One of my favorite things about running Redthreaded is the opportunity for collaboration with amazing businesses and people. That so many of these ventures are run by women just makes it better. Last week, we were fortunate to do a photoshoot with a group of women with a passion for history at the Van Cortlandt House Museum in the Bronx, NY.
Cheyney McKnight is the extraordinary woman behind Not Your Momma's History. Through her programming, lectures, and reenactment, Cheyney is working to improve the representation and understanding of enslaved and free African history in the United States. Cheyney's research into 18th and 19th century African clothing and material culture is bringing awareness to an often overlooked aspect of dress history.
We believe in her mission and have been fans of her work for a long time (psst, she has a Patreon), so we were beyond pleased when Cheyney agreed to model our corsets for us for a shoot. She provided all styling and accessories based on her own research, including headwraps from Burnley & Trowbridge.
Photographer Lindsey Mullholand of Lindsey Loves History captured Cheyney beautifully.
The staff at Van Cortlandt House was incredibly accommodating. Museum Director Laura Carpenter Meyers has a clear passion for this home and for early American history, and we are so thankful to her for sharing that with us.
The fieldstone house sits surrounded by shade trees at the edge of an expansive and lush green field. It is the oldest surviving structure in The Bronx, built in 1749. It was used by Washington, Rochambeau, and Lafayette during the Revolutionary War.
The home has been wonderfully preserved with accurate furnishings and thoughtful restoration. The 21st century slips away as you walk through the doors and step onto the wide, worn floorboards. It feels real, because it is. The entire setting was a welcome and quiet afternoon respite after a boisterous week in modern Manhattan.
The Van Cortlandt House Museum is absolutely worth a visit if you're in the area. Incredibly, this bit of history sits right at the end of the 1 train!
Cheyney modeled custom front lacing stays in green wool, nearly fully boned with synthetic whalebone, our 1860's gored corset in custom fabric, and our new strapless back lacing synthetic whalebone stays in a standard size.