It's the early 19th-century equivalent of a clip-on tie. I added a strap and stock buckle from my collection, and two folded strips sewn at one end. Some of the original stocks I've looked at have bows or knots stitched to the front (even backwards tails proving they weren't tied so much as built from pieces.) I'm going to leave this one loose so I can change it as the mood strikes me. It feels like a neck corset, and I can actually see stars if I hold my head the right way.
Here is something cool for all you 18th century Northerners and Francophiles as the temperature drops:
Comfy and practical, straight from Mr. Diderot. He says these Chausson were knitted from wool or linen thread by Canadians, or made from cloth. The pattern looks like this:
I was turned on to these by a friend who has a fantastic site on 18th-century Native culture here. Check it out if you have any interest in the frontier and honoring the history of the people who were here before us. Next time, construction details of a simple 18th century great coat, perhaps the first time I have worked on winter clothes during winter. Meanwhile, tying a barrel knot is much easier if you aren't wearing it: