Posted by: alannaofskye | June 4, 2012

12th Century Dress

Update 6/4/12
Forgot to add that everything you can see of the stitching is done by hand: hems on both layers at neck, sleeve, and bottom, plus a bunch of hand done seam finishing.  I tend to start my seam finishing with the sleeves, then work up from the hem, then do the rest as I have time.  I’ve never had problems with my seams fraying out too much in the wash, but I do get threads that catch on my boots a lot if I don’t do the bottom, and it looks messy if the sleeves aren’t done and I roll them up to do messy stuff.
Also, photos!
All construction for these dresses was done using a pattern similar to  I generally do the style without front and back gores since I don’t feel they add anything to the look and do add annoyance to the construction and use.  In general, a dress with full front front gores tends to grab my stockings and twist between my legs if I am not holding it as I walk, so I select the variations that don’t give me those problems.  For this outfit, the underdress is a pale yellow linen with tighter sleeves and a slightly wider neck than the overdress.  The outer layer is a thin burgundy wool with bands at the sleeves.  These bands are black wool embroidered with yellow wool thread.  My first time working with wool thread for embroidery, in the future I would select a thinner thread, but this seems to have worked ok and shows up well, just fuzzier than I would have liked.
Posted by: alannaofskye | June 4, 2012

Purple linen bliaut

Update 6/4/12

Still no hem!  I wasn’t kidding about this constantly being pushed back.  However, I do have pictures!  Finally found the camera cord to upload.  I’m hoping to get better pics once it is done so you can see the stomach wrinkles clearer (yes it is supposed to do that).

Update 4/12/12

This project always seems to be what gets pushed back in favor of other stuff (much of which I forget to post here).  The side lacing is now done!  I had the sides pinned in to about what the fit would be for the tightness of a 14th century dress, then folded in about 3/4 more to make a hem.  It worked out that I fit the part that was on my middle, then extended that line for the extra body length so it would do the wrinkle thing, and tapered it out top and bottom to avoid weird lumps.  Then I sewed a braided string to the edge of the hem, tacking it about every 3/4″ and keeping it tight with the hem.  Running spiral lacing through, it seems to close nicely and wrinkle how it should.  Now I need to finish the hem and see if it all stays in place for a day of wear.


This project is a bliaut as seen in 12th century statues.  I am attempting side lacing for the first time, as well as a keyhole neckline.  I had actually intended to do a slit neckline but I wasn’t brave enough for the length of slit required to get it over my head, so I cut a neck I am more comfortable with for this first attempt.  The pattern I am using is the rectangular construction of a tunic, with front and back gores set in, long draping sleeves, and about a foot added to the body panel in the section that will be laced.  If all goes well with the added body length and side lacing to create the horizontal wrinkles seen in the sources maybe the next attempt will have the slit.

Posted by: alannaofskye | April 19, 2012

16th century pouch

Time for Nobelese Largesse swap round 2!  This time documentation is required, and my recipient is someone with a late period persona.  Goal #1: Find something from the right time that looks like it would be interesting to make.   This Purse from the V&A museum looks good.  Goal #2: Find a way to make it in the time I have (til July 31).  I will be using a cream wool that I already have for the base, as I think it will look nice and I will be adjusting the stitching style to use stitches I am more comfortable with and sew a bit faster (stem and satin stitch).  I will also not be filling in the background with embroidery since I sew way too slowly for that to get done.  Embroidery was done in linen thread.


NL swap 2

Posted by: alannaofskye | April 18, 2012

Queen’s favor – Kiena

I finished a Queen’s favor for Kiena, working with the SCA Embroidery MA group.  I learned the Bayeux tapestry stitch for the K, reverse chain stitch for the stem and leaves, and satin stitch for the flower.  It was my first time doing any embroidery that was filled in instead of just outline.  Of course I forgot to take a picture of it before giving it to her, but I know who it went to so I suppose it’s possible that at some point a picture will appear with this post.  Either way it’s a new thing so it gets a post or I will forget to count it!

Posted by: alannaofskye | January 23, 2012

Embroidered raven pouch

This pouch was a gift for Nobelese Largesse Swap round 2.  This interkingdom swap gives each participant a $25 materials limit and details about the person you will be making a gift for (different than the person who will be making a gift for you).  The person getting this has a raven on their device, and colors of red, gold, and black.

All the fabric is wool that I had left over from other projects.  The gold for the embroidery is wool, and it’s the first time I have worked with a really nice wool thread.  Definitely makes me wish I had this stuff earlier, but fortunately I got tons at Pennsic so should be good for awhile!  I did my best to make sure there was no visible machine stitching on the bag, though I did sew the bag together by machine.  Since the swap had a deadline I wanted to make sure all the critical parts were done in time and then I could hem and attach straps by hand if there was time (which there was).

The gift I received from the swap was an antler needle case with a period metal needle, which I tested out when sewing the straps to the bag.  It worked well, and had the wonderful benefit of not drawing blood any time I accidentally stabbed myself.  The only difference I noticed in how it came out was that the stitches look a tiny bit darker on the red when done with the period needle, I think because it is pulling some very fine fuzz from the black through to the red side.  I’m assuming this is because it is less smooth than a modern needle, though it didn’t really make a difference if I wasn’t trying to analyze it.

Posted by: alannaofskye | September 7, 2011

Tablet weaving

Update 9/7/11: It’s done!!!

That last half inch took me a week or so to get back to, but it’s finally complete after almost a year!  My loom looks so empty now.  Unfortunately this was my go to project for when I needed something for craft night or to do at an event, so I should pick a new pattern and set it up again ASAP.  I think I put about twice as much string as I needed on my shuttle, so I should probably cut that down a little next time.  Final finished length: 2 yards, 6 inches.  Width and pattern were pretty consistent, I will have no problem using this for trim or something else visible.


I learned this at Pennsic 39 and completed a thin purple and white band about 1 yard long that I have yet to find a use for.  Currently I am working on a purple and black band about 1/2″ wide to be used for trim, using 12 cards.  The design is taken from A Tablet Weaver’s Pattern Book.  The weaving is being done with cotton crochet thread.

Posted by: alannaofskye | August 28, 2011

Tablet woven garters

I bought a purple and white tablet woven band from White Wolf and Phoenix at Pennsic 40.  It is cotton, and something I could make, but I still weave slowly and this was pretty and done so I bought it.  I got a pair of pewter buckles from Billy and Charlie to go with it.  My work on this project was cutting the band to the correct length, twisting the loose ends and tying them so they looked pretty and won’t unravel, and sewing the band to itself with the loose edges tucked under so it is tightly attached to the buckle.  I have another set of buckles that I may use for a second set if I weave something I want to use for that, but right now I have other plans for my next few weaving projects.

Posted by: alannaofskye | August 21, 2011


Welcome to my blog! I’m working on the AS 50 Challenge, and focusing more on hand sewing and my persona now, so I’ve started this blog to track what I am working on. Please feel free to comment!🙂