Saturday, December 29, 2012

FWLHA Ladies Conference and Dates for 2012 needed!

Publicize your groups calendar.  Send the information to and I will include it on the blog's calendar and post here on the blog.

Frontier Women's Living History Ladies Conference will be at Ft. Concho will be held March 8,9,10, 2013.  In addition to the usual history and costuming classes, the food will focus on frontier immigrant fare.  Mark your calendars.

Good only till Dec. 31

Calling brown haired women:

While looking through the Cat's Meow which has much on sale, I noticed a basket of human hair falls on for half price making the most expensive one at $6.  If you contact me at I will find you a good piece and send it to you.  The fall I bought was about 20 inches long and of the most soft pretty hair.  Being human hair, they can be dyed although I'm not sure how light you might be able to get with these as they are pretty dark brown.  Sale is over on Dec. 31.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Making comments

There have been several questions concerning making a comment.  Hooray!  All you have to do is click on the comment button below the article you want to comment on.  Anyone can comment whether you "follow" the site or not.  Enter your comment, choose your profile (if you have none of the top choice use "Anonymous".  Then click, "Publish".  Click on the picture enlarge it and see the screen shot of your steps. 

Identifying Fiber Content with a Burn Test

This is an excellent article by Pacific Fabrics on identifying textile types by using a burn test.  Wne creating your living history attire, this will be valuable when you find that period looking but unidentified content fabric.
Reasons for using natural fiber fabrics.
1.  It's the most appropriate.
2. It's the safest.  Synthetic fabrics burn quickly and easily.  They are particularly dangerous around campfires and burns with these fibers are much worse.
3.  It's the easiest to wear.  Avoid heat stroke...In the Texas heat, natural fibers wick away moisture creating a cooling effect.  Wool maintains warmth even when wet.

The Burn Test to Identify Textile Fibers

The burn test is a simple, somewhat subjective test based on the knowledge of how

particular fibers burn. Be prepared to note the following when testing your fibers:

Do the fibers melt and/or burn?

Do the fibers shrink from the flame?

What type of odor do the fumes have?

What is the characteristic(s) of any smoke?

What does the residue of the burned fibers look like?

Test Procedures

The burn test is normally made on a small sample of yarns or thread which are twisted together. Since the fiber content of yarns used in one direction of a fabric are not always made up of the same fibers used in the other direction, warp and filling yarns should be burned separately to determine the entire fiber content of the fabric.

This test is very helpful in determining whether a fabric is made from synthetic or natural fibers, but it is not foolproof and the characteristics observed during the burning test can be affected by several things. If the fabric /yarn contains blends of

fibers, identification of individual fibers can be difficult. Two or three different kinds of fibers burned together in one yarn may also be difficult to distinguish. The odor and burning characteristics exhibited may be that of several fibers, thus making your results difficult to analyze. Finishes used on the fabric can also change the observed characteristics.

Pull a small sample of at least six to eight yarns from your fabric about 4 inches long, and twist them together into a bundle about 1/8 inch in diameter. You can also use a small snippet of the fabric if you only need to determine whether it is a synthetic or natural fiber fabric and you are not seeking to determine the specific fiber(s) that make up the fabric.

Hold one end of the bundle with tweezers over a sink or a sheet of aluminum foil (about 10 to 12 inches square) to protect your working area. If the sample ignites it can be dropped into the sink or on the foil without damage.

Use either a candle or a match (automatic lighters work well) as your flame.


Some fibers are slow in igniting, but then burn quickly. Others can burn hot and produce a painful burn if caution is not maintained.

Be extremely careful to keep your hair out of the flame.

Be very certain that you are not wearing flammable materials when testing.

Do not stand anywhere near any flammable materials.

Potential Test Results

Natural, Organic & Manmade Fibers

In general, if the ash is soft and the odor is of burning hair or paper, the fabric is anatural fiber. Cellulosic fibers (cotton, linen and rayon) burn rapidly with a yellow flame. When the flame is removed, there is an afterglow, then soft gray ash.

Cotton: Ignites on contact with flames; burns quickly and leaves a yellowish to orange afterglow when put out. Does not  melt. It has the odor of burning paper, leaves, or wood. The residue is a fine, feathery, gray ash.

Hemp: Same as cotton

Linen: Same as cotton

Ramie : Same as cotton

Rayon : Same as cotton, but burns slowly without flame with slight melting; leaves soft black ash.

Silk: Burns slowly, but does not melt. It shrinks from the flame. It has the odor of charred meat (some say like burned hair). The residue is a black, hollow irregular bead that can be easily to a gritty, grayish-black ash powder. It is self-extinguishing, i.e., it burns itself out.

Tencel : Same as Rayon

Wool, and other Protein Fibers: Burns with an orange sputtery color, but does not melt. It shrinks from the flame. It has a strong odor of burning hair or feathers. The residue is a black, hollow irregular bead that can be easily crushed into a gritty black powder. It is self-extinguishing, i.e., it burns itself


Synthetic Fibers

Most synthetic fibers both burn and melt, and also tend to shrink away from the flame. Synthetics burn with an acrid, chemical or vinegar-like odor and leave a plastic bead.

Other identifying characteristics include:

Acetate: Flames and burns quickly; has an odor similar to burning paper and hot vinegar. Its residue is a hard, dark, solid bead. If you suspect a fabric is acetate, double-check by placing a scrap of it in a small amount of fingernail

polish remover-if you're correct, the fabric will dissolve

Acrylic: Flames and burns rapidly with hot, sputtering flame and a black smoke. Has an acrid, fishy odor. The residue is a hard irregularly-shaped black bead.

Nylon: It will shrink from the flame and burn slowly. Has an odor likened to celery. Its residue is initially a hard, cream-colored bead that becomes darker gray.

Olefin/Polyolefin: Has a chemical type odor. The residue id a hard, tancolored bead. The flames creates black smoke.

Polyester: It will shrink from the flame and burn slowly giving off black smoke. Has a somewhat sweet chemical odor. The residue is initially a hard cream-colored bead that becomes darker tan.

Spandex: It burns and melts, but does not shrink from the flame. It has a  chemical type odor. Its residue is a soft, sticky black ash.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Fort Stanton Garrison Christmas

Christmas Music
  Snow on  the Capitan Mountains
just a few miles west of Fort Stanton.
After Action Report
A Garrison Christmas


Larry Auld and his wife Janine, Mike Bilbo and his wife Barbra, Dan Judy and his wife Kate, Josh Judy, Matt Midgett, Larry Pope and his children Emily and Amanda, Jack Shuster and his wife, James Summers, Garrett Yost, Theresa Yost and her children Wayne, Wyatt, Aubrey and Cassidy, Theresa’s niece Bailey, and Mitzi Jenkins

Event Overview

We found ourselves preparing for the coming Garrison celebration of Christmas in the midst of a winter storm. Fearing icy roads and inexperienced drivers, we decided to head to the fort early on Friday afternoon, all the while hoping for a white Christmas celebration. Traveling through the storm, we emerged on the other side at Fort Stanton to find only a small amount of white on the ground, but a driving wind brought snow from afar to lite upon the parade. Our immediate task was to transform the Nurse’s Quarters into a habitable location for activity and joy. This we did with the little effort of a cleaning and warm fire.

Saturday dawned clear and cold with a constant wind. The flag was raised a little after 10:00, but only to half staff in reverence to the recent school tragedy in Connecticut. Various small activities were tended to and Theresa set up tables for Christmas ornament construction. Though this was meant to entertain the children, several Garrison members enjoyed painting clothes pin ‘soldiers’ along with the little ones. Josh then brought in the tree he had acquired, a beautiful 5’ evergreen, and posted it in the corner of the room. Its fullness was quickly enhanced with the imagination of child and adult alike as small additions adorned its branches. Everyone stood back to admire its beauty. Following our entertainment, we took to the parade for a short musketry drill session accompanied by horses. Our zeal for drill quickly waned as further entertainments within the Nurse’s Quarters beckoned.

Our celebration moved forward as holiday music filled our ears. Emily and Wayne raised their stringed instruments and marveled a crowd of visitor and volunteer alike with their talents. More senses were aroused as the smell of turkey, ham and cider filled our nostrils. We lowered the flag around 4:00 and began making the final preparations for a Garrison feast. To enhance the experience, 100 luminarias were placed and lit around the exterior of the building. After viewing the little glowing bags, everyone reentered the warmth of the building to take their respective places at the table. Garrison Chaplain Jack Shuster blessed the bounty before us and Sgt. Bilbo blessed our glasses with liquid gunpowder. Many toasts were offered and many thanks given as we filled our plates. A wonderful meal was consumed in short order and topped with sweets. The Auld and Judy families combined to give the children numerous gifts and we finished the evening relaxing around the fire in gastric recuperation.

Sunday dawned much like Saturday, only later. The flag was raised at 10:00, and then we gave the Nurse’s Quarters another thorough cleaning. Everyone cleared out by about 2:00.


The Garrison Christmas was a wonderful celebration. We spent a great deal of time with good friends. We gave thanks for what we have and made plans for the future. It’s amazing to think that merely a year ago, as of December 31 to be exact, the Fort Stanton Garrison came to be. We have done so much in a short amount of time. We can only look to the future with great expectation knowing that we will succeed with our plans.
Submitted by Jo Pope for the Ft. Stanton Garrison   Thanks, Jo


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Perfect Pleats...that stay.

Antique pleater
Details, details, details!  It is the small details that make a dress stunning.  Pleats were extensively used  on skirts, hems, necklines to display the seamstress' ability.  There were a number of tools used to pleat or flute fabric, some were flat like the one demonstrated here and others were cranked or required a form to use with a fluting iron.  All in all, it required work that you didn't want to be continuously repeating when you wore the dress. This video  demonstrates a pleating tool available today that is similar to the antique tool to the left that will make pleating much easier in creating your historical garment.  She also recommends using a solution of water withe a tablespoon or two of vinegar to set the pleats.  I have also used this solution to remove stubbon creases.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas at Old Fort Concho 2012

Christmas at Old Fort Concho in San Angelo, Texas is one of the premier Christmas celbrations.  Enjoy the movie.
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow

If you should have trouble with an advertisement popping up, close the advertisement and and click on the movie again.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

There's a winner!! Muff identification

Muff and Collar made around the 1890-1900s.  The center is
 Longhorn hide and the ruffle is black velvet.  The collar is a high
collar that hooked on. 
And the winner is...
Martha King of Ft. Stockton.  My guess is that Martha as former curator of Historic Fort Stockton and with a ranching heritage herself had no problem identifying that as longhorn hide in the muff along with the velvet.  Stephen Porterfield of the Cat's Meow in Midland ( had this displayed along with a collection of other muffs.  With our latest cold spell, I was in the mood to look at muffs  -- and maybe use one.  According to Stephen, this one belonged to an old ranching family in West Texas and dates to the turn of the century.  What could it tell us about buggy rides, town trips and ranching fun?  Don't you wish it could talk?

Let's get discussions and comments going so we all can learn and benefit.  Next time you are wandering through an antique shop and you see something like this you will know what it is.  When you comment (please, please, please add your comments) remember to click the PUBLISH button so it will upload.  Anyone can comment and if you have an article or picture you would like to post send it to Ann at and I will post it for you or make you a blog author.

Original posting ===========================================================

Wednesday, December 12, 2012Keeping Warm in Texas

When the weather became frigid on the frontier , gloves were not enough to keep the hands warm so muffs were used to insulate the hands when not in use. Even in Texas, it can get cold! Here's a challenge--what is this muff made of? Kudos to the first person who comments with the correct materials used to make this muff. This muff was found at the Cat's Meow Antiques in Midland, Texas. The owner is a textile and vintage fashion expert for Antiques Road show. A must see shop if you are ever in the area.
Muff and Collar
The only hint you get is !!Only in Texas!!

Please comment---don't muff-le your replies.

Friday, December 14, 2012

TLHA Living History Conference in Huntsville

The following is a letter on a conference that you might be interested in.  Click the letter for a clearer version of the text. Find the conference form and schedule here .  The schedule has a lot of interesting classes.  West Texans -- reply if you plan to attend and perhaps we can get a group of us going.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Keeping Warm in Texas

When the weather became frigid on the frontier , gloves were not enough to keep the hands warm so muffs were used to insulate the hands when not in use.  Even in Texas, it can get cold!  Here's a challenge--what is this muff made of?  Kudos to the first person who comments with the correct materials used to make this muff.  This muff was found at the Cat's Meow Antiques in Midland, Texas.  The owner is a textile and vintage fashion expert for Antiques Road show.  A must see shop if you are ever in the area.
Muff and Collar
The only hint you get is !!Only in Texas!!

Please comment---don't muff-le your replies.

Friday, November 23, 2012

After Action Report: Hat, Hair and How Living History Cconference

Hat, Hair and How Living History Conference
November 3, 2012
The Frontier Women’s Living History Association conference was held on Saturday, November 3rd at Midland College in Midland, TX.  The event provided women Living Historians an opportunity to learn about Victorian hair styles from 1850-1880.  The agenda began with a presentation by Michael Fields, director of the Midland College Cosmetology department, who showed the participants how to create an accurate hair style from the Victorian era using items available today.  One highlight of the conference was that the cosmetology students of MC assisted each lady was in creating her own style .from the era of her choice.  Prior to coming to the conference, participants were encouraged to view a presentation developed by Ann Dixon on hairstyles of the time and located online at!3766
  Laughter and excited chatter filled the cosmetology center as hair and hair pieces were crimped, curled and attached. To record the lovely new looks, each lady had their portrait taken in a period setting by Kent Moss, photography professor and his student, Kirsten, in addition to a group shot outdoors in a natural setting.  Another treat was the opportunity to view and purchase some period appropriate fabrics and trims graciously brought out by the owner of a local store, Monograms by Essie.  Following a pizza and salad lunch, the ladies warmly welcomed Steven Porterfield, a textile expert with the Antiques Road Show, and his bag of treasures.  He is the owner of the Cat’s Meow, a must-see antique store in Midland which specializes in vintage clothing as well as antiques.  Steven encouraged the ladies to look closely at pictures of the time period as they thought about their impression – even to using a magnifying glass to see the hidden details.  He brought along a dress form wearing a beautiful gold silk dress from the 1860s with a Chantilly lace shawl.  This brought many Ooh’s and Ah’s from the participants.  The focus then shifted to hair combs, hats and bonnets.  The lovely items were passed around so that the participants could look at their construction details.  It was a marvelous learning experience to have a chance to inspect these lovely garments painstakingly made so long ago.  The conference ended with the drawings for door prizes donated by participants and Hancock Fabric.  The real treasure was an 1880’s fashion print that had been embellished with fabric and gems.  This was drawn by a volunteer from Ft. Davis NHS who excitedly offered to display it in the volunteer dressing room at the fort.  The participants then headed for their homes, many of them out of state.  The twenty attendees volunteer at historic sites including Ft. Griffin SHS, Historic Ft. Stockton and Ft. Davis NHS in Texas and New Mexico’s Ft. Selden and Ft. Stanton.  The conference was organized by Ann Dixon, Ethel Matthews, and Beverly Reeves of the Frontier Women’s Living History Association.  Many thanks go to Midland College for the use of their facilities, Michael Fields and the MC cosmetology students, Kent Moss and student, Kirsten, Monograms by Essie, and Steve Porterfield for making this an unique and informative conference. Ft. Griffin SHS assisted us with advertising and organizing needed materials.   The FWLHA will host another conference March 9 & 10, 2013 at Ft. Concho in San Angelo, TX.   View the FWLHA blog for information on that conference as the time approaches.

Fort Stockton's Frontier Days

Enjoy the pictures of Historic Ft. Stockton's Living History Days, Oct. 20, 2012

Click to play this Smilebox collage

Rewinding wooden spools for old sewing machines

If you have an old sewing machine, treadle or hand crank, that you use at living history demonstrations, you will have found that the thread on the old wooden spools is very likely to be brittle and unusable.  Wouldn't it be nice to have solid thread on the machine but on a wooden spool.  Here is an excellent article that give directions for easy winding of wooden spool with modern thread.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Ft. Griffin Living History Event, October 2012

The sun is bright and the students are many,
The adage is right, pictures tell it all.
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow

The Handsome Lads of Fort Griffin

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Modern Millinery Tips

Although the hats and hair decorations here are strictly modern and NOT period, I found this video interesting.  It gives some tips that might be useful in creating period hair decorations such as the use of pipe cleaners for structure.  A tip that would be useful in other crafts using a glue gun is to use a hair dryer to get rid of those glue strings -- why didn't I already know that!? 
A final reason for this post is that Halloween is coming up and costumes are needed so have fun with this video.

Written directions can be found here:

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Frontier Christmas Dance at Old Fort Concho

Christmas Ball

Monday, October 8, 2012

Fort Griffin Living History Days


As a reminder, in less than 2 weeks Fort Griffin SHS will be having their annual Living History Days on October 12th and 13th. We are excited about what all we have to offer this year. If you've been to one of our living history events in the past, then you know just how fun it can be. We will once again offer stage coach rides, which are extremely popular with the kids (maybe even some adults, haha). We will also be bringing back Time Was..., which is a period band we had out a few years ago, but were unable to get last year. They will be playing live music both days of the event with 1800's era musical instruments. In addition, we will have the usual military interpretations, including artillery, infantry, and cavalry demonstrations, wild west gun fights, Drummer Boy Ice Cream, chuck wagon BBQ, Native American culture, and much more. The Ladies of the Garrison will be having a tea. We would love to have you join us! Contact information :
Fort Griffin State Historic Site
(325) 762-3592
Hello, Everyone,
The time for the conference "Hat, Hair and How" is getting close. I want to encourage everyone who would like to participate to get their registration in immediately. At this time we only have 2 registrations which means the event may have to be cancelled. You can find the registration form attached to this post.
I am very excited that we have been able to assemble such a great conference that could only be held here in Midland (can’t move a college or take advantage of a wonderful local expert anywhere else). When you register you will be emailed information on period hair styles so don’t wait too long.

Here is what we have planned:
...v Period hairstyle created on and for you with emphasis on being easy for you to recreate (free).
v If you have a hairpiece or purchase one bring it and it will be styled for you and you will be shown how use it
v Your portrait in period hairstyle and dress. The MC Photography students will take photos for us and give you a digital copy you can use online or have printed.
v Hair accessories –opportunity to make a ribbon hairnet or fancy hair comb.
v Show and Tell by an international expert on Victorian era clothing – Steven Porterfield. You really can’t miss his talk on hats, hatpins and hair combs!!
v Midland has some interesting museums and stores if you are bringing along a non attending spouse or friend.
We hope to see you in Midland on Nov. 3 at Midland College. Please share this with your friends and get a car pool going. Don’t forget that Midland also has a nice airport with good connections and flights through Southwest. For those coming in by air, I will try to help get you to your hotel and the conference.
Ann Dixon

Monday, September 3, 2012

Camels in History Video

Please view this very well done video from our friend, Doug Baum, on the history of the
 Camels in Texas.  Invite your friends to view it as well.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Chama Territorial Days 2012

A Tale of Bad Guys, Bank Robbers, and Butterfly Dances in Old Chama, New Mexico

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
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Grandmother's Choice

Quilting and History
Barbara Brackman of Civil War and Reproduction fabrics fame has started another Block of the Month.  This time it tells the history of Women's Suffrage.  This site not only provides a quilt block from that time period but a wonderful history of that time with pictures and artifacts from the time.  Even if you have no interest in quilting, the history each week will be worth reading.  Each will there will be a new block and history notes.  Check out the webpage each week for an new block.  To save these articles each week on  your computer use Joliprint ( for more information see button on the left side of the FWLHA blog.  
To access her Civil War quilt blog go to 

Enjoy the stories!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Songs of the Southwest Country

Hidden gems abound on the Internet for the intrepid researcher. Many books that were published in the 1800's have been scanned and put online. If you want a glimpse into an 1890's poet's feeling for the land we live in --- look at this book. It can be read online or downloaded. Those who do a school marm impression might look at this for your "classroom". Although today, we might call the poems "sappy". They provide us with insight into the settling of the American West. The website is a great site to find public domain books of all kinds. Check it out.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Fort Chadbourne 2012 Movie

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow

A little late but it's finally here.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Many of us have antique sewing machines that we display and love for their historical value.  Those machines often come with some real mystery feet.  What do they do?  How were they used in the day to day use of the machine.  Even though I have sewn for 50 + years, I've often wondered what some of those old feet were used for.  Would others like to see their use, too?
Do you have a box like this?  What are those strange things?  Find out here by watching videos on the use of various feet. Although the videos show modern machines, the feet used work about the same on antique machines.

How to Use a Blind Hem Foot

How To Use an Embroidery Foot

How to use a Binder Foot
In this video we show you how to use and install the Binder foot. Learn how to sew along curves and corners and tips for use on knits and…

Invisible Zipper Foot Tutorial

Presser Feet Tutorials
Learn how to use select presser feet including the All-Purpose Foot, Zipper Foot, Blind Hem Foot, Button Sewing Foot, Darning & Embro…

How To Use A Welting Foot

How to Use a Rolled Hem Foot

How to Use A Narrow Hemming Foot

How To Use a Cording Foot
How to properly sew a cord on, using a cording foot.

How to use a Low Shank Gathering Foot
Using a ruffler foot to add gathers or pleats to a garment. Complicated looking foot...very easy to use. Make hundreds of pleats or gathe…

How To Use A Walking Foot
In this video we show you how to use a walking foot, how to ..

How To Use A Gathering Foot
In this video we show you how to use a gathering foot, how to install it and how to use it specifically on certain types of fabrics. The…

PDF Instructions for Singer feet

Hmm..,some of these might be useful on my next dress...  Frontierlady

Friday, August 10, 2012

Hat, Hair and Hair Living History Conference

Living History Conference
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Midland College
Cosmetology Center
3600 N. Garfield, 
Midland, Texas

Frontier Women’s Living History Association is excited to offer this wonderful opportunity to women Living Historians. Conference participants will be treated to a period hair style by the Cosmetology students of Midland College under the supervision of department director, Michael Fields.  Michael is well versed in theatre hair styling and will help his students give us a simple, reproducible  daily hair style  from 18860-1880.   The focus will be helping the participants learn to create a period appropriate hairstyle with their current cut. Hair pieces can be styled and hair nets can be incorporated if brought to the session.  Participants are encouraged to wear  one of the their daily wear dresses  to help set the mood and for another activity that is being planned, a possible photo opportunity in a Victorian setting.
We will also be treated to an exciting show and tell by Stephen Porterfield of Cat’s Meow Antique Shop.  Stephen is an expert in vintage clothing and has a large collection of 1800’s clothing.  He has been an expert appraiser for Antiques Road Show.  He will talk about Hats, Combs and Hat pins from the era giving us information on how to perch those hats on our new hairstyles. 
Conference pre-registration cost of $50 will also include a light lunch and some other activities that are still in the planning stage. 
  For more information contact:
Ann Dixon
Ethel Matthews

Click here to download an informational and registration brochure.
We are limited to 35 participants so register soon.

Crochet Buttons

Personalize your dresses with special buttons.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

More Frontier Quilts

Homestead national monument in Nebraska has a good article about quilts on the frontier. In addition they have a downloadable books on quilt patterns and history from the time period. Take some time to look at the website which has some great information about the Homestead Act that settle the vast areas of our country.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Pets, Then and Now

There are many loves in my life.  Of course, my faith and family are first but I also love to create beautiful things like quilts.   I know that women making a home on the frontier in 1800s Texas felt the same way.
Snoozing at my side at this time are my two "furbabies"  2 big dogs named Autie (named for Geo. Custer) and Ulysses...and, yes, they are named after "Yankee" generals.  This is a long way around to telling you about an article I just found about dogs and quilts from the 1800's.  Barbara Brackman, a civil war quilt historian, published this article at l 

There are several vintage pictures of dogs during that time period.  She also references a site where there is information and pictures of dogs and breed's history
Just like today, dogs were important to homes and families.

Enjoy these articles and give your puppy an extra pet or two.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Territorial Days in Chama, New Mexico
June 29. 30 and July 1, 2012

This will be the second year for Territorial Days in Chama and there are plans for a great event with lots of fun for all.  Below is the schedule.

Territorial Days Sponsored by the Rio Arriba Stuntmen Association
View the video of last year's fun
June 29, 30 & July 1, 2012
Chama, New Mexico in Historic Old Chama 
(Across from the South Entrance to the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad)
Kids Crafts Kids Crafts
Vendors Vendors
Skits Skits
Horse Training Horse Training
Blacksmith & Farrier Blacksmith & Farrier
10:00 Meet At Depot Meet At Depot
10:30 19th Cent Medicine
Stick Horse Races
11:00 Ukulele Band
11:30 Herbalist Herbalist
12:00 Shoot Out Shoot Out
12:30 Gun Safety Talk Gun Safety Talk
1:30-3:30 Stick Horse Races
1:00 Tour C&TSRR Rail Yard Tour C&TSRR Rail Yard
1:00- 5:00 Horse Rides 1-5
1:15 Story tellers Story tellers
1:45 Bank Robbery Bank Robbery
2:00 19th Cent Medicine 19th Cent Medicine
2:30 Author:s  Robert Torrez & Slim Randles
3:00 Tour C&TSRR Rail Yard Tour C&TSRR Rail Yard
3:15 Kangaroo Court Kangaroo Court
4:00 Meet At Depot Meet At Depot
5:00 Hanging Hanging

Sunday's schedule is similar to Saturday's although times may vary.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

More Victorian Trim

Below is part of an article on Victorian Trimmings at Your Wardrobe Unlocked,  The Costumer's Companion.  It has great pictures and tutorials on some lovely trims.

Victorian Trimmings
Gina Barrett  

The best way to trim any historic costume is, of course, to look at period examples. Surviving garments are the first choice, and then illustrations and paintings from the period to see what was 'in vogue'.

During the Victorian period, numerous books and magazines were published to give ladies ideas and instruction in various needle arts. From dress making to lace making, these publications are invaluable to those of us looking to achieve an authentic look.
However, not all of these publications are equal. Some are very comprehensive in their instructions, others assume that a certain amount of knowledge is already known. This can be difficult for us today, as even the terminology can be different, or the process changed with time, making following some of these articles less easy to reference.
In the case Hecklinger's Ladies Garments, there is a wonderful section on trimmings. But despite the wealth of engravings of trimmings and trimming ideas, there's very little instruction on how to make them. So Gina Barrett, our trimmings expert, has stepped in to help.
Click Here to

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

New tutorial on Pretty Ribbon Trim

The Threads magazine often publishes tutorials on various sewing subjects.  This lovely example of a period ribbon trim is explained with directions and picture at

When you pull up this page, you can create a pdf file with JoliPrint  -- the gadget on the left side or go to to create a file you can save on your computer. You can use this trim for a Period or Present fashion statement.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Great Articles

One of my favorite blogs is Historical Costuming at  Jennifer, the blogger, has some wonderful articles I want to draw your attention to.  Check out these excellent articles.

19th  Century  Pocket Solutions ...because you have to put your iphone somewhere.

Three Tips to Prevent the Lampshade Hoopskirt

Clothing Articles to Make When You’re Just Beginning Historical Costuming

Antique Pattern Library

Do you enjoy looking at books of antique patterns and pictures?  Here are some resources that are just what you need.

Antique Pattern Library
This library contains many pattern and needlework books from prior to 1923 which are now in public domain.  These have been scanned and are available for download as a pdf file.  Nearly all needle arts are represented.

Antique Pattern Library Resource List
These are links to other antique patterns and informational sites.
This web site links to many entities that archive texts of the past.  You can find volumes of Godey's and Peterson's ladies magazine.  Look under Text to find these in American, Canadian and Universal libraries.  You can also Project Gutenberg and some audio collections from this site This is also a good portal for finding past websites using The Wayback Machine which proves that nothing posted on the web ever goes away.  Be careful what you may come back to haunt you.

Have fun looking at books from the past.