You can get a whole lot done during just one weekend! We – Eme, Sahra and I, as well as Knut from the children’s entertainment troup – gathered under the exquisite roof of casa de Sahra and Knut to plan, cut, fit and baste as much as we could. The actual sewing would happen afterwards. And hey, what could be done from all the left over scraps of fabric? Pouches! (And so the world was filled with pouches…)
To make sure things ran smoothly and food arrived on time, we were guarded by the cats Felix and Miisu. The essential breaks for resting, cuddling, fussing and guarding were announced by Eikka and Pinja by barking and jumping on our laps. Naturally, they made sure the food was not forgotten either.
First we tackled the cutting of a grey Viking coat for Eme. At first there seemed not to be enough of fabric but after a certain turn of events that can only take place in the Exquisite Household, there was. The fabric for the lining unfortunately resided in another town but the cutting would be easy with the help of the grey pieces.
The Viking theme continued. If you have Sahra around, you’d better take full advantage of her expertise on the era.
We spread out some dark blue wool for Eme’s apron dress / sjelekjolet / hängelsekjortel. As inspiration and model we had Sahra’s dress which almost fits Eme like a glove. After cutting the fabric we basted the pieces together and made sure the new dress fits. All that is left now is the actual sewing, done by yours truly. Ha, this will be my first ever Viking age woman’s dress!
And it was time for tea!
OK, if I’m being honest, I did keep myself well hydrated during the weekend. In this picture you can see some of the teas I have looted from Sahra’s cupboards. Surprisingly enough, there were also sachets of herbs for foot baths (in the middle).
A leap of a few hundred years forward…
… because next we fitted 15th c. sleeves for Sahra. (The colour was lovely by the way, it reminded me of a pale blueberry!) The rest of the dress is almost done but the sleeves were just cut out using somebody else’s patterns. Now we made a pattern that should fit Sahra.
Then I climbed high.
My yet-unfinished checked dress has a hem that is way too long, so what could be more convenient than to have a little help from friends to find the right length! And oh what a camera angle! I can’t help but ask the classic question: Does my bum look big in this?
Luckily we didn’t get stuck with bums but we did have to continue talking about sizes though.
Green wool started its transformation from fabric to a fine, but not too fine a dress for Knut the carpenter. The dress will make its debut in Morimondo (I bow my head in respect and jealousy now). The aim is to make a man’s cote, pulled on over the head, with a few buttons in the neckline and sleeves. The cote will have a knee-length, wide hem and rather a fitting but still comfortably loose upper part. We decided to use a pattern that has been fitted to Knut before, and since it creates a very tight fitting cote, we would just make the pattern bigger from appropriate places. This casual decision to “just make it bigger” caused a vivid discussion: we had to think very carefully how we could add to the measurements around the chest without loosing the nice, snug fit of the elbows and armseyes. But it will turn out just great – I have faith in Sahra’s skills!
The carpenter’s wife also needs something new to wear for Morimondo.
So we took out this beautiful green wool and started turning it into a dagged hood. Sahra tried out 2 of her old hoods, we chose the one the sat better on her shoulders – the red one – and used it to draw the outlines for a new one.
Did you notice how handy it is to be able to use old clothes as models for new ones? Only a fool would waste time on designing the wheel over and over again.
Our inspiring assistants Pinja and Eikka urged us to rest after a long days work, and even showed a good example. But what do the naughty ladies do when they think noone is watching? They gamble!