Late Medieval Fashion Redressed

POPULAR POSTS

Spiral Lacing—Why and how to do it on 14th century clothing

I was recently asked how I placed my eyelets for lacing my dresses shut. I lace the fronts and sides of my dresses using an off-set pattern of eyelets, finished with matched eyelets on each side at the top and the bottom of the opening. This arrangement facilitates a spiral lacing pattern which reliably holds …

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My Honeymoon and Medieval Clothing—Seeing the Charles de Blois Pourpoint

(Link to a new article on the pourpoint of Charles de Blois is at the bottom of this post.) It’s been far too long since I blogged, but I promise I have some good content to share. There will be a series of posts about the amazing medieval things I saw in Mantova, Venice, and Prague on my honeymoon. …

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The Royal Grave Clothing of 14th Century Bohemia

…Or: The Bonanza I Found When I Went Looking for the Houppelande of John of Görlitz (Jan Zhořelecký) As part of my husband’s and my honeymoon trip to Prague, we intended to check off a modest bucket list item, which was to see the extant 14th century houppelande on display in Prague Castle. I also …

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The Fitted Dress Neckline: Devil in the Details

While I have consistently indulged in a relatively deep scoop neckline for my 14th century-style fitted dresses, I have done so in a willful departure from what the art of the time actually reveals. In fact, I have come across precious few images of fitted dresses with generously wide shoulder seams that also dip low …

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Face-Framing Braids—Recreating a 14th-Century Hairstyle

I’ve long been fascinated with the braided hair styles seen on women in Western European figural art of the mid-to-late 14th century—particularly in French works. To my modern eyes, women did charming and oddball things with their hair. The undeniable outlandishness of these braids make them fun to recreate. I am especially enamored of the …

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The Medieval Buttonhole

To skip the talkity-talk below and go right to the tutorial, click here. But I recommend you read on anyway. Buttonholes… the mere thought of them strikes cold fear into the hearts of European 14th century clothing enthusiasts. The 14th century was probably the most insanely over-buttoned century ever. We few, we committed few, will …

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RECENT POSTS

Embroidery on medieval clothing and accessories

In February 2019 I traveled to Dearborn, Michigan where I shared a slide presentation on medieval embroidery for clothing and accessories. This was the yearly chapter meeting for La Compagnia della Rose nel Sole, a re-enactment company portraying English, French, and Italian mercenaries in Italy in the late 14th century. We get together in February …

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Hiking the Camino Primitivo, a Medieval Immersion

Memories and Mind Expansion I travel for two reasons — the memories I carry with me afterwards and the expansion of my understanding of the world. Trips I took decades ago still loom in my consciousness; sharp, fresh moments of joy and profound satisfaction. I remember visiting the pueblos carved into the side of mesas …

Hiking the Camino Primitivo, a Medieval Immersion Read More »

Face-Framing Braids—Recreating a 14th-Century Hairstyle

I’ve long been fascinated with the braided hair styles seen on women in Western European figural art of the mid-to-late 14th century—particularly in French works. To my modern eyes, women did charming and oddball things with their hair. The undeniable outlandishness of these braids make them fun to recreate. I am especially enamored of the …

Face-Framing Braids—Recreating a 14th-Century Hairstyle Read More »

Coloring the Fencing Master in the Getty Fiore’s Segno della Spada

Or, How Coloring Can Teach You More About Medieval Clothing This story begins because my husband, Gregory Mele, owns a martial arts studio called Forteza Fitness & Martial Arts in Chicago.     It serves as the home of his first love, the Chicago Swordplay Guild, which he co-founded with like-minded others in 1999. As the Dean of the …

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Charles VI Coat Armour Repro, Part 4: Sewing It All Together

This is the fourth in a series of blog posts describing the process I undertook to recreate the child-sized coat armour on display at the Musée des beaux arts in Chartres, France. This installment covers the sewing techniques used in attaching all the pieces and finishing all the edges. You can find the earlier installments …

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Charles VI Coat Armour Repro, Part 3: Padding and Quilting on a Frame

This is the third in a series of blog posts describing the process I undertook to recreate the child-sized coat armour on display at the Musée des beaux arts in Chartres, France. The prior installments can be found here: Dyeing an Imperfect Lampas Recreating the Pattern The truly laborious stage was upon me now. I had …

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