Saturday, May 17, 2014

Historical Fashion How To ~ Middle Ages

  

  Greetings, fair ladies! We're about to dust off our time machine and study another era of fashion history. This time, we shall completely leave the modern era as we explore the middle ages. This is one of my favorite eras in history, and I hope that by the time we're done, you'll be as excited about it as I am!

The Middle Ages 








   The Middle Ages was the thousand year period that divides Ancient times from the Modern era. We can roughly define it as beginning around 500 AD, and ending around 1500 AD. It became known as the Dark Ages because of the lack of knowledge, both spiritual and material. Life in the Western world of Europe was much different than today; deathly disease was rampant, and countries were controlled by absolute rulers and the power of the Catholic church.
   Art during the time was fairly crude, but we still get a good idea of what was worn during the different centuries of the middle ages. Back then, women's style changed far more slowly then today, and for many years, only nobles had access to good fabric. The church required modesty, so women always wore floor-length dresses and, until the later part of the era, high necklines. Despite slowly changing styles, each century had a bit of variation; There were romantic veils and long, pointed sleeves in the 12th century, layered surcoats and underdresses in the 13th and 14th centuries, and fantastic headdresses in the 15th century.
   My timeline of clothing above was something that I did a couple of years ago when I was helping with/sitting in on a class my mom was teaching to some homeschool friends. Most of the drawings are copied from books or medieval artwork. My drawing skills are *hem* outdated, but you still get the idea. ;)




  The above outfit is based on the drawing of 13th century German garb, though layered dresses were popular throughout the middle ages. My long-sleeved brown shirt and brown maxi skirt are used to resemble a long gown. A short-sleeved dress goes over them to achieve the layered effect. A gold clasp bracelet adds a bit of sparkle; perhaps I am a noblewoman or a wealthy merchant's daughter. ;) Because my hair is down, it shows that I am a young, unmarried woman. I believe that some women would wear head coverings whether they were married or not. It probably depended on the era and the region.




  Does this look familiar? If you read my 1970's post, you've already seen this flowing ivory dress. I originally bought it to be a medieval costume, and it has served me well! Though it doesn't perfectly imitate any particular era, this gown definitely has a middle ages feel to it. For this photoshoot, I put my Lilla Rose clip through the holes where my bodice laces up and it made a pretty Celtic style broach. Of course, the outfit wouldn't be complete without boots! Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be much evidence that women wore boots regularly during the Middle Ages. They did ride horses, however, so we can conjecture that they may have worn boots during equestrian pursuits. ;)


  This historical photo shoot was certainly fun! That is, it was pleasant until the mosquitoes decided to make my dress a landing strip. ;) I hope that you enjoyed learning about Middle Ages fashion! Fare thee well!

"He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be they shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;"
~Psalm 91:4-5

18 comments:

  1. So pretty! You know I love the middle ages ;) Exciting when you can find stuff in your own closet that works for things like this!! :D

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    1. Thank you! :) Yes, it is! :D I might have to try my new costume at the next medieval event. ;)

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  2. That is SO beautiful....I love the first outfit. Reminds me more of a maiden type of look and the second one is just gorgeous! Love the bow 'n arrow. I actually do archery and love shooting! Do you take lessons, or is that just for fun? =D

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    1. Thank you so much Ashley! :)
      I have done a little bit archery, but only at friends' house, not actual lessons. It's so awesome that you do that! :D

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  3. Wow, you both look amazing! Both outfits are stunning!
    And I was really impressed with your artwork, you're very talented!
    Natasha
    A modest fashion blog: www.natashaatkerson.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you so much for the sweet compliments Natasha! :)

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  4. You look beautiful in both the dresses!

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  5. Oh, you look gorgeous! Those dresses are super pretty and very historical-looking! And I have to tell you, you look really nice in white! Not many can pull off the look! :D

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    1. Aw, thank you Laura! :) It's funny, because you commented just when I was commenting back to the previous comment. "Ooh, Laura commented!" :)

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  6. WOW! You are such a talented artist; the drawings are fantastic! You say they're outdated but I'm so impressed.

    I might have to bookmark this page, there is so much great information on here.

    I love the last picture. I feel like it could have been taken during the Middle Ages (*cough cough* assuming there were, like, color cameras and stuff back then :))

    Ireland
    http://irelandrhea.blogspot.com/

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    1. Aw, thank you for all the sweet compliments Ireland! I'm glad that you found this post informative. :)

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  7. Your drawing are incredible! Love both your outfits; you look so pretty in both! So neat you put this scripture in too, my pastor preached a sermon on another scripture pertaining to the wings of God!
    ~Sarah~
    http://allthingsvintage-sc.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thank you for the kind comments Sarah! :)
      Wow, it's so neat that you just heard that in a sermon.

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  8. I love your dresses! The picture with the bow and the very last look so medieval.

    Elizabeth

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Please leave a (polite) comment and I will get back to you when I can. I enjoy hearing from you! :)