Preparing for a New Project

It’s been a while since I’ve done much in the way of historical-based projects. Between the pandemic, just being meh, and health issues I just haven’t felt very inspired. But, for whatever reason, I suddenly have the urge to make some of the things that have been rattling around in my head.

My current project that is almost completed is just a plain linen shift. It’s geometric construction and will be serviceable under a wide variety of different outfits. I cut it out a few years ago and I finally decided to work and get that finished and remind myself that I really enjoy hand sewing. I just need to hem the sleeves and the bottom hem and I can stick a fork in that project and call it done.

With the underwear layer (almost) out of the way, I want to start looking forward to what I want to make to go over it. Not that I’m planning on going anywhere soon (shakes fist angrily at COVID) but eventually I will and because of weight gain, a lot of my current medieval outfits don’t fit. Boo!

One of the projects I have been pondering for a while now is to do a 6th-century Kentish woman’s outfit. I haven’t really done anything in this time period (other than just regular tunics) and Kent seems to have some interesting differences/interpretations from other early English clothing. I think it will be a fun research rabbit hole to dive down and fun to interpret because there is limited information for what the clothes might have looked like.

I’m using the texts Cloth and Clothing in Early Anglo-Saxon England AD 450-700 by Penelope Walton Rogers and Dress in Anglo-Saxon England by Gale R. Owen-Crocker as my jumping-off points for research. Plus, I’ve bookmarked a few different articles in the Medieval Clothing & Textiles series to look at as well.

I’ve been pondering the 4-brooch outfit interpretation with an undergown and an over gown/coat. I’m still researching but I’m liking the look of those interpretations and just want to glance over some other sources and see if that seems to be the current analysis of these outfits. But, I went ahead and purchased a lovely red/madder wool twill fabric from Burnley & Trowbridge that I’m looking forward to sewing and should be a decent fit for this project.

I’ll also need to start looking around and sourcing some reproduction early English brooches and accessories. Because accessories make the outfit, right?

But, this project makes me excited and I’m going to try to blog about it as I go along because this site has been dreadfully dull and slow and it would be nice to bring some more life to it. And what better life than a new project!

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