Little Red Riding Gugel


Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf?

The gugel was a type of headdress from the 14th century. Mine is made from red wool, lined with white linen and completely handsewn with waxed linen thread. Even though the wool isn’t that thick, it is surprisingly warm. Very nice for cold Visby nights at Medieval Week on Gotland that aren’t quite cold enough to merit a cloak.


Handsewn hem.

Viking Apron Dress


Blue apron dress over red linen dress.




























I had some left over lovely blue wool fabric and an event to go to where I was dressing up as the asynja Idun, so I decided to make a Viking apron dress! Or two thirds of one, the sides aren’t supposed to be open if you want to be period correct. I also added lacing in the back for a better fit – tubular apron dresses are not the most flattering garment for small boobs. The dress is completely hand sewn with waxed linen thread and decorated with a ribbon I had lying around. It is only hemmed at the top, because I figured I might add some gussets in the sides some other time. Here, Im wearing it over my red linen dress – love the combination of red and blue!


These stitches are even Steven!


Eyelets handsewn with silk thread.


Handsewn eyelets reinforced with linen on the inside and finger braided cord with aglet.


Top hem sewn with herringbone stitch (?). They’re called ‘häxstygn’ – witch stich, in Swedish. Or ‘krejstygn’.


Ribbon decoration.


Lacing at the back.


Rawr, I has sword!

Red Medieval Linen (?) Dress


Red linen dress over white linen shift.

What do you do when you’re bored at your family’s summer house and don’t have access to your sewing machine? You go to the local fabric store and find some fabric for a handsewn dress! This one is more inspired my the Middle Ages rather than being any attempt at reproduction. Linen was usually not worn as outer garments, and I’m not even sure it actually is linen. It may be some cotton blend that just looks a bit like linen. But I did handsew it with wasxed linen thread and finger braid my own cord for the lacing. I was going to cast over all of the seams on the inside by hand too, but ran out of time before Medieval Week on Gotland, so mot of them are finished by machine. Even though that isn’t very period correct either, I like the look when you can see the shift under the dress!


Seam sewn and cast over by hand.


Seam sewn by hand but zigzagged by machine.


Hem seen from the inside, sewn with silk thread.


Eyelet hand sewn with silk, finger braided cord and aglet.

Handmade Linen Shift

Medieval underwear!

When I decided to make my medieval wool kirtle, I needed a shift to go with it. I ended up wearing it with all of my medieval garb. It is completely hand sewn, hemmed and felled with waxed linen thread and made from pure linen. The neckline is very wide and low to go with my wool kirtle and my red linen dress. I recently added a drawstring to be able to change the neckline depending on the dress.


Felled seam seen from the outside.


Felled seam seen from the inside.


Hem seen from the outside.


Hem seen from the inside.

Handsewn Medieval Wool Kirtle


So much skirt!

My first attempt at more historically accurate medeival garb. I got very inspired when I was studying textile history, and since I go to Medieval Week on Gotland every year, I thought it was time to try my hand at soemthing more historically accurate. I drew inspiration from kirtles of the mid 14th century, much like the in reeanctment circles popular Moy Bog, but with lacing instead of buttons. I drafted it myself based on the structure found in for example the Bocksten Man’s garb: rectangular pieces and triangular gussets. It is made from green homespun and completely hand sewn with waxed linen thread. The cord for the lacing is finger braided with yellow wool yarn.

Underneath, I wear a linen shift (absolutely required because wool can itch close to the skin and because linen is MUCH more washable than wool).


Finger braided cord, aglet and eyelets sewn with silk and reinforced with linen.


Side seam from the outside.


Hem and side seam from the inside.


Spiral lacing.

Medieval Week on Gotland 2015 #1: Zelda’s Hylia Dress from Skyward Sword

I recieved a fun comission for this year’s Medieval Week on Gotland: a girl who wanted to be Zelda! At first, we thought we’d make the costume from Twilight Princess, but since she lives far away, making proper fittings impossible, we chose the simpler Hylia Dress from Skyward Sword. Plus points: the cut is inspired by medieval garments!


Hylia in Visby!


Dress with paper template.


I designed the dress using the same straight pieces and triangular gussets I use when making medieval clothes. In the back, I made adjustable laccing, partly because I wouldn’t be able to fit it perfectly on my client, and it turned out quite well! The pattern at the neck was the most difficult part: first, I made a paper template, then I hemmed to layers of fabric together along the edges of the pattern. Tricky! I look forward to seeing my creation in action at this year’s Medeival Week!


The neck.


Adjustable lacing.

Medieval Week on Gotland 2014 #3: Green Wool Kirtle

Before Medieval Week on Gotland 2014, I recieved several commissions from friends visiting this amazing event for the first time. This is a series of posts about all the different garments I created that summer.

This is my friend Annie’s green twill kirtle and linen shift!

Annie Båtman2

10432312_10203813458797666_1915836105_nAnnie did quite a bit of research on her own before ordering her outfit. This reference picture was her main inspiration. The high waistline reminds me of Regency dresses. I made a simple pattern using rectangular pieces and triangular gussets from the armholes down. The fabric is a lovely woll twill from Korps, super light and shiny! I also made a linen shift to be worn under the kirtle, with a simliar neckline to the one in the refenrece picture. Wool can be quite itchy on your skin, so it is necessary to wear linen undergarments. Also, linen can be washed repeatedly whereas wool shouldn’t really be washed at all. EVER. It’s enough to air it. In medeival times, linen undergarments and wool outer garments are what people wore. So this outfit is a bit historically correct, even though it’s completely machine sewn.

Medieval Week on Gotland 2014 #2: Blue Linen Dress

Before Medieval Week on Gotland 2014, I recieved several commissions from friends visiting this amazing event for the first time. This is a series of posts about all the different garments I created that summer.

This is my friend Malin’s bright blue medieval dress!


The cut is similar to that of the garb of the Swedish archaelogical find The Bocksten Man: rectangular pieces and triangular gussets. It has a somewhat tailored fit, but is wide enough to just pull over the head. The fabric is blue linen from Korps. Completely machine sewn, so not exactly historically correct. Rather, it’s inspired by medieval fashion, and that’s why I call it a ”medieval dress”. After all, either the word ”medieval ” or the word ”dress” was used during the actual Middle Ages!

Malin is a skilled nail artist, and she has a (Swedish) blog named Malin lackar ur. Check it out!


My nails made pretty by Malin.

Medieval Week on Gotland 2014 #1: Corset Vest

Before Medieval Week on Gotland 2014, I recieved several commissions from friends visiting this amazing event for the first time. This is the beginning of a series of posts about all the different garments I created that summer

First up, my childhood friend Maria’s outfit.

10453081_10152583111588756_8761891848176724830_o - CopyMaria’s inspiration was an outfit called the Archeress dress. It seems to be more inspired by Game of Thrones and other fantasy than the actual Middle Ages, but that’s perfectly fine for Medieval Week on Gotland! Maria made the dress herself, assisted by her mother, and I made the corset-like vest. She wore the vest not only to Medieval Week on Gotland, but also to the Steampunk Convention in Gävle, Sweden that same summer.


Finished vest.

I made the vest with velvet, and sturdy cotton for lining. The original seems to be made from suede, but since that material is hard to come by and expensive, we chose velvet. Along the armholes and hips it is decorated with rolls and fabric filled with cotton, and those are in turn decorated with satin ribbons. For lacing, I used an old bootlace. The pattern is a combination of pieces from the pattern of a shirt and the pattern for my 1880s corset. I drew the rolls and shoulderpieces myself.


The lining, partly assembled.


The rolls look like little boats!

My First Medieval Dress

010-001 - CopyWhen I was twelve years old, I bought this dress at the market in Visby at Medieval Week on Gotland. I did have another medieval dress when I was even younger, but this was the first one I bought myself, and it has been with me ever since.

Over the years, I have mended and changed a few times, but the basic dress is the same. The first year, my mother helped sew little pleats on the shoulders to make the upper part smaller. Last year, I changed the fabric of the wide border when the old fabric gave out. I also added lacing in the back. Originally, the border was placed on top of the green linen, but this summer, I felt the dress needed lengthening. So I ripped the seam that was under the bust, added a different piece of linen behind the border and moved the skirt so that it now begins under the border. I lengthened the sleeves in the same way. The fabric used for the borders was originally a tablecloth. I’d much rather have pretty fabric on me than on a table! Not a very period correct dress, but I love the colour and the design! The very word ”medieval dress” isn’t period correct either, after all.

021-001 - Copy