hsifeng: (*Arrrrrrrr!* Sewing Pyrate!)
Link sharing for those who would like to know where I get my ideas for the tassels and cords I am working on for the Cloak Project:


There are dozens of sites out there on how to do these. My current favorite is from Racaire on her website here. When it comes to methods for finishing tassels (ie. making them purty) there are a number of options including Turks Head knots, embroidery, and beading.

Some lovely inspirations from later in the period...
Original Tassels - late 16th, early 17th C


My preferred method for cord making is fingerlooping. There are other versions for making cord available out there (such as lucet cording), but I prefer the variations in design and durability of cut cords much more with the fingerlooped method. Also, I have questions about the historical accuracy of lucet cording in this period...

 I am planning on doing a pattern called 'lace bend rounde', and will vary between 6 and 8 bowes (the number of loops being worked, which varies the diameter of the final product). The plan is for the cords to be red and white, with some tipped in black tassels (to help match up on the larger tassels that will be affixed to the tails of the hood). The cording will also be used to close the neck of the cloak, although I will be using ties rather than the supposed loop-and-hook closure seen in this extant piece:

Stephan Prauns coat (1544-1591) - co Lady Petronilla via Flicker
Stephan Prauns coat (1544-1591) - co Lady Petronilla via Flicker. GMN.


As is my wont, I will be using DMC embroidery floss for these items. It's cheap, easy to get, and has served me well. If I decide that the larger hood tassels need bigger threading, I will use the wool yarn I have at hand. Any 'shaped heads' for the tassels will either be formed over a wooden base (beads and buttons) or over a stuffed cloth form. 
hsifeng: (Creative Sewing)
So I have been messing about *a lot* with fingerloop braiding. Honestly, once you get started with this stuff, it is sort of an obsession. I have gone through every pattern available for one person on this site and have totally fallen in love with the chevron pattern:

1) It's Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy!;
2) It goes super fast (unlike this beast - which is pretty but tiiiime consuming);
3) It can be done up in a variation with multiple colors that super pretty trim (I'll post photos, promise);

Plus, by using a couple of paired bit of chevron fingerlooping and a bit of stitchery down the middle, I changed my garters from this:

To this:

The husband is thinking of getting into casting again now that he has his forge set up. There is talk of me producing these (and the buckles) for resale at events. Could be fun!
hsifeng: (Blackpowder Love)

We’re slowly by surely getting our gear together for the upcoming School of the Renaissance Solder (April 17th – 19th at Camp Tamarancho). Since the powderflasks are here and are ready to get finished, I need to start formulating my plan for their cording. I am gathering a few images together from the various sources I have found to try and get an idea of what cording style I should use.

Cut for those who have no interest in pictures of rope….*grin* )

I can fingerloop, lucet and card-weave: However, I am not sure that the cords in the images above were produced with any of these methods – at least I have never managed to make a cord of that size, using thread/yarn elements that small. The cords made via Kumihimo seem to look more like the ones in the images, but what technique did Europeans use at this point in time that produced a cord of such thickness? 

My initial thought is that I should card-weave a band about 1” – 1.5”, I could then stitch it into a cord (either around a core of an alternate material or not). This would leave me plenty of ‘tail strands’ to make the various fringe and tassel hangers that the images show. Then again, almost any cord weaving technique using multiple strands will do the same. 


Anyone out there have any suggested techniques?

Of course, once I am done with this cording I will be starting on cording for the cartridges...
hsifeng: (Creative)
OK, I have a few techniques I am planning on testing out and I am going to document them here for others who might find them interesting. They have to do with the making, binding and filling (use) of point holes for the 16th century.

The scope of the project should be worked out before the first weekend in April (when I plan on my husband using his new Waffenrock with these items in place on it), for the School of the Renaissance Soldier.

Project #1: Point holes reinforced with metal rings ala the examples in Janet Arnold.

Project #2: Point lacings made of lucet cord

Project #3: Point lacing made of fingerlooped braids.

Project #4: Point lacings made of linen (via my new ¼” bias tape maker).

Updates as I make progress…. The Waffenrock should be ready for me to place points on by sometime next week...


Completed 'test holes' in sample fabric work up. Sample fabrics used match the liner and wool outer that are being used on my husbands new Waffenrock: That means two layers of medium weigh canvas and two layers of light weight wool had holes put thru them. A picture of all materials used is included below. These include the sample fabric, a tailors awl, a #4 (5/32") leather hole punch & a variety of copper and alloy 'jump washers' that I flattened using a pair of needle nosed pliers - washer sizes #8-#10.


Discovered that I like the punched holes more (*duh* the threads are no longer there to crowd back in to the voided space - making the sewing much easier), but that the tailors awl holes were almost identical in size so long as I worked them *with the awl in place* to hold the shape until the threads were in place to retain the shape of the opening. The awl also worked well for holding the metal backing ring in place while I did my sewing...hummmmm So, I guess I really don't know which technique - punch or awl - that I will use on my final product. *shrug* I don't have to make a decision 'right now'. *chuckle*

Photos of finished hole included, with close up of metal backing ring in place - this is taken from the 'back side/inside' of the fabric.  Please forgive my late-night-tried-after-sewing-all-day stitch technique. *grin*


Need new photo of finished hole - this first one was too dark...

I will be taking my test fabric to Meg's tomorrow so that I have sample sizes to test my completed points lacings against. With any luck, I will get both lucet and fingerloop braid completed to use as samples.




OK, so I *may* change my mind on this once I get a chance to try fingerloop braiding - but I am pretty sold on lucet cord for points at this time. They are easy to produce - you can make them in multicolor if you want to (still need to learn this technique) and stretchy which would be an advantage when dealing with the points at the back of a man's Hosen/Wams connection. I will upload some photos of my work in progress: Still plan on meeting with Meg again next week to go over finishing the cords and how to do some other styles of laces. I tried four types of fiber: Handspun wool, medium weight wool yarn, embroidery thread and embroidery floss (all six strands). What I learned is this:

Handspun - I need to work on my spinning! *chuckle* Seriously though, I used to think it was soooo cool that I could spin such a fine thread. The only handspun I had to work with was waaaay too thin and wouldn't have held up well. I may still geek out and spin a heavier thread on my walking wheel to lucet and hand dye for points. The thought did wander across my mind that fulling a handspun lucet cord might give a nice stretch while still retaining the overall strength of the fiber. Something to play with later...

Wool yarn - unless you use a *very* small yarn, you are going to get a final cord that is way too big for a point hole. This weight might be good for some other cording applications, but not my points.

Embroidery thread - I think this might work out if my point holes were larger. It comes in a wide variety of colors and is already 'spun' so it would be pretty strong.

Embroidery floss (all six strands used) - this will be what I am using on this project unless something else jumps out at me. The final cord was the right size for my holes; the material comes in a wide variety of colors and has a nice finish and stretch when corded.

Now to get hubby to make his aglets....*grin*





I have been playing with fingerlooping on-and-off for three weeks now. Other than the confusion that comes with interpreting each pattern authors 'take' on explaining the process of their braiding, it is easy and almost mindless once you get into a rhythm.  I have only tried two types of fiber with this cord making technique and here is what I have found:


Wool yarn - This makes some very nice trim work, and can be done (at least in the three loop braid that I know so far) i a manner that produces a flat tape. I love the overall appearance and can't wait to learn more patterns. By far the easiest material to work these projects in - forgiving on the fingers and easy to 'untangle' when necessary. WINNER!

Embroidery floss - This makes a nice, tight cord for lacing (it looks a lot like the four strand braids when done, but easier to do!), and can come out nicely when done in three loop pattern with more than one color. However, it is murder on the fingers! I will learn to endure it because I think I am going to make hubby a brown and red set of points for his Waff (to replace the red only lucet ones that he is using now) - I really like the final product!


All in all, I should learn to just listen to

[livejournal.com profile] jillwheezulwhen she tells me that I "should just use fingerloop braids for points". *chuckle* But then I wouldn't have had a much fun!


hsifeng: (Default)

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