Tuesday, March 31, 2015

IRCC5 - And we're off! (almost...)

Tomorrow, April 1, 2015 is the first day of the fifth Italian Renaissance Costuming Challenge, run by Bella Lucia da Verona of the Realm of Venus.

I have lots of plans. :)

I was one of the lucky few who supported the Kickstarter fundraiser for Margo Anderson's Italian Wardrobe patterns and they are just waiting to be taken for a spin around the block. I am planning to use them for both my layer 1 (drawers) and my layer 2 (a parti-colored sottana). I'm not sure if I will use the pattern for my layer3 (striped overgown) or not. It rather depends on the fit of my layer 2. I think now that I have discovered the joys of making full gowns with 4 yards of fabric I may feel that the skirts are too full, Plus I've been longing to try out Matthew Gnagy's cutting and tailoring methods...

I may just frankenstein together a bodice drafted by his method (as close as I can infer from his book on mens tailoring) and my new Elenora-style skirt...or whatever style skirt is necessitated by my experiments...instead

The one thing I know for sure about the outer layer is that I want to try to make a striped dress. This dress, in fact!


Francesco Montemezzano
Portrait of a Lady
Private Collection
ca. 1580

I am completely fascinated by the stripes in the skirt and I want to answer the question of whether this representation was likely to have been an accurate portrayal of an actual style--or at least is possible when using ordinary striped fabric.

Not that my fabric is "ordinary!" I have the prettiest teal and gold plaid in my stash and it is very sure it wants to be this dress.

Who am I to say no?

Largess for Game Day #3 - Tablut

I am going for another strategy game this week, and a much more complicated one! Tablut is a two person game played with sides of unequal strength--sixteen brutal ATTACKERS and a small band of eight loyal DEFENDERS seeking to protect their KING. It sounds very exciting!

We need a board with a nine-square by nine-square grid. Once again I made mine in felt!

And then there are the necessary pieces and a six sided dice (just one).

I also made paper versions of the board and instructions slightly adapted from these which are kindly provided by Baron Modar Neznanich, OPel. The paper versions mean that everybody has a set of instructions handy during game night, and they can take a game home with them. (A good thing in my book.) BTW, there is a bit of method to my madness, I plan to put the games out on the tables during the day at the Three Saints and a Ruby event in May!

All in all Tablut was pretty easy and quick. Which is a very good thing since I kinda waited until the last minute. I get to play Tablut for the first time tonight! :)

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Baker's Dozen Largesse Derby - Dipping my toes back into the world of Largess

It was my great honor to receive an origami Dragon from the hands of their majesties during the Constellation Regional A&S Competition this past Better War Through Archery. It is perched on my computer monitor as I write this and every time I look at it I am reminded that small and light largesse is A GOOD THING! It is convenient for both the giver and the recipient and quite small and simple things still have the marvelous ability to make the recipient light up with happiness, even months after they first receive the gift!

I usually lean toward large and complicated largess, so my Dragon is a wonderful inspiration to try my hand at smaller things. Even if I do have to keep beating myself back from overly complicating things by adding more stuff!

One of our neighboring shires is being elevated to a barony shortly after the Three Saints and a Ruby event this May and we are holding a Largesse Derby focusing on largesse for the new Barony. We hope to be able to pass on many lovely things to the new Baron and Baroness Shadowed Stars...

And I am making pins.

Yes. Simple little brass pins. I'm actually rather excited about it because I have never made pins before, yet I have wanted period appropriate pins made of brass wire for ages! I confess that I may enamel the heads of some of them, But I WILL NOT make complete sewing kits with boxes and needles and scissors and thread-winders and a pincushion and a beeswax tablet and ...

I will not.

I am making something small, light, easy to carry and eminently useful.

I am making PINS.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Largesse for Game Day #2 - Gluckshaus

Another month, another game!

Some people like games of skill, some those of strategy, and some like games of luck. I'm trying to cover a little bit of each, and what better game to start with than one named for the Lady herself! This week's game was Glukshaus, or the House of Fortune.

Using the information kindly provided by Dragonell the Juggler at http://www-ca.canisius.edu/~salley/SCA/Games/gluckshaus.html  I made up another felt game board. (I'm working on a full set of five, but these take a while to make And since the game can be played by any number of people, we only needed one.) I bought dice at the local party store--they had them in their 'poker night/casino party' section--and also made a pretty version to print on 8 1/2 x 11" paper. Having wised-up a bit, I printed the paper boards on card stock with the instructions on the reverse so everyone who attended could take away the game.

Which many did. Score!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Simple Subtelties for a spring event - Carrots!

I have been pondering the opportunity the first course which is often "on the table" at an SCA feast gives one for not only taking the edge of the hunger of restless diners, but to set a appropriately festive and medieval tone for the meal ahead. Our Barony is beginning to prepare for our annual Spring event "Three Saints and a ____" and I have been seized with the notion of making our first course an homage to spring. Perhaps a combination of the first Spring fruits of the garden and the last remains of the Winters staples...in illusion food!

My first idea is baby vegetables.

Baby carrots!