I received these lovely cinctures in the mail today, a gift from Paul of the Communio blog, which you should also read.
Of course a cincture as a liturgical vestment is not the same thing as the cord that forms part of the Franciscan habit, but I couldn't help thinking of one of my favorite quips from the Franciscan tradition, from Salimbene, a chronicling friar in the middle to late thirteenth century. As quoted in Dominic Monti's St. Bonaventure's Writings Concerning the Franciscan Order:
"Salimbene, recounting the lack of discipline in the Order in his youth, remarks: 'Some of these brethren did not even wear the proper cord of the friars, but chose a fancy one with colored threads and intricate knots. And happy was he who thought he had the prettiest one."