About Edine : I’m Edine Godin from Innilgard, Lochac. I’ve been in the SCA since 2006. I’ve previously been a keen fencer and a bit of a sewer. I don’t make myself fancy court clothes very often, preferring lower-class clothing. Now I have a reason to make a ‘dream gown’ for myself, but I haven’t made garb at all for a couple of years and nothing structured for about five, so I’m feeling very rusty! The outfit will be as close to my person’s era and status as I can make it. The deadlines particularly will be a challenge for me as I already have a full plate – but without them, I haven’t been making time to sew. I’m hoping this competition and the community of people supporting and encouraging each other will help re-light my fire of sewing interest and motivation.
Her Project: I will make mid to late 16th century French noblewoman clothes reflecting my persona. Drawers, chemise, and partlet; kirtle in black linen with silk trim; green silk gown, sleeves, and headwear; and jewellery – girdle, necklace, and earrings. I’m basing the outfit off a couple of engravings, with additional portraits for some details. I wanted a gown in my new heraldic colours of vert and argent for a special occasion. I’ve been thinking about a nice court gown for a while but haven’t had a good reason to expend the energy and money towards it, as I’m constantly on a budget for both.
Layers 1 & 2
This month I worked on my underskirt for Layer 2. It is nearly complete, I only need to whip stitch down the front of the waistband and put a fastening on it (hook and eye). The hook and eye can’t be done until I make a pair of bodies. I had someone fit a bodice for me and it became obvious then that I need the full Elizabethan style underpinnings. I will make a pair of bodies and then get fitted again for the over-gown.
If I could do this all over again, I’d seek fitting help for everything, not just the bodice. I would buy a second fold-up trestle table much earlier – having two of them together has made a huge difference to cutting and pinning. I sat down with a friend and made a week-by-week plan to get my outfit done. I’m struggling to juggle sewing and mundane life, so there will be many helpers involved from this point onwards.
About Eleanora: This will be my sixth year in the SCA. I grew up sewing and doing various crafts, though had a long break in using them. Am also learning many new skills in the SCA, and want to challenge myself to learn or use new skills for this challenge. This project will tie in with a challenge I have given myself, portraying a series of women through the ages, making outfits as complete as possible including accessories. Materials will have to be largely those already in the stash, due to financial constraints, which will add another level of challenge. This will basically be my main persona’s Saxon Grandmother. Saxon is not something I would have imagined doing when first joining SCA, but will help to round out the range of periods nicely.
Her Project: Anglo Saxon Late tenth to mid eleventh century gentlewoman. Looking at a number of illustrations to pick ideas. I have challenged myself to try to do at least one full outfit for each hundred years after 1000, too late to enter my half complete 12th century outfit, but this will also work well to have an outfit for a partly Saxon themed event I hope to co-steward next year. This will be my main persona’s Saxon Grandmother, circa 1066. Anglo Saxon is something quite new for me, so this will be a huge learning curve.
11th Century Anglo Saxon upper class (but not royal) ladies underdress Linen chosen in a colour appropriate for second wash madder. Embroidery was to have been silk and gilt on linen, but suitable silk was not available so cotton used. Stitches chosen included Bayeux stitch for the background, stem stitch and chain stitch to outline. The pattern was taken from a handout on Anglo Saxon Embroidery.
Embroidered facings were worked first, then dress cut out. I have made a number of bliauts and viking underdresses before, so use a similar geometric technique, but made the body of the dress a little wider for ease of wear, and altered the sleeves to make them longer, baggy at the top but very narrow over an elongated forearm to allow it to wrinkle/fold up as in contemporary sources. Gores were added to the sides only (three each side, may have been somewhat overkill, but the fabric was there) to maintain the flat fronted appearance. The facing was added by stitching right side of the facing to the wrong side of the dress, cutting and clipping then flipping it to the outside and ladder stitching down (after much pressing and pinning heavily and leaving to settle overnight). All sewing was done by hand, backstitching and faux french (whip stitched after folding) for the seams, and ladder stitch to attach the facings. Hem was folded and whipped after allowing to hang for a few days. I had forgotten to add extra seam allowance to the sleeve facings, so had to insert a piece and stitch down well at the seam. The neck facing is just big enough, but slightly higher than I personally enjoy wearing, so would probably increase it just slightly for a next time. The dress is quite long as per the fashions of the time, but may be taken up at a later date.
High class Anglo Saxon 11th century ladies overdress (Gunna).
Hand sewn from linen. Modified T tunic shape, larger elbow length sleeves and knee length with larger neckline to show underdress. It is very loose fitting as seen in illuminations of the time. Seams done as faux french, whip stitched closed. Neckline and sleeve trim from black silk with goldwork chain stitch embroidery, and embelished with freshwater pearls, carnelians, and turquoise. The pattern was adapted from the edges of the Sutton Hoo Brooch. I chose dragons as they are part of my heraldry. (I had toyed with using peacock pearls to simulate the closed eye of my sleeping dragon, but the price was prohibitive. Likewise the fleur de lis on the underdress is based on my heraldry, although they are argent not teal).
Originally I had planned to also do a wide goldworked front panel and hem trim, as well as embellished medallions with coral, turquoise, carnelian and onyx beading, but unfortunately time constraints and real life dramas prevented this. They are still in progress and will be added to the outfit at a later date.
11th century upper class ladie’s mantle based on manuscripts of the time. Rust coloured wool and purchased trim. Basic rectangular shape, the hardest part is finding the precise point to attach the pin holding it together, so as to allow the mantle to fall in a flattering manner, and also allow it to be quickly pulled up as a self hood in case of sudden inclement weather. Trim hand sewn to wool piece. Was very pleased that it seems on the dummy to sit very much as the illuminations depict. I chose to do a very light mantle as it is summer in my area, and I already own a heavy duty early period cloak.
11th century homespun naalbound ladies hose.
This was my first attempt at naalbinding. I had tried to do this with some dropspun yarn, but it had been spun at a demo and was very uneven and was not working well, so I purpose spun some thicker wool yarn on the wheel (for speed) and that was far more successful. They were each worked as one piece, tubular to the start of the heel, heel plate worked backwards and forwards, then the stitches on the edge picked up (and some skipped) to shape fully. Post construction areas which will have heavier wear (sole and heel plate, back of ankles) and any areas where the yarn seemed thinner were padded out by weaving wisps of underspun fibre through the fabric. The hose were then put on and fulled with the help of a footspa.
Knee length worn with garters were used by ladies in this period, longer hose usually worn by men. I am postulating naalbound hose as these were common in the Viking period, not only amongst vikings, with bias cut cloth used in later centuries, especially after the Norman conquest. At this time knitting was really only practiced in the far to mid east.
While they are not perfect, fulling them made them much better. The most surprising thing about them is how amazingly soft and comfortable they are, and not too hot. There will definitely be a few more pairs made in the future.
Accessories for a high class 11th century Anglo Saxon Lady. It was my plan to have a complete outfit from underwear out totally handmade by me of, as much as possible, period materials and with as period techniques where possible.
Shoes: (first ever attempt) Black leather, pointed, semi turned with a front seam as seen in pictures of men’s shoes of this period. Most illustrations of ladies shoes just show black pointed ones similar to men’s shoes peeking out from under the hem of the dress. Cut in one piece from black leather, stitched with matching linen. Next time I would trust my original patterning (had thought they would be too tight, adjusted and now they are a little loose but should be ok with a felt or suede lining). Learned a lot about using a stitching awl during this! (and thoroughly qualified for the “bleed for it” category).
Enamel Brooch. Done during an A&S class dedicated to enamel brooches, had the teacher cut the shape using an Anglo Saxon pendant cross as the template, made using a modified version of the original cross pattern. First time doing enameling for over 40 years, would love to pick this skill back up again if able to afford the equipment.
Headrail Woven from 20/2 black silk, 300 thread warp 24 inch four shaft table loom. Again another real learning curve, with learning to use a warping board and loom. I had thought the end result a little gauzy, but it has settled well off the loom, and is probably more appropriate for our climate than the welsh black homespun originally pegged for the job. (this will be used with a revamp of the silk warp to weave a second headrail for winter). No respectable older Anglo Saxon lady would be seen without her headrail, and black was one colour repeatedly noted in illuminations of this time.
Garters Inkle woven from Gutterman silk thread, with the addition of a little gilt thread from the embroidery. This is still a relatively new skill for me, and at 80threads to make 8 mm (just over a quarter inch) it was the first time I had attempted anything so fine. Very fiddly and challenging to make, but quite satisfying. I have already bought thread to make some similar as trim for other projects.
Inkle woven belt Again, a relatively new skill. I had hoped to learn tablet weaving to do a silk belt for this outfit, but time forbade it. The first belt I made was approximately 1 inch wide, too wide for a Saxon lady of this time period, so the pattern was adjusted and the second one is around a half inch wide.
Sadly time also prevented the original plan of making pattens to wear with the shoes.
About Eva: I have been in the SCA for almost 10 years now. I like to sew garb in the society but it is not something I do all the time; I also like to knit, do illuminations, and accumulate new hobbies to try. My persona tends to be 12th century onward. I have not completely settled on one time quite yet but this outfit is one for a persona I have considered. This project , despite having done some tudor before will still be challenging. I plan on handsewing this outfit almost entirely. The over-gown is something I have never made before which I will have to pattern and actually really intimidates me.
Her Project: I am going to make an upper class tudor outfit. This outfit is based on portraits of Mary I (1544) & Elizabeth I (1546) from when they were girls. In the past I have created, with much help an outfit for the tudor middle class women. The two outfit have the same shift and kirtle layers but vastly different gowns. My goal for this project is to sew almost everything by hand. I will be adding substitute whale bonesto the kirtle to provide extra stability and structure, which I have not done before.
Knitted Wool socks, late 1500s using a Modern maker knitting pattern. I made some mistake along the way so the socks are not entirely identical/do not follow the pattern exactly. These are the first pair of socks I have completed ever!
About Frieda : well, I and my husband joined a little over three years ago after I had open-heart surgery as a hobby to keep me busy, I have been sewing on and off for over 15 years, not a master. I do show interest in other skills and try to pick them up, but I love sewing. and I really hope to if only at least complete this challenge with a sense of accomplishment, I know that will be huge but I would love to take the challenge and place honestly by I feel that would be great.
Her Project: I am going for mid 14-1500, I believe it is as close as I can get that as possible based on the patterns I was able to purchase. it is a piece I have been wanting to make for a while. I do usually sew by hand so that makes this a very big challenge for me. I plan on making the chemise, underdress, overdress and something completely new to me, I will be making a leather chatelaine belt.
This is the first layer an chemise , with additional chest cover , and bonnet . Was going for 14-15 century. I still have another three full layers. Everything is all hand sewn
My second layer , first one over my chemise , is made with a tan and dark brown layer , i made fabric buttons for the first time . everything is hand sewn like the last layer . i intend on using december to do my final outer layer which is a thinker material great for the winter . like i said before my era is 14-15 century , and i would say my entry is middle class ish
The last sewing layer is to be a jacket or overdress layer , I intended to use this layer in matching with previous one layers
About Johanna: I have been in the SCA off and on for about 20-some years. I have been sewing since I was a child, and enjoy making garb and working in other aspects of the fiber arts. This project is a bit of a stretch for me. In the past, my focus has been on early 14th century western European women’s garb. I have only gained an interest in Ottoman garb in the past year. Although I have been trying to use period techniques as I learn them, my access to completely period materials is limited by my budget. I would love to use the gorgeous brocades and silks that are seen in extant pieces, but this will be a simpler, working man’s outfit. For this project, I am imposing the additional challenge of purchasing as few materials as possible. The fabrics I use will be mostly from what I already own. I have not settled on an accessory layer yet, but I think that it will be in leather working, which I have never done before.
Their Project: I will be working on a 16th century Ottoman man’s outfit. My specific interest is in the Janissaries. The Janissaries were an elite infantry corps in service to the Sultan. I have several extant pieces of garb as well as several illustrations that I am using as inspiration. Several of the extant pieces are in the Topkapi Palace Museum, some were auctioned by Sotheby’s. The illustrations I am looking at are from the late 16th through mid 17th century. Several of them are not specifically of Janissaries, but serve to show the general style of the period. I have been wanting to make an Ottoman outfit for about a year now, since I joined the Osmanli Mehter Takimi (Janissary Band) at Pennsic last year. I had quickly cobbled together an outfit that was suitable to march in, but now that I have studied the period more, I see many flaws. I would like to create a more correct outfit that has the correct layers, is made of the correct fabrics, and completes a more authentic look.
My garment is intended to be suitable for a member of the Janissary, the elite guards of the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, dating to the reign of Suleiman I (1520-1566).
For Layer 1 of my garment, I made a base layer of underpants and an undershirt (gömlek). Extant examples are made of fine linen or cotton. I made the underpants first and made them of linen, and hand sewed them with linen thread. They have a drawstring waist with a linen sash. The long seams were sewn with a back stitch for durability, and felled with a whip stitch. The waistband was folded over, and the bottom edge rolled so that there would be no raw edges. I used a small herringbone stitch to secure this seam. Due to the taper of the legs, the leg seam was left open a bit at the ankle, and the bottom hem is finished with a rolled edge.
The gömlek is made of cotton, and is hand stitched with cotton thread. I used cotton rather than linen because I had it on hand, and I was intending for this to be a rough draft, and to make a final copy in linen. However, since it fit well, I went ahead and completed it for the competition. The pattern is based off extant gömleks that have the sleeves and gores all in one piece. Long seams are backstitched, felled with whip stitch. The keyhole neckline and hems are finished with a rolled edge.
About Lianor: I have been part of the SCA in Lochac for 5 years. I was originally drawn to Equestrian. And led me to an interest in 16th century Iberian culture. I love the aesthetics of the period. But my lack of Spanish language skills have made research harder. I have a good level of modern sewing skills, and one of things I’ve enjoyed in the SCA is translating this into historic skills. This project will be pushing me to improve my research skills and pattern drafting. I really enjoy hand sewing and detail, but I know I will have to comprise on my decisions to met the deadlines.
Her Project: My project is inspired by the portraits of Juana de Austria, Particularly the 1552/53 portraits by Juan Pantoja de la Cruz & Cristobal de Morales. Very much a royal portrait, it is assumed to be her wedding clothes. The third (outer) layer will be drawn from later portraits or images from the period. Mid to late 16th Century Iberian is a culture that I have researching for the last 2 years. And this challenge is giving me a reason to create this outfit that I have kept coming back to over the last 2 years.
Her final thoughts on her C3 experience:
I’m so pleased to have taken part in this challenge. It pushed me along to get something a bit special done, at a time when there wasn’t much motivation. I’ve so enjoyed the enthusiasm of fellow challengers, and loved seeing the range of things that were created and lessons learnt. I pushed myself to improve my pattern drafting and tailoring techniques. And I feel a lot more comfortable with the techniques now, and I can really see the value in the end result. Overall, I’m proud of what I produced.
My project is based on the portrait of Juana de Austria by Coello. Juana was daughter to Charles V of Spain, the portrait is thought to show her wedding clothes from 1552. The high status garment shows features typical of Iberian high status clothes, constructed of costly black silk velvet. Complex tailoring and structural under layers. Layer 1 is the base layer, and would have been similar to layers worn by most levels of society at the time in terms of construction and function. The difference would have been choice of fabric.
The Chemise is linen, and constructed using basic rectangles and squares for efficient use of fabric. Drafted myself from my measurement. As the chemise is unseen in this portrait, I have left it unembroidered. The unseen seams are machine sewn for speed, but seams and hems are hand finished so no machine stitching is visible.
Faldellin – half circle petticoat is worn over the top and is the first support layer for the skirts. The pattern is drafted using instructions from Matthew Gnagy – based on Alcega’s tailoring manual of the period and culture. The fabric is light weight wool blend, the slight wide pinstrip is not noticable in the made up garment. And it was choice for coolness and access – the right wool can be hard to source. The under hem is a heavy wool / synthetic blend felted fabric – similar to melton, that was in my stash. The trim is a tightly woven synthetic taffeta, silk taffeta would have been the ideal choice but I couldn’t find a really tightly woven silk in my budget in time.
This was the first time I had made one of these skirts and I’m really happy with the results. The hem treatment is really effective, adding a significant amount of structure to the garment. The bara tape draft was easy and being based on proportions it was a flattering cut. I also learnt to love my thimble and got a lot faster with my hand sewing. I think I got a better feel for the handsewing approach a tailor of the period would have taken.
My project is based on a portrait of Juana of Austria dated 1552/53. It reflects Spanish court fashion of the mid 16th Century.
This is a supportive structural layer, critical to achieving the correct shape for the outer layer. It includes a spanish farthingale – Verdugado de Seda & Pair of low necked bodies – Cuerpo Baxo. Both based on patterns found in period tailors manuals. And both patterns have been drafted using the barra tape method, which is the 16th C technique based on body proportions.
The farthingale base is synthetic silk for budget reasons, channels and tapes in linen, and natural cane which I bound together for strength. I had some problems getting the shape right for the farthingale. I had expected to get a very smooth skirt, but the draft required me to gather and adjust around the canes. Once I had decided to use my judgement to make the shape right, it worked better. Using cane was tricky and I had many experiments to get the right weight and joining shorter pieces together.
The low neck bodies have an internal structure of heavy and hair canvas, with additional layers of wool and hair canvas to the front. All layers were pad stitched together, which stiffened and gave it a curved shape. I then added linen lining and top layers. It is side back laced on both sides. Because the fit was critical, a lot of time was spent checking and fitting but this was worth the effort.
The end result is very supportive, but more comfortable than bodies with canes / reeds / bones. And is appropriate for the period of the portrait.
I’m happy with the end result, and think it has given me a good base for the next layer.
This was my outer bodice, skirt and sleeves for a 16th Century Spanish court gown. Based on a portrait of Juana of Austria 1552. Main fabric is a black cotton velveteen, with hair canvas and wool felt / melton for support and a black and gold brocade for trim. The shape of this outer layer is only possible with the support layers underneath. But still required tailoring techniques such as pad stitched and supported hems. The amount of machine stitching was minor compared to the hand stitching with all the tailoring, trims and hand finished hems.
This was the first time I have produced a separate skirt and bodice that is tied together. I was a bit unsure about it, but it works really well and I can see me doing this more often in the future.
The sleeves are layered, with a plain two pieced curved sleeve, and a paned short sleeve over the top, bound together at the top.
Construction didn’t cause me any particular problems, but it probably took longer than I anticipated.
I plan to make some additional items after the challenge to better mirror the original portrait.
My accessory is a painted heraldic banner. It includes my personal heraldry and motto, which reflects my interest in 16th Century Iberian culture. It also compliments the gown I’m constructing – so I figured it would work for the final composition. Its heavy cotton plain weave, painted with fabric paints, and bound in black bias.
I chose a gonfalon shape, as it is versatile for display. And the chevron of my heraldry could also be mirrored in the hem.
About Lynn: I have been in the SCA about 15 years and sewing for about 60. I constantly add to my skills with each new project. On this one I will be learning or improving on weaving, tablet weaving, embroidery, glass beads, metal work, and wood carving. Each new skill is challenging.
Their Project: Viking based garb with accessories based on my interpretation of historical finds. 9th century. Under shift, apron, head ware, Hedeby bag, and apron adornments.
Their final thoughts on their C3 experience:
Loved doing this.. Seriously reinforced the skills I already had and improved ones I am just starting in.
This is a 9-10th century Viking Chemise. Hand sewn using linen and silk thread with seams encased to prevent fraying There are several modifications of the standard early tunic pattern. I did modify this to decrease the should width or it would have hung down to almost my elbows. I have found other modificatiions that accomplish this and would loke to try those next time.
9-10th century Viking dress tunic This would have belonged to a wealthier lady due to the colors used and the amount of embroidery. Again would like to try another modification of the pattern next go around..I was extremely pleased at the fit and how this one turned out.. Next step…Weaving the linen and hand dying it.
9 to10th century Viking apron and cover.. Would have belonged to a wealthier woman due to color and amount of embroidery..I put lot of thought into making this layer . On seam treatments and choice of embroidery patterns and tablet weaves. I am completely pleased with how this turned out.. If I didnot live in Florida would have loved to embroider and make an outer cape or cloat for next project.
I completed a Hedeby bag as an accessory for my Viking outfit. I cut out the handles using finds from Birka for inspiration. I then carved the wood handles with a design found on a sword scabbard in Valsgarde, Sweden. I wove a 2/2 wool twill on a 3 heddle loom for the body of the bag. Next I wove a wool tablet weave in missed hole technique from 10th century Birka for the shoulder strap and trim for the bag. This Hedeby is Viking in origin. Used for wide period around the tenth century by all classes. This was the first time I have done wood carving so that was a little painstakingly done. The weaving I have done a couple of times and still hope to improve my skills.
Additional Viking accessories. Viking woman wore their wealth so even more accessories could be added. I made lampwork glass beads using period designs to add to the front of the apron..I also made a leather flask hand tooled with a heraldic dragon..
About Malkin: I have been involved in the SCA for 39 years. I am not a regular seamstress though I do enjoy it. I am a Rapier fighter, a former heavy fighter and an avid Helgaball player. Owen and I recently stepped down from our tenure as Baron and Baroness and we focused the tenure around a nautical theme.
Her Project: I am planning a reproduction of the Magellan portrait from an extant painting. It is a new idea specifically for this competition.
Her final thoughts on her C3 Experience: The project started as a Portuguese outfit completely hand sewn.Friend Praxilla was invited to the order of the Laurel and I made the English Gentlemens Full Wardrobe so that he could help on camera for the virtual elevation. I couldn’t do both. I’m still working on Owen’s Portuguese Clothes but not for the C3. The underwear and hat were hand-sewing along with a pair of stockings that would not fit the second set. Patterns were an adaptation of the Margo Anderson pattern series adapted for a man who stands 6’5″ tall. All fabrics were chosen by the recipient except the cloak pin. The stained glass cloak pin was a gift for the recipient for being so cool about the whole thing.
Hand-sewing linen skivvies and undershirt layer. This layer has been delayed because the intended recipient couldn’t decide what kind of cuffs he wanted.
Maroon velvet doublet lined in gold colored cotton . Lining is hand-stitched to emphasize chest and shoulders and deemphasize midsection. Sleeves are straight insert with 18 buttons each sleeve and 14 down the front. Trousers are single flap button’fly
Outerwear. Grey velvet cape lined with black linen and two ‘flat hats’, one lined in gold and the other lined in blue. The hat lined in gold is machine sewn, the hat lined in blue is hand sewn.
3″ diameter cloak/hat pin made using leaded glass techniques in red and gold glass.
About Mikhaila: My SCA name is Mikhaila von Dhaun and I am a second genner. I have been sewing my own garb for about 15 years and have been wanting to completely hand sew an outfit for a while. This gives me a good reason to sew this Anglo-Saxon outfit, especially being made up of fairly geometric shapes. I sew regularly. I have slowly been gaining more comfort and confidence with my own abilities. My persona is German, but I was born in England near an Anglo-Saxon Village in Suffolk called West Stow. I thought this would be a good explanation for why my German person was in England.
Her Project: I will be aiming to make an outfit that fits within the same time period as the Anglo-Saxon village that I was born near, West Stow, 420-650 AD. As I am unsure if I will be able to find extant examples all from one place, I plan to construct pieces using information from Germany and England, possibly Middle or Merchant class. I hope that by bringing together this combination of extant items, I will be able to make up an outfit that would have been worn within the bounds of viability for West Stow.
Her final thoughts on her C3 Experience:
I appreciate the opportunity to push myself by producing this outfit completely by hand and researching the pieces that would make a plausible outfit of this time period, culture and place.
I would like to state that I chose to recreate the wrist clasps and bands from Lincolnshire as they were not out of the realm of possibility for a merchant to have purchased a set on their travels to purchase things to sell back home.
This layer contains: an early period linen underdress sewn by hand with linen thread and a linen strophium, hemmed with linen thread. I failed to complete a pair of underpants and socks due to some research difficulties.
This layer contains a wool overtunic sewn by hand with linen thread, a set of Anglo-Saxon wrist clasps (based on a set from Lincolnshire, cut out, stamped and bent from brass sheet) embedded on leather bands (sewn with linen thread). I also forged a brass penannular pin to close the slit of the keyhole neckline.
This layer contains a linen peplos-style dress (hand seamed and hemmed in linen thread) with a set of brass fibula pins that I forged to hold it together at the shoulders. I failed to finish a linen tablet woven belt in time due to some technical difficulties.
Based on an Anglo-Saxon spiral bracelet from Tuddenham, Suffolk between 410-649AD. I made it from purchased strip brass, which I sawed to length, annealed, stamped and bent into shape.
About Tellina: I’m known as Tellina di Guiseppe da Fiesole. I live in the Barony of Rivenoak in the Principality of Cynagua in the Kingdom of the West. I’ve only been playing for about three years. I currently serve as baronial exchequer and prima consortia (baronial head of court). I do a small amount of costuming, but generally I’m generally known as a cook. In cooking I also prefer to focus on the Italian peninsula.
Her Project: My area of interest is 1450-1470 Florence. I’m particularly inspired by the paintings of Piero della Francesca, so I intend to create an outfit based on his paintings. Clothing depicted in his paintings generally consists of a camicia (shift), gamurra (kirtle type dress) and giornea (sleeveless overdress) or cioppa (sleeved overdress). I’m not exactly certain what the accessory will be, but I’ve been eyeing belts.
Update: I’ve updated my plan and inspiration since the website profile was created, so I’ll no longer be taking as much inspiration solely from the paintings of Piero della Francesca, but will focus on aspects of dress appropriate for travel in inclimate weather including hallmarks of pilgrim dress still appropriate to somewhere between 1450-1480 Tuscany.
Her Final Thoughts on the Challenge:
I was very pleased having everything on, although if I plan to wear it in the snow again, I’m gonna need to make a hood. The surprising win for me was the totally unplanned bag made from my leftover sleeve material, it’s incredibly convenient.
I’m working on an outfit appropriate to my later half of the 15th century Florentine persona had she gone on pilgrimage. Under pinnings are not widely depicted in my little window of time/place (okay, not for women anyways). It’s reasonably clear that women wore both camicia and calze, as they can be glimpsed at the neckline and hem. In the particular period I’m looking at ~1450-1480 it does not appear that shifts are yet gathered at the neck nor particularly voluminous at the sleeves, and there is some earlier and later evidence of gored construction, so that’s what I opted for. My shift was 100% hand sewn in linen cloth. The calze (stockings), again lacking extant garments or tremendous detail, I looked slightly further and based my seam placement in a german stocking depiction. The stockings had machine structural seams and hand finishing. They are made of wool.
My outfit is appropriate to a mid-15th century pilgrim from Florence. My main inspiration was a fresco from the 1480s, so I chose some specifically 1450s-1470s features for the gamurra (kirtle). The dress is made of wool and features a puffed sleeve shape common to women is the mid-15th in the Italian peninsula (this shape remained in fashion for men much longer). I had wanted matching sleeves, but made an error in calculating yardage, so I went with a contrasting sleeve. Contrasting plain sleeves seem to be more common outside of Florence in this time period, but pilgrims are by nature travelers. The dress is hand sewn, and between the front and side lacing has 98 eyelets. The other thing that went wrong was that it was initially too long waisted, so I detached the skirt and moved it up an inch and half.
This is a short mantel similar to the one featured in the inspiration fresco. Over Zoom I played around and we realized the proportions of my skirts were very similar, so this is essentially a skirt on a band. It’s is made of slightly heavier wool and hand sewn. In the fresco it’s hard to tell if there is a front opening, but I rather liked it without.
Pilgrims need hats! While the inspiration had a shorter brimmed hat, I’ve opted for a bycocket because it will keep rain off my glasses. There are bycockets in my 1460s inspiration frescos. The hat was made by wet felting roving, I then dyed it using acid dyes, shaped it and added pewter cast badges. The badges were sand cast, however in period they would likely have used soapstone moulds. The designs are based on extant badges to scale. The purse is admittedly not a pilgrim badge (possibly a professional badge), but it’s so cute.
Pilgrims also need bags! From the scraps of the sleeve material, I fashioned a bag on the commonly depicted trapezoidal shape, it’s also adorned with pewter cast badges.