The woman and girls made all the clothing. Pioneer clothing was very uncomfortable. The girls had to wear many layers like petty coats, dresses and aprons. They also wore bonnets and high laced boots. The boys often wore trousers with suspenders and plaid shirts. They might have worn straw hats and high laced boots. People would wear fancier clothes to special occasions and parties. Most children only had two outfits. One outfit was for wearing during the week and the other was for "Sunday Best." The Sunday outfit was usually fancier than the weekday outfit. Wealthy parents dressed their children in the latest clothing. The children were dressed a little like their parents. Young boys wore dresses instead of pants until they were four or five years old. Girls never wore pants. Life in the pioneer times was difficult. There were few materials and tools available, and most of the daily life revolved around working the land or preparing basic things for the home. The clothes the pioneer wore were practical and suitable for hard work. Since it was as difficult as it was expensive to make new clothes, extreme care was put into preserving the ones already in existence.
Significance: All the clothing the pioneers wore was made by hand by the woman in the family. Because buying raw material was difficult and expensive, most homes own a spinning wheel and a dye pot so women could process the materials before they sew or knitted the clothing itself. It was also the work of the women to cut the wool off the sheep, carden it (meaning cleaning and straighten it) and spin it. Spinning clothes was so time-consuming that women often did it in groups, turning the chore into a chance to socialize. Types: Depending on the region and the climate of the area, most clothes the pioneers wore were made of wool, linen or cotton. Families grew flax in their own properties, from which linen was eventually made. Preparing the flax required breaking the bark of the...
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