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I forgot to post these, I’ve slowly been sewing away on petticoat bodies from caramel colored wool. Linen/cotton canvas interlining, linen/cotton lining. Sewn with the broken backstitch, running stitch and whip stitch in linen thread. The project has sat in the time out corner a few times.

First, when I trimmed the neckline corner down a tiny bit too far, I ended up darning it as a fix and reinforcing the area. Second I tried it on and it was too tight! Bah, I need to adjust my bodice block. Thankfully I had an extra large seam allowance in the back so I was able to let it out, but once I did that the back neckline started to have issues. After lots of basting, pressing, and re-basting I sewed up another 1/4 an inch and that seemed to fix it.

The lining is in, the armscyes bound, so it just needs eyelets and a tiny bit of clean up, oh and the petticoat. I have 5 yards of red wool (lucky e-bay find) which should be enough for a new kirtle *and* the petticoat if I am careful with my cutting.

 

petticoatbodiescut petticoatbodiceshoulderstrap petticoatbodiceshellside petticoatbodiceshell padstitchedinnerpb

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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Last Friday and over the weekend I put together a list of 16th century English wills that are available through google books.

https://books.google.com/books?uid=115257834026815258589&as_coll=1001&source=gbs_lp_bookshelf_list

Some highlights include the Sandwich Book of Orphans which gets into orphans their wardship or guardians and the cost of their upkeep. Most interesting is the record of Tomasine Wolters, it covers the repair of her houses, the amount of rent her properties collected, the repairing of her shoes and purchase of her wardrobe and other necessities.

 

Another interesting tidbit (in a different document) was the mention of a possible linen kirtle.

“..To Effam Hargrave widow one lyne kertle and my white petticoate”

The full will is here.

It started a good debate on FB, did that mean linen, did that mean lined? I haven’t run across any other mention of a kirtle like that before. So I did some digging, drawing on Drea Leed’s database for variations on how linen was spelled in period.

“linen” “lening” “linnen” “lynon” “lynen” “lynne” “linninge” “lynnynge” “lyn clothe” “lin[en]” “lynn[en]” “lenone” “lin clothe” “lynenn” “lynnyne” “lynnyn” “lynuen” “lynnen” “lawn” “lockram” “cobweb lawn” “cobweb lawne” “copwebbe lawne” “cobwebbe lawne” “cobwebe lawne” “copweb lawne” “copwebb lawne” “band of lane” “lane slevis” “layn” “lawne” “lokeram” “lokorame” “lockeram” “lockrom” “locram” “loceram”

And I ran it through the will I had collected, then I pulled out anything that wasn’t the usual coif or tablecloth.

Snippet view couldn’t get what year
15788 Item vij paire of Sleves three of linnen clothe and iiij of Lawne wroughte with golde and Silke.
https://books.google.com/books?id=VnIKAQAAMAAJ&q=linnen&dq=linnen&lr=&ei=c225V_HyEpqp-wH64ae4Aw&cd=15

1587 – Will of Roger Simpson
2 lynnynge apprens, 2 linninge churchef, 3 napkins, one payre of lynne sleves….
https://books.google.com/books?id=HE8JAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA138&dq=lynne&ei=Jm-5V_LCKIK7-wGNirjgCA&cd=7#v=onepage&q=lynne&f=false

1606 Sandwich Book of Orphans
 It m paid Tho Horsman formakinge a Dublet a paire of hoose and a wastecote he fynding lenone for tho Dublet for Tho Ingram iiij s ij d
https://books.google.com/books?id=79UGAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA196&dq=lenone&ei=I3G5V4iMAtiq-gG_8hw&cd=1#v=onepage&q=lenone&f=false

1564 Mychaell Clerkson Testamentum
A pair of lynnyn sleves and a pair of fusshyn sleves, xijd
https://books.google.com/books?id=eENjAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA173&dq=lynnyn&ei=0HK5V4yCO4K7-wGNirjgCA&cd=1#v=onepage&q=lynnyn&f=false

1592 Will of Richard Rawstorne
I geve 8m unto Ralph Hoult one sute of my worst apparell To Edward Nuttall a paire of gray breeches laid wth vj laces and one dublet of milion fustion and my best paire of netherstockf saving one To Rogger Pilkington one paire of lynuen breeches cutt To my sonne Henry my best oloake best dublet best jirkin and my best hose To William Pilkington one dublet of cutt canvas and one paire of new shooes ..
https://books.google.com/books?id=Ol1VAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA40&dq=lynuen&ei=Y3O5V7mLN9Gb-gHM_YHACw&cd=1#v=onepage&q=lynuen&f=false

Snippet view couldn’t get what year
one lynnen apperne
https://books.google.com/books?id=JGZOAAAAYAAJ&q=lynnen&dq=lynnen&ei=MXS5V5-2BsnY-wHqmZ7IDA&cd=9

So no other kirtles but the one mentioned, but it may crack the door open an inch to the possibility of them.

 

 

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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A very very old project (6+ years maybe?) has found a new home. It is based on the circle cloaks found in Patterns of Fashion, made from many scraps of black cotton velvet and a scarlet linen/cotton/rayon blend for the lining. It is a bit shorter than the ones in PoF, in part because as it sat in my closet and the outer fabric grew, the lining grew. I ended up hand-basting all around the outside of the cloak and trimming everything as even as I could make it. Which left me with an uneven lining in some areas.

So I took the extra fabric I had from the lining (still had some!) and cut a very wide 4 1/2 yard long section of bias tape, sewed that through both the velvet and the lining, flipped it up, and hand sewed the folded edge down to the inner lining. (Phew!) That done I make a collar from the off cuts of the shortened cloak, lined it with more of the lining fabric and stitched it on.

But I was going through several layers of fabric, thankfully the whip stitch works great there, but it looked a bit messy and I didn’t want the stitched to rub. So I took more scraps of the lining fabric and made a narrow band to cover the join and hand sewed them on. Finally I bound the collar top with scraps of black silk taffeta, snipped along the edge to give it some texture.

But then the hem of the cloak did not match the collar edge (and I wanted a stop gap in case the cloak lining decided to grow again). This meant more silk taffeta! I cut 4 strips of it about 4 inches wide, folded them horizontally and machine sewed them together. Then I hand sewed the strips down along the hem of the cloak twice. Once to the red lining and the second time through the velvet to keep the taffeta band from rolling up.

More edge snipping to match the collar, a set of twill tape ties and it was finally done.

 

cloakfull copy cloakedge collarcloseup collarbias

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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Long have I coveted Scott Perkin’s leather jerkin, which is based off the jerkin at the Museum of London and written about in Janet Arnold’s “Pattern of Fashion”.

Scott's Leather Jerkin

Scott’s Leather Jerkin

Leather Jerkin from the Museum of London

Leather Jerkin from the Museum of London

But I am not a leather worker*, I didn’t want to get a very nice hide and ruin it with my amateur attempts. So I filed the idea away in the back of my head until one night I came across some leather on eBay.

dark brown leather for the jerkin

It was cheap and looked like there was enough to make a jerkin, one press of the buy now button and I good. The blitheful glow of a new project set in. I started planning out how I wanted it to look, what buttons I would need, to slash or not to slash?

But then I realized an important question needed answering, did women ever wear leather jerkins?

The common assumption is that it’s a male garment with origins as armor, and possibly evolved into the 17th-century buff coat. (I am not an armor historian if this is incorrect please let me know.)

leatherjerkinMor

In “Patterns of Fashion”, Arnold mentions:

“Alcega gives pattern diagrams of some petticoats or skirts (‘saya’) with ‘a jerkin, a little cassock such as women use in Spain’ as Minsheu translates ‘sayuelo’; others are with a ‘cuera’, translated by Minsheu as ‘a Spanish leather jerkin’. The latter is a bodice which has apparently taken its name from the leather from which it was once made.”

The diagram referenced in the quote

Saya y cuera de pano
Language is a living thing, the meaning of words change. In my look through the English translation of Alcega’s book, I found some of the translations questionable, but I am inclined to agree. Paño or cloth, being mentioned in the layout means it is not being made from leather.

 

Lexicon Tetraglotton, an English-French-Italian-Spanish Dictionary 1660 lists the following:

Jerkin
1660 definition of jerkin
Cuera
1660 Cuera leather jerkin 1660 Cuera Cow Leather
Cordovano
1660 cordovano

 

Part 2: Digging through some Spanish and English Inventories.

 

*I did make a leather jerkin a long time ago out of chrome tanned suede cut from skirts from the thrift store. I looked like a badass female Iago in it, but I’ve learned a great deal about sewing since then.

References

http://blog.museumoflondon.org.uk/leather-jerkin-well-examined/

http://garb4guys.blogspot.com/search/label/Leather%20Jerkin

The Mauritshuis collection Anthonis Mor van Dashorst (and studio), Portrait of a Man, 1561

Libro de Geometria, Pratica, y Traça

Lexicon Tetraglotton, an English-French-Italian-Spanish Dictionary 1660

 

 

 

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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Sewing in the lining around the top edge

Clipping into corners and trimming

Edge stitching the seam allowance to the lining along the top

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Pleating the skirt down with knife pleats and a box pleat in the back

 

Basting the pleats in place

Ironing the pleats down to keep things from moving around when I sew the skirt to the bodice

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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This shall be here in a few weeks.

 

goldsariwithvelvetborder

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Starting off the New Year with finishing a big project!

More photos can be found on the Nonesuch costume page.

Market woman front shot Nonesuch map market woman

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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I spent last night re-resetting the ruff! It is not perfect by any means but the starch worked and I didn't catch anything on fire.
Some ruff in progress photos are over here on my site.

I also shot some video but it will be a day or two before I get that edited and uploaded.
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Hand sewn ruff and starch

Finished my 95% hand sewn ruff, and ready to try starching for the first time.

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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