I just got reminded that I'd been intending to get to some of the "Four and Twenty Blackbirds
" events, and in particular the one in Spalding on the 1st/2nd of September. August has flown past, and that isn't very far away at all. Early Tudor, I'm told. Time to think through what I've got, what I need, and what the differences are.
Well, I could wear my houpellande, the one I made for Coronation years and years ago. It's early, but I'm a kitchen skivvy, it must be a hand-me-down. Better, though, would be a chemise and kirtle - linen kirtle, by choice, in this sort of weather. I've been pointed at a pic of the sort of thing I need - short sleeves, not too fitted. Yes, I could do that - I drafted a cutting pattern over lunch, planning on raiding the fabric stash when I got home. (At this point my costume-making friends will be nodding, the the others will be going "you what???? Yes. No pattern, I really don't need one for anything this simple. It's a question of attaching rectangles and triangles to each other).
So, once home, I cleared the piles of clothes from the lid of the fabric stash, and went diving. LInen? Yes - but anything heavy enough isn't big enough, and vice versa. I need about 4 yards of 60", and all I've got in that size is underwear-weight white linen, black cotton (why?) heavy wool, silk, or velvet. So I need linen, and I need it fast. Herts Fabrics
is an option (though I don't like the £10 delivery charge, I might drive south and visit) or I've left a message with Bernie the Bolt
, who's likely to be somewhat cheaper.
Edit: Bernie's daughter does Hitchin market on Tuesdays. So I'd have Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday morning, for sewing. Possible, but tight. I'll email him bakc, and we can have a phone chat tonight.
What else? I raided the drawers of reenactment gear that haven't been looked in for ages. Yes, I have several chemises, and should be able to get into all of them. I have headwear. I have a belt pouch and belt - a rather nice "bollock pouch". Shoes? This may be a problem. I used to have a very nice pair of Tudor shoes, but lymphodaema meant I couldn't get into them any more, and I'm pretty sure they've been passed on. I can't find them, anyway. Looks like I'll be in Dave's dark age boots, the furry ones. I can't yet find any aprons, but I'm sure there's plenty around, and I can easily run up a fresh one if needed.
If I can be sure of having a solution to the "what to wear" question, then I can try to book accommodation. If that isn't an option, the place is an hour and a half's drive, I'll day-trip - but I'd rather not.
Edit, as a thought occurs: one of those chemises is linen. Quite heavy linen. I could dye that, maybe? It's almost one-piece, though, not quite the right style (C13, I think?), but at least I know there's enough material there.