Earlier this summer I visited the little Swedish museum in Vasa, Minnesota, and I remembered I had taken these photos.
.Back in the day, acquiring clothing took a lot of work. First, fiber had to be grown--in Minnesota, that meant flax or wool. Then harvested, spun into thread, andwoven on a loom like this one -- all by hand. If you fancied a color other than beige, dyes had to be prepared and applied from plants you grew for that purpose.
No one saved the ordinary, everyday clothes because they wore them out, but this delicate wedding dress made its way into the museum. It was hand made and worn by Elin Prenn for her marriage to Henry.
Another wedding dress, which was often worn as a "best" dress after the wedding until it fell apart, then found another life in the squares of a quilt.
This was a man's handspun linen nightshirt, a summer one if it was worn in Minnesota, I think. Linen is made from the flax plant, bleached, carded, spun, and finally woven into cloth.
I don't think any of the clothing I saw in the charity shop last night will end up in a museum nearly 200 years later!