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Recommended Vendors

Women's Clothing: Dresses & General ClothingOuterwear & shawls | Bonnets & headgear | Footwear
CorsetsCage Crinolines & Corded Petticoats | Other Underpinnings | Nightwear
JewelryParasolsOther Accessories | ToiletriesWomen's patterns

Men's Clothing: Frock Coats | Sack Coats | Trowsers | Waistcoats | Shirts | Headgear | Footwear
Suspenders | Men's Accessories | Men's patterns

Children's Items: General children's clothing | children's patterns | toys & schoolbooks

Personal items & material culture: Eyewear | Watches Carpetbags | Trunks | Basketry | Plates & glasses
Cutlery | Miscellaneous tools, etc | Reproduction bottles | Product labels | Stationery & repro books/newspapers
Furniture & bedding for living histories | Coverlets, blankets & carpetingFood suppliers

Craft & Sewing Supplies: Calico & homespun-type fabrics | silkswoolens | menswear fabrics | buttons
Knitting supplies & wool | RibbonsUtility fabrics & sewing supplies for period sewing

Children's Clothing, Patterns, Toys & Schoolbooks:

Children's Clothing:

Elizabeth Stewart Clark is acknowleged as doing the best reproduction children's clothing and does lovely work for all ages from infants to pre-teens.

Originals by Kay (Kay Gnagey) also produces very attractive and accurate children's clothing to order and sometimes has ready mades. She frequently has tiny child sized corded petticoats in stock.

Sue Pfeiffer: makes very attactive children's clothing, which she usually sells as readymades through Kay Gnagey's mercantile (see above)

Children's Patterns:

Elizabeth Stewart Clark has started producing a wonderful series of children's clothing patterns that are much easier to use and represent more typical and less high fashion styles than the more complicated patterns offered by Heidi Marsh, although the latter are useful for experienced sewists trying to reproduce more fashionable middle to upper class styles.

Toys & Schoolbooks:

Ragged Soldier Sutlery (Mike & Virginia Mescher) (VA) carries a wide variety of toys and games from the period and also carries slates and slate pencils for period school work. They have just started carrying reproduction McGuffey readers, which should be available soon.

Women's Clothing: Dresses & General Women's Clothing

Beth's Place (Beth Miller Hall)
Gettysburg, PA
(no website, no email. Shop open Friday-Sunday)
The doyenne of reproduction clothing makers. Prices are high but include a lot of hand detailing. Absolutely beautiful workmanship. Tends to cut the armcyes at about the upper height range for the period, but will cut lower if you prefer and you ask her. Does great muslin fittings for quite low prices.

Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
Ft. Wayne, IN
Has a wonderful eye for period color combinations and trim. Basic prices are fairly low as they don't include hand finishing, which is extra, but you can save money by doing this yourself. Like Beth Miller, one of the few makers of ball & evening dresses who puts correct net "tuckers" in the necklines. Is currently reproducing a workdress / wrapper from Kathryn Coombs' collection that makes a great loaner dress because it has an adjustable waist. Does great muslin fittings for quite low prices.

Mrs. Wrightsman's Corseterie & Fine Sewing (Leann Wrightsman)
Marion, IN
Does very nice work and makes a very useful drawstring waisted workdress that is handy for a loaner dress or people whose weight fluctuates (pictures on her website)

The Civil War Lady -- Joy Melcher
Great gathered bodiced work dresses, plus very nice sheers. Day dresses are often fitted bodiced cottons -- not inaccurate but over-represented so best avoided. Often has lovely ball dresses in silk as well (look carefully as she also has some synthetics) She's on the road a lot and custom orders can be very slow. It's best to buy off the rack if you can. She attends a lot of events.

Linda Sterner (no website)
Gettysurg, PA
Has a shop in the upstairs at Speros Marinos' store. Despite the appearance of the ready-mades in her shop tend to be farby and geared to the tourist trade, she does extremely nice and accurate custom work.

Robin Stokes (no website)
Excellent custom made dresses. She's got a "day job" and is therefore sometimes slow on delivery but does beautiful work. She sometimes has ready-mades available for sale at Abraham's Lady in Gettysburg

Petit's Village Mercantile - Tricia Pettit
Sells via Ebay, one of the few eBay sellers that does good work. Her gathered bodiced work dresses are nice, as are her pinner aprons and slat bonnets.

Galla Rock Mercantile
(Atlanta History Center pattern dress & underpinnings, aprons, etc)

Elizabeth Stewart Clark
(particularly: children's clothing, collars & cuffs, underpinnings, outerwear)

Lynne Gaither Doddington
Known for her corded petticoats, she doesn't ordinarily do dressmaking commercially, but does a beautiful job on her own clothes, has successfully made nice, accurate dresses for others and can be persuaded to make dresses if she's not tied up on petticoat orders and you ask nicely.

Hank Trent
Has just started doing custom clothing to order after making clothing for his wife, Linda. Superb documentation and attention to detail -- machine work is done on an antique treadle machine. Still has a bit to learn - tends to make bodices too long, so worth mentioning this if you commission anything. Is new to sewing long distance (e.g. without in-person fittings) and this can be very difficult to adjust to. Recommend that instead of sending measurements, you send him a copy of your custom muslin.

Faith Hintzen (if she's still doing drawstring waisted work dresses - KC to check)

Millinery:

Buckram-covered silk & sheer bonnets:

  • Christine Ballard (no website, email is MrsBonnets@aol.com)
  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
  • Beverly Lister (sells at "Beth's place in Gettysburg)
  • Linda Gray (no website, but her straw bonnets are available via Glenna Jo Christen's website)

Straw Bonnets:

  • Linda Gray (no website, but her straw bonnets are available via Glenna Jo Christen's website)
  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
  • The Stevenson House (Susanne Carter Isaacson) (makes nice rustic looking straw bonnets that are superb for a rural or southern impression)

Bonnet patterns:

Bonnet making supplies:

Ribbons: (see ribbon, under fabrics section of general items page)

Slat and Corded Bonnets:

  • Mrs. Christen's Miscellanea (Glenna Jo Christen) (slat bonnets)
  • The Stevenson House (Susanne Carter Isaacson) (slat and corded bonnets)
  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey) (corded bonnet from 1850's Godeys)

Quilted Winter Bonnets:

Ball headdresses, decorated nets, breakfast caps:

Knit and Crocheted Bonnets:

  • S&S Sutlery, Gettysburg (reproduces various knit and crochet bonnets from Godey's patterns)
  • Jessica Wise (AGSAS member who will knit Godey's 1858 "Sortie Cap" to order and other items)
  • Colleen Formby (AGSAS member who will knit fine hoods and other items from Godeys -- also sells via Beth's Place in Gettysburg.

Ladies Footwear:

Robert Land
5 Columbia Dr. #139,
Niagara Falls, NY 14305
519-836-6868

He sells directly and also via Beth's Place in Gettysburg. Congress gaiters are also carried at Grand Illusions in Gettysburg and some other models at Speros Marinos in Gettysburg. Custom orders should be addressed to him.

Missouri Boot & Shoe Co
(Robert Serio)
951 Burr Crossing Rd.,
Neosho, MO 64850
417-451-6100

Fugawee
The Fugawee "Victoria" and "Rose" boots are very good value for money. While not the quality of the above custom shoe makers, they meet standards and are a good starter shoe commonly available "off the rack" in a variety of sizes. As well as ordering via their website, they can also be bought via Heirloom Emporium and Abraham's Lady.

Mattamore Harness (Tom Mattamore)

Website currently doesn't show any women's shoes but he does a very nice oxford based on an original and will do custom orders.

Underpinnings:

Corsetry:

Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
Makes a variety of corset models, specializes in gusseted corsets which are comfortable and the most common in our era. Good at long distance fittings.

Beth's Place (Beth Miller Hall)
Does very beautifully detailed corsets, mostly in the gored style that was just beginning to come into vogue in our era. Good at long-distance fittings

Mrs. Wrightsman's Corseterie & Fine Sewing (Leann Wrightsman)
Good at long-distance fittings, also specializes in the later, gored corset

Collars, Cuffs and Undersleeves:

  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
    Carries a variety of very nicely done collars, cuffs and undersleeves in myriad documented patterns, including some items that you don't see elsewhere. Sometimes has knit and crocheted undersleeves.
  • Beth's Place (Beth Miller Hall)
    Beautiful detail work as per her other items.
  • Elizabeth Stewart Clark
    Excellent collars, cuffs and undersleeves both plain and fancy, to custom-order
  • Susanne Isaacson, (The Stevenson House) generally carries a selection of everyday, utility quality collars -- extremely helpful if you're at an event where she's set up and you find yourself short of a collar.

Cage Crinolines:

  • Best source of cages is Heritage Reproductions 1811 Jeanette Ave. Evansville, IN 47714 (812) 473-5233. Their website is currently down and we don't know if they're still in business.
  • The cage crinoline kit from Needle & Thread is excellent, a bit pricey at $85 but gets rave reviews.
  • Kay Gnagey has recently upgraded her cage kit but we have not tested the new one yet. It could be very good value at $60. She also does cages to order
  • Mrs. Flemming, who sells her cages via Mrs. Christen's Miscellanea, makes very accurate cage crinolines but the material used tends to bend out of shape -- don't try to drive in a tiny compact car in one of these -- take it off first so it preserves its shape!
  • Susanne Isaacson, (The Stevenson House) if you ask really nicely, will make excellent and extremely accurate cage crinolines, although this isn't her main line of business

Corded Petticoats:

  • Corded Petticoats by Lynne Doddington - Lynne Gaither Doddington
    Corded petticoats -- the best!
  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
    Also makes nice corded petticoats, including tiny ones for children.
  • The Gettysburg Sutler:
    Mainstream sutler that is beginning to carry a few items that are above the usual mainstream stuff. They have a quite nice drawstring waisted corded petticoat that is good value as a starter item for folks on a budget at ca. $50 and can be useful for loaner gear once you've upgraded

Chemises , Drawers & Petticoats (top quality)

  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
    Makes a variety of chemises based on originals in her collection, including a very pretty model with pintucks on the front, as well as and drawers, including nice warm canton flannel ones. Has ready-made woolen winter underpetticoats that are very nice too
  • Beth's Place (Beth Miller Hall)
    Beautiful detail work as per her other items. Has started doing ready-made "Balmoral" and work petticoats in striped cotton that are extremely nice.
  • Elizabeth Stewart Clark
    Excellent custom underpinnings, including personal made to order drawers patterns.
  • Most of the high quality dressmakers recommended on this page will make a variety of underpinnings to order and those who regularly set up at events (Civil War Lady, Galla Rock generally have nice-quality readymades)

Chemises , Drawers & Petticoats (budget)

Chemises, drawers and under and over the hoop petticoats are items that are easy to make on one's own and are also areas where you can economize by buying less expensive readymades that are serviceable (you can always upgrade later)

  • James Country Mercantile
    Has quite decent cheap drawers and chemises, in both white cotton and unbleached muslin. The latter is less authentic. They are worth patronizing among the general interest sutlers as they also produce the high-authenticity Homespun Patterns and a variety of items that are higher on the authenticity scale than the average.
  • Heirloom Emporium:
    Cindy Hopes carries a wide range of items, including good, high-authenticity items for reenactors as well as tourist stuff for spectators. Underpinnings are usually quite good. In addition to budget priced items she also carries some top of the line items including corded petticoats by Lynne Doddington. She also sometimes has flannel underpetticoats.
  • Elizabeth Stewart Clark
    For do it yourself-ers, her website has a FREE drawers pattern on it.

Nightwear:

  • Beth's Place -- Beth Miller Hall has very nice reproduction night caps for $35 and is about to start offering reproduction nightgowns
  • Victoria Lawhon, AGSAS member, is considering offering reproduction nightwear based on an original in fellow member Kathryn Coombs' collection and is working on the prototype

Ladies Accessories:

Miscellaneous Accessories:

  • Mrs. Christen's Miscellanea: Excellent pinner aprons, and a variety of other useful items like bonnet pins, etc.
  • The Stevenson House: pinner aprons, elastic garters and other useful things.
  • Petit's Village Merchantile: sells on ebay, does period appropriate pinner aprons
  • Beth's Place: very nice pinner aprons and a variety of other accessories. Carries very high quality stockings too and often has hand-knit garters.
  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
    Fans and a vareity of other accessories. At events, also carries high quality stockings.
  • Jessica Wise (AGSAS member who will knit very nice knitted garters to order)
  • Abraham's Lady: (Gettysburg)
    Carries a wide variety of useful accessories, including some antique jewelry, fans, gloves, stockings and other basic items. Carries a wide range and quality can vary from the very best to standard sutler row, so shop carefully.

Antique and Reproduction Jewelry:

  • Beth's Place -- has really top quality antique pieces at market prices. No bargains here but some really lovely stuff of collector quality. For the budget-minded, Also carries the "Mourning Glories" line of reproduction mourning jewelry -- earrings, belt clasps, bracelets and brooches, at very reasonable prices.
  • The Stevenson House (Susanne Isaacson)
    Doesn't have anything listed on her website as all items are one-off originals. As one of the leading lecturers on antique jewelry and hair combs in the hobby, she often has a good assortment of antique pieces to sell.
  • James River Emporium (Betty Loba)
    No website, but look for her at events. Has gorgeous original jewelry in the same quality and price bracket as Beth's place, and also a variety of other antique items.
  • Mac Sutlery
    Bill "Mac" MacIntosh usually has a very nice assortment of original jewelry.Last time we checked he had some very nice gold hollow ware brooches.
  • Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey). Has some original items on her website and a wider selection at events
  • The Museum of Jewelry isn't a museum, it's an online and catalogue based jewelry company that produces a number of good looking Victorian styled earrings.

Parasols:

  • Marta Vincent -- does an excellent job at recovering original parasol frames that have lost their covers and are therefore suitable for reenacting and her husband Henry repairs parasol frames and makes very nice bonnet stands.
  • Mrs. Christen's Miscellanea -- Their supplier Mr. Flemming, makes accurate reproduction folding parasols. The wood on the sticks is a bit rough and worth sanding and varnishing or painting however, but this is THE best option for those who hesitate to use an original.

Toiletries:

  • The Ragged Soldier Sutlery (Mike & Virginia Mescher) carries a wide variety of colognes of the era including Carmelite Water, Hungary Water, Florida Water, etc. Virginia's new book on period cosmetics and toiletries is particularly worth buying and available from them at events or online.
  • The Arabia Museum: has chemically analysed and reproduced two colognes from residue found at the bottom of perfume bottles on this steamboat that sunk in the Missississippi in 1856. Beth Miller Hall also carries these in her Gettysburg store.

Outerwear:

Coats, Paletots, Mantles, Etc:

Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
Often has a good selection of outerwear in a variety of styles, including items based on patterns in Godeys and Petersons that are generally not being reproduced by others. Also does silk mantles and other under-represented items.

Beth's Place -- (Beth Miller Hall)
Will reproduce a variety of outerwear from period fashion illustrations and often has ready made items in her store.

Elizabeth Stuart Clark
Offers a number of attractive ladies sacque and paletot styles on her website, to custom order.

Woven Shawls:

Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
Has modern Indian paisley shawls available on her website that are a good approximation of period woven paisley shawls.

Beth's Place -- (Beth Miller Hall)
Carries Russian challis shawls that are a good approximation of period printed paisley shawls and often has antique originals.

Abraham's Lady: (Gettysburg)
Often has period woven paisley shawls that are not in museum condition yet sturdy enough to be used CAREFULLY for reenacting. Also sometimes has vintage, non-antique woolen shawls of the right dimensions for our period. (e.g. ca. 60 in square or 60x180 rectangular to be doubled)

Sontags & Knitted and Crocheted Shawls:

Originals By Kay (Kay Gnagey)
Re-seller for a mother and daughter team of period knitters who offer shawls, sontags and other items.

S&S Sutlery, Gettysburg
Debbie Sheads, the owners wife does beautiful knitting and generally has a good assortment of period-correct hand knitted sontags.

Do it yourself option:
Visit our "
How To" section for a free pattern for a knitted sontag or "bosom buddy"