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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 7:55 am    Post subject: Medieval Jackets?         Reply with quote

I am not so crazy about the idea of wearing a cloak or cape. Did they have coats and jackets in the Middle Ages, say late 13th century and Mid 14th century. I would like to wear one with a sword belt, Nothing too fancy like a lord or magistrate would wear, say something casual for a mercenary or traveler visiting a town fair. Maybe I'll include a chain mail depending on weight but I doubt it and defiantly no plate (too heavy for me to enjoy the day in) plus I may end up carrying my daughter on my shoulders before the day is out. So it would have to be practical, but still nice. Maybe a solder returning home on leave or someone no longer in service but likes to wear his sword at fairs and festivals just for show (I image a commoner with a sword would have been pretty proud of it back then) Just looking for an excuse not to be burden with armor. or cloak.
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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 7:56 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My daughter would be tugging on my cloak or else hiding under all day if I did wear one. Razz
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Jonathan Blair




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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 9:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Generally, clothing in the High Middle Ages (late 13th through late 14th Centuries) for men would have been multiple layers. The layer closest to your skin typically was a linen shirt, coif (small hood), and braies (boxer style undershorts) made of plain white linen. This layer was for keeping the body's oils from the more expensive woolen garments on top and kept you barely decent for working in the fields. Finer linens would have been a bit pricier, and so would have been worn by the upper classes, whereas coarser linens were cheaper. Linen is not typically very colorfast, so white was the norm for the underwear.

On top of this was your second layer, consisting of a colorful tunic or doublet and hosen. The tunic was the typical T shape with gussets in the front, rear, and each side. Doublets were more form fitting, making a pigeon breasted shape that echoed the armor of the time. Earlier hosen were socklike, in unjoined pairs, pointed (tied with a cord) in the front to the braies or a belt. Late 14th early 15th C hosen were pointed front and rear to the doublet, had a extension that formed a seat, but were still two seperate pieces. Hosen didn't join until the mid 15th C. The second layers were of wool or fustien. Colors often clashed to the modern man's tastes and were as bright as you could afford.

Then you had your third layer. This was a brightly colored wool cotehardie or gown. Each opened in the front and closed with buttons of cloth (typical), wood, bone, or metal (if you could afford them). You also would wear a hood, chaperone, or hat of some type on the head and turn shoes and pattens on the feet. Shoes were rarely worn higher than the ankle (boots higher than the ankle did exist but were typically worn horseback to protect the legs like modern chaps). A good narrow belt (1-inch wide) with metal strap end cinched the waist and this was studded with belt mounts in pewter for the poorer or copper alloys for the richer. The length was not overly long with perhaps a four inch tail including strap end after the knot at the buckle. Longer, and wider belts were worn by women, although dedicated sword belts could be 2-inches wide. A purse, a small knife (used for eating, amongst other things), and perhaps a dagger or sword and buckler finished the ensemble, unless you really were cold, then you would wear a cloak or mantle on top.

Things to avoid are cotton or modern fabrics. Cotton is a relatively weak fabric compared to linen or wool as well as being prohibitively expensive in period, except in its raw form. Modern fabrics don't breathe at all well, making you hot on hot days. See www.historicenterprises.com for some examples.

Anyone else is welcome to chime in, make additions or corrections.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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William Goodwin




Location: Roanoke,Va
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 9:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Matuls in Poland have some nice examples

www.matuls.pl

as well as

Medieval Design in Italy (I think)

www.medievaldesign.com

Roanoke Sword Guilde

roanokeswordguilde@live.com
"I was born for this" - Joan of Arc
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Glennan Carnie




Location: UK
Joined: 23 Aug 2006

Posts: 289

PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 10:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Fantastically succinct description Jonathan.

I would add:

I suspect the doublet began life in the mid 14thC as a military garment, which was adopted into everyday life (via the nobility - the fighting classes, after all). A fighting man, especially a well paid one, might own a doublet in the mid 14thC, but a typical peasant probably wouldn't; if for no other reason than cost.

Through the mid 14thC the predominant head covering was the hood for men. Also, contrary to what many reenactors may tell you, hats were not always worn. In fact in the majority of images from that period men go bareheaded. Of course, if you're going to do that as a reenactor you should make sure you have 'period' hair - that is, not a modern haircut (took me a year to grow mine, with some mighty bad hair days in between! Big Grin )

Belts seem to be thinner, too. A typical male belt would be 1/2" to 5/8" wide, judging by the extent belt ends and buckles found. Red seemed to be a very common (in both senses of the word!) colour, since it can be achieved uding horse excrement (which was obviously pretty common, too!)

As for colours: (in order of commonality)
Madder shades (orange, rust, red),
Woad Blue (sky blue through to dark indigo blue, if you were very very rich; but certainly NEVER electric or royal blue) Yellow. Weld yellows tend to fade very quickly
Green doesn't seem to be too common, possibility because it requires two dyes (blue + yellow) and would therefore be expensive.
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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

Posts: 69

PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 10:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks, I've been looking through this site but the most dress has been armor or early peasant and lord style. I guess Middle class society did not come about till the late 1500s. Most I am not really a re-enactors but would like to go dressed somewhat the part with my daughter (who is five and of course will be the princess) just to make it more enjoyable. Os something comfortable would be great, and not too heavy because it does get humid here at times. Lot of great info, I had always thought they had cotton and that is what linen was made of cotton. Glad you told me,
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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 10:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh, yeah. what about felt, did they have felt hats for sunny days or only the straw (I've seen those in pictures before.)
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Bryce Felperin




Location: San Jose, CA
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 10:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would like to add that a good wool cloak can be very warm and waterproof. However since most Renaissance Faires and reenactments in our modern era occur during summer months, I seldom get an occasion to wear one. ;-)
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 11:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Look at the photos in the "Gallery" section of this site:

http://www.olofsgillet.org/

You'll see all kinds of common clothing, with armour and without.

-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 11:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks seen a few that looks like they might be comfortable and not so hot. See here is the south, and the fair is held around late spring so it pretty warm to hot. sometimes humid. last year it was a hot day and then out of nowhere it poured down rain and it turn cold as could be. But the re-enactors held firm and carried on through out. Even the jesters.
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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 11:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Sean Flynt wrote:
Look at the photos in the "Gallery" section of this site:

http://www.olofsgillet.org/

You'll see all kinds of common clothing, with armour and without.


Like the music as well. Wink
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James H.





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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 11:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

here's another question, How about those robin hood hats, I've never seen them in historical pictures or very often in medieval suppliers. Were they real or just a Hollywood deal.

Another question, Chausses and Hoses, I have seen them a bunch but it never crossed my mind until I was looking at them now, but they have no crotch area. Is it just underwear and shirt that is exposed. I mean I'm no John Holmes but I think it would feel a little exposed unless I wore a long tunic over it. I know earlier examples of Viking and Celtic wore breeches. How did history change this out for something that has a crotch left wide open? Just a funny thought on my part I guess.
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Mikael Ranelius




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 11:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'd suggest a buttoned cotehardie or a doublet (basically a shorter version of the cotehardie) for mid-late 14th century clothing. During the late 1200's knee-length cotes were still fashionable.

Me wearing one of my cotehardies:



My late 14th century doublet:



I have more images + texts on medieval clothing (predominantly 14th century) on my blog (it's in Swedish but most posts are also in English):

http://historiskdrakt.blogspot.com/
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 11:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

James H. wrote:
Thanks seen a few that looks like they might be comfortable and not so hot. See here is the south, and the fair is held around late spring so it pretty warm to hot. sometimes humid. last year it was a hot day and then out of nowhere it poured down rain and it turn cold as could be. But the re-enactors held firm and carried on through out. Even the jesters.


I live in Alabama, and the weather is one of the many things that keeps me out of the living history scene. I feel your pain. If I were in your shoes, I'd be tempted to just put on a giant linen shirt and throw a spade over my shoulder--typical for a medieval worker in hot weather apparently. But if you want to wear a sword and be both comfortable and decent, I would suggest the persona of executioner. Of all the folks depicted in medieval artwork, these men seem the most comfortably dressed (ignore the Hollywood version). Obviously, they couldn't have heavy or cumbersome clothes restricting them, so they usually present a very clean and close-fitting figure. They most often wear a thin doublet but I'm pretty sure I've seen them stripped to their shirts. NO hood, mask, etc. Their victims, of course, are almost always in their shirts.

If you don't want to invest in serious threads, just go to TJMaxx and find the biggest soft cotton long-sleeve white shirt you can find--XXXXL or something. It'll be dirt cheap. Cut off the buttons and roughly stitch up the front to mid-chest. Un-stitch the collar, so that all you have left is a band collar. Instead of hose, buy the closest-fitting red or black sweat pants you can find/stand and remove the elastic at the cuffs, if possible. Shoes will be hard to approximate, but slip-on, round-toe leather shoes will pass, given the rest of your kit. For a sword belt, get a black dog leash and tie it around the top of the scabbard so that the buckle end projects forward on a short piece of belt and belt end projects far enough back to go around your waist very loosely--this is historically correct. With the belt resting on your right hip bone, the weight of the sword low on your left side will keep the belt in place without constricting you. Tuck in the shirt, of course.

That's a cheap costume that'll be much more autthentic-looking than most of what everybody else will be wearing (even if they don't recognize that). You'll be cooler, too. If you want to complete the look you could splash a little red food coloring on your shirt. Big Grin

If it's REALLY hot, you can go as St. Sebastian, who is typically depicted in his white "grippies". Laughing Out Loud

-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Mikael Ranelius




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 12:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

James H. wrote:
here's another question, How about those robin hood hats, I've never seen them in historical pictures or very often in medieval suppliers. Were they real or just a Hollywood deal.

Another question, Chausses and Hoses, I have seen them a bunch but it never crossed my mind until I was looking at them now, but they have no crotch area. Is it just underwear and shirt that is exposed. I mean I'm no John Holmes but I think it would feel a little exposed unless I wore a long tunic over it. I know earlier examples of Viking and Celtic wore breeches. How did history change this out for something that has a crotch left wide open? Just a funny thought on my part I guess.


Those "Robin Hood-style" hats are not only historically accurate, but were in fact extremely popular during the 14th century if we are to judge by period art. There are some images featuring them here, and a very fine and elaborate modern reconstruction here

As for hosen, they were commonly worn over- and attached to a couple of simple linen breeches or braies (as Jonathan already pointed out). Check out this link for more helpful information on hosen/ chausses:

http://www.greydragon.org/library/underwear3.html
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 12:57 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Uh...I just noticed that you want mid-14th c. at the latest, so ignore all of my suggestions for a cheap kit. What I described is more appropriate for ca. 1475-1525.
-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Glennan Carnie




Location: UK
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 12:58 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
Another question, Chausses and Hoses, I have seen them a bunch but it never crossed my mind until I was looking at them now, but they have no crotch area. Is it just underwear and shirt that is exposed. I mean I'm no John Holmes but I think it would feel a little exposed unless I wore a long tunic over it. I know earlier examples of Viking and Celtic wore breeches. How did history change this out for something that has a crotch left wide open? Just a funny thought on my part I guess.


For the most part men wore a gown long enough so their underwear wasn't on show. I don't supposed medieval man was any more disposed to walking around with his underwear showing than we are. Big Grin

As to cotehardie and doublets: Personally I suspect the cote/tunic/kirtle persisted late into the century for the less fashionable - that is, the working man. Again, how many of us today dress in the latest designer fashions? The cotehardie is seen a lot in art of the 14thC but that art tends to show the young, noble and fashionable for the most part. Warmth and practicality are the key considerations for the working man.
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James H.





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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 1:22 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Was there another name for the Robin Hood hat other then Robin Hood Hat? I found one site that sells decent ones in leather and felt but I really like the one that was in the link with embroidery. If I could find one like that that I might be able to embroider myself with maybe a hunting since that would be cool.
This site has what looks to be a good deal on the hosen and underwear and shirt, 59.00$ for the lot.
http://www.historicenterprises.com/cart.php?m...54&c=5
[url]

Lastly I'll see about a cotehardie and low shoes, maybe latter, I do not want to spend too much at once. I am just trying to get ready for when the Fair comes to town again. and the cotehardie seems expensive or maybe even makable. I have a site saved to my favorites on how to make stuff like this I think, just they are all a jumble and not labeled right so I will have to find it.
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Glennan Carnie




Location: UK
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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 1:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
and the cotehardie seems expensive or maybe even makable.


The cotehardie is a very fitted garment, cut to your body shape. Cut it too loose and it looks lousy; cut it too tight and you can't move! It's definitely not an easy garment to make (or to make so that it looks good).

The cut medieval clothing is rather different to the cut of modern clothing, which is why a lot (sorry, for you in the US: "alot") of reproduction clothing looks somehow 'wrong' as it's cut by people trained as modern seamstresses/tailors.

Historic Enterprise's cotehardie is therefore well worth the money!

If you want to have a go at making clothing I'd recommend Sarah Thursfield's book "The Medieval Tailor's Assistant".
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James H.





Joined: 03 Aug 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 12 Aug, 2008 1:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The cut medieval clothing is rather different to the cut of modern clothing, which is why a lot (sorry, for you in the US: "alot") of reproduction clothing looks somehow 'wrong' as it's cut by people trained as modern seamstresses/tailors.

Quote:


Laughing Out Loud Thanks "alot" My wife is also foreign and she makes fun of my "Yall" all the time. Razz

Yeah, I will buy one, Just not yet, it is still quite a few months before the Fair so no worries.
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