Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Beaded Veils and Things We Put on Our Heads

Pink and green totally matches.
13th century clothing isn't always super exciting. Personally, I prefer to use nice solid blocks of color for my under gown and cyclas so that I can mix and match my wardrobe to suit my mood, the event, the weather or whatever the daily augury suggests. I have a few gowns that are patterned or made with flashy fabrics, but for the most part, you'll find me in Manesse codex match-ups. 

The one place I can have a bit of fun is in the stuff that goes on my head. Veils, wimples, coronet, crispinettes, filets and more, but my favorite accessory is a silk veil with beads. Lots of beads. Perhaps, a shameful number of beads.

There is nothing quite like a long sweep of silk and a clatter of tiny pearls. The wearing of the wimple, veil, crispinette and coronet is simply the part of my dress that feels the most medieval since these items are so limited in modern appearance. Nuns, holy people, a few pagans and Muslim women  are really the only modern survivors of the middle age aesthetic of women wearing head coverings as a sign of modesty or devotion.

Last Judgement Triptych
by Hans Memling, c. 1469.
Veil w/pearled edge
Of course, in the middles ages, lots of crazy veil and hat styles knocked the modesty out of the equation, but still kept a woman covered... even if she had to duck through doorways because of the height of a hennin. Ladies also jazzed up the veil by adding ruffled edges and sometimes even heavily beaded edges. There are lots of paintings of beaded veils that come from the medieval and renaissance period sometimes showing heavy beading, intricate works and veils so gossamer you can read a newspaper right through them. 

I look terrible in pretty much any hat produced after 1915, so I'm glad I get to have a bit of fun with head coverings in my SCA experience. 

I hand bead and hem all of my silk veils. I do this because silk is way easier to get a rolled and lovely edge when hemmed by hand, I can't afford buying this work from someone else and because it helps me to reach back into the past and make a little connection. I sew veils mostly in the evenings. In my rocking chair as I watch television, talk on the phone or listen to audio books, my hands are busy rolling the fine edge of silk, working with thread and beads to create something beautiful.

The best part is when someone asks me where I got my veil and I can answer with a smile and a blush of pride that I made it myself. I'm not fantastic at sewing handwork, so making more veils and delicate pieces that add to my kit is forcing me to become better at sewing as I decorate myself.

Currently, I am adding to my collection by working on a pale blush silk veil with pale rose glass pearls. Also, new crispinettes are coming soon...

Michelino da Besozzo

A quick border inspired by a page from the Hours of Michelino da Besozzo.

I worked on this at a demo at Hoggetowne Medieval Faire and had to stop regularly to talk to Faire patrons or to eat proffered "Faire food". I did not attempt the deep friend butter, but I did watch a man go slowly green as he ate it. I think I'll just stick with painting and tiny hot

It did take about a solid 5 minutes of eraser use to remove all of the Faire grime.

Turned in to the Chart Signet for general use.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Stefan Lochner Gebetbuch

Border inspired by the Stefan Lochner Gebetbuch

Illumination my Baroness Maol Mide ingen Medra OL, OP

Turned in to the Trimaris Chart Signet for general Kingdom use.

The Dragon Ship

Inspired by: Viking Ship / Anglo-Saxon Illumin./ C11 Anglo-Saxon manuscript illumination, c. 1025–1050. Viking ship of war.

Turned into the Trimaris Chart Signet for Kingdom use at Hoggetowne 2016

Kale Adriane, Pelican

Inspired by: An illustrated and illuminated manuscript of Jami's Yusuf wa Zulaykha, signed by 'Ali Reza Al-Katib, Herat or Bukhara, Safavid, dated 982 AH/1574 AD

Limning: Baroness Lisabetta da Firenze, OL

Text: Baron Severin Visconti di Milano, KSCA

Calligraphy and Illumination: Baroness Maol Mide ingen Medra, OL, OP

I made her a special Goatse of her own. My gift to her.

Seamus mac Dhughaill, Knight

Inspirations: Gray-Fitzpayn Book of Hours and the Ellesmere manuscript of Chaucer

Limning: Mistress Lisabetta da Firenze

Text: Master Simon Maurus of the Argent Quill

Calligraphy and Illumination: Mistress Maol Mide ingen Medra

Renown comes to those rare warriors whose
Indomitable spirit presses them ever forward,
Seeking to fully live in Virtue and with Honor.
Each battle, be it for Crown, Kingdom or Cause,
Against all forces is his Prowess and Resolve made evident,
Keeping true to that most ancient, noble Code.
Now, let all men know from the thistle highlands to our triune shores
In our fair Kingdom do We, The Crown Trimaris, elevate our good Seamus mac Dhughaill,
Granting him rank as a Companion of The Order of the Chivalry Trimaris,
Hereafter bearing this Patent of Arms, with all rights and privileges appertaining.
This, done by Our Hands on this 14th day of November, AS 50

Ardion, King
Lisa, Queen

Friday, January 15, 2016

The Butterfly Women

The caterpillars
just know the act of eating.
They offer no thanks

When the rain is full
of ghosts. Cold gems come falling,
tapping foliage.

A butterfly girl
knows no rest, no warmth, no thanks...
still the insects chew

Upon shining leaves
gathered in the blowing rain,
by hands, pale and cold.

Still, the keeper knows
her charges, someday, will show

When wings are unfurled
and a riot of color
lifts into the sky.

-Kristen Gilpin, 2016