Project image
)}
$2,117
pledged of $3,300pledged of $3,300 goal
50
backers
13days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, September 7 2019 3:59 AM UTC +00:00.

$2,117
pledged of $3,300pledged of $3,300 goal
50
backers
13days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, September 7 2019 3:59 AM UTC +00:00.

About

Interpreting Servants' Work in Providence, RI
Interpreting Servants' Work in Providence, RI

Since 2011, I've been researching and re-creating historical clothing, blogging about living history, and material culture as Kitty Calash. I analyse and explain primary sources using my background in art history, and decades of experience working with historical collections of objects, images, and documents in museums. This research is behind all of the bonnets, accessories, and patterns I make-- and people love what I make

“[the bonnet] is absolutely GORGEOUS (I audibly gasped when I saw the photos). It's just what I was looking for.”

“Well researched pattern with very easy-to-follow directions. Thank you!”

“Beautiful workmanship and a wonderful artist to work with. Patient and understanding with a true eye for period aesthetics.”

“Stunningly beautiful, well made, perfect for reenactment.”

This year, I formally launched the KItty Calash Clothing Company. I sell historical clothing and accessories on Etsy and privately. I also teach workshops based on my patterns, and now I want to create more patterns. I can fill the gaps in everyone’s wardrobe, while also making the right clothes for those want them, but can’t sew their own. 

Pattern One: Lined Bed Gown in Sizes A-G
Pattern One: Lined Bed Gown in Sizes A-G

I’m currently developing a quilted waistcoat pattern in multiple sizes with illustrated instructions for making up in matelasse, pre-quilted silk, and hand-quilted versions. I strive for clear, easy to understand instructions with good photography. 

Excerpt from the Bed Gown Instructions
Excerpt from the Bed Gown Instructions
Pre-quilted Sillk and Hand-Quilted Wool Waistcoats
Pre-quilted Sillk and Hand-Quilted Wool Waistcoats

My patterns are multi-sized paper patterns, printed on 36” x 48” sheets by a professional pattern printing company. The waistcoat fills a need and will be the only one on the market. 

In Production (slowly)
In Production (slowly)

My goal was to have this pattern release by mid-September, but working a part-time job and keeping up with commissions is delaying development.  

My part-time job consumes hours that I could spend working to put patterns and new bonnet designs into your hands much faster. The more patterns I can sell, the more I can prototype new designs. I need to focus exclusively on Kitty Calash.

With three months of expenses and production costs covered, I can focus exclusively on costuming work to ramp up production and increase what I can offer.  With $3300, I can devote my time to creative work, and scale my business to offer more variety,  teach more workshops, and dress more of you!

Cost Breakdown by Type
Cost Breakdown by Type

Three months of research and design will benefit more than just women! Men’s and children’s clothing and patterns are also in the works. The amount I need to raise will cover my fixed costs, as well as the material costs of designing, testing, and producing two new patterns. I want to be available for consultations as well. Fabric choices, fitting, and persona development round out the services I can offer.

Personal Fitting a Speciality
Personal Fitting a Speciality

I'm asking you to be my backers, My first pattern, a bedgown, proved very popular and easy to use. I want to create a line of common garment patterns so people can dress for winter, and represent a wider variety of clothing seen in the colonies.  

Quilted Hood-- pattern to come
Quilted Hood-- pattern to come

In addition to the quilted waistcoat underway now, other patterns include:

  • Quilted hood with capelet pattern (early access and 25% off for higher level backers) 
  • Mantelet in two sizes, for several seasons (suitable for wool or silk)
  • Early Federal bibbed or strapped apron
  • The ‘Pabodie’ Cap, based on a Rhode Island portrait
  • Quilted capote bonnet ca 1810 based on New England examples
  • Men’s banyans and work caps
  • Men’s 19th century neck stocks and under garments
  • Children’s clothing
The 'Pabodie' Cap: inspiration and prototype
The 'Pabodie' Cap: inspiration and prototype

I’ll also be developing “learn to sew” kits for newcomers, providing materials and instructions for useful items that teach basic stitches and result in an appropriate accessory, like a wallet, housewife, pincushion, or pair of pockets. 

The "Mrs Ogee" bonnet in a custom color,  based on a 1776 print at the British Museum.
The "Mrs Ogee" bonnet in a custom color, based on a 1776 print at the British Museum.

Even more importantly for you, I can make more things for clients! I'll also be able to prototype new bonnet designs for the late 18th and early 19th century--work that has stalled. More designs mean more variety, allowing you to stand out from the crowd. 

Click for a Digital Intro to 18th Century Housekeeping
Click for a Digital Intro to 18th Century Housekeeping

“Being” Kitty Calash full time will also allow me to resume writing my blog, continue teaching weekend workshops, and even resume attending or helping to plan your events! I can make that special weekend happen for your unit or historic site. I can script scenarios for civilians and military, and provide research and roles for the participants. Your pledge will help me help you bring history to life. 

About Kirsten Hammerstrom:

My grandmother, Elsa, ran a dress shop in Western New York state for 50 years, dressing the women of Jamestown to look and feel their fashionable best. She taught me to sew during summer vacations, and I've been sewing ever since. I graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1989 with an MFA in sculpture, but the work I did there reflected on the American past, mythology, and iconography-- you could say I used history as my subject matter then, and I use it as my medium now. My RISD education taught me a variety of skills: problem solving, how to make a lot of different objects, research, connections, and art history. 

My subsequent career in museums, libraries, and historical societies brought me into direct contact with historical collections, primary sources documents, and the wealth of material culture documenting American history. 

Living history and historical costumes have combined my two loves: art, and history, into a practice that allows me to undertake site-specific, historically-based immersive experiences while helping people prepare for those events with research, clothing, and patterns. Meeting my Kickstarter goal will boos tmy abilities to practice my craft and increase the value I offer to the historical and museum community.

Risks and challenges

The biggest challenge? Time and reach! While I have a total of some 3,000 followers across social media platforms, there is overlap. Getting the first pattern out in October depends on being able to start working full time on patterning and sewing in mid-September.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Make a pledge without a reward

    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Personal Hand-Written Thank You

    Who doesn't love real mail? $5 gets you a hand-written thank you note on a special Kitty Calash note card.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    1 backer
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Personal Thank You & Blog Shout-Out

    Get a hand-written thank you on a Kitty Calash card and a shout out on the supporter page of the Kitty Calash blog.

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    7 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Early Release Pattern!

    The very next pattern in my line! Currently underway, this is a multi-size pattern for a woman's quilted waistcoat with instructions for making up in matelasse, pre-quilted material, or hand-quilting. Based on original examples, this garment is worn under a gown to keep you warm in winter. Get it a week before it posts to my Etsy shop!

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    • Early Release Pattern
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited (53 left of 75) 22 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Pattern plus 25% off the next Pattern

    In addition to the quilted waistcoat pattern, get a coupon code for 25% off the next pattern I release (probably a mantelet in 2 sizes, adaptable for silk or wool).

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    • Early Release Pattern
    • 25% Off the Next Pattern
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited (65 left of 75) 10 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    All That and a Personal Skype Consult!

    In addition to the items above, get a one-hour Skype consultation with me to go over your impression, talk about details, interpretations and items you'd like to add, and how to strategize improvements. I can take a look at garment fit, talk about what your goals are, and help you figure out who you want to be in the past.

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    • Early Release Pattern
    • 25% Off the Next Pattern
    • Skype Consultation
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited (5 left of 5) 0 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $175 or more About $175

    The Mini-Bonnet Option

    Get the pattern, a discount, and a mini-bonnet suitable for an 18" doll (like Felicity). Only a limited number of these are available! Designed and hand-crafted by me, based on period images and the full-sized bonnets that are one of my signature items, your doll (or office, or Christmas tree, or rear-view mirror) will have the most authentic miniature head covering possible.

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    • Early Release Pattern
    • 25% Off the Next Pattern
    • Mini-Bonnet: Doll-Sized 1770s Black Silk Bonnet
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited (4 left of 5) 1 backer
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    Consultation & Blog Post

    Everything above (early release pattern, a discount and a Skype consultation) PLUS a blog post on a question you want answered (and I think I can answer!). Patterns will drop in early October 2019 and Skype consultations will be scheduled at our mutual convenience. A blog post will take a little longer, depending on the research and how many I have to do, but I'll do my best to get them out by the end of the year.

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    • Early Release Pattern
    • 25% Off the Next Pattern
    • Skype Consultation
    • Blog Post!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited (5 left of 5) 0 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Shopping Trip in PHL or NYC

    All the swag plus a one-day fabric shopping and consultation trip to the garment district in either Philadelphia or Manhattan. You pay your own transportation costs, but I'll meet you in either city and take you to my favorite fabric shops to help you search for (and hopefully find!) fabric for your next historical project. We can talk in person about your historical sewing goals, and, if there's time, visit a museum to check out inspiration in costumes or images. (Does not include the Skype consultation; you pay transportation and meal costs only for yourself. Trip must be scheduled a minimum of 4 weeks in advance, preferably on a weekday as many shops are closed on weekends. Schedule before the end of April 2020.)

    Includes:
    • Hand-written personal thank you note on a Kitty Calash card
    • Shout Out on the Kitty Calash blog
    • Early Release Pattern
    • 25% Off the Next Pattern
    • Blog Post!
    • Shopping Trip, NYC or PHL
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited (1 left of 1) 0 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.