A New Day

This past month capped a dark chapter in American history. On this day four years ago, I was furious and scared. I knew that people would die as a result of who was elected. But I didn't realize how far it could go. The level of racism, hubris, and tyranny that was encouraged during this past administration killed babies at the border, black brothers and sisters of all genders across our country, and over 300,000 Americans during a pandemic that was allowed to run rampant. These issues didn't start with the president, but they were exacerbated, weaponized, and encouraged for his personal gain. At the end of it all, we saw a violent insurgency by those who feel entitled to power at the exclusion of everyone else. It is physically sickening.

So why am I wearing an American flag shirt? Because at the end of it all, I still believe in the American people. Health workers who heroically covered themselves in plastic bags and headed to the ICU. Black women who knocked on doors in Georgia. Mutual aid networks in New York. People who opened their homes to those who lost everything in the California fires. The sewing community, who gathered up their quilting cotton and made masks. I truly believe that the American people, despite our flaws, can build back stronger and better. Leaders will come and go, but I have hope that together we can build an America for all. 

If you're here for the sewing, here's the details:

Pattern: Closet Core Pattern Kalle Shirt
Fabric: 1 yd each of Robert Kaufman Chambray and Telio Cotton Linen
Cost: $30

This is the first time I've sewn the Kalle shirt, which may surprise you considering how long it's been out and how many versions there are online. I never bothered before because I have similar patterns, but I'm running out of things to do in quarantine and decided to give it a try. My version came together beautifully and I appreciated the details such as the hem facing, curved armbands, and finishing instructions for the yoke and collar. 

I did make a few modifications just for fun. First, I lengthened the sleeve openings by three inches. They are quite adequate as drafted but I wanted an exaggerated, oversized look. I also lengthened the cropped version by three inches so it is shirt-length (the pattern offers cropped, tunic, and dress lengths). I probably could have gone a bit shorter and might do that next time. Finally, I decided to do a cut-on button placket as I'm lazy and my design allowed for it. Finally, to make my design work, I cut the back and collar + collar stand in two pieces so I could use my two different fabrics. I'm especially happy with my craftsmanship on this one, including that pattern-matched pocket.  

Admittedly, the American flag can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people. I hope you know where I stand based on the intro to this post. But to make my position especially clear, I decided to embroider "FOR ALL" on the back. I believe in liberty for all, healthcare for all, education for all, food and housing for all, and so much more. I believe in defunding the police, universal healthcare, free college, and building up our systems towards these ends. 

I don't know what the next administration holds and know that the election will not be a panacea to all of our problems. But I'm rooting for a better America and I hope we can start to build toward that vision. 

Stay safe out there, care for one another, and here's to a brighter 2021. 


  1. I'm routing for a better America and feeling especially hopeful today, too!
    And your sewing is always a pleasure to see, Meg.

  2. that came out so well and I like the length a lot, will have to give that a try.

  3. The covid count hit 400,000 Tuesday. Yes, I was sobbing with happiness and relief during the inauguration.

  4. I absolutely love this post. You said so many things I am also feeling. My husband and I were talking last night that we were going to hang an American flag. Lately, if I see one I kind of cringe and look for the Trump sign to go with it. Isn't that horrible? We are going to hang it proudly by our Black Lives Matter sign because we are proud of our country and always hoping we can do better. I love you shirt and the reasons that you made it.


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