T-Shirt of the Month November 2018

When I post my video diaries I always get comments about my Laura clothes. No, not my period dresses, but my Laura Ingalls Wilder t-shirts that I wear for travel and Laura trips. I thought everyone might enjoy a closer look at them. So enjoy our monthly series where we look at a Laura shirt.

Shirt of the Month

Here’s this month’s shirt:

Brown shirt tied with twine
Wrapped Shirt from Loftus Store

The Loftus Store always has interesting shirts. Some of my favorites I’ve shared come from there like my tie dyed oh my gosh it’s hot shirt and my silhouette t-shirt. This one comes so cute tied up with twine.

Brown shirt with golden stitching
Embroidered Little Town shirt

I was very glad to get it because it’s the chocolate color I love. I like tan and brown shirts for Laura travel. They are hard to find.

Tan Embroidery of Various Colors
Embroidered Little Town on the Prairie

I especially like that instead of being printed like most shirts, it’s sewn. You can see the stitching a little better at an angle.

Angle Shot of Embroidery
Angle Shot of Embroidery

I think this is the perfect shirt for a fall Laura trip.

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder autI think hority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, look at her photos, and find her on Facebook , Twitter , Google+LinkedIn , SlideShare, and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

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T-Shirt of the Month July 2016

When I post my video diaries I always get comments about my Laura clothes. No, not my period dresses, but my Laura Ingalls Wilder t-shirts that I wear for travel and Laura trips. I thought everyone might enjoy a closer look at them. So enjoy our new monthly series where we look at a Laura shirt each month.

Clothes are one of those things that I once kept as a firm line not to cross as part of my efforts to restrict my Laura collection to a reasonable size. That totally failed when I discovered how great it is to have a Laura t-shirt on when traveling. It really makes it feel like your trip has already started once you get in your car.

Tie Dye Shirt
Tie Dye Shirt

The American Midwest can get very hot during the summer and if you want to wear this kind of Laura clothes your options can be fairly limited. There are t-shirts and sweatshirts aplenty, but not so much super hot weather wear. This extremely lightweight t-shirt is the closet I’ve found. It not only looks pretty, it’s cool and comfortable. The text reads “Laura Ingalls Wilder” with “De Smet, South Dakota” in smaller print.

I got this shirt at the Loftus Store in De Smet, South Dakota. They tend to have the most distinct and unique tops and I always try to stop and check in.

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

T-Shirt of the Month May 2016

When I post my video diaries I always get comments about my Laura clothes. No, not my period dresses, but my Laura Ingalls Wilder t-shirts that I wear for travel and Laura trips. I thought everyone might enjoy a closer look at them. So enjoy our new monthly series where we look at a Laura shirt each month.

Clothes are one of those things that I once kept as a firm line not to cross as part of my efforts to restrict my Laura collection to a reasonable size. That totally failed when I discovered how great it is to have a Laura t-shirt on when traveling. It really makes it feel like your trip has already started once you get in your car.

Loftus Store t-shirt
Loftus Store t-shirt

This is one of the many t-shirts I’ve bought from the Loftus store. They tend to have unique t-shirts and tend to get new designs frequently. Sadly this one isn’t available anymore, but I love the design with the silhouette of the lady sewing with such a lovely background and props. I bought this on my second trip to De Smet which was when I was traveling with my boss from Ushers Ferry to update my program for the Ushers Ferry Girl Scout event. I just think it’s one of my top two prettiest shirts, so I hope you enjoy it.

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Collection

Relic from Graces House

It seems like there is something about Laura Ingalls Wilder’s writing that does compel people to try to find and possess a piece of “Laura World” as Wendy McClure calls it, by collecting physical things. Many of the things the Ingalls Family had were mass produced and therefore it is possible to find and buy the same or extremely similar things to those mentioned in the books and found on display in Laura’s last home in Mansfield, Missouri.

Laura’s Glass Bread Plate (famously featured in The First Four Years), a replica of Laura’s doll Charlotte, sunbonnets (worn on strings trailing down your back), and mounted twigs from the Ingalls Homestead Memorial Site in De Smet are common. Less common but still popular are the other pieces in Laura’s bread plate glassware, her china patterns and assorted knickknacks. My own collection also includes a lot of period things mentioned in the books, like a bullet mold, a butter mold, a Braille slate, autograph albums, etc.

However, I also own things like the relic pictured above. When Grace’s house was torn down some enterprising person connected with the Laura Ingalls Wilder Memorial Society in De Smet got a hold of some boards from the house sawed them up into thin slices and sold them at the gift shop. I also have a hunk of the Loftus Store wall which they also cut into pieces and sold when they cut through to join two store buildings. Plus wheat grown on the Ingalls Homestead and a shingle off Rocky Ridge, sadly this is off the second time they re-did the roof although the roof that was there when Laura was was also sold off a shingle at a time in their gift shop.

What’s the most unusual thing you have in your collection? Or what is still serving as your white whale? Currently I’m looking for just the right bear trap and a set of the character dolls created by California doll maker Barbara Brooks and described by Laura in the only known recording of her voice.

UPDATE: I appreciate the people who commented on the post with things in your collection. I’d have to say the only thing odder I’ve added to my collection is a paperdoll of me as Laura.

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on FacebookTwitterGoogle+,LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. She is currently acting President of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Legacy and Research Association. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Favorite Purchase

Loftus Suspenders
Loftus Suspenders

During my programs, I often point out how dangerous Laura collections are. Once you get to a certain tipping point, it gets harder to justify to yourself why you shouldn’t buy that 9th version of a stuffed Jack. (OK, it gets to be impossible – trust me – it’s an addiction.) That brings me to the point of today’s blog entry. Of all the stuff I got this summer just because I couldn’t bear not to my absolute favorite was this little number from the Loftus Store. It’s miniature mounted suspenders on a cardboard cutout of Pa’s shirt representing the pair that Laura, Carrie, and Ma bought Pa for Christmas in the books. It’s just too cute for words.

1876 Suspenders
1876 Suspenders

The Laura Ingalls Wilder Park and Museum in Burr Oak, Iowa has a pair of flowered suspenders from 1876.They are a good example of the kind of suspenders that the Ingalls women pooled their money to get Pa for Christmas during The Long Winter. This is what they look like.

Feel free to leave a comment with one of your favorite buys or finds.

UPDATED January 1 2017: I added my signature block, made one photo a lot larger, and edited one sentence for clarity.

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on FacebookTwitterGoogle+,  LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.