Rodeo Girl


Rodeo (Row-dee-0h) Drive Skirt. Photo by Brenda Morrill.

Dear Reader:

Localista find of the week.

Every Wednesday, a few community women get together at the Redneck Studios in rural Newfield, Maine to learn belly-dance and yoga moves. To laugh. To celebrate female energy. To exercise and stretch and grow stronger. Redneck Studios is much like it sounds–unpretentious, down-home, low-key, fun.

Proprietor Brenda has also started up a clothing and home furnishings business, up-cycling skirts and shirts and pants into blingy items suitable for belly-dance and beyond, as well as sewing custom orders for quilts and shower curtains and pillows and more.

She calls her biz Rodeo Drive. Like a cowgirl, not Beverly Hills.

So before belly-dance class the other day, I picked up this richly-textured chocolate velvet skirt, the middle tier embellished with thick-thread embroidery lines with tiny sequins and a flower button or two or three scattered around. The velvet contrasts nicely with heavy cream fringe. I was just taken with it–the texture, the color, the way it reminded me of the “Prairie Look” from the early 80’s.

Later that evening, I wore the skirt to a high school concert with my green Goodwill micro-cable sweater (simple enough to lend interesting contrast to the frou-frou of the ruffles),a hand-knit chunky scarf in browns and golds and cranberry, and ruffled velvet boots.

rodeo drive skirt

I felt bohemian. I felt Redneck. I felt like a Rodeo Girl.

What are your favorite hand-sewn or up-cycled or re-purposed home or clothing items?

6 responses to “Rodeo Girl

  1. How nice that you felt so good about what you were wearing. I have gotten into wearing a very comfortable pair of pumpkin colored pants to work every day…I wish I had a uniform, since I just want to be comfortable and have an easy choice. Clothing is so ridiculously overpriced and fashion? Who can keep up? I guess I am at the point in my life where I just dress because naked isn’t a choice…not that I would go naked. 😦 Not at my age and weight…LOL

    • Hi Sue:) I feel good about it because it was locally sourced (and soft velvet doesn’t hurt.) Fashion isn’t about keeping up with trends…it is wearing your favorite pair of pumpkin-colored pants! At least in my opinion. Shopping Goodwill and consignment and swaps and yard sales can often snag good clothes at very reasonable prices and supports a more local economy. But, really, what a person chooses to drape their body in really isn’t a measure of their worth as a human being. Honestly, kindness, charity, forgiveness, hard work…those are much more important than labels. Stop in again. Very refreshing comment. Love it!

  2. I have a pair of “jumper” dresses my mother made me that I enjoy. I can wear long or short sleeves underneath so I can wear them in any season. Mmm, I also have a couple of plaid skirts my mother made.

  3. I’ve been thinking about this quite a bit lately, as I will be interviewing in a couple weeks for the position of library director here. Everything I wore at the hardware store became paint splattered and grease stained eventually. For working as a server, I keep my eye out for docker-type trousers in neutral colors, and white blouses for summer. I shop exclusively at our little re-sale shop. I’m thinking of a wardrobe that will be casual yet professional, and a bit of fun. The job entails working with schoolchildren quite a bit, and I like color for their sake. I’ve been working on a pattern for a menswear inspired vest, with more of an A-line shape (to hide the belly fat). That way, I could wear my basic black tops and trousers, with a punch of fun and color in the vest. So, I’ve been watching for anything that appeals to me, and is large enough to cut up for the pattern pieces. So far, I have a couple patterned shirts and a denim jumper. I think heavier weight T-shirts and sweatshirts would work well with this pattern, too. Just about time to get out the sewing machine! I love the skirt, by the way!

    • Ooh, good luck with your interview, Cindy! I think your idea about color for the kids makes total sense. I have found so many interesting things at resale and consignment and the price points mean I can experiment without worrying about buyers regret. Keep us posted on both the job and the wardrobe finds.

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