there are no bullies.

          The public schools are a sleeper secret. many of them are quite fabulous.

          There is a public park in Harlem that is on the hudson river atop a sewage treatment plant. It is beautiful and clean and cheap to use. My kids go swimming there in the supersized pool - there is also a track and skating rink and other goodies there too. if you are lucky enough to get in early enough, you can sighn your child up for swim classes - the cost? $5 for eight weeks - in a city where most swim classes for kids are $30 a session you can see why folks line up to register.

          One of the joys of living in manhattan ius that there is such a range of what one can look like that kids don't feel ppessured to look a particular way - like most mall rat suburban kids. there is no one brand or one look. My daughter loves to troll the thrift shops & sample sales with me. My kids have friends who are super-rich (pool in the basement of the townhouse) and also have friends who live in housing projects. They have dear and close friends of every race and religion. There is enough diversity in their lives that they feel comfortable with our own minority status - just another way to be.

          before we had kids, i had thought that this would be a treeible place to raise kids. Now i couldn't see raising them anyplace else. What they lack in physical space, they gain in emotional space.

          OK, enough of this i love ny rant - but it is a terrific place to be... where you can get the best bagels on the planet & eat them while listening to the NY philharmonic playing for free in the park


          1. suzyki | | #12

            Sarah, you are making me so homesick!  I moved out of Manhattan 2 years ago (after living there 24).  I miss it so much.  Things like "my" fabric store...you know, the kind of place where everything is all piled up & the only way to find anything is to ask...I've gotten the best stuff like that.  (I am not ashamed to admit that I still have quite a bit left, being a "collector" and all.  My philosophy:  other people collect stamps, I collect fabric.  It's just bigger.)


          2. JudyWilliment | | #15

            WOW - Sarah, what can I say??  Perhaps the NY Tourism Board should hire you!  I totally loved hearing all about why you love your city.  Like most people in the world, I "know" New York only from "Mad About You" and other TV programmes.  Now I feel like I've had a glimpse into it's soul.  No wonder after 9/11 people were saying they're New Yorkers, not Americans.  At this stage of our lives (partner works full time, I take care of the 3 kids) an overseas trip is still several years off, but I'm starting to think NY will be a must visit destination some day.  Thank you so much for all your musings.  It made my day.

            Now, what was this board about again?

      2. apoo | | #14

        I lived on 73rd and West End--the Schwab House. Went to High School of Art and Design. My best friend in high school lived at 94th and Bdway. I used to go to riding lessons at the Claremont, on 89th and Amst. I can sense we might get way off topic here! I know what you mean--the fabulous things you can find in the garment district, but you have to BE THERE! I've been looking for an affordable dress form and I found some used dress forms in 8th Av, unfortunately no petites, but I keep checking whenever I'm in NY. I love to go to Superior Model Forms, in this totally nondescript building on 38th St. Also Bazar fabrics, which used to be Butterfly fabrics. And the store that sells only wool suiting! Bins of shoulder pads, zippers and god knows what else, for incredibly cheap.

        What's great about NY? The Metropolitan Museum-rooms and rooms of fab paintings, armor, costumes, mummies. The museum of Natural History--dinosaurs (I took my three year old godson last year, he was so impressed) wildlife dioramas. You can find anything at almost any time you want it. Zabars, I took a Russian friend there-he called it the Hermitage of Smoked Fish. Great unknown restaurants. Great known restaurants. The mix of people on the street--you see absolutely everything! ice skating in Central Park. I could go on and on. I'd move back in a NY minute.


        Edited 4/8/2002 5:22:24 PM ET by april

  3. LizMaynard | | #13

    I too am disappointed by the inactivity.  It's very helpful to have this source for help as I have very few fiends that can carry on intelligent conversation re: sewing.  We need to help one another.

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