A pilgrim's bag

Well I've been wanting a non belt mounted bag for many years now.. and I've made 5 or 6 of them.. but none for myself.. And then this Heraldry challenge popped up on Facebook and I thought "why not combine the two..?!". Making a pilgrim bag with my device on the lid.

First things first.. I know what other people's pilgrim bags look like.. but what historical references are there..?!
I turned to Google and to Pinterest.. and some of my books as well..
Made a sketch of the different types I found (spanning ca 1100s-late 1400s) and the styles I liked..
Since I wanted a somewhat shield shaped lid I went with that style, and I liked the bags where the shoulder strap went down the sides of the bag..
The research can also be found on my Pinterest: Garb -  purses bags baskets

Outer layer: thick red wool
Inner layer: dark grey costume wool
Thread: red sewing silk from Gütermann
Wings/pointed point: White raw wool, grey filament silk from the 50s (grandmother Ingrid's old stash)
Finger loop braid and tassels: wool yarn.. oh and a white skull made of bone.. because.. SKULLS!

I would love to, some day, weave the band for this.. but this time I made it out of a lovely wool fabric that actually used to be my apron dress.. The wool is too thick for that and this turn me into a cylinder.. not making me want to Viking ever again! So I thought I'd better turn it into something I would like :)

I took a piece of paper and cut it to a size I thought would work for me.. actually held it up to my hip and checked it out in the mirror ;D then I decided on the thickness of the sides/strap. After that was done I drew it out on the fabric. (25x80cm including seam allowance, strap is 8x178cm) I cut the edges off on the lid to make the shield type shape..
Then I placed that on the lining (the thin dark grey costume wool) and cut that out as well.

I decided to bag line the bag since it was quicker.. In hindsight.. perhaps it wasn't.. but anyway.. I pinned down all the sides to keep them in place while making the rest.

After that folded the strap fabric (8x178cm) lengthwise and just whipstitched it together, then I attached the sides/strap.. leaving the bottom of the strap open for the tassels later..

Now to decide on the wings.. (My device ca be found in this post)
I turned to my Heraldry folder on Pinterest where I have loads of wings! But no.. then I started looking through my Pelican inspirations in my Drachenwald folder on Pinterest.. and there it was! Most likely a religious embroidery piece with absolutely NO INFORMATION!! I've messaged the original Pinner for more info since my image search has come up empty..

Photo can be found HERE!

I printed it out.. traced the wing, took a photo of it and emailed myself and then printed it out in the size I wanted :P easy peasy!
I wanted the wings to be layered so I redrew it and made 4 patterns.

Then I cut it out of the white raw wool (råväv) I bought from Medeltidsmode some years ago for a project I can't remember..

Still hadn't decided on the colour of silk I would do the blanket stitch in for the appliqué, so I did some tests..

I later decided on making the top part and all the feather "stems" in a dark grey filament silk, and the feather edges in a lighter grey filament silk (all from grandmother Ingrid's stash).
In the top I had to get through 6 layers of wool! Achy finger tips :P

After the first wing was done I was (still am) very pleased with my colour choices :) (though in the future I will make red ones and golden ones too!)

Then it was on to edging the lid.. My first idea was to weave an edge with a rigid heddle.. but I didn't have any thin wool in red, and I didn't want to use silk.. so I opted for a simple 4 loop finger loop braid instead and sewed that to the edge. (I'll make a finger loop post some other day..)
Before I attached that I made a small loop that I saw on Elin's page that I though was brilliant! This goes around the centre tassle on the bottom and closes the bag :D Simple yet fantastic!

Then we come to the final bits.. tassels! Perfect to do in front of the tv while watching a movie :)
Took a smaller box from the recycle bin and cut it the size I wanted. Wrapped the wool 50 times and tied a string on top.
Then I cut them all off and wrapped another string to make the ball on top.. (can't find the good blog post I used to look at for this.. so I'll make my own some other day..)

And me being me.. I had to attach a little something something to the centre tassel :D

So there you have it :) 
My first pilgrim's bag (for ME) and a Heraldry challenge all wrapped into one!

Links to other people's bags I've looked at:
there are more.. but these will do for now :)


A long time coming..

Well this hasn't been updated in a year.. I promise I do make stuff!

But now for something completely different :)

I finally digitized all the family's devices (for the SCA)

Ælfwynn of York
(that's me) name accepted in June 2014
Gules, a pair of wings conjoined in lure, a point pointed argent
device accepted in June 2015
Award of Arms 2003
Gyllene Bandets Orden (Golden ribbon) 2005
Orden des Lindquistringes 2008
Panache 2012
Dragon's Tear 2013

Jacob Gareys
(the husband who never responded when ppl called him Axel Jäderholm anyway..)
Gules, an anvil a point pointed and in chief three mullets of six argent
name & device accepted June 2015
Award of Arms 2005
LjusOrden (Order of Light) 2015
Gyllene Bandets Orden (Golden Ribbon) 2014

Beatrix Gareysin
(the teenager now with the title LADY after her AoA at Double Wars)
Azure, issuant from base a sun and in chief three etoiles Or
name & device accepted June 2015
Dragon's Jewel 2010
Nordmarks Ekorre 2011
Dragon's Pride 2015
Award of Arms 2016

Anna Gareysin
(so she can play Frost whenever she wants)
Purpure, a papillion and in chief three hearts Or
name & device accepted in June 2015
Dragon's Jewel 2015
Nordmarks Hare 2016

Also found an old shield base that I played around with.. because it's fun :P
Black skull with white wings is a badge I'm thinking about for myself, on the right is the purple arm with golden goblet from my household The Purple Dragon, green poofy feather, scales for merchant and Libra and a sewing needle (it used to be a sword..)


Mending continues

Really loving this iPhone app to help me be more active on the blog :D

SUNDAY April 5th
Well I continued with the mending today :)
Already done: my blue landsknecht underskirt, Birgitta cap and a small tare in one of my scrappy shifts (weaving technique see pic 1 or yesterday's post, and switched the crappy string for a nice fingerloopbraided one).
Also mended one of Mr J's shirts yesterday with weaving as well.

1. Mended shift with weaving technique (same as what I did on Mr J's shirt yesterday).
2. Fingerloopbraid with two loops of each colour. (I'll do another post with fingerloopbraides in the future..).

Well today I took on Mr J's favourite slacker pants with a hole bigger than my palm!
To work around the wobblyness I attached it to my embroidery frame.
Then I took some scrap linen and attached to the back. Didn't have any green left so dark blue has to do.
3. The mending from the back
4. Mending from the front before I attached anything
5. All edges attached with running stitch and then langette stitch to secure everything
6. All finished seen from the back

7. Before and after.

I "accidentally" did a chain stitch embroidery on the knee mending just for fun. A crowned Æ for my persona (Ælfwynn of York) so that Mr J knows to appreciate his hard working wife ;)

As a different technique I did a patch over a smaller hole.. but in a heart shape.. because it's silly, and I can ;)


Spring cleaning

I finally took the time to go through all our medieval garb, and made lots of LISTS (ofcourse). Inventory well needed!
Happy list maker indeed :D

I also set aside all that needed mending.. well that was a LOT!
Most of my garb need some type of mending or alteration.. but I do use my garb a lot more than my family.. since it's part of my work wear :)

Also came to the conclusion that T1 has 1.5 dresses that work.. she's outgrown the rest.. Well the .5 she's working on altering herself *proud mother*.

I also found my old moybog dress I used to wear at my old medieval workplace in Kungälv. It has a lot of holes and lots of ware and tare.. so I made T1 try it on with great success! We need to shorten it and mend, and take it in.. but if I don't make it super tight she can wear it for many years to come :)
She also needs a new "kitchen" dress since she LOVES helping out (wonder where she gets that from..) ;) and plenty more shifts and one or two aprons.

For T2 I'm working on a 15th century short sleeve dress in a fantastic green wool from Handelsgillet. She made me use the toille fabric as a lining or she would refuse to wear it.. It is green with white hippos.. she's VERY happy ;)
I'm almost done with it. Making folds in the dress to be able to make it longer in the future. She's grown over 10cm in 1 year!
She's getting some other well needed play garb as well :)

I've already mended one of my dresses, my Birgitta cap and the blue under skirt for my Landsknecht dress.
Me in my landsknecht dress at St Egon celebration in the Barony of Gotvik in Nordmark (Kingdom of Drachenwald in the SCA). The linen underskirt showing. The queen, who usually wear her landsknecht hat with lots of feathers, couldn't for obvious reason not wear them at the event. Thus I wore a LOT of feathers to please her :)

Today (Saturday) I took on mending Mr J's shirt for the 7th time in 3 years :P
First mended some ripped seams, AND reinforced them this time. 
Then I reinforced the neck slit (halssprund) with some button stitches and an extra reinforcement with a langette covered string ca 1-1.5 cm above the bottom of the slit.
When I THOUGHT I was done I found two holes on the left sleeve (honestly, what does he do with his garb?!!)..
So I tended to them as well.

Started with attaching a linen patch on the back for stability. (Pic 1)
Did a running stitch around the holes (pic 2), and then started making "lines" (warp?) over the hole. (Pic 3) After that I started with the weft, weaving with the linen thread over the hole. I used the needle to push it tighter.
The pics are very zoomed in. It's not as visible irl :)
Mr J will also be needing loads of new garb.. :P

Now a quick trip down memory lane..
T1 at ca 1.5 years summer 2002

T2 at ca 7 months at DoubleWars 2009

Time flies! ❤️


I got a new name!

Today I finally got my acceptance letter from OSCAR and Drachenwalds Albion Herald!

I am no longer known as 
Ælfwynne of Eoforwic (since noone could pronounce Eoforvic as "Jorvic"), but as Ælfwynn of York! 

New Name - Ælfwynn of York accepted
6 November 2014
Unto Ælfwynn of York doth Constanza of Thamesreach, Albion Herald, send greetings,
It is my great pleasure to inform you that your recent name submission:
Ælfwynn of York
was considered by the Sovereigns of Arms at their September meetings, and as a result of these meetings have been accepted and registered. Congratulations on this acceptance! You may now use this name without let or hindrance from anyone throughout the Society.

If you have any further questions or if I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Lady Constanza of Thamesreach Albion Herald

Sadly though my device was blazoned/drawn wrong and was returned because my pointed point was not a pointed point :( the point was too high up and need to be lowered so that it doesn't become a devider.. tricky business this..
So.. draw a new one with a smaller pointed point and send it in again and wait for another 6 or so months.. well well.. If I'm lucky I'll get it accepted in time for DoubleWars :)


The to-do-list just keeps growing and growing..

Finally got around to doing an inventory of all our garb to make lists (yes I do love my lists) of what needs to be mended, replaced and/or made..

We brought our pavillion home from Visby and need to measure it out again since we need new beds that actually fit.. T2 is too tall for the travel crib anymore :P so the girls need easy beds and we need a smaller one. We have a GREAT one but it's HUGE and weigh a ton!

To do (so I don't loose track):

  • Small linnen shift - sew shut the breast feeding holes..
  • Linnen shifts for working dress - mend both and replace the sleeves (I made them back in 2004 and have used them A LOT since then)
  • Red velvet sleeves - adjust to the new yellow 15th c work dress a bit tight though..
  • Yellow 15th c work dress - weave edges, fix the hemming, fix the sleeves and some other stuff..
  • Trossfrau - Mend lacing (replace with hooks and eyes?), some holes, ripped silk, slit the skirt(?)
  • Trossfrau sleeves - Mend and add lacing holes
  • Smocked shirt - finish smocking and hemming
  • Trossfrau hat - make a new since T1 got mine..
Not super important
  • Wimple - make a larger one
  • Birgitta cap - make a new one
  • Red Italian - make sleeves, pimp skirt
  • Moybog - adjust..? or sell it? or redo it for T1..
  • Whulsthaube - reduce the size
  • Red petticote - finally finish! Found the skirt part this weekend! it needs wings too.. made it in 2005..
  • English fitted gown - add more hooks in the front
  • London hood - press
  • Black hose - mend and make wedge
  • 14th c hose - make new (make pattern)
  • 15-16th c hose - make new? (make pattern)
  • Braies (brokor) - make new
  • Red doublet - mend  neckline, replace metal buttons with woolen? project for camp..
  • make 16th c shirt?
  • Black straight pants - mend
Not super important:
  • Blue jerkin - remake closure, it also needs it's wings and new buttons..
  • Make early tudor garb
  • 14th c headgear
  • Lacing vest - make one..?
T1: the 13 year old is actually fixing most of her stuff her self! *pruod*
  • Birgitta cap - make new
  • 16th c shirt - make?
  • Linnen skirt - make for trossfrau
  • 14/15th c dress - make?
  • Purple trossfrau - fix bodice, slit the back?
  • Purple trossfrau sleves - needs to be made and also add lacing holes
  • Dark red trossfrau - needs a hook at the skirt
  • Dark red trossfrau - sleeves needs to be made
  • Straw hat - mend and remove black ribbon
  • Apron - make new for kitchen duty
Not super important:
  • Waffenrock and hose for the war games
T2: found two boxes of T1s old dresses! they only need some alterations :)
  • Blue Italian 15th c dress - make new closure
  • Partlet - fix the side
  • Grey shift - add buttons
  • Pink princess - puff needs some TLC on the sleeves and the lacing in the back.. could use some mending if I can find the fabric
  • Viking apron dress - let it out somewhat.. 
  • Black 16th c sleeveless dress - the girls have decided that the dress will be turned into a Landsknecht.. so it needs pimpin.. and maybe a hat..
  • Viking kaftan - move the buttons and let the hem back down
Not super important:
  • Red English fitted gown and cap - will have to wait until this fall but needs a lot of work since I never totally finished it.. redo the bodice, pimp the skirt
  • Shift - make new?
  • Green play dress - redo if I can find the fabric or put it away..
  • 16th c silk dress - make longer strings or put it away.. (it's not like we have a shortage of dresses)

and then there's the furniture and kitchen things to fix.. and put together

so.. TO WORK!


The London hood

Working on my yellow 15th century dress for work (Kapitelhusgården i Wisby) I also wanted some type of headgear.

I've been wanting to make my own London hood for over 7 years now and drooling over everyone else's that struts by..

so.. I finally got around to it..

Started with my books
  • Dress accessories 1150-1450
  • Woven into the earth
  • Medieval tailor's assistant
and some other ones I can't recall at the moment..

then went on to my beloved Pinterest where I added plenty of images to
I mostly wanted to find a hood with one colour on the outer layer and another on the lining.. nada zip nothing.. so.. scratch my idea of lining my dark red hood with a softer wool in black..

  1. Detail from L'Annonce aux bergers. Danse champêtre. Heures de Charles d'Angoulême, Folio 20V. French, late 15th century. (In colour: http://www.dancewith.co.uk/history/ladansechampetre.html )

  2. Ca. 1470 Dancing Peasants

  3. Boccaccio's Decameron, detail of Fiammetta (Italian for little flame)— pseudonym of Giovanni Boccaccio's beloved and muse, her real name may have been Maria d’Aquino.

  4. Tres Riches Heures de Duc Berry, 1413-1416. (February)
  5. Flemish tapestry 1460-7+ (rabbit hunting with ferrets) she has twirled the lire pipe around her head..
While looking through the pictures and the findings most of the hoods have a seam on top but none on the brim. The conclusion is that they are lined with the same type of fabric as the outer layer (see pic 3).

You can easily make the hood in different pieces but since I had enough fabric I chose to not have a seam at the top or at the beginning of the lire pipe but instead have it all in one piece (plus the gussets..).

The fabric at hand is a dark red melton wool from Medeltidsmode.
I really liked the lighter (yellow?) edge you can see in the colour version of no 1 (se above for link) and I had some lovely red linen thread given to me by my friend Renika.. so I decided to finally get some woven edges on a garb like Åsa vävare taught me last year.

The pattern
I've noticed that quite a few people choose to make their pattern follow the shape of the head..
I chose to go by the findings (links will come when I find them again..) and the more plausible idea of straight lines in the pattern.. the curvature is created by the gussets instead.. Saves fabric = cheaper (and you mostly see the hoods on peasants)

So I started taking my measurements and writing them down.. how low should the brim in front go, how wide do I want the brim to be, how long do I want the collar.. should I make it practical (cover my neck from sun/cold) or have it just touch my shoulders..?

This is my easy peasy pattern :)
My first pattern had a lire pipe of 100cm but then when I started drawing it out on the fabric I chose to go all the way to the end so the total length of lire pipe and hood = 150cm.

I wanted the the main hood to cover my face (good for cold and warm days in different ways) and I wanted a 7cm brim (the longer of the dotted lines). And tada! 30 by 30 cm.. crazy :P but it works!

Now to the length.. I decided I did want the longer collar so it would cover more.. out with the tape measure again and after some fiddling 43cm worked just fine for me.

I like patterns that are straight and that I can draw directly on to the fabric. It also means I don't have to keep track of WHERE I put the pattern.. (I also have an easy peasy Birgitta cap pattern that works the same way.. I showed it to Whilja and she made a blog post about it).

Now.. drawing the pattern on to the fabric you need to make a few small fixes.. The angles needs to be smoother between the hood and the lire pipe and between the collar and the brim.

For saving fabric place the gusset in the free square of the hood, fits perfectly :)

Since I wanted woven edges I only had to add seam allowance to the gussets, neck of the hood and the bottom of the lire pipe.

So.. after I've cut out all my pieces I make a 12 cm cut in the collar 6cm from the front edge (se pattern). This is where the gussets go.
I place the gusset underneath with as little seam allowance as I can and then whip stitch it to the collar (same on both sides) I then turn it over and whip stitch down the seam allowance on the inside.

I'm hand sewing with Kapitelhusgården's brass sewing needle and red sew silk from Gütermanns. So nice and smooth (silk will be available at Kapitelhusgården in the future too!).
I could have also used the bleached or unbleached linen thread prepped with beeswax.
After the gusset I sew the back of the hood and the lire pipe. I turn it inside in again and make a somewhat point at the end of the lire pipe.

Woven edges

I take my linen roll (you could probably do this with the thicker linen thread at Kapitelhusgården..) and use it as a measure to go round the hood. I add an extra 30cm just to be sure.

My rigid heddle made by Martin 15 holes and slots.
  • Make 15 lengths of the linen and tie a knot in one end 
  • Cut off the other end and thread the heddle
  • I tie a string/ribbon around your waist and pin a sewing tape to it (a ribbon or scrap fabric will do just fine.. nifty little things!). 
  • Pin the linen threads 5cm (or so) from where you want to start weaving on the hood.
  • Attach the other end of the linen threads to a chair using another string to hold it. As to not entangle all the long threads I use an alligator clip to hold them together (also so I don't need 2m space..) 
  • Pin the sewing tape (the one attached to your waist) to the hood, making it stretched and tight.
  • You don't need to fasten the thread you're weaving with (weft), just leave 5cm or so to fasten later
  • Start weaving!
  • You're weaving with a needle so that you can go through the fabric, make a weft, go through the fabric.. and so on..
  • Remember to separate the threads to keep the weave tight.
  • Don't use a too long thread for the weft it will only tangle up or brake.. I go by the length of my left shoulder to my right fingertips. Works great!
When it's time to finish weave as close to the starting point as you can, "weave" the weft back in to the weave to make it fasten and disappear. Do the same to all the other loose ends throughout. Same thing at the start/finish but you'll have 30 strings to tuck away.. patience is virtue ;)

I took one of the very popular classes by Åsa vävare, and this is my first try after the practice run with her last year.

After I finished the edging and tucked all the stray threads away it looked like this (it needs pressing though..)

(it's really hard to photograph red..)
Normally I would have my Birgitta cap on underneath and then pin the hood to the cap using some of the beautiful dress pins in my shop Silverstielk Emporium. The one in the picture is the Fleur-de-lis or Fransk lilja in Swedish. (I have an Etsy shop as well but it's resting until early fall when I will take the time to fill it up again)

Knowing me I will probably also add some pilgrim's badge, brosch or a dirty little somethin' somethin'.. ;) (also available in by/through my shop).

(let me know if you want me to illustrate my teachings better.. it's all in my head but you aren't so.. also feel free to ask me questions!)
P.S. ALL photos in this entry are mine, the pattern is mine too. Feel free to use it for your own needs but please ask first if you want to use any of my materials on your blog, hand out for a class, publication or likewise. Thank you for respecting me. D.S.

P.P.S. Making a new pattern/version of this hood with a tighter fit. But as for likeness to pic no 1 I still feel that it's spot on :) D.D.S.