My step up outfit is my current best interpretation of Kentish Dress Style IV with a few caveats.
6th century Kentish finds are from burials. For the most part the fabric has rotted away except where it’s in close proximity to metals (brooches, brocaded tablet weaving, swords, weaving swords). This leads to the need to extrapolate the garments based on very little actual evidence.
Dress Style IV, as described by Penelope Walton Rogers consists of “a garment with a vertical front opening clasped by two brooches, one at the throat the other centre-chest, and worn with a buckled belt” (Dress Style III) with “the addition of a front-opening coat or jacket on top. The coat/jacket was fastened by a pair of crossways bow brooches, either at the waist or immediately below, the jacket being worn outside the belt” (Dress Style IV)
Fitted, self-supportive (ie, not bra underneath). Short sleeved, waisted. Front opening. Bodice will have two layers of linen, skirt will have one layer of linen. Square necked. Edges bound. Silk sleeves tied in at the shoulder.
At West Kingdom October Crown, on October 3, 2015 directly after my apprenticing to Master Leo Diogenese as a lady-at-arts, while the ink was still wet on our chirograph contract, Their Majesties of the West, Miles Fitzraulf and Ariela Bar Leila invited me to join the order of the Laurel. By the gracious permission of Their Majesties and Their Royal Highnesses I had my Laurel ceremony at West Kingdom Golden Beltane at Their Majesties Mark and Patricia’s stepping down, April 30, 2016.
My Vigil and Ceremony were exactly what I wanted. Simple and elegant. My banner, which was made by Duchess Mina Wynter, was carried into court by my very good friend, Lord Coenwulf Draugrson. I was escorted into court by my husband, Sir Fearghus MacAirt and my Laurel, Master Leo Diogenese. Her Grace Sir Mari Alexander agreed to stand as my speaker. Master Leo passed the Laurel medallion on to me which he had received from his Laurel, Mistress Danaë FitzRoberts.
I finished the last stitch on the last accessory on the evening of Thursday April 28th. I did not stitch a single thing in the car ride to the site nor did I do any stitching before, during or after my vigil. I view this as a HUGE win. Coincidentally, staying up until midnight for the last month working on my outfit and accessories made it very easy to stay up late for my Vigil.
Brown velvetstarted March 29, 2016. Finished April 23, 2016.
For my laurelling ceremony I want to wear aover my . I lucked upon a great deal on brown cotton velveteen at $3.20/yd. So I got 10 yards of it.
This is going to be a brown velvetwith a center front opening which will be held closed with hook and eye at the bodice (open on the skirt). The will have a waist seam and very wide sleeves (which can be folded back). The sleeves and the skirt will be lined in black cotton velveteen. The neck and the hem will also be bound with black velveteen. For this dress I’m going to use stuffed box pleats as shown in “The Queen’s Servants” page 46.
The sleeves will be very wide but I want the seam to be at the underarm (lined up with the side seam) and end up at the bottom of sleeve drop at the wrist. For the sleeve, I want a very wide sleeve which can be worn down (to the back of my knuckles) or can be rolled up partially(~3-4 inches) or half way up the arm. When rolled back I want the rolled back portion to sit flat against the sleeve it’s rolled up against. When I was fitting the sleeve I found the if I used a basic flared sleeve the rolled back portion didn’t sit flat. To fix this I updated the sleeve to go straight after it flairs out enough for the depth of the sleeve I want (see pattern).
Originally I thought I’d do a train.. but I finally decided against it. Realistically the number of times I’d wear thewith the train down is approaching one and it seems silly to spend time and effort developing a pattern for and then sewing a feature I’d never use.
Continue reading How now Brown ?
Planning began February 10, 2015.
Accessory finished March 19, 2016.
V2 finished March 30, 2016.
V3 finished April 17, 2016.
I’ve been spending a lot of time looking at early Tudor (1488-1515) pictures from France and Brittany and I’ve noticed quite a few of them have something white at the neckline. I believe that to be a partlet (sometimes called a gollar). Most of the time I see this under thelayer. Occasionally I see it over the . In images from France/Brittany I’ve only seen the white partlet under the (in some Italian images the white partlet can be seen over the outer ). Occasionally I’ll see the black partlet worn over the .. but the black partlet will be a different accessory with its own post.
Hannah Brown worsted wool sleeveless waistedstarted January 17, 2016. Finished March 5, 2016.
I lost 10 lbs, gained 60 lbs, had a baby, lost 60 lbs and refit my bodice. I’ve had time since the last time I made a fittedto consider my construction methods and design choices and to make some new choices based on new information.**
– ( , cotehardie, cote, gothic fitted dress, whatever you want to call it) The support layer. A dress worn over the . It supports and shapes the breasts. In middle/lower class this may be the only dress worn. The type of described here is appropriate for the late 15th/early 16th century (eg. 1480s-1540s possibly earlier/later). This is later (1540s and later) sometimes referred to as the petticoat.
– The fancy dress worn over the . Made of expensive fabrics and sometimes fur lined.
Breast Band – (outlined in dotted lines in image to the left) In thethe breasts are kept up by having the pattern tightly fitted to the body. There is a band about 2-3 inches wide which runs below the breasts on the rib cage. If this band is nice and tight and on-grain it’s impossible for the breasts to “droop”. Above the band the breasts are shaped by the space available in the pattern and the tautness of the fabric both from the side seam and from the shoulder seam. Below the band the pattern should at most skim the the body. I do not recommend shaping the body below the breast band.
Just a reminder that I have no evidence that this is a “period” practice in ~15th century France (Yes, yes, I know about the Lengberg bra but that’s in Germany/Austria/Bohemia.. not France/Brittany/Netherlands). I just know that I want more support than my current kirtles are giving me and the quickest/easiest fix is to make a small undergarment to do the heavy lifting.
The shape of the under most recent adjusted fitting for a 4-panel . The under will only extend down to the bottom of the breast band. Unlike my normal pattern the under will lace up the sides (I didn’t want the laces to match up between the under and the ). For the under I eliminated the center front seam and made the front as a single piece. I probably should have made the back as a single piece but I wanted to be sure to keep the breast band on the straight grain and my back piece doesn’t lend itself easily to that in a single panel. So instead I’ve left the seam in the center back panel.is based on my
The underis made with two layers of linen (because two seems more supportive than one). The eyelets will be pierced through the sides and the seam allowance at the sides (ie, I’m not using a reinforcement strip).
I tried on my V3 mockup and then put my blueon over the mockup and had my husband mark the neckline in the back. Then I cut the mockup so that the under will not show under my existing kirtles. This will work for the underkirtle but I think I’ll have to go back and re-do the neckline on the mockup for a V4. The new pattern with the old neckline is just too narrow in the back.
Finished the last eyelet at midnight, 4 days before the event where I plan to wear the garment. I wore the underaround the house for a few minutes and then put on my blue over the under . This will work. The under feels only slightly more restrictive than my normal bra. I’ll wear it on Saturday and confirm that I can tolerate wearing it for a full day.
Since I have 4 days I plan to go ahead and add the sleeves
[post-mortem: I first wore the garment on 2/14/2015 at the West Coast Culinary Symposium]
I wore this garment all day on Saturday and Sunday for the West Coast Culinary Symposium.
On the plus side this kept my girls perky all day and not once did I notice any droop.
[second post-mortem: I wore this garment for the second time on 2/21/2015 at the Northern Wolf Tournament]
[third post-mortem: I wore this all day on Saturday and Sunday at Beltane 5/1/2015]
That said the underkirtle was supportive all day. In fact I ended up briefly wearing the underkirle under a t-shirt and I was amazed at what a different shape the underkirtle gives from my normal brassiere.
I’m faced once again with shrinking out of my fitted (I know, rough problem to have). This means I again need to re-fit my bodice pattern and make new clothes. I hate that. I mean I have four workable if slightly big dresses which I would like to continue to wear and making all new clothes is a pain.
After thrashing about this for a while and reading a few threads in the Age of the Cotehardie Facebook group
[Edited to add: Yeah, ok I decided to make a Lengberg bra and I said I was ok with it.. but the more I worked on it the less happy I was with the decision. I finally decided instead to just tackle a whole new fitting and make a kirtle to go under my kirtles. I hate fitting a new kirtle. It takes a long time and is just less zen than straight up sewing. Regardless I finally figured out that’s what I needed to do and I just did it. I did -start- with a duct tape pattern.. but that was not the end of it.]
Since the last time I made a fitted bodice I’ve read a couple of very good articles and plan to try to incorporate those lessons into this fitting.
I use the same pattern for both my German garb and my 15th century kirtles. It makes sense to me as I remain the same shape. The difference is that the 15th centuryis fitted to my natural waist (about belly-button level) while the German bodice ends at the bottom of my ribs (about 2 inches above my natural waist).
Problems with previous pattern:
For this fitting I’m using a zipper on the center front seam to make it easier to get into/out of the dress for iterating on the fitting. This has been super great since it’s nice and fast. The only wrinkle is that the zipper takes up a different amount of seam allowance than the final lace placket will. I’ll need to take that into account when I cut out the final dress. I -think- I just need to add 1/2 seam allowance to the center front seam and I’ll be good.
Continue reading Making a to wear under my kirtles
While working on the outfits for Coenwulf, Katla and Kolskegg I was repeatedly struck by how very cute it would be if I dressed my son, Erik (13 months), in a waffenrock. Especially if he were walking. As fate would have it, Erik started walking about 3 days after his first birthday November 19, 2014. As soon as that happened I knew that I would have to make him a waffenrock that matched his daddy’s waffenrock for 12th night.