My Top “Must Read” List

I really am writing this post with a friend, who wants to get back into reenacting, in mind. But, I also figured some others may benefit from these links and thoughts as well.  It has been a while since I wrote a post that was reenacting focused….

Do you want to get into CW reenacting? Returning to reenacting after a long absence? Here are my top posts I would like you to read…… (many of these are mine. I am working on adding others.)

The Basics

  • It is helpful to know where you are, what kind of event you are at: Watcha Doing can help with that.
  • This is an older (2011) but still sound post about the basics: The Basics.
  • It is helpful to know the terminology for the dress(es) you will be wearing. Anatomy of a Dress should help with that.
  • Here are a pair of posts that look at the parts of a bonnet: Anatomy of a Straw Bonnet and Anatomy of a Drawn Bonnet. Of coarse, there are other bonnets.
  • Why this is GoodThis post has a PowerPoint and PDF with photographs of well dressed historical interpreters, with bullet points as to why what they are wearing is good.
  • Once you know what clothes (and pieces of material culture) you need, you should take a moment to read Know Your Maker.
  • I’ve been told The Shopping Itch, a small pocket reference, has been a great help in the moment.
  • Pizza, and the Piggy BankThis is my philosophical take on spending for the hobby.


Paying Attention to the Details

  • The Sewing Academy has been kind enough to offer several patterns for essential garments for Free! Please make use of these:
    • Chemise (Plan to have 3)
    • Drawers (Plan to have 3)
    • Petticoats (Plan to have 1 for under the cage, 2 for over the cage)
    • Sunbonnet (Start with 1. Eventually have a working one and a nice one)
    • Apron (Depending on your impression)
  • If you have a straw bonnet or hat that needs to be finished, please read these: How to Finish a Straw Bonnet and Guidelines to Finishing a Straw Hat
  • Cold weather events require layers to keep you warm. Read Are You Ready for Winter?


On the Book Shelf

These are the books that should be on your bookshelf. For some, you may want to get 2 – one to write notes in and one to keep clean.


I suppose this is a good moment to pause and say I no longer consider myself a reenactor. I do not “reenact” a particular event. I also do not focus on a particular military era, which is most often connected with the concept of “reenacting.” I find I am no longer interested many aspects of “the hobby” as a military, social entity.

My (current) focus has shifted to visitor education and skill refinement. My participation is as a historical interpreter and takes place at historic sites. My primary research and interpretive focus is on women’s employment, specifically the spectrum of straw millinery. On occasion I will take on other roles as specifically needed for programming.

So, with that in mind…

Who do I Read?


Published in: on March 14, 2019 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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