Sunday, June 22, 2014

G63 Coat Reconstruction

Rough Description:
This piece is based on one found in Herjolfnes, Greenland, as part of the Viking settlement from the 14th century.  It is a knee length, loose, coat like garment with set in armscyles and a short collar. 

The main body is made of eight trapezoidal pieces, four in front and four in the back, with a front buttoned down to the waist (conjecture).  The original garment had buttons about every ½ inch, and probably 30-40 originally[1].  The sleeves were made of four pieces, consisting of a funky shaped upper arm with a gusset in the back, and a lower sleeve with an elbow gusset; the sleeves are only about arm length (not much, if any extra length) with a deeply curved armscyle.
Seams, decoration, and fabric:
The back seam is 1.08% longer than the front seam and seems to have been decorated with a backstitch.  The seams also lay towards the back.  The garment is constructed in such a way that each of the eight pieces has a straight and a bias edge, and all of the seams are constructed with straight-to-bias, limiting stretch.  It also seems to have been decorated and re-enforced along all the seams with stab stitching.
The fabric used in the original was a 2/2 wool twill, originally very dark brown.  The garment is believed to have been trimmed around the neck and down the front opening (on the left side with the buttonholes) with a thin material woven in 2/1 twill, originally madder colored.  There are also traces of tablet woven edging on a piece believed to have been the bottom hem.  The thread used for the stitching was likely finely spun wool or goat hair.

My goals in making this garment are to make a working garment based on the original, as close to the original in patterning as possible (while still making a garment that fits me and my sense of aesthetics) and learn about seam and finishing techniques of the period.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

16th Century Irish Dress

           I feel that claims that Irish clothing changed very little over time are completely false.  A 4th century Irishman did not wear the same thing as 10th, who didn’t wear the same as 14th, which certainly wasn’t the same as the 16th—which is what I will cover in this article.
           There are common elements throughout—such as the leine gel, the white or saffron dyed linen shirt; the wearing of the Irish Brat, or large, fringed, cloak—a garment which seems to have been truly omnipresent[1]; and the predilection to wearing tight, or no pants.  In addition to the Irish styles of dress, English and Continental fashions were also slowly adopted (often with the addition of the brat), and were more prevalent in major cities (particularly port cities), among the upper class, and later in the century.
           Throughout this period the English rulers (Henry VIII…) attempted to enforce freshly created laws forbidding Irish modes of fashion, and haircuts—this is one of our prime sources on the essentials of Irish clothing.  Articles targeted were the glib hairstyle, women’s headwear, the dying with saffron, the  amount of cloth used in the leine, and ,particularly, the Irish Mantle (with its fringe).
Men’s Clothing
Leine:  This (in various forms), along with the brat, was one of the two main articles of Irish dress throughout the ages.  The leine was invariably made of linen, likely a heavier weight, tightly woven type than is commonly available today.  The colour by this time was almost invariably saffron dyed yellow (a bright yellow)--or natural for the destitute.
           The leine was usually long—ankle length—and bloused over the belt in order to pull it up to knee level and allow greater freedom of movement.  Necklines seem to have been roughly ‘V’ shaped and often fairly deep.  I believe that they were probably rounded in the back, making the neck opening a loose teardrop shape when laid out flat during construction.
The sleeves of the leine were very wide at the cuff, often hanging to the knee—but were narrow at the top[i].  An interesting evolution on these is that though the sleeve itself is very wide at the cuff—they were not necessarily very long.  Several images show the sleeve stopping just below the elbow, presumably to give greater freedom of movement and reduce the chance of entanglement I believe that at least occasionally the sleeves were full length, and in the “bagpipe sleeve” style.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Pluderhosen: Some assembly required

Pattern Traced from Patterns of Fashion, by Janet Arnold.

Continuing on from my last post--A Road To Madness--I believe I managed to rectify my mistake, by extending the dart into a seam going the full width of the piece.  This will result in the back panel being slightly shorter (around 1/2 inch, since I'm using as small of a seam allowance as I may), but that should be acceptable---that piece 1/2 inch shorter than it should, should not be noticeable.

Here, you can see the modified dart (left) and the original plan (right).

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The (A) Road to Madness: Take the exit marked...Pluderhosen?

Over the last two days I managed to fully assembled the Sture doublet, with two major differences off of the original: It untrimmed (for now.  Strips of silk will eventually be applied), and I left off the shoulder wings because I quite honestly do not like the things--I don't like drafting them, I don't like wearing them, and they add a fair amount of thickness to the seam (at least with these fabrics)
There were a few issues in the making up, with ease (which was remedied once I got the bright idea to measure off of my existing doublet), mainly.  These were summarily overcome, and all that is left is the hook and eyes (and someday trimming)

But that is not what this post is on.  This particular post is on the Sture Pluderhosen, a maddening pair

Monday, June 9, 2014

Sture Suit: Thoughts on restarting.

Coming back from the Three-Barons Renaissance Faire this weekend, I got have a new suite of clothing for the second weekend.  The best bet, of course, is my shameful example of an UFO--an UnFinished Object
......My Svante Sture Suit.
Source: Patterns of Fashion, by Janet Arnold

Friday, June 6, 2014

Drafting a Frock Coat, part II: The Sleeves

Drafting sleeves--one of the banes of my existence.  Like in the first part of the tutorial, I am going to translate and provide step by step photographs of the process.  To find the measurements needed to draft the sleeve pattern, you need to have the body pattern drafted...or, as I am using, made up in halves (I recommend the first).

Page 13 of the Cutter's Guide
Page 14 of Cutter's Guide

Page 15 of the Cutter's guide...the last of the instructions.

Start off by measuring the width of the scye.  This is done by placing the ruler horizontally (or squared to the back seam) at the side-body seam.  Like Thus.

Measure down from point 'O' by this amount.

Here, it starts talking about finding the pitch.  Mark point 'A' 3/4 inch above the bottom of the scye (Forearm seam).  Mark point 'B' (Hindarm seam), the back-sidebody seam, or to taste.  Because the difference between the front and back is so drastic on mine, I decide to put 'B' one inch above the shoulder seam--actually on the front piece.