So I showed you things from the Dress-Ups Box in Part The Second and Part The First. Time for Part the Third.
First up a silk suit I made in a purple-y brown mushroom coloured silk. This baby has meters and meters of hand applied gold cord and gold metallic braid. I based the design on a russet coloured suit worn by Robert Dudley in 1565.
When I found out that I was going to be elevated to a peerage in the Society For Creative Anachronism, as a member of the Order of the Laurel (just nod politely if this sounds like gobbledy gook), I decided it needed a special outfit. In shorthand, in the SCA it's the equivalent of getting a Knighthood, but for service and excellent in the arts & sciences instead of the art of the biff and bash. Mine was for costuming, and it basically recognises excellence, research and sharing of your skills (I taught quite a few costuming classes), but also 'peerage qualities'. (ie: not too much of a prat.)
Because I was working to a deadline, I sensibly decided to hand sew the individual little scale shaped tabs at the shoulders, neck and waist, and sew on the meters and meters of couched cord and braid by hand. A period I think of as the Marathon of Madness.
This looked fab on the day, and when I stepped up for the King & Queen to perform the ceremony there were gasps and cheers. Alrighty then, that's called Making An Entrance.
Handsome Robert Dudley, the original inspiration. He's a bit of alright, don't you think? No wonder Liz thought he was sex on a stick.
Next up is a 16th c Spanish travelling cloak I made from thick fulled wool (ie: like felt, but actually woven). This is an authentic reproduction of a travelling cloak pattern in a facsimile reprint edition of Juan de Alcega's tailor's pattern book from 1589.
I cut it to the exact pattern, and after checking his measurement guides I didn't even have to scale it down. 16th c Spanish were hobbits I think. The decoration is based on the same sorts of cloaks shown in engravings from the period. Lots of braid, and lots of tassels. Tassels! A definate selling point, don't you think?
The design is really clever. When the collar is undone and the hood flipped back, the collar sits nicely like a regular wide collar.
When you do up the collar though, and flip up the hood, it completely protects the face from the elements and leaves just a slit for the eyes. Some versions of these cloaks were made in thick felt, like the underlay that goes under carpet, and so the conical hood stood upright and helped the rain and snow slide off the thick felt. Plus it made you look kind of funny. Love that!
So there you go. Believe it or not there are some more bits to come, but we're on the home stretch now.