Tudor Fortnight at Trerice

Our summer costume days are underway, we’ve had a lot of interest from visitors and some good weather has meant we’ve been a little less manic than usual, which is nice.

We’ve finished two more outfits for the schools’ project – an Elizabethan sailor and a mid Tudor loose gown and loose kirtle.

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The sailor’s outfit is based (roughly) on one I saw in the Queen’s Gallery in London last year, with a loose tunic top and baggy knee-length hose in linen.

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Also completed is an English gable hood to go with one of the early Tudor dresses.

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A couple of the schools’ outfits have had a trial run in the last two costume days, which was great. We might be able to test some more in the next few weeks.

The last remaining wooden farthingale has bitten the dust 😦 The hoops had become more gaffer tape than willow, after one-too-many 10 year old sat or stood on it before we could intervene. It is now being remodelled with curtain wire which has proved to be a lot more durable with rough handling so far in our other farthingales. The skirt itself is being altered too; it was based on the Alcega/Janet Arnold pattern with hoops put into tucks of material, so there is now far too much fabric, which will distort the shape with the new wire or be ridiculously huge and awkward to sew.

We’re in the middle of Tudor Fortnight at Trerice at the moment, and the Wardour Garrison are down for the weekend. They’ve set up their tents and have been showing camp life including musket demonstrations and target practise. Hope they haven’t got blown away by the tail end of hurricane Bertha! There’s also two Tudor themed banquets being held this week in the evenings on Wednesday and Saturday. Plus a costume day tomorrow and on Wednesday, hobby horse jousting and various craft activities.

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Summer preparations

Still trying to make more clothes in time for the summer costume days. The loose gown with loose kirtle and tied-in puffy sleeves is finished after fighting the hems into submission – they looked fine initially but turned out to be about a foot longer at the sides than necessary!

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A yeoman farmer’s coat has just been finished, copied from a picture in Herbert Norris’s book about Tudor costume and fashions. We’ve tried bashing an old felt cowboy hat out of shape to get a similar felt hat to the one in the book, it almost looks right…

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There are two dresses for girls aged about 12 coming along too, so we should have a variety of new things for visitors to wear in a couple of weeks.