Who would’ve thought that you could get your dog Civil War era clothing, handmade to be as historically accurate as possible? Stephanie Honodel designs these beautiful works of art, selling them in a store called ‘The Dogs of Gettysburg’ right near the famous battlefield in Pennsylvania.
Honodel started off making fleecy coats for her own hard-to-fit Chihuahua about 15 years ago. Since he was always cold, Honodel tried to find clothing for him. If it was the right size, it was too short. If it was the long enough, it was too big. So she started making his clothing herself. Soon she found people asking her to make clothing for their pets and it turned into a business.
The Civil War themed pet clothes started about five years later, when a history re-enactor asked about making a Confederate general outfit for his miniature Pinscher, Chester. In the years since then, Honodel estimates that she has created a hundred more ensembles, many for Civil War re-enactors, but also people who just love history.
The Dogs of Gettysburg carries a line of ready-to-wear Civil War outfits for dogs with clothing items varying from hats and frock coats in both wool and cotton, as well as treats, beds, and patriotic and flag themed toys and other fun items
Honodol also takes orders for custom-made clothing, usually ranging between $50 to $300. Honodel hopes that someone will commission a Civil War-era ball gown and hat. She also makes clothing for pigs, snakes, tortoises and cats. Although the idea of dressing up your pet seems silly and unnecessary, Honodel sees it as a perfect unison of United States history and personal history.
“My family liked visiting Gettysburg and watching the re-enactments,” she says. “We always had dogs and a Shetland pony, so we were animal lovers. I love meeting new people and creating something they want for their pets that is made with quality fabrics and skillfully.”
Honodel makes clothing for both Confederate and Union animals. Although the Union was victorious in the actual Civil War, Honodel notices a trend that folks prefer buying clothing of the Confederate side.
If you are a fan of U.S. history and love dressing your dog up, check out Dogs of Gettysburg for your Civil War fashion needs.