MoonDragon's Medieval Costumes
by Magistra Rosemounde of Mercia
Slits are often called vents. Slits are found at necklines, sides at the hem, and underarms to allow ease of movement, ingress and egress. A broach (or hook) is commonly used at neckline slits.
Lacings are often combined with slits and are used frequently at necklines, sides of garments, up the back or front of gowns, on pants fronts, and on boots. Laces can be drawn through eyelets or loops, or wrapped around lacing hooks (available at fabric stores).
Neckline Vent with Lacing Through Eyelets.
Side Vent with Lacing Through Loops.
Gown Back with Lacing Around Lacing Hooks.
Eyelets may be hand bound or embroidered (I prefer doing mine by hand). Eyelets are lovely but time consuming. Metal eyelets can be put in with a special pliers tool quickly, but are less authentic, especially in early garments. Also special care should be taken to avoid having the material ravel away from the eyelet. Some sewing machines make eyelets (tiny buttonhole setting that will not ravel).
Ties can be used anywhere. In the earlier periods they were combined with slits. Later they were used as much for decoration as function. Ties were almost always what was used for garters.
Neckline Vent with ties. Italian sleeve c. 1490.
Drawstrings are used in waistbands, necklines and cuffs. A drawstring affect can be achieved with elastic, which allows easier ingress and egress to the garment, but does not always look quite the same. A good "chest" version with elastic can be achieved by sewing a drawstring to each end of an appropriate length of elastic (1). Then insert the elastic into your casing with the drawstring pieces coming out the ends. Stitch the elastic at the ends (2). The drawstrings can then be tied. Since the elastic with stretch, there will be no need to ever tie or untie the strings when putting on or taking off the garment (3).
Hooks can be used singly at a neckline, on cuffs or shoes. In groups they can be used for back closures, pants fronts, etc. Grouped hooks can be bought in tape form (called hook tape) at fabric stores. Be sure when sewing on hook tape to lap the edges of the fabric over it to cover evenly from both sides. It should look like a seam when finished.
Hook Tape sewn to look like topstitched seam.
Buttons are used like hooks, but are more versatile as they are decorative as well as being functional. They were used in the later periods as pure decoration as on slashes in doublets, etc.
Early buttons were horn, shell, bone, wood, gold, silver, bronze, and copper. Later, buttons of polished gemstones, ivory, pearls, brass and knotted fabric were added to the list. Covered buttons as they now exist were probably not known. Buttons could be one holed (like beads), two, three, or four holed, or shank. Shank came to be te most popular from about 1300 on.
Cotehardie with rows of buttons down front and sleeves.
BUTTONHOLES & BUTTON LOOPS
Bound buttonholes are most authentic, but a bit more difficult. Fabric stores sell a bound buttonhole maker with instructions that works on any machine and eliminates a lot of the hassle. Machine buttonholes do not look too bad, and they do not show when covered by the button.
Hand crocheted button loops are great of course and terribly authentic. However, elastic loops by the yard (look in the bridal section of cloth shops) look pretty good, open and close easily and are eminently more practical for long runs of buttons.
Knotted fabric button.
Buckles were most likely developed from the fibule type broach. They were used during the medieval periods on bolts, baldrics, shoes, and kilts. They were very common on armor. Generally made of metal, they could be anywhere from quite simple to very ornate.
Kilt buckle with leather straps.
It is debatable whether or not snaps are in period. A crude kind of snap was probably used during the cavalier period, but it is not likely that it looked anything like the ones we have today. However, if well disguised, snaps may be a convenient closure for you. They can be especially handy for faking buttons. Snaps come in card form like hooks, available at fabric stores, or singly.
Button backed with snaps.
Velcro is an alternative to snaps. It is easy to use and very easy to open and shut, so easy in fact that it should not be used on high stress points. It is also somewhat expensive.
LINKS TO OTHER COSTUMING RESOURCES
SCA Clothing & Costume Links
RedDawn's Pages for Faire Costumes
The Garb Bag: Fantasy Costuming Links
Making A Shield
The Perfect Armor Improved: Water Hardened Leather
Apprentice Armorer's Illustrated Handbook
Care & Cleaning of ChainMaille
Production Mail Techniques
How To Make A Coif
Footwear of the Middle Ages
Chaperon's and How To Make Them
Costuming 101: The Cowl
Real Whips: How To Make Your Own Whip
Some Clothing of the Middle Ages
Lothene: Costumes of Medieval Times
Costumes.org: Medieval Costume Links
Costume Page: Medieval History
StitchWitch Medieval Links
Sunara Clothing & Accessories Goodies Page
MoonDragon's Costumes Index
AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Allspice Leaf Oil Angelica Oil Anise Oil Baobab Oil Basil Oil Bay Laurel Oil Bay Oil Benzoin Oil Bergamot Oil Black Pepper Oil Chamomile (German) Oil Cajuput Oil Calamus Oil Camphor (White) Oil Caraway Oil Cardamom Oil Carrot Seed Oil Catnip Oil Cedarwood Oil Chamomile Oil Cinnamon Oil Citronella Oil Clary-Sage Oil Clove Oil Coriander Oil Cypress Oil Dill Oil Eucalyptus Oil Fennel Oil Fir Needle Oil Frankincense Oil Geranium Oil German Chamomile Oil Ginger Oil Grapefruit Oil Helichrysum Oil Hyssop Oil Iris-Root Oil Jasmine Oil Juniper Oil Labdanum Oil Lavender Oil Lemon-Balm Oil Lemongrass Oil Lemon Oil Lime Oil Longleaf-Pine Oil Mandarin Oil Marjoram Oil Mimosa Oil Myrrh Oil Myrtle Oil Neroli Oil Niaouli Oil Nutmeg Oil Orange Oil Oregano Oil Palmarosa Oil Patchouli Oil Peppermint Oil Peru-Balsam Oil Petitgrain Oil Pine-Long Leaf Oil Pine-Needle Oil Pine-Swiss Oil Rosemary Oil Rose Oil Rosewood Oil Sage Oil Sandalwood Oil Savory Oil Spearmint Oil Spikenard Oil Swiss-Pine Oil Tangerine Oil Tea-Tree Oil Thyme Oil Vanilla Oil Verbena Oil Vetiver Oil Violet Oil White-Camphor Oil Yarrow Oil Ylang-Ylang Oil Aromatherapy
Healing Baths For Colds
Using Essential Oils
AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Almond, Sweet Oil Apricot Kernel Oil Argan Oil Arnica Oil Avocado Oil Baobab Oil Black Cumin Oil Black Currant Oil Black Seed Oil Borage Seed Oil Calendula Oil Camelina Oil Castor Oil Coconut Oil Comfrey Oil Evening Primrose Oil Flaxseed Oil Grapeseed Oil Hazelnut Oil Hemp Seed Oil Jojoba Oil Kukui Nut Oil Macadamia Nut Oil Meadowfoam Seed Oil Mullein Oil Neem Oil Olive Oil Palm Oil Plantain Oil Plum Kernel Oil Poke Root Oil Pomegranate Seed Oil Pumpkin Seed Oil Rosehip Seed Oil Safflower Oil Sea Buckthorn Oil Sesame Seed Oil Shea Nut Oil Soybean Oil St. Johns Wort Oil Sunflower Oil Tamanu Oil Vitamin E Oil Wheat Germ Oil
HELPFUL RELATED MOONDRAGON NUTRITION BASICS LINKS
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Amino Acids Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Antioxidants Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Enzymes Information MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Herbs Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Homeopathics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Hydrosols Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Minerals Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Mineral Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary & Cosmetic Supplements Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary Supplements Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Specialty Supplements MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Introduction
NUTRITION BASICS ARTICLES
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: 4 Basic Nutrients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Foods That Contain Additives & Artificial Ingredients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Is Aspartame A Safe Sugar Substitute? MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Guidelines For Selecting & Preparing Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Destroy MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Heal MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: The Micronutrients: Vitamins & Minerals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Overcooking Your Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Phytochemicals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Increase Your Consumption of Raw Produce MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Limit Your Use of Salt MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Use Proper Cooking Utensils MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Choosing The Best Water & Types of Water
RELATED MOONDRAGON HEALTH LINKS & INFORMATION
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Additives Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Safety Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Articles MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1 MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2 MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index
For a full list of available products from Mountain Rose Herbs, click on banner below:
MOONDRAGON'S REALM - WEBSITE DIRECTORY
A website map to help you find what you are looking for on MoonDragon.org's Website. Available pages have been listed under appropriate directory headings.