This was standard wear for Eastern woodsmen from the French & Indian War until well after the Revolution. Includes several options for cuffs, cape and fringe treatment. Sizes M, L, XL and XXL.
About Your Straight Dance Suit Pattern
Straight Dancing is a unique style which is easily distinguished
from other styles seen at American Indian pow-wows.
However, unlike pow-wow styles which derive from a social setting,
the originating context of the Straight Dance is the “formal
war dance” ceremonials which are still held today. As care has
been taken to maintain the traditions, so too has the dance style
The Straight Dancer moves with the war dance song in
a graceful and dignified manner, weaving his way along as he
rounds the drum in the center of the arena or dance arbor. This
is a conservative dance, without the spins, fancy footwork, flamboyant
movements, and acrobatics of the Fancy Dancer. While
the Straight Dancer may appear to simply weave and bob gently
in time with the music, these conservative movements are somewhat
difficult to achieve, as they must be carefully coordinated,
remaining in strict time with the song and drum. This graceful
style and smooth, fluid motion often gives the impression that
the dancer is floating effortlessly, just inches above the dance
floor. This is the Straight Dance.
The Straight Dance Suit, or Ribbon Suit, is the foundation
of this regalia, consisting of a pair of aprons, a pair of leggings,
and a dance trailer. These articles are all decorated with multiple
layers of different colored ribbons which are cut, folded and
sewn into beautiful geometric designs. This pattern will show you
how to cut and fit the suit and make the ribbonwork to complete
it. The step-by-step instructions are easy to follow and will help
you create a beautiful and authentic Straight Dance outfit that
you will be proud to wear.
Notions & Tools
Sewing thread, tailors chalk, brass or silver sequins, metallic
fringe, cloth or ribbon for binding the edges of the leggings. White
seed beads in size 11/0 for edgebeading the ribbonwork.
RIBBON: The lengths and widths required will vary based on the number
of ribbons used in the pattern, and this can range from 4 to 13. We
suggest choosing a ribbonwork pattern and colors before purchasing
ribbon. A normal suit will require approximately 4.5 yards of ribbon for
each strip used in the design, plus 4 yards extra for binding the bottom
of the leggings and the sides of the dance trailer. We suggest buying a
little extra for practice and just in case a mistake is made
The Straight Dance Suit should be constructed of a good quality
wool broadcloth, or tradecloth. Ideally this has a rainbow (multicolored)
selvedge edge ranging from three bands of color to as many
as seven. For the ribbonwork, rayon taffeta material or ribbon is preferred
because it will hold a crease when folded to create the designs.