Showing posts from May, 2015

Finger Woven Belt and Garters

A few years ago, I learned how to finger weave so that I could make belts and garters for 17th century Native American costumes ( I used this website, "Native American Finger Weaving in the Eastern Forests" (, to learn the basic techniques. Last year, I conspired with a friend to make a surprise birthday present of a belt and garters for someone, so I once again tried my hand at finger weaving. There are some really beautiful examples of finger woven belts and garters at the Fort Pitt Museum in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Some day, I would like to be that good at finger weaving, but for now, here are photos of what I can achieve.

This set is warp-faced chevron weave made with 100% wool worsted weight yarn. The garters are 40 strands wide and the belt is 80 strands wide. I spent about 3 hours making each garter and perhaps 12 hours making the bel…

Red's Square-Cut Shirt

I have a good friend who is a Civil War reenactor, like me. He asked me to make a basic shirt for him using a sheet. It's a printed cotton/polyester blend. The printed plaid is very close to the grainline, but not quite, so the plaid looks crooked in some places. I cut most of the pieces following the grain of the fabric, not the printed lines. I am entering this project in The Historical Sew Monthly ( Here's the finished product:

This shirt is the basic square-cut type used for many centuries in Western cultures, with certain features typical of the mid 1800's. I referred to "1850's Civil War Men's Shirt Pattern" at and "Making a Shirt" at I reduced the size of the shirt significantly to be similar to a modern XL shirt. I chose to …