November 15, 2017

“The Art of Period Dress” At Prallsville Mills

THE ART OF PERIOD DRESS: Professionals will lecture and present hands-on workshops to help participants make elements of 18th century clothing on November 17 and 18 at Prallsville Mills in Stockton. (Photo by Brandyn Charlton)

The Hunterdon County Cultural and Heritage Commission and the Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area together present the second program in the conference series, “The Art of Period Dress.” Popular 1770s clothing lectures and workshops return in “The Art of Period Dress, Part 2,” on November 17 and 18 at Prallsville Mills in Stockton.

The November conference features two days of programming with a lecture each morning and hands-on workshops in the afternoons.

The conference includes two distinct days of programming; participants may register for one or both days. Friday morning’s speaker is Rebecca Fifield, head of collection management for the special collections at the New York Public Library. Her research focuses on the study of indentured and enslaved female labor and their dress as studied through runaway advertisements 1750-90, for which she was awarded a Winterthur Museum fellowship in summer 2013. She has written several articles on this topic, including for the Winterthur Museum and Library, Readex, and Pasold Research Fund’s journal Textile History, and has presented on this topic for Colonial Williamsburg, the American Antiquarian Society, the Costume Society of America, and other organizations.

On Saturday morning, hatter Andrew Kirk, will discuss felt hats and hat making. Kirk has been involved with American Revolutionary War living history since the age of 13. Serving as hatter and artificer for HM 17th Regiment of Foot in America, his interest in reproducing the 18th century material culture of the British Army led to creating reproductions of artifacts for television, film, and museums. Trained as a fine artist and educator at Maryland Institute College of Art, he has been a secondary art teacher in Maryland for seven years.

The afternoon hands-on workshops include several that help participants learn period sewing techniques and go home with a project. They will be hosted by Eliza West, Andrew Kirk, Carrie Fellows, Kirsten Hammerstrom, David Niescior, and Asher Lurie. Afternoon workshops include making a bonnet, fabric identification 101, women’s hair and caps, men’s hats, making a market wallet, making an apron, and getting comfortable with getting dressed 18th century style for men and women. For more information and to register, visit

“The Art of Period Dress, Part 2” takes place from 10 a.m.–5 p.m. on November 17 and 18 at the historic Prallsville Mills in Stockton.