Sunday, May 20, 2012

What the Waffenrock?

After the fiasco of having all four kids at Unicorn in unexpectedly miserable weather, I decided that each of the kids needed to have a warm weather AND a cool weather outfit that we could easily layer or un-layer as the weather dictated.  So these past two weeks, mom and I worked on getting some new garb for the kids for Border Raids this weekend, making use of the various scraps we had available.

Lee and Kara got new long sleeve linen smocks, since they'd grown out of the one's I'd had for them, and Lee's not big enough to fit in the next size up I have of Owen's old garb.  (That's a problem I didn't account for- Lee doesn't fit in Owen's garb hand-me-downs.)

Kara still fits in her Durer dress, though she's gained about an inch and a half of height,so we just needed to get a linen option for her.  I came across the funerary garb of Dona Maria, and decided that an old embroidered linen we still had scraps of would make a great sleeveless, Spanish-like surcoat for her.  Mom sewed this one, and with her new linen smock, Kara looks very girly and cute and comfortable.

I also made a pale green linen "riding"-style tunic (13th century) for Lee, but I didn't get any pictures of it.

The big thing for Lee, though, was his new wool garment- a waffenrock. I got the idea after observing a very simply cut waffenrock on a baron two weekends ago. It was so simple and understated. After realizing how much I liked the look, I decided a waffenrock would look pretty nice on Lee. Plus, it's fun to say "waffenrock".

I started with some (really bright) yellow cotton and created a sample that I'll use as his pattern. I made a few adjustments in the top after letting him try it on, mainly around the neckline. Then I attached the bottom "skirt" and let him play around in it for a bit. Other than it still needing sleeves, I needed to shorten and remove some of the fullness from the skirt. It was really cute, but I'm not going for cute- I'm going for waffenrock!

After the second trial, with sleeves, I realized that I went too short on the skirt. I needed to go about halfway back to the original length. I didn't redo the skirt panels to be less full, so part of the issue could have been that as well. I machine sewed the sleeves on, which pulled the top in a weird way. Beyond that, though, I needed to add some curving to the armhole. I just hate set-in sleeves, you know.

So I made the modifications, and committed them to the wool. I used some of the left-over wool from my fitted dress. I machine sewed it together, then finished the seams by hand (all but the sleeve seams, just because I needed to move on to another project).  He gets really excited to wear it, and doesn't want to take it off.  He understands how it fastens at the top, and I think that makes him feel cool.  Of course, the mohawk helps with that too.

He looks kind of melancholy in these photos, but that was more from a rough, cold night of camping.

I wasn't able to get to Owen's new garb in time for this weekend, but he's got a pale blue linen tunic in the works and probably a new wool doublet, since he's almost grown out of the one he's got now.

But the bigger project on the table now is to begin my pink wool cote- the foundational layer of my Garb Quest.  Though I now have a suitable draped-method pattern for fitted gowns, I'd like to explore using a measuring method, as it seems feasible as an authentic patterning option.  June is a quiet month for us as there are no local events, so I hope to at least get a good start on this completely hand-sewn project.  Plus, now that my gray dress has hit the ground running, and proven to be successful (and relatively comfortable in 85 degree weather!), I need to maintain that high!

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