Saturday, 28 February 2015


A few weeks ago I was tidying up and found some embroidery I was doing back in our re-enactment days, pre-children. It was intended as decoration to go round the cuffs of my green linen Viking/mediaeval dress, so I could be a bit posher. What I've learned as a dyer since then of course is that naturally dyed green is an elusive beast even on wool, and linen I imagine would be even more difficult, so as authenticity goes it wasn't that great, but we were limited in what we could get back then. 

Anyway, I rather thought this bit of unfinished embroidery had got lost at some point over the years and through various house-moves so I was quite pleased to find it again, even if it was a bit crumpled and grubby. So I gave it a wash:

I quite like the way it looked damp and crumpled in the sunlight.

Eventually it dried out and I ironed it very carefully. I'm really not much of an embroiderer so this is probably the pinnacle of my achievements, but even looking at it now I'm quite pleased with how neat it was. I have no idea what to do with it now though!


Mrs. Micawber said...

It's beautiful - such even stitches. Is there enough for a cushion cover? Or maybe a tote?

How fun that you did reenactments. (Why do I feel that there should be a little double-dot thing over one of the "e"s in reenactment ... what the heck is it called, an umlaut? But I digress.)

One thing I've always wondered about mediaeval dresses - did they have set-in sleeves? When you see the old engravings and paintings the dresses always seemed to fit well, yet there's no visible sleeve seam. And the bodices seem to skim the body - how did they achieve that kind of drape? Did they cut on the bias?

Sorry for all the technical questions.... It really is a beautiful bit of embroidery.

Peeriemoot said...

Hello :-). It's too small for a cushion cover really, though maybe a small bolster is doable.

I don't really know much about the dresses - we did Viking and early Mediaeval re-enactment. Viking dresses seem to have been quite loose and simple and when we did the early Mediaeval I was being a low-status person (one reason I never finished the embroidery, it wasn't really in character) so again quite simple and unfitted. I imagine there was a degree of wishful thinking on the part of the painters of the time because some Mediaeval dresses look as if they'd only work with lycra!