08 June 2014

A simple late 15th c. cap

Late 15th c. cap
Late 15th c. cap
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.

Wearing late 15th c. cap
Wearing late 15th c. cap
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.
This is an incredibly simple piece of headwear - but it looks right, so why make it complicated? I think of this style as primarily 15th c., although it's probably plausible into the early 16th.
  1. Take a rectangle of fine linen, 22 by 12 inches. (These measurements fit my head - small adjustments may be necessary.)
  2. Hem all four sides.
  3. Fold in half, sewing the edge together to form the center-back seam.
  4. Attach a long tie to the point at the top of the head.
  5. There is no step 5!
To wear, secure hair close to head in braids or bun. Drape cap on head, hold tail snug to top of neck keeping front edge where you want it, wrap tail around head once, pull end through first loop in order to change directions and wrap around head the other way. Tuck end under previous wrap to secure, and flip the front edge back to frame the face.

14 May 2014

Mostly quiet on the sewing front

I've been on a bit of a hiatus from my big sewing projects, so I haven't had a lot of new material to post here. I did remake the sleeves on the black kirtle (much better!), and I just need to add a lining and a new lacing cord to consider that finished. The next step is the outer gown, and although I know I want to fully line it, I'm not sure with what. Until I figure that out, that project's on hold.

I've been working on the embroidered pouch in little bits here and there. Right now, I need to decide on my finished dimensions before I go much farther. The current width is about the minimum for me to get my hand into comfortably; I'm strongly leaning towards adding another half-repeat which would put it at about 5 inches, for more room and better symmetry. The finished pouch should be approximately square, so I'll need to embroider something twice as tall as it is wide.

29 April 2014

New project: embroidered pouch

Beginning of brick stitch pouch
Beginning of brick stitch pouch
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.
I have long admired (and coveted) the brick stitch pouches that a few of my friends have. So there was only one solution... make my own! Richard Wymarc's article on brick stitch embroidery is fantastically helpful, and I've adapted the pattern from one of the extant pieces to use the colors I wanted. I'm working with commercial silk embroidery floss on a 32ct linen ground. The embroidery itself is fairly simple, and now that I've got the pattern well established, it's easier to work without looking at my diagram too often. Still, no completely filled design is exactly fast to work...

11 April 2014

The previously-promised Persian braid case

Braidcase, flat
Braidcase, flat
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.

Braidcase, worn
Braidcase, worn
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.
Here are some pictures of the (mostly) finished braidcase. This was almost entirely a stash project. The main fabric is a red silk - it is medium weight with a strong hand, somewhat similar to a dupioni but with very few slubs. The tassel is also silk, and although not an exact color match it is close. The yarn was the loom waste from a weaving project, and I've been saving the short thrums for a long time but they were perfect for this! The (fake, plastic) pearls are recycled from my old persian hat, which I'd like to redo anyway. The only thing new was the silk embroidery thread. I picked a simple, repetitive band pattern done in outline stitch and lazy daisies. It is probably not terribly authentic, but I think it has approximately the right aesthetic. I ran out of time before I wanted to wear it, so only the first three bands at the top are done, but eventually I want to extend the design along the entire length. (The finishing of the tube part was done in a way to make it easy to un-do later.)

04 April 2014

Upping my game, Persian style

Improved Persian, 2014
Improved Persian, 2014
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.
One of my long-term projects has been to slowly rehab and improve my Persian clothes. I made my first set many years ago, essentially on a whim, and entirely from fabric out of the stash. It's a lot of fun to wear something completely different than I normally do (and to hang out with my awesome Persian-persona friends), but it really wasn't up to my normal standards. So one of my goals has been to fix, replace, and add pieces for gradual improvement.

Here, I've swapped out my first coat layer for the new silk one I made this winter, although much of the interesting detail is hidden. (Please forgive the low-light hotel room photo) You can also glimpse just the tiniest bit of my braid case peeking out under the veil - a teaser for another post hopefully appearing soon. Next up? I need more bling! I definitely need to add jewelry, and I think my next coat should be a brocade.

06 March 2014

See you at Gulf Wars!

I've got a few fun new projects to show, and I'd really hoped to get some photos taken and posted this week. But I've run out of time, and the things have been packed into tubs instead, and there's really still far too much to get done before I hit the road.