15th century kirtle no. II

I have had a bit of a slump going on with my medieval reenactment. The excitement of making new things and do research slowly faded to almost nothing some two years ago, and over the course of the last couple of years I’ve only made two new pieces of clothing. One hood for 14th century reenactment and my red 15th century kirtle for Glimmingehus. Other than that, my main crafting focus has been on knitting and my folk costume – both are areas that I hae been giving lots of love and attention.

Thus, the year of 2020 was very welcomed by me in terms of not going to any events, or to feel the pressure to produce things for my 14th century personas. To be honest, the whole year of being at home was rather relieving for me in many ways. Of course I would have rather it to be a normal year without a pandemic, without all the hardships that has followed in its footsteps, but to make the most out of the situation I felt like I really needed that break.

So, the result was that I was going into 2021 with a little bit more energy than before. Early in the year I was invited to join the local version of Company of Saint George’s event Pilgrimage 2021. A distanced 15th century pilgrimage taking place at the same time all over Europe (the world?). It felt like the perfect event. Hiking along the pilgrim trail in Kinnekulle, Sweden, together with some friends. I even felt like I had everything I needed, save for a pilgrim’s staff, which I was able to order early on, so – no extra pressure there. There is something very soothing in knowing that you are prepared, and can focus on only having a good time. I felt very good in the whole situation, with no stress at all.

Then, just shy of a month before the event I got that feeling again. That longing to produce something. To craft something new. I felt that I needed a simpler kirtle to go with my pilgrim’s outfit, as well as I kind of needed it for my kitchen worker impression at Glimmingehus. I scowered my fabric boxes for a suitable fabric and found three meters of a thin woolen twill in dark forest green. Maybe not the most suitable colour in terms of my goals of keeping it simpler, as I think the dye truly would have required overdying a yellow with woad/indigo, but it might pass as a grey fabric being dyed with birch leaves and iron to darken the colour to this green. I am no expert in plant dyes, so you tell me. What do you think?

My goal was to have a wearable, but perhaps not finished dress, by the time of the event. That is, a dress with maybe not all seams felled, that needed to be closed with pins rather than lacing. I could use the same pattern as for my red kirtle, which made things super easy. I did some changes to the sleeves in order to make it more of a working garment, which includes changing the sleeve head to have a little less of a difference in the curve to allow for more movement as well as giving the sleeve some more ease. I also made it a full sleeve, with wide ‘cuffs’, to allow it to be able to be rolled up when doing dirtier works.

With as few seams as this the sewing was fast. Really fast. I decided early that I would fell al the seams as I went to make sure that the job was done and not left undone for eternity, as is the case in some of my other dresses. The reason for this is mainly that the thin twill frays quite easily, so I wanted to protect the raw edges. This I did by felling both seam allowences to one side and covering it with filler thread as I was sewing it down with whip stitches. I am not perfectly sure that the technique with filling threads was used in the period, but it was a step I considered necessary as I didn’t want to add the extra bulk that would come with me folding the seam allowences over.

This time I made sure to not stress. I made sure to enjoy every single stitch in sewing the kirtle. Everytime I stuck that needle into the fabric it would be with a sense of calm and happiness. And so it was. In the first time in many, many years, I was sewing a medieval garment and enjoying the whole process. A huge step forward, in my opinion.

The result? I finished the dress in less than two weeks. Not to a wearable extent, but all finished. I’m very proud of myself! Do you think it will look nice at the pilgrimage?


Livstycke and jewellery

Two years ago I took a short course in the sewing of the Blekingedräkt at Blekinge Folkhögskola, taught by Lina Odell who is part of Blekingelivet. As one of the parts of the course we went to Karlshamns Museum to look at preserved originals in their collection. What a treat that was, and what lovely pieces they had in the collection!

One of my favourite pieces in the collection is a livstycke, a waistcoat, in blue silk damask – KN 6656. There are some similar livstycken preserved in different museums, that all show off the beautiful pattern of the fabric on the back. I’ve posted some of my pictures of this particular livstycke below.

Livstycke from Nordiska Museet, beginning of the 19th century. NM.0061899

Already when seeing these beautiful pieces I felt the urge to recreate one for myself, so when my mum Annette and I went to Gotland in 2019 to attend Battle of Wisby we took half a day off to go to Sidengården and buy ourselves some fabric. Annette also made the incredible effort of weaving the lining fabric for both of us, which is a linen/cotton blend. I dyed a white silk ribbon with onionskins and oakleaves to get the golden orange colour below. Many extant pieces are edged with silk ribbon in contrasting colour, and I thought this combination would work beautifully.

Damask from Sidengården, plantdyed silk ribbon and handwoven linen/cotton

To assemble it all I used the way the extant pieces I’ve seen was sewn, which I noted in a little journal I keep for my Blekingedräkt. The outer fabric and lining was basted together, then the side and shoulder seams of the outer fabric was sewn together with backstitches and pressed down, and the lining was folded over itself over the seams and then sewn down with hemming stitches. Some of the pictures of the first original piece above show this beautifully. Then, all edges were folded in and sewn together with a whip stitch, except for the bottom which was lined with the outher fabric after the little gores were sewn in. The bottom instead was covered with the golden silk ribbon. Lastly, a couple of rows of stab stitching was sewn along the two mid front panels, and hooks and eyes were fastened. A good press later, and my new livstycke was done.

This is one of the pieces I’ve made that I’m the most proud of. I think it turned out beautifully, and I can’t wait to get to use it more!

Winter wonderland

You would think that we get white winters in Sweden regularily, right? Not where I live, which is in the city of Gothenburg, situated on the Swedish west coast. It is characterised by humid, mild, winters with little to no snow. The start of this year has thus far been different. Minus degrees celcius and a good amount of snow blessed us in the second week of January.

I spent my last vacation day by photographing my folk costume, my Blekingedräkt, as I had just finished my Luvtallrik – a piece of embroidered headwear. The Luvtallrik will have its own blog post, where I discuss the sources and my design choices, but here are some of my pictures from the photo shoot! Almost all the items I’m wearing in the photos are made by me, which I am very proud of. 🙂

Blekingedräkt: An apron and a skirt

For many years I’ve had two fabrics in my stash. One meter of a wonderful, white, printed cotton lawn, and a couple of metres of a vividly red, handwoven and plant dyed, woolen twill. Both fabrics has kind of a story to them. The cotton lawn I got as thanks/payment for allowing some of my photos to be shown on an exhibition, and the wool twill I bought on an online auction. The seller lived up north in Sweden and had wrote in the item description that the fabric was woven by her grandmother, and after a little email correnspondance I was told by the seller that her grandmother had lived in Blekinge – the county I grew up in! A wonderful coincidence.

I had always had a plan for the cotton lawn to become an apron, and the wool twill to become a skirt, but it wasn’t really until this year I properly decided that I was going to make an apron and a skirt for my folk costume of it. As always, I find a lot of inspiration in original garments and items, as well as from the amazing women who run Blekingelivet.

Högtidsdräkt – Festive wear
In the mid 19th century – as today – people would dress up for special occasions. . Church on Sundays had its own particular dress, and everyday wear was something different. Weddings, some Christian festivals, etc., meant to dress up in the absolute finest.

See more images on my Pinterest board on Blekingedräkt

The skirt
Looking at what’s in the museums collections and in paintings from the time, it looks like red skirts are common for the absolute finest clothing. Often red skirts with woven patterns (i.e. this one that is seen to the left below), or with silk mixed in, but also some less fancy with just a plain weave, barely fulled wool (like this, seen to the right below). In written and/or oral sources, it is said that the red skirt could have been used by the bride, and otherwise when you wanted to look your best (Swe: “annars till fint”). (Nordlinder, E. 1987)

I have mainly based my skirt off of the left one in the photos above, with the exception of the fabric. My fabric is, as I wrote before, is a handwoven wool twill, with no pattern what so ever. The original has quite a big piece of linen fabric at the front – in Swedish called sparvåd, or djäknalapp. It is there to save the precious fabric, since it is not visible when you wear your apron on top – as you always should. In some instances they have also saved on some of the silk ribbon following along the hem in the same fashion. Smart right? Since I had a limited amount of fabric, I decided to do the same with my skirt. I picked out some handwoven linen scraps from my stash to act as the sparvåd, and sewed my skirt.

A bridal skirt from Blekinge. Notice the linen piece, and also that the fabric below it isn’t the same as the rest of the skirt.

My skirt is entirely handsewn, as I prefer to sew things by hand. It has a waistband, and the skirt is sewn to this. In the front it is flat, with knife pleats going inwards over the hipbones. Over the rest of the skirt the fabric is gathered with what was supposed to be parallell gathers, but the gathering thread broke as I was fixing the gathers. Ah well, such things that happens – we’ll see if I ever get around to fix it. On the left side of the linen piece there is a slit, to get in and out of the skirt, which closes with hooks and eyes. In the future I plan to put a silk ribbon along the bottom, but otherwise it is now done.

The apron
The fabric of my apron might not be perfect. Historically it would have been in a fabric called linong, a thin cotton weave with woven in pattern, as the gorgeous apron that is this museum piece, or this one that is held in the collections of Blekinge Museum – both pictured below. Mine is, as I stated above, a printed cotton lawn, but it gives the same expression as the woven one would.

Here the bride is wearing a red skirt and a white, see-through apron in the painting “Church-wedding in Blekinge”, by Bengt Nordenberg.

My apron is quite simple. It is hemmed with narrow hems in the side, and a wide one at the bottom. The wide hem at the bottom is also mentioned in passing in Nordlinder, 1987, when an oral source tells about the aprons used at the Christian confirmationm, and also in Dahlin’s writing from 1937. My apron is gathered to a waistband that continues out from the skirt of the apron for 15 cm, and is then finished with ties. Much like the apron I made in 2015, except that this one is gathered all the way, and that the ties are different in length.

Now, I’ve been thinking a bit about the pairing of specifically these two items. I don’t really think that a see-through apron like this one would have been worn with skirt with a linen piecing, since part of the point of wearing it over a dark skirt is to have the pattern of the apron shine through. So, they don’t quite match in the end. I’m not sad though – I see it as a reason to make new skirts and aprons. Lucky me! 😉

Dahlin, I. Blekingedräkten. Blekingeboken (1937). – New print from 1987 by Blekinge Läns Museum

Nordlinder, E. (1987). Kvinnligt dräktskick i Jämshögs socken i Blekinge. Stockholm

An 18th century shortgown

Happy 2019!

This year I have a lot happening – both reenactment and in my personal life. Many, many years of studying is coming to its end and this spring I will graduate with a Masters exam in Geology and start to work a normal day job. In fact, I’ve already been hired by a consultant company to work hours until my graduation, to then start working full time there. I’m very proud of myself, and excited for this year!

Reenactment-wise I will attend several events, with at least four different time periods. The usual 14th century with Carnis, with the big event being Battle of Wisby, hopefully 15th century at Glimmingehus again if the event will be on this year as well. Then, around autumn, it will be time for my first 17th century event. If I’m lucky I’ll even be going to Grolle in October.

Now, my first event of the year will be an 18th century pub-event called “Den Sprängda Husaren” – The Blasted Hussar. It is an event that I have wanted to attend the other times that it has been held, but never had the possibility to. This time around I decided that I would have to make it, and as it seems I will be going to the event now in February! Happy Andrea!

What do I want to wear for the evening? Something simple, something wooly – something that is not too far up on the social ladder. I already have stays, two skirts, half-mittens, a cap, and stockings. What I need for my outfit is something to wear as my outer layer on the upper body. I have some lovely striped wool that I’ve had for several years, without a project in mind for, which now presented itself when I was cleaning my sewing room. Looking through Pinterest for inspiration I found several Swedish short-gowns (tröja), many of them striped. I’m not entirely sure about translating the Swedish word tröja to short-gown – I’m not certain enough about the terms for this period, but I found the word translated to short-gown in a newsletter I linked below.

While striped fabrics are very poplular in the 18th century, the stripe in my wool isn’t really perfect. I have seen it here and there, in one or two fabric samples (e.g. in this sample book from 1771), so while it exists, it is not representative at all. I decided that it was okay for me, since this isn’t a time period that I really prioritise in my reenactment – though it is a beautiful period!

A Swedish short-gown with a similar stripe as my gown. Now at Nordiska Museet. NM.0001390

According to the book “Möte med mode” by Berit Eldvik, the style of these short-gowns were in fashion at the high society during the middle of the 18th century, after which the style wandered down in levels to be popular among common people at the end of the century. The earlier gowns were made up of silk, and the later ones mostly of different kinds of wool or wool blends. Many of the Swedish short-gowns were quilted, but not all.

What do you do with a not so fancy background? Remove it 😉

My short-gown is inspired in particular by two extant pieces. The pattern is taken from a printed cotton short-gown from Källfors, Sweden, and has been written about on the Durán Textiles Newsletter in 2007. It is made up of two pieces, with the sleeves cut as one with the body without shoulder seams. In the newsletter there is a drawing of the pattern of this short-gown, which I scaled up and made a toile of. Trying it on with my stays I realised that it was a perfect fit, but I still decided to add 1 cm to the width of the sleeves to get a little more room to move.

A work-in-progress image from my Instagram from when I was scaling up the pattern.

The second short-gown that inspired my gown is featured in the same book as I wrote about before, Möte med mode, and it also features a simple construction. It had one feature in particular that I wanted to carry over to my gown – a printed cotton band sewn to the neckline of the gown. I had a long cut out piece of a printed cotton that I used to create a ball gown for my highschool graduation ball, that is a reprint from a late 18th century print block. This piece was perfect to put along the neckline of my gown.


Swedish short-gown, c. 1750-1775. Now at Nordiska museet. NM.0090398


My gown has two layers, the striped wool and a plain linen tabby as lining. I stitched the three main seams on the machine after tacking the pieces together to be able to treat lining and outer fabric as one piece. After that I sewed the rest of the dress by hand. I trimmed the lining’s seam allowances and split and felled the wool over those, thereby covering the only machine seams in the garment. To attach the lining to the outer fabric at the hem and centre front, I used a technique that was used on the Källfors short-gown, hiding the raw edges by sewing the lining down with slanting stitches that left ‘dotted stitches’ at the right side. On the Källfors gown this technique also was used to finish the neckline, but I instead covered the raw edge with the cotton fabric as I sewed it to the neckline. This is the same way the cotton is attached to the striped woolen gown.

To finish everything up I needed four ties to be able to close the gown. I decided to use an orange silk from my stash that I dyed with madder a couple of years ago, and cut it with a special pair of scissors to get the zig-zag pattern (I pressume that those scissors have a specific name, but I don’t know it). To use cut strips of fabric rather than narrow ware, I based on another Swedish short-gown, which has white silk ties with this cut zig-zag pattern. Using orange silk I think looks very nice with my historical eyes, but my modern self must say that it is not the prettiest next to the burgundy red in the cotton print.

Swedish short-gown, c. 1770-1790. Now at Nordiska Museet, NM.0158631

From start to finish this project took me about 9 hours. It was a very fun project and I’m very happy with the result! When I’m wearing the gown it very much reminds me of a painting of an 18th century girl called Smultronflickan (Smultron translates to  Wild Strawberries and flicka is girl, giving the English title of the Strawberry Girl). The stripes are different, but the way the gown falls is much the same.

Smultronflickan, by Nils Schillmark, c.1782. Now at the Finnish museum Ateneum.

Now I can’t wait to wear it at the event, and get some nice photos of it! I still have some minor things to make for the outfit, like a new rump or a quilted petticoat, because the one I have now doesnt really give me the silhouette that I would want, but it should be no problem to finish it on time.




A gift for Cathrin

This year,one of my dearest friends – Cathrin who runs Katafalk – turned 30. For the longest time I was thinking about what I would make for her as a birthday present, since she always makes such beautiful things for me (like the painted boxes). Then I realised that I hade a project lying around, a part of a trade, that I thougt I would not only finish my part, but also embellish it. If only I had the time to finish it…

As you know, my lust for crafts has been lacking this past year, but I managed to gain some energy to actually finish the project. What was it then? It was a filet/headpiece. My part for the trade was to weave the base for a filet for Cathrin, but I did not only do that – I finished the whole piece as a gift for her.

14th century belt
14th century tablet woven belt with metal mounts, from the Colmar treasure Photo (C) RMN-Grand Palais (musée de Cluny – musée national du Moyen-Âge) / Jean-Gilles Berizzi


The filet is constructed in basically the same way as my own piece, woven as the filet described in Textiles and Clothing. Check that post for more information about the weaving details, sources, and such. At Battle of Wisby 2016 I bought some belt pieces from Lorifactor that I intended for a tabletwoven silk belt, but I never got around to weave one (yet). That meant that I had some nice flowers and lady-heads to put on Cathrin’s filet, together with some garnet-beads and pearls. Fun fact – you know I am a geologist, and my favourite mineral is the garnet (group), so it was extra fitting that I could put some garnets on my gift.

Since the metal fittings are pushed through the filet and the ends bent over on the back, I didn’t want them to be bothering dear Cathrin when she was wearing the piece. Therefore I lined the back of the filet with blue, plant-dyed silk, which also covered up the stitches from when I attatchied the beads.

The finished piece came out very good in my opinion, and I think Cathrin was happy with it as well, which of course is the most important part. I delivered the gift at her 1930’s themed party, which was amazing as well!



D10584: Den färdiga klänningen – The finished dress

There is quite a lot of fabric at the hem

Äntligen är min Herjolfsnesutmaningsklänning färdig! Jag har använt den i ofärdigt skick sedan sista helgen i maj då vi var på Ekenäs Riddarspel, men nu efter Middelaldercentret har jag tillsist tagit mig i kragen och faktiskt gjort färdigt den helt och hållet.

Om ni inte läst mitt inlägg med den forskning jag gjorde inför sömnaden av klänningen så gör det! Ni hittar det här.

Now at last my Herjolfsnes Challenge dress is finished! I’ve been using it since the last weekend of May in an unfinished state, but now after Middelaldercentret I’ve finally got around to actually finish it completely.

I’ve written a blog post about my research and thoughts prior to cutting the fabric. You can read it here!

This is from the last post where it didn’t have pocket slits yet

Photo: Christine Carnie. Here, at Middelaldercentret, the dress have pocket slits, though not visible in the photo

Jag är väldigt glad för min klänning. Den har redan lyckats med allt den var tänkt för. Jag ville ha en klänning som lätt kunde dras över huvudet, med fickslitsar, som man kan ha ensam när man behöver ta en tur på toaletten på morgonen och inte vill fippla med snörning på en tajt klänning, eller som ett extra lager för värme och skydd mot regn under råa dagar. Till sist ville jag ha en surcote som en lägre-stånds-persona kan ha och fortfarande ser sådär supersnygg ut. Den här klänningen gör allt det och lite till.

I am very happy with my dress! It’s already served its purpose well – I wanted a pullover dress with pocket slits, for chilly mornings when you need to go to the loo and doesn’t want to fiddle with lacing and tight dresses, for cold and rainy days to warm you, and to be able to wear as an outer layer for a lower class persona and still look fabolous! It can do all these things and more.

Vilka ändringar har gjorts från originalplanen?
De största skillnaderna från min plan är framförallt två saker. Jag ville handspinna all sytråd jag skulle använda till klänningen, men av olika anledningar blev det inte så – framförallt på grund av tidsbrist. Istället har jag kompromissat och använt handspunnen tråd och garn till synliga sömmar. Det är alltså de bindande sömmarna som sytts från utsidan, den brickvävda fållen, pricksömmen/stickningarna och ögleflätan. Jag använde ett maskinspunnet, men väldigt trevligt, tunt, kamgarn till att fälla sömmarna med.

What changes to my original plan has been made?
The main differences from what I set out to do are two things. I wanted to spin all the sewing thread for the project, but I realised that I wouldn’t have the time. Instead I compromised, and I did so by “only” using hand spun yarn and thread for the visible seams, i.e. the binding seams which were sewn from the right side, the tabletwoven hem, the stabstitches and the fingerloop braid. Then I used a nice and thin, worsted, yarn to fell the seams.

Two rows of stab stitches along the sleeve hem and slit

Fingerloop braid along neckline

Close-up of the braid

Inside and outside of pocket slit. It’s first hemmed, then has one row of stabstitches and then the braid to reinforce it

Tablet-woven hem and felled seams

Den andra skillnaden har mest att göra med tygbrist. Jag fick skarva en av ärmarna i höjd med armbågen. Det ser dock inte dumt ut, och nummer 63 har en söm på ungefär samma ställe.

The second of the differences has to do with me not having enough fabric. I had to piece one of the sleeves at the height of the elbow. It doesn’t look bad though, and number 63 has a seam at about the same place.

Here the piecing is visible. You can also see it in the photo above

Vad skiljer från originalet?
Utöver den extra ärmsömmen är det framförallt en sak som skiljer. Det kanske inte är så uppenbart vid första anblick, men det står ut för mig. Sömmarna som delar mitt fram- och mitt bak-kilarna verkar inte vara fällda enligt SStJ (åtminstone ser det ut så på illustrationerna). Likaså den falska sömmen i ena sidostycket är inte heller fälld enligt SStJ. Jag har läst båda böckerna flera gånger, noggrant som bara den, men jag har ändå lyckats missa det. Om jag ska skylla på något så skulle det vara att den informationen inte står under sidorna om just det plagget utan i den allmänna sektionen om sömmar, men jag har egentligen bara missat det. Det innebär alltså att jag har fällt alla sömmar. Ingen jätteförlust – jag är fortfarande glad.

What differs from the original?
Other than the additional sleeve seam there is one obvious thing that differs from the original. Or perhaps not that obvious or even that visible, but to me it stands out. The seams in the middle thats separating the front and back gores is described in WitE as not felled (at least when you look at the illustration). Likewise for the false seam in one of the side gores. I’ve read the book several times and have somehow missed that specifik feature (if I were to blame something it would be that it’s not written in the section about the garment, but I really don’t have anything to blame for me missing it). That means that I’ve felled all the seams. Not a big loss – I’m still very happy.

Utöver det är det bara ett par saker som skiljer från originalet. Tyget är maskinvävt och har inte samma tråd/cm som originalet. Jag har förlängt min klänning, vilket jag skrev om i mitt forskningsinlägg. Sen är det säkert några smågrejer till som inte stämmer, saker som inte skrivits med i någon av böckerna – sånt som man bara vet om man kan studera originalen själv (förutsatt att det bevarats). Jag anser att jag har gjort ett välgjort plagg som uppfyller min krav på mig själv som hantverkare och reenactor. Jag tror att min klänning hade passerat utan större chock om den flyttades bak i tiden.

Other than that there’s a few things that differs from the orignal. The fabric being machine woven and not weft faced, for one, the lenghtened hem which I wrote about in the research post and some other minor things, together with those things that haven’t made themselves into any of the books about the Herjolfsnes garments. Things you would only know if you’ve examined the garment yourself. I believe that I have made a really nice garment, true to my standards as a reenactor and a craftsman, and I do think that it would pass well if I was transported back in time.

Side panels

Close-up of the tablet woven hem

Det här projektet har fått mig att inse att vissa detaljer på Herjolfsnesplaggen finns där av fler än de uppenbara anledningarna. Ta ögleflätan som är ditsydd på fickslitsarna som exempel. Innan jag gjorde mitt plagg hade jag antagit att den fanns där som förstärkning. Förstärkning i form av skydd mot slitage för kanterna – ungefär som den brickvävda nederkanten – men det var visst inte så enkelt skulle det visa sig. Jag gjorde mina fickslitsar innan jag åkte till Middelaldercentret och fållade dem och förstärkte med pricksöm. Anledningen till att jag inte satte dit flätorna på en gång var för att jag skulle göra dem på eventet. Sen en kväll när jag tog av mig klänningen råkade jag dra i fickslitsen och den sprack. Panik! Eftersom slitsen är skuren mitt i panelen och tyget är hyfsat lösvävt så var det inte tillräckligt att fålla och pricksömma. Det är därför ögleflätan behövs som förstärkning. Den gör det i princip omöjligt att ta sönder tyget på samma sätt som jag gjorde!

This project have made me realise that some of the details on the Herjolfsnes garments have more than obvious reasons for being there. Like the fingerloop braid sewn to the pocket slits. Before making my garment I understood that it was there as a reinforcement, but I thought that it was mostly to protect the edges – like the tablet-woven hem – but life proved me otherwise. I made the pocketslits before going to Middelaldercentret; cutting them, hemming and reinforcing them with stab stitches. I didn’t attatch the braid because I was supposed to make it during the event. Then one night when I undressed I accidently pulled in the pocket slit, leading it to rip… Panic moment there for sure! Since the slit was cut in the middle of the panel and the fabric was a bit too loosely woven it wasn’t enough to just hem it and reinforce with stab stitches. That is why the fingerloop braid is very much needed as a reinforcement. It makes it almost impossible to break the same way as I ripped mine.

A tear in my not even finished dress 😦

Det resulterade i att jag hastigt lagade revan och sydde på förstärkningsflätan. Jag är inte så ledsen egentligen – det har gett mig möjligheten att förstå varför förstärkningen finns där och så har jag fått en cool lagning. Varför den är cool? För det ger mer liv till plagget. 

This resulted in a mend and me hastily sewing the fingerloop braid to the slits. Actually I’m not that sad – it has given me the opportunity to see why the reinforcement would be needed and I have an awesome mend. Why is it awesome? Because it gives more life to the garment!

And now it’s mended. 

Som jag skrev tidigare – jag tror att den här klänningen inte skulle vara allt för uppseendeväckande om den hamnade på 1300-talet. Åtminstone med den kunskap vi har om perioden nu. Jag kommer vara nöjd och glad för den här ett långt tag framöver.

As I wrote earlier – I think that this would pass well if I was transported back to the 14th century, at least with the knowledge we have about the period now. I will be happy with this one a long time.

Till sist vill jag bara dela med mig av Annettes fina klänning! Den är gjord efter samma mönster som min, men i ett annat (handvävt!) tyg. Den är så himla fin!
And I just wanted to show you Annette’s wonderful dress too. It’s made after the same pattern as mine but in another (handwoven!) fabric. It’s so beautiful!
Look how nicely it’s folding!

So beautiful. Both dress and you, mum!

Tre gånger krapp – Three times madder

Jag är inte så bra på växtfärgning. Tvärt om – jag är verkligen en nybörjare. Jag tycker det är roligt att se hur färgen fäster på tyget och det är kul att testa olika växter och färger. Mitt senaste färgningsäventyr var med krapp. Jag hade ett vitt tyg som var tanken att det skulle färgas och bli till hosor, och efter jag klippt ut bitar till hosor insåg jag att jag hade tillräckligt mycket tyg kvar för att kunna göra en liten hätta med. Lyckligt ögonblick!

I’m not a very accomplished plant dyer. On the contrary – I’m quite the beginner. I think it’s fun to see the dye stick to the fabric, and I like to try different dyes. My latest adventure was with madder. I had some white fabric intended for a pair of hoses, and after I cut them before dyeing I realised that I had enough for a small hood, too! Lucky moment. 

Hättor är så enkla att göra. Jag tycker verkligen om att göra dem och man känner sig bra efter att man slutfört ett projekt. Och förresten – när vi ändå pratar om att slutföra projekt så kan jag berätta att jag fortfarande inte är färdig med min Herjolfsnesklänning. Det är fortfarande fickslitsar som saknas. Jag har gjort massor av andra saker istället, som att sy yllemuslin slöja och haklin, växtfärgat och sytt grejer av resultatet från färgningen. Tiden börjar dock rinna iväg och jag vill verkligen att klänningen ska vara färdig till nästa vecka då det är 25-årsfirandet för Middelaldercentret i Danmark.

Hoods are so simple to make. I really like it and you feel good after finishing projects. By the way (on the matter of finishing projects) – I’ve still not completed the Herjolfsnes Challenge dress. It still lacks pocket slits. I’ve been doing lots of stuff instead, like sewing a thin wool veil and wimple, madder dyeing and sewing from the resulting fabric from the dye. Time is getting short though, and next week I wan’t it to be finished because then it’s the 25th anniversary of the Medieval Center in Denmark. 

Istället för att göra fickslitsar färgade jag alltså tyg. Jag hade 100 gram pulveriserad krapp och totalt ungefär 420 gram material. Jag ville ha den starkaste färgen på plagget som kommer synast mest- hättan alltså – så den fick gå i första badet. Materialet till hättan vägde ungefär 170 gram. Tyget till hosorna åkte i nästa bad. Efter det hade jag inte tänkt färga något mer, men jag ville inte slösa på färgen som fanns kvar i grytan så jag la ner två små bitar tyg som kommer räcka till två små tofsväskor.

So, instead of making pocket slits I dyed some fabric. I had 100g of powdered madder, and in total about 420g material. I wanted the strongest dye on the item that would be seen the most – the hood – so that went into the first bath. The material for the hood weighed about 170g. The fabric for the hoses went in second. Then I didn’t really plan to dye anything more, but I didn’t want to waste the last of the dye so I put in two squares of fabric, enough for two small purses.

Resultatet? Tre nyanser av rött och orange!

The result? Three different shades of red and orange. 

Första badet blev riktigt bra, det andra är inte så jämnt i färgen (mest för att jag hade alldeles för mycket tyg mot vad jag borde i den grytan jag hade). Det sista badet resulterade i en fin aprikosfärgad tygbit.

The first bath is really nice, the second isn’t that even (mainly because I used too much material in a too small pot).The last one is a lovely peach shade that I like. 

Hosorna är inte så himla intressanta, men jag tog några bilder på dem ändå. Det som jag är mest nöjd med är hättan. Den är baserad på en av hättorna från London; nummer 246.

The hoses are not really interesting, but I took some photos of them anyway. The real deal here is the hood. It is based on one of the hoods from London, number 246. 

London hood no 246, Image: Marc Carlson “Some Clothing of the Middle Ages”

Jag gjorde mönstret baserat på informationen om 246 i Textiles and Clothing och ändrade det efter mina egna mått. Jag ville ha en liten, tajt hätta med knappar och strut. Jag känner att jag i princip fått till det på pricken.

I made the pattern using the information in Textiles and Clothing and mixed it with my own measurments. I wanted a small, tight hood with buttons and a liripipe. I think I more or less nailed it.

Jag fick skarva lite för att få det som jag ville, men det syns knappt. Både färg och passform blev riktigt bra!
I had to piece it a bit to get it the way I wanted it, but it’s barely visible.  I think that both the colour and fit turned out really nice!
Barely visible, but it’s pieced on this side.
Om jag skulle ändra något så skulle det i så fall vara kilplaceringen. Som ni kan se på bilden ovan så är den placerad ganska långt framåt istället för i mitten. Fast det är nog inte nödvändigt att ändra egentligen. Den passar ju bra ändå. 
If there’s one thing I’d possibly change it’s the placement of the gores. As you see here they lie a bit to the front and not centered. But perhaps it’s not neccesary. It fits really well anyway. 

Hättan är helt handsydd. De bindande sömmarna är sydda med lintråd och alla detaljer samt kilarna är sydda med sysilke. Alla sömmar är nedsydda med förstygn från utsidan, och nederkanten har en rad pricksöm (förstygnversionen) och ansiktsöppningen har två rader pricksöm. Knapparna är sydda av tyget med lintråd, knapphålen är också sydda med lintråd och backade med ett handvävt linne.

The hood is all hand sewn. The binding seams with linen thread and all details and the gores with silk thread. The seams are sewn down with running stitches from the outside, and the hem has one row of stab stitches (running stitch way). The face opening has two rows of stab stitches to reinforce it. There are ten self fabric buttons, sewn with linen thread. The buttonholes are sewn with linen thread and are faced with a handwoven linen.

Här är några detaljbilder på hättan. Om du trycker på bilderna så förstoras de.

Here are som detail shots of the hood. If you click the images they will be enlarged. 

Och som en avslutning – ett foto på de tre baden, två av dem redan färdiga plagg!

And to end this – a photo of the three baths, two of them already made into garments!

Thanks to Maria Neijman and Linda Clarin for help with method and materials! You rock!

D10584 – Före tillskärning – Before cutting the garment

Det här inlägget är främst till för att samla den forskning jag har gjort inför sömnaden av mitt Herjolfsnesutmaningsplagg. Jag listar de steg och ämnen som jag har funderat över, och skriver om mina fynd och slutsatser. Artikeln fokuserar främst på plagget med museumnummer D10584, eller också Nörlund nummer 42, men jag jämför även det med de andra plaggen från Herjolfsnes och andra plagg från medeltida Europa. Jag kommer använda följande förkortningar för olika böcker jag tittat i. SSTJ står för Som syet till jorden (den danska originalversionen, den engelska översättningen heter Woven into the Earth) och MGR för Medieval garments reconstructed. När jag citerar Östergård gör jag det på engelska och därför, vilket kanske är lätt förvirrande, hänvisar jag till den engelska översättningen, alltså Woven into the Earth, och sidhänvisningarna är alltså till den engelska versionen.

This post will mainly gather the research I’ve made prior to sewing my Herjolfsnes Challenge-garment. I list the stages and cathegories I’ve given thougt, and write about my findings and conclusions. The post focuses on the garment with museum number D10584, or Nörlund no 42, but I will also correlate it to the other Herjolfsnes garments and to extant medieval garments found around Europe. I will use SSTJ as short for Som syet til jorden (the original, Danish, version of Woven into the Earth) and MGR for Medieval garments reconstructed. When I cite Östergård I do so from the translated version of SSTJ, i.e. Woven into the Earth, and the page numbers will refer to that, English, version. 

D10584, or Nörlund no 42. Photo from kostym.cz

Vad står skrivet?
D10584 är en plagg av Nörlund typ Ib, “which are tight-fitting with gussets inserted in the front and back and with between four and eight side pieces which give them outward-flaring fullness from around waist height. The garments are for pulling over the head, with round or oval neck openings.” (Östergård, 2004, p 128). Andra Grönlandsplagg som tillhör typ Ib är D10580, D10581, D10582 och D10583.

Plagget ansågs vara en herrkjortel enligt Nörlund, baserat på placeringen av fickslitsarna i förhållande till låret. Den slutsatsen är ganska spekulativ enligt mig – varför skulle en lägre placerad fickslits indikera att det är ett herrplagg? Det enda sättet att få ett definitivt svar skulle varit om plagget hittades på en kropp, alltså buret av personen när den begravdes. Då skulle det vara möjligt att göra en osteologisk analys av skelettet för att bestämma könet på individen, och inte ens då skulle resultatet vara helt säkert.

What is written?
D10584 is a Nörlund type Ib, “which are tight-fitting with gussets inserted in the front and back and with between four and eight side pieces which give them outward-flaring fullness from around waist height. The garments are for pulling over the head, with round or oval neck openings.” (Östergård, 2004, p 128). Other garments that belong in the type Ib cathegory are D10580, D10581, D10852 and D10583.

It was considered a mans kirtle by Nörlund, based on the location of the pocket slits in relation to the thigh. This is rather speculative in my opinion – why would a lower pocket slit indicate that it’s a mans garment? The only way to get a definite answer to wheter it’s a man’s or a woman’s garmet would be to find the garment on the body, worn by the person. Then it would be possible to do an osteological analysis of the skeleton to determine the sex of the individual and not even then the result would be a hundred percent certain.

Pattern illustration of no 42/D10584, from Marc Carlson, Some Clothing of the Middle Ages

Som det är nu så hittades plaggen inte burna av personerna i gravarna, utan de hade använts som liksvepningar. Det innebär att det inte ens är säkert att de egentligen tillhörde personerna de gravlagdes med, vilket i sin tur innebär att en analys av kvarlevorna inte ger ett svar på huruvida plagget tillhörde en man eller en kvinna. Man skulle förstås kunna jämföra de olika plagglängderna och sedan säga något om de resultaten, men för att det skulle ge något definitivt skulle man också behöva göra en studie av medellängden hos kvinnor och män i Herjolfsnes och först då skulle man kunna säga något om vad som var en “kvinnlig längd” och “manlig längd” på kläderna. Det är inte en analys jag varken haft tid eller möjlighet att göra, men det är såklart ett väldigt intressant ämne. Det är fullt möjligt att en liknande analys redan gjorts, så om någon vet var man kan hitta det så får ni gärna höra av er – jag skulle vara mycket intresserad av att forska mer kring det. Utöver detta skriver också Östergård att omkretsen vid både handled och ärmhål på plagget är väldigt liten, vilket talar emot Nörlunds slutsats om att det skulle vara ett herrplagg, och det leder henne till att tro att det snarare är ett kvinnoplagg.

Min slutsats är att det är svårt att säga om D10584 är ett kvinno- eller mansplagg, men i slutändan spelar det ingen större roll. Min version kommer bli ett kvinnoplagg till mig själv. Även om det i framtiden framkommer starkare bevis för att det är ett mansplagg så är det fortfarande en trovärdig tolkning av ett kvinnoplagg från samma tid.

As it is now, the garments were found as wrappings for the bodies and not worn. That means that it isn’t even certain that they belonged to the person they were buried with, which means that analysing the human remains does not give an answer to wheter the garments belonged to men or women. You could of course compare the lenght of the garments and then say something about those results, but then you would have to compare that to the average heights of the men and women of Herjolfsnes and then decide what is a “female lenght” and what is a “male lenght” of a garment. That is not something I have bothered to do, but it would indeed be an interesting topic if anyone would have the time to do it. Perhaps it has already been done, or at least something similar? I would be interested to know, so if someone knows about it, please send me a message so I could investigate. Östergård also writes that the wrist diameter and armscye are both small, which speaks against Nörlunds conclusion that it is a man’s garment, and leads her to think that it’s rather a woman’s garment.

My conclusion is that it is hard to say if the D10584 is a woman’s or a man’s garment, but in the end it doesn’t really matter. My version will be a woman’s garment for myself. Even if there will be stronger evidence in the future suggesting that it indeed is a man’s garment, it will still be a very plausible interpretation for a woman’s garment of the same time.

Some of my needles and a piece of combed Rya wool

D10584 har inte blivit C14-daterat, men ett annat plagg tillhörande samma typ (typ Ib) blev daterat till 1380-1530 (med en peak mellan 1400-1480). Dateringen behöver inte nödvändigtvis gälla för alla plagg av samma typ, Ib. Kjortlar av de andra typerna har blivit daterade till främst 1300-tal, både tidigt och sent.

The D10584 have not been carbon dated, but another garment belonging to the same type (type Ib) was dated to 1380-1530 (with a peak between 1400-1480). The dating does not have to extend to all of the garments of type Ib. Kirtles in the other cathegories are dated to mainly 14th century – both early and late.

Sömmar, tråd och tyg
Det står egentligen inte så mycket skrivet om sömmarna som användes för att sy D10584. Beskrivningen av sömmarna som användes i D10581 och D10579 är mycket mer ingående. I SSTJ så finns det ett helt kapitel som handlar om sömnadsteknikerna som användes på Grönlandsplaggen, och när sömmar specifieras i plaggbeskrivningarna så verkar de skilja sig från dessa generella beskrivningar. Det leder mig till att anta att om sömnadsteknikerna inte specifieras i plaggbeskrivningen så är de gjorda enligt den allmäna beskrivningen. På grund av det kommer jag använda mig av de sömmar som talas om i den generella genomgången (se citat nedan). Jag kommer att fälla sömmarna åt samma håll, utom i axelsömmarna eftersom Östergård i SSTJ skriver att dessa normalt fälldes åt varsitt håll.

Seams, thread and fabric

There is not much written about the actual seams that made up the D10584. The description of the seams of the D10581 and D10579 are way more elaborate. In SSTJ there is a whole chapter describing the sewing techniques used on the Greenland garments, and when seams are specified in the garment descriptions they seem to differ from the over-all description. That leads me to think that if the sewing techniques are not specified, they were sewn as described in the beginning of SSTJ. Because of that I will use the seams described in the over-all description (see citation below). I will fell the seams to one side in all seams except for the shoulder seam, since SSTJ states that those commonly were split and felled. 

“Many of the seams may have been done from the front, where one piece with a fold along the cut-off edge has been laid in over the adjacent piece. In these seams a hem stitch has been used. The seam allowance on the back is fastened in one piece to one side with tight overcast stitching down to the cloth.” Östergård 2004, page 98

Sytråden som användes beskrivs som tunn och tvåtrådig, spunnen av kammad får- eller getull. Den är Z-spunnen och S-tvinnad, och diametern är ungefär 1 mm. Till det här projektet har jag spunnit min egen sytråd av handkammad ryaull och spunnit den med en reproduktion av en medeltida slända tillsammans med mitt fiberfäste/spinnpinne.

The sewing thread is described as a thin, two-ply, thread, spun from combed sheep’s or goat’s wool. It is Z-spun and S-plied, and the diameter is about 1 mm in diameter. For this project I’ve spun my own sewing thread, made from handcombed Rya wool (Rya is a Swedish breed of sheep). I’ve spun it with a medieval spindle replica together with at distaff. 

The sewing thread

Enligt SSTJ är tyget i D10584 en 2/2-kypert. Originalfärgen på tyget var brunt, och i tabellen om färg och tråd i MGR så skriver de att varpen var tannin (färgad?) brun och inslaget mörkbrunt. I somras köpte jag ett ekologiskt ulltyg från Medeltidsmode, ett tvåfärgat tyg med olika, naturliga fårfärger, i varp och inslag, med tanken att det skulle bli ett Herjolfsnesplagg. Senare insåg vi att vi är hyfsat många som köpt samma tyg med samma intention, så kommande sommar i Visby kommer vara “all about” Grönlandsmode. Många av tygerna i Herjolfsnes har fler trådar i inslag än varp per centimeter. Mitt har det inte.

According to SSTJ the fabric D10584 is sewn in is a 2/2-twill. The original colour of the fabric was brown, and in the table about colour and thread in MGR states that the warp is a tannin (dyed?) brown. and the weft is dark brown. Last summer I bought an ecological wool from Medeltidsmode, bi-coloured in natural shades of the sheep, with the intent for it to become a Herjolfsnes garment. Later, we realised that we were several people that bought the same fabric with the same intent, so next year in Visby will be all Greenland fashion. Many of the textiles in Herjolfsnes are weft-faced. My fabric is not. 

The fabric (in bad lightning). It’s lighter in real life.

När jag har gjort mitt mönster så har jag framförallt gått efter MGR. Mitt plagg, D10584, finns med i den boken. MGR har mönster i tre olika storlekar för varje plagg, men tillsammans med dessa mönster finns även en skiss av hur originalplagget ser ut i förhållande till storlekarna. En stor skillnad från originalplagget mot mitt mönster är att mina ärmar är lika långa. I SSTJ står det att vänster ärm är 530 mm lång och höger ärm är 430 mm lång. Det är väldigt tydligt i det första fotot, längst upp. Totalt kommer mitt plagg bestå av 13 mönsterdelar och en av dem kommer delas ytterligare med en falsk söm.

I’ve mainly relied on MGR for the pattern. My garment, the D10584, is drawn in that book. MGR has sizes, but in the pattern diagram they’ve also added the outline of the original garment. One big difference from the original in my pattern is that I’ve made the sleeves the same length. In SSTJ it is written that the left arm is 530 mm long and the right is 430 mm long. This is very much visible in the first photo above. In all, my garment will consist of 13 pattern pieces and one of them will be divided further with a false seam.

My scaled up pattern on the floor

Mönstret har redan blivit gjort. Det blev uppskalat från MGR på mönsterpapper, och vi använde storlek S, vilken är mer eller mindre som originalet. Sedan gjordes en toile med hjälp av mönstret, men till mönstret lades även 30 cm längs nederkanten. Allt dettta gjordes med hjälp av min fina mamma, Annette. Toilen passade okej, och med mindre ändringar får jag ett ganska bra mönster.

En av de roligare detaljerna hos det här mönstret är att axelsömmen faller framåt, istället för det man normalt ser – att den sittter mitt på axeln. När jag hade på mig toilen låg axelsömmen precis nedanför nyckelbenet på mig.

The pattern have already been made. It was scaled up from MGR on paper, using the size small, which is more or less the original size. Then a toile was made using that pattern, but with 30 cm added to the bottom hem. All of this was done with the help of my dearest mother, Annette. The toile was an OK fit, and with minor tweaks I would have a perfectly good pattern. 

One of the more fun features of the pattern is that the shoulder seam is not at the top of the shoulders, but rather tilted forward. When wearing the toile the seam lies just beneath the collarbone on me. 

Me in the toile. We only had enough fabric for one sleeve.

Dekorationer och förstärkningar
Runt halshålet och fickslitsarna har en fläta, troligtvis en öglefläta (fingerloop braid) sytts fast. Åtminstone är det den sortens fläta jag drar som slutsats att de har använt efter att ha tittat på bilderna och läst beskrivningen av flätan i SSTJ. Där skriver Östergård att de antagligen flätats med öglor. Garnet jag kommer använda till detta har jag redan spunnit och skrivit om i detta inlägget.

Decoration and reinforcement
The neck opening and pocket slits are finished with a braid, presumably a finger-loop braid. At least that is what I conclude from looking at the image and reading the description of the braid, where Östergård states that they probably were braided using loops. The yarn I will use for these is already spun, and I’ve written about it in this post

The yarn I will use for brainds and tablet-weaving

Samma garn kommer användas till den brickvävda nederkanten. I SSTJ beskrivs denna brickväv ligga ovanpå fållen, och den täcker även en rad med singling. Singling beskrivs också i SSTJ som små förstygn, sydda i S-form längs med fållen för att förstärka den (se illustration).

The same yarn will be used at the tablet-woven piped edging that finishes the bottom hem. The tablet weaving lies on top of the fabric, covering a row of singling, all around the hem. Singling is also described in SSTJ. It is small running stitches, sewn in S-shape along the hem to reinforce it (see illustration). 


Längs med nederkanten av ärmarna är det sytt två rader pricksöm. Till dessa kommer jag använda sytråden. De två raderna är sydda längs med fållen och slitsen på ärmen. Det finns också en rad pricksöm längs fickslitsarna, om jag förstår tabellen om sömmar och stygn i MGR korrekt. Antingen menar de fickslitsen eller ärmslitsen, men jag är böjd att tro att det är fickslitsen de menar eftersom Östergård tydligt skriver att både ärmfållen och ärmslitsen har två rader prickstygn. Om någon har den danska versionen av MGR och kan tänka sig att kolla upp vad det står där så hade jag uppskattat det enormt!

There is also some stab-stitching at the end of the sleeves. For these I will use the sewing thread. They are sewn in two rows along the hem and the slit. Also, if I interpret the table on seams and stitching in MGR correctly, there is a single row of stab stitches along the pocket slit. Either that or on the slit of the sleeve, but since SSTJ clearly states that both the hem and the slit of the sleeve have two rows of stab-stitching, I lean to think that it is the pocket slits that have the single row. If anyone have the Danish copy of MGR and could check what it says there for me I would be grateful!

Stab-stitching on hoods I’ve made

Andra plagg i Europa
Baserat på det stora antal plagg som troligtvis användes på medeltiden så är det ett väldigt litet urval som överlevt till idag. Ändock har vi ett antal plagg från perioden som kan användas för att ge en bild av hur medeltidsmänniskan var klädd.

Konstruktionsmässigt är Grönlandsplaggen väldigt speciella. Det finns inte riktigt några andra plagg som är gjorda med liknande konstruktion. Endast små detaljer, så som axelsömmens position på D10584, går att hitta hos andra plagg. I det här fallet så går den framflyttade axelsömmen även att finna på Moy-Bog-kjorteln (se Carlson, 2006). Utöver den lilla detaljen så skiljer sig Moy-Bog-kjorteln ganska ordentligt från Grönlandsplaggen.

Other garments around Europe
Based on the amount of garments that probably were used in the medieval times, the ones that have survived to today are very few. Non the less, we have some garments from the period that can be used to give a hint about how the medival people dressed. 

The Greenland garments are very special construction wise. There are not really any other garments from the period that are similar in construction. Only small features, such as the position of the shoulder seam on the D10584, can be seen in other garments. In this case the forwarded shoulder seam can also be found in the Moy Bog garment (see Carlson, 2006). Other than that, the Moy Bog garment differs a lot from the Greenland garments. 

Difference in warp placement for tablet-woven edges.

Kantvävning med brickor kan man hitta på många ställen, men genomförandet skiljer sig något från plats till plats. Här tänker jag framförallt på kantvävningen på textilierna från London – specifikt den ärmkant som blivit kantvävd vid knapphålen. När den beskrivs i Textiles and Clothing så verkar det som att kantväven ligger utanpå kanten. Kantväven på Grönlandsplaggen ligger snarare ovanpå kanten – en skillnad jag försökt illustrera ovan.

Tygerna från Herjolfsnes är nästan alla 2/2-kypert. I Europa under samma tid är de vanligaste bindningarna 2/1-kypert och tuskaft.

Tablet-woven edges can be seen in more than one places, but the execution of it differs from piece to piece. Here I am thinking mainly of the tablet-woven edges in the textiles from London – specifically the edge of a sleeve with button-holes. When decribed in Textiles and Clothing the edge seem to be just that – an egde. The tablet-weaving on the Greenland garments rather lies on top of the edge. I’ve tried to illustrate the difference above. 

The fabrics found in Herjolfsnes are almost all in 2/2-twill. In Europe at the same time, the most common weaves are 2/1-twill and tabby.

Kommande steg
Nu är nästa steg att klippa ut delarna ur tyget – något jag trodde att jag skulle ha gjort vid det här laget, men vardagslivet har hängt mig i hasorna och jag har fått prioritera annat. Jag har också lärt mig att sticka strumpor, vilket jag trodde att jag aldrig skulle lära mig. Det innebär att jag övar på den färdigheten ganska mycket. Men! Snart kommer jag ta mig samman och klippa ut och börja sy, för egentligen kan jag inte bärga mig!

Next steps
Now I need to cut the fabric. I thought I would have done that by now, but everyday life have caught up with me and I’ve had to prioritise other things. Also, I’ve learnt how to knit socks, which I never thought I would. That means that I’m practicing that skill quite a lot. But! Soon I will bring myself together to cut the fabric and start sewing, because I can’t wait, really!

My first ever knitted socks! Tiny ones, but still

Carlson, I. M. (2006). Some Clothing of the Middle Ages,

Crowfoot, E., Pritchard, F., & Staniland, K. (2006). Textiles and Clothing, c. 1150-c. 1450 (Vol. 4). Boydell Press.

Fransen, L., Nørgaard, A., & Østergård, E. (2011). Medieval garments reconstructed: Norse clothing patterns. Aarhus Universitetsforlag.

Østergård, E. (2004). Woven into the earth: textiles from Norse Greenland. Aarhus Universitetsforlag.

Herjolfsnes Challenge warm-up – D10606

Innan jag börjar på mitt stora Herjolfsnesutmantingsprojekt ville jag göra något mindre. Både för att jag ville prova lite tekniker, såsom att skala upp mönster från Medieval Garments Reconstructed och sömnadstekniker, och för att jag ville börja (och bli färdig med) något mindre. Jag bestämde mig för att göra hätta nummer D10606, eller Nörlund nummer 78.

Jag har ett långtidsprojekt som började med att jag sydde den ärmlösa överklänningen i somras. Mitt mål är att ha ett fullt set med kläder i samma tyg. Det innebär en kjortel, en överklänning och en hätta för min del. Överklänningen är färdig och nu även hättan.

Before starting on my big Herjolfsnes project I wanted to do something smaller. Both because I wanted to try the techniques, like scaling up a pattern from Medieval Garments Reconstructed and the sewing techniques, and because I wanted to get going and finish something smaller. I decided to make the D10606 hood, or Nörlund no 78. 

I have a long term project going that started with the sleeve-less surcote last summer. My goal is to have a complete set of clothing in the same fabric. That means a kirtle, surcote and a hood for me. The surcote is done, and now the hood too.

För att göra den här hättan har jag framförallt använt två böcker om Grönlandsfynden; Som syet til jorden (engelska översättningen heter Woven into the Earth) och Medieval Garments Reconstructed, som källor. När det gäller sömnadstekniker så har jag i första hand konsulterat Som syet til jorden (SSTJ) och i andra hand Medieval Garments Reconstructed (MGR), och när jag gjorde mönstret följde jag det i MGR tillsammans med informationen som finns given SSTJ.

To make this hood I’ve mainly used the two books on the Greenland garments; Som syet til jorden (Danish version of Woven into the Earth) and Medival Garments Reconstruced, as sources. For the sewing techniques I consulted Som syet til jorden (SSTJ) in first hand, and secondly Medieval Garments Reconstructed (MGR). When making the pattern I followed the drawing in MGR, combined with the information given in SSTJ. 

Som jag skrev ovan så använde jag uppritningen av mönstret i MGR tillsammans med informationen om och fotona av hättan i SSTJ. Mitt mål var att komma så nära originalet som möjligt och jag tycker att jag kommer väldigt nära. Den enda skillnaden mönstermässigt är att jag missade att det var en skarv på struten. Jag märkte det inte heller förrän hela hättan var ihopsydd. Synd, men det är inte alldeles för tokigt.

The pattern
As I wrote above I used the drawing of the pattern in MGR together with the information and photos given in SSTJ. My goal was to get as close to the original as possible, and I think I’m very close based on what’s given in the two books. The only difference pattern-wise is that I missed that the liripipe was pieced and I only noticed that after the hood was all sewn together. A pity, but it’s not too bad. 

The cut out pieces

Hättan består av sex mönsterbitar. Två huvudstycken, två sidokilar och den delade struten. Struten är fastsydd till hättan på ett lite annorlunda sätt som jag inte sett någon annan stans, med utskärningar i både hätta och strut. Man kan se det på fotot av de utklippta delarna, men för att göra det hela tydligare gjorde jag en liten skiss som ni kan se nedan. Jag vet inte riktigt vad meningen med designen är än, men jag tycker det är en fin detajl och det ser snyggt ut.

The hood is composed of six pattern pieces. The two main pieces, the two side-gores and the split liripipe. The liripipe is attached in a peculiar way that I haven’t seen anywhere else, with cut outs in both the hood and on the liripipe. It can be seen in the photo of the cut out pieces, but here is an image I’ve drawn to make it even clearer. I’m not sure of what it does yet, but I think it’s a nice add, and it looks good.

The peculiar shaped joint

Det fanns inte så mycket information om hur hättan var ihopsydd, varken i SSTJ eller i MGR (se citat nedan). Det som nämns är att struten är ihopsydd på både ovan- och undersidan och att hättan har två rader pricksöm längs med både ansikts- och nacköppning. Fållen längs ansiktsöppningen är 7 mm bred och nedsydd med kaststygn. Även nacköppningen är nedsydd med kaststygn, men den fållen är 9 mm bred. Det är den information som ges om hättan och det har jag kopierat till min egen hätta.

The sewing
The information about how the hood was sewn together is very sparse (see citation below), both in SSTJ and in MGR. It is mentioned that the liripipe is sewn together on both sides (top and bottom) and that the hood has two rows of stab-stitching along both the shoulder opening and the face opening. The hem of the face opening is 7 mm wide and sewn down with overcast stitches. So is the shoulder opening, but there the hem is 9 mm wide. This is all the information there is, and I’ve copied all of these features to my hood. 

“The added liripipe is 695 mm long, 55 mm wide. It is sewn together from two pieces with seams above and below the liripipe.
The original finishing edges at the face and on the shoulder are preserved. Both have two rows of stab stitching, sewn through a 7 mm and a 9 mm narrow hem. The hem is sewn down with close overcast stitches.” Østergård, 2004, page 214 

För information om hur resterande sömmar skulle sys så konsulterades informationen som ges om allmän sömnad bland Herjolfsnesplaggen i SSTJ. Där skriver de att långa sömmar troligtvis syddes från utsidan med fållstygn, därefter har sömsmånerna fällts åt ett håll och sytts ner med kaststygn – utom på axelsömmar där sömsmånerna är lagda åt varsitt håll och sedan sytts ned. Kilarna syddes också från utsidan.

For the rest of the seams I’ve leaned on the information given earlier in SSTJ, in the chapter where they describe how the Herjolfsnes garments were sewn together as a whole. There they state that the long seams probably were sewn from the outside, using a hemstitch, and then the seam allowances were sewn down to one with overcast stitches – except on the shoulder seam of the kirtles where the seam allowance was split and then sewn down. The gores were also sewn in from the outside. 

Sewing the stab-stitches

Side-gore sewn from the outside and two rows of stab-stitches

Inside of shoulder hem. 

Hättan är sydd med tunt kamgarn. Det är grått och syns ganska tydligt när man tittar närmre, men det är inget som stör mig. Jag hade kunnat lägga fyllnadstrådar längs med ansiktsöppningen, men eftersom de är väldigt tydliga med att tala om när sådana finns på hättorna gjorde jag antagandet att D10606 troligtvis inte har någon fyllnadstråd, så jag bestämde mig för att hoppa över sådana. Att sy ihop hättan gick fort – minst dubbla den tiden gick till att sy pricksömmen. Jag tycker att pricksömmen gör väldigt mycket för hättans totala uttryck och jag tycker att de är väldigt trevliga att sy.

The hood is sewn with a thin worsted thread. It’s gray and does show quite a bit when you get close, but that doesn’t bother me. I could have used filler threads along the face opening, but since they state very clearly when filler threads have been used on the other hoods I concluded that the D10606 probably don’t have any filler threads, so I decided to go without. Sewing the hood together was a fast job – at least the equal amount of time was spent on sewing the stab-stitches. I think they give alot of the finished look of the hood, and they’re quite a joy for me to sew.

Face opening

Den färdiga hättan
När jag gjorde mönstret oroade jag mig lite för att hättan eventuellt skulle vara för liten – att det inte skulle passa mig. Jag gjorde den trots allt efter originalmönster med tanken att mitt främsta mål med hättan var att testa tekniker. Nu när den är klar så visade det sig att den passade ganska bra. Jag har inte hunnit prova hättan med mina medeltidskläder än, men jag är säker på att den här hättan blir ett fint tillägg till min redan existerande hättsamling.

The finished hood
When I made the pattern I was worried that it might be too small, that it wouldn’t fit. I made it original size anyway, thinking that my main goal for this was to try the techniques. Now that it’s done it fits quite nicely. I haven’t had the time to try it with any of my dresses yet, but I think it will be a nice add to my stash of hoods. 

The finished hood!

The “horn” at the front is quite hard to get decent in a photo of it lying on the floor. 

Nästa steg blir att klippa ut tyget till min klänning. Jag spenderade helgen hos mina föräldrar och tillsammans med mamma så skalade vi upp mönstret till D10584 och gjorde en toile. Vi förde även över mönstret till mammas tyg så jag kunde ta med mig pappersmönstret hem när jag sen åkte. Nästa blogginlägg kommer att handla om mina tankar och forskningsprocessen fram till att jag klipper ut mönsterdelarna ur tyget. Kommer snart!

Next thing will be to cut the fabric for my dress. I spent the weekend at my parents, and together my mom and I scaled up the D10584 pattern and made a toile. We also traced the pattern onto my mothers fabric so that I could bring the paper pattern with me when I went home. My next blog post will be about the thoughts and research process up until the cutting of the dress. Stay tuned. 

Fransen, L., Nørgaard, A., & Østergård, E. (2011). Medieval garments reconstructed: Norse clothing patterns. Aarhus Universitetsforlag.

Østergård, E. (2004). Woven into the earth: textiles from Norse Greenland. Aarhus Universitetsforlag.