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February 27, 2006

Lure Coursing

Otto chasing the lure at Estrella XXII.
While at Estrella XXII we had the chance to run our whippet Fenris. He did a stella job on the course. We're very interested in starting lure coursing in the West.

Interesting links:
How to Build A Lure Machine
Lure Coursing with Jack Russell Terriers

February 23, 2006

Quick&Dirty Peri-oid pants

This is it. This is my instructions for quick and dirty peri-oid pants that seem to fit everyone. Granted, I've only made about 4 pairs of these.. and each time I make a pair the pattern evolves a little bit... but they're getting close to passible. They're tons better than sweats and jeans.

  • These will yield a pair of pants that are relatively comfortable and resemble "period" pants for those who don't know anything about actual "period" pants.
  • The front is shorter than the back.
  • Measurements are in inches, include seam allowance, and a waist band of 3 inches. For those of you who think in centimeters.. 1 cm ~= 1/2 inch (If I did the conversions for you I'd just mess it up).
  • I use flat-fell seams throughout. It make sense to me and goes together nicely.

Cut out two rectangles that are 56 inches by 40 inches each. These will be the two legs.

Fold these so that it makes each leg 56 inches long by 20 inches wide.

Cut each leg as indicated at the right. Remember, the front is shorter than the back.. so only the front will have a 4 inch triangle removed from it.

Flat-fell all the seams. You can make these with or without a gusset. For fighting pants (or yoga) I recommend adding a gusset. My honey informs me that 10 inches for the gusses is a bit huge... Use your best judgement. I wouldn't go any smaller than 5 inches square.

Add a drawstring. I ususally encase this in the waist seam. Be sure to make the string itself longer than 80 inchs. That way it won't disapper back into the casing.

I made this pattern up. I haven't finished researching actual period pants to say how close/far this is from anything they might actually have worn. Adjust the measurements/sewing instructions, gusset however makes you happiest. Have fun.

February 22, 2006

Wedge Tent

In July 2005 I finally published my instructions for How to make a wedge tent.

Here's a couple of backup, historical links to go with those instructions.

1479, Wedge tents scattered among round and cabin tents. This actually dates a wedge tent to much later than I thought.

That said, these seem to be much shorter and have a much wider pitch then the ones I make.


Old Firepit
Purchased from DragonWing Pavilions
I want a new firepit... calling it a firepit is misleading... I want a mobile cooking station that could accomodate a 30-50 person feast without need of a feast kitchen (or something that can compliment a feast kitchen).

For some reason cooking at event is one of the things that really excites me about the SCA. The potential of creating an authentic experience of the middle ages with food just does it for me. That and I'm supposed to cook a feast in November (2006) and I won't have an on-site kitchen. Somehow the idea of serving spit-roasted venison with furmenty cooked in a cauldron over an open fire really makes me happy.

The general idea is to take this:
(uber-spif off-the ground cooking setup)

and combine it with this:
(Full pig cooker: 12" wide, 44" long, 24" deep))

and this:
(hooks up sides of legs to accomodate spits and space
for hanging cauldrons)

Something like this except with a "belly" for pig roasting.
Seen in pictures from Estrella War XXII




Ideally this would also be something that would break
down/pin together so it can be stored flat/travel
well. ... hell, while we're at it, it should do my taxes and wash windows too.

February 21, 2006

Bread Trenchers

Washing dishes is a sucky camp duty. It's an icky job and it's not terribly fun.. and there are about a hundred other things you'd rather be doing at event.

After this last Estrella (2006) my camp suggested we start using paper plates.

Outside of the SCA I hate paper plates, they're wasteful. Inside of the SCA I hate paper plates. They're not period and they're wasteful. But they did have a point. Paper plates can be burned and eliminate the "doing dishes" part of the meal.

After mulling this over for a long while I proposed that we should start using bread trenchers at event. It's still wasteful.. but more period than paper plates. They seem amiable to the idea. Now I just need to work out the logistics.

This topic is to gather trencher ideas.. and to document how it all works out.

From http://www.florilegium.org/files/FOOD-BREADS/trenchers-msg.html

Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2000 18:42:00 EST
From: Bronwynmgn at aol.com
Subject: Re: SC - Trenchers Oh my!

stefan at texas.net writes:
<< So, what recipe did you use when you made these trenchers and how did
they work out? So far, no one has been able to relate to me whether
they got soggy and were a total mess, whether they soaked up all the
juice and thus left nothing for the food, whether they collapsed in
folks laps or table or just what. >>

I worked out a recipe from Bear's suggestions about using only flour, water,
yeast, and salt, and relative proportions from my breadmaker book. The
current recipe for a 1.5 lb loaf is:

1.75 cups water
3.33 cups + 2.5 Tbsp whole wheat flour
1.25 tsp salt
1.5 tsp bread machine yeast, or 2 tsp regular yeast.

The odd measurements are due to trying to get the dough to the right
consistency. For some reason, this seems to be much more senstive to
atmospheric moisture that regular bread dough, so I nearly always have to
adjust something.

I usually make them either the Tuesday or Wednesday before a weekend event,
and let them sit on the counter until we are ready to pack, at which point
they go into a muslin bag, tied shut. We have learned that it is best to cut
them after only a day or two of drying; a saw would work better than a bread
knife if you leave it till the last minute. I have been making them in the
bread machine (normal loaf shape, not round), so we slice them into 3 or four
sections from the top down, and usually discard the top because it tends to
be very lumpy. We have used two side by side for most feasts, and have not
needed to use the "spare". Of course, anything really soupy goes in the
wooden bowl anyway ;-) We have not had any problems with them getting too
saturated, or falling apart; they mostly just tend to leave crumbs everywhere!

Brangwayna Morgan

"country man's gloves" - 3 fingered medieval gloves

A couple years ago I decided to goto Estrella. I'd been told it was frightfully cold so I figured I'd need gloves to keep my hands warm. A short amount of research found a pattern for "3-fingered workman gloves". I fiddled with the pattern for a while and then finally sewed a pair from some bunny skins I had in my random-stuff box.

In retrospect it probably would be more correct to use lamb/sheep skin. The bunny fur is nice but a bit thin. That, and my honey is a bit "weirded out" about holding my hand when it's inside an inside-out dead bunny.

I've also made a pair of these out of a nice thick wool.

Evidence of Gloves from the 12th to the 16th Centuries
3 Fingered gloves, Marc Carlson