Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Thoughts on kurta patterns

  Over the past half a year, I've intermittently been rethinking my original ideas about kurta patterns. Some of it is based on a class I attended, some of it on looking further at pictures of the child's kurta and other depictions of kurtas, and some of it from a recent comment on a past post.

Pattern pieces and their shape
  I had originally thought the front flaps would be trapezoids whose bottom width is from hip to hip, but when you look at the child's coat- it's bottom is only a little wider than the top. Laid out so that the opening is vertical down the center, the outside edges pretty much go straight down. The extra bits on the side are gores.

  Jadi Fatima showed her class at KWARCS a Mongol pattern she'd recreated that used gores and gussets like that on the side. The two gores on the armpit were trapezoids as opposed to the triangles anyone who's ever made a generic T-tunic using a period pattern is used to. There were two additional long trapezoids running from below the armpit to the hem.  It looks like the child's kurta eschews the gussets and just has two gores running down the side.

  Scott, the commenter I previously mentioned, makes his kurtas with triangular gores. He described his pattern as follows:
  My kurta uses these long triangular gussets that function as armpit gussets as well. I have found this to be the easiest and most practical way to go about it. I basically use a 3,3,5 pattern, that is rectangular body panels 3 units wide and 5 units long, sleeves 3 units long and 2 units in circumferance at the widest point. Then I can simply alter the width of the triangular gusset and taper of the sleeve to achieve a good fit. For instance, mine is 1m long, with 60cm wide body panels, 60 cm sleeves that are cut 40 cm wide tapering to 25 cm. The triangular gusset starts about 15cm down the sleeve and is 50 cm wide at the bottom hem and is made up of all the scraps, 3 pieces in one and five in the other. If you just leave the front panel whole instead of splitting it, you have a Byzantine style tunic like the one found in that cave in Turkey, or you can make a narrower side gusset, split the front panel and you have a kaftan pattern.

Keeping kurtas closed
  I had thought that the hem should lie horizontally when the kurta is flattened on the ground, but the child's kurta is opened in such a way that it's pointed in front instead. I have a really hard time keeping my crappy attempt at a kurta closed and was considering adding some sort of button to the inside for practicality's sake.

  That still left me wondering how Sarmatians and others would have kept theirs' closed, because I've never seen any sort of internal fastener. That doesn't mean they don't exist- All the pictures of seen of Sarmatians wearing kurtas have them crossed in only one direction (and Sulimirski mentions this), so maybe they had some sort of fastener on the inside and we just don't have one preserved today [that I know of].

  The one Gamble made for me actually stays closed on its own because the fake silk brocade on the inside creates enough friction that it doesn't budge much. The moleskin on the mine has a slick inside surface that wants to move. I'm sure leather would create friction more like the brocade does. Quilted cotton, too. So maybe fasteners just wouldn't have been needed?

Open vs. closed
  The kurtas of the Scythians on the Greek-made jug and jewelry are barely crossing and have a vertical slit down the center. Someone sent me a link to a Scythian A&S entry in another kingdom (Northshield or Midrealm, I don't remember which), which also demonstrated the vertical opening down the center. I really wish I could find that link, because they created an entire outfit and it was gorgeous. After flipping back and forth through depictions of kurtas with vertical openings (I'm going to call this "open") and those with flaps crossing the front of the body (I'm calling this "closed"), something Jadi had said years ago at Dragon*Con  (and repeated at KWARCS) struck me- what if it's the same pattern, just worn differently by the Scythians than by the Sarmatians?

  She had been trying to figure out a pattern for an open kaftan. I don't remember if it was Persian or Mongol. She just couldn't get the neckline right. She'd already made a closed kaftan from the same culture and was standing in front of the mirror one day while the kaftan was unbelted and hanging open and realized she was wearing the open kaftan. It was the same exact garment.

  This kaftan had fasteners in the same place as you see on Mongol kaftans and some extra attachments on the inside edge of the underflap. Going horseback riding? Cross the flaps and fasten the overflap at the armpit to keep the wind off your front. Walking around town on a hot day? Attach the outer flap to the inside buttons so that there's a vertical slit down the middle.

  Under the assumption that Iranian steppe nomads didn't have fasteners, one could either cross or not cross it before putting on the belt depending on which culture you're emulating. If they did have fasteners, it could be a similar setup to the Persian kaftan.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

RUSH Schedule and Class Descriptions

I haven't been able to turn my laptop on for about a month now. I wanted to upload the RUSH schedule and the remaining class descriptions at the beginning of March, but haven't been able to because of the computer issue. I'm sure people are getting antsy/curious, so I'm uploading a copy here. Once I'm able to use my computer again, I'm upload it to the RUSH website along with all of the class descriptions.

We weren't able to book a demo of the printing press, but there will be medieval manuscripts available to flip through!


Survey of Heraldic Displays
HL Vincent de Vere

  What use is your heraldry if you never use it? Heraldic displays come in many forms and styles, from flags and banners to garb. This class will include a list of online resources for information on heraldic displays and garments, display of examples, discussion of various construction techniques and the related pros and cons to several techniques. It is meant to show that there are many inexpensive and easy ways to start your heraldic displays as well and many advanced and challenging ways.

Silent Heraldry 101
Lady Nesscia inghean Chearnaigh

  This class will teach some basic signs for people who are interested in Silent Heraldry. But never fear! If you already know some sign language, during the class we will also discuss what you need to do to get ready for court. The steps you need to consider to begin. Also, we will discuss what happens if a Deaf or Hard of Hearing person shows up and you were not expecting to be Silent Herald (AKA stunt heralding). Your instructor, Lady Nesscia inghean Chearnaigh, is a nationally certified interpreter in the modern world and has taught sign language and Silent Heraldry classes at Lilies for the past two years and is currently Calontir's Good Hand Herald.

Beginning SCA Titles and Etiquette
Duchess Aislinn Morcroft

  An introductory class on SCA/Calontir awards, titles, how to address people of various rank, and what court is like. All ages welcome.

Mysteries of the College of Heralds
Mistress Sofya la Rus

  The submission process, common pitfalls, and what the new rules mean to the lay person.


Hood Construction
HL Issabell St. Charles

  Learn basic hood construction for many different personas.  Patterns will be available for tracing, bring your own paper for patterns (something large, like a roll of wrapping paper).

Basic Gloves:  History and Construction
HL Vincent de Vere

  Variations of gloves have been found throughout period and in many cultures. They were as useful to our predecessors as they are to us, and they make a cool accessory. This will be a beginning level class that will identify several online resources for information related to mittens, three fingered gloves and five fingered gloves, glove making, materials and tools needed for glove making, and some basic patterns for glove making. It will include several examples of functional gloves that are constructed using modern, normal sewing machine and a demonstration of technique. The techniques can also be translated to hand sewing but the instructor no longer has the patience needed to hand sew more gloves.

Making Buttons from Cloth or Wrapped Beads
HL Giraude Benet

  Buttons in period were often made of cloth and also wooden beads wrapped with interwoven threads. Learn the basics of making each type of button and how to use them. Materials will be provided.

From Costume to Clothing: Using accessories to make your look more authentic
Duchess Aislinn Morcroft

  An overview lecture class looking at typical SCA periods including Saxon/Norse, Norman/middle period Western European, and 14th-15th century accessories and their uses will be explored.

It’s Hip to be Square
Mistress Sofya la Rus

  See how you can dress yourself from head to toe with simple rectangular patterns and draft a pattern for yourself if time permits.

Period Cosmetics
Lady Liadan

  We will discover how cosmetics were used and MADE in period times. Including recipes and resources to find out more about who, when and how of Makeup before It was sold in stores. There will also be a chance to make your own take home sample of a period recipe.

Performing Arts

Images of Dancers and Musicians in Middle Eastern Art
Sayyeda Samia al-Kaslaania

  Examine images of dancers and musicians from illuminated manuscripts, carvings, and painting from the Middle East in the Middle Ages (this will not include Persian or Ottoman art).

Recorder Ensemble Hour 1
Master Christian d'Hiver

  Bring some recorders and a music stand. If you have copies of the Rosenberg books, bring them, too. We'll take a look at some music, as if we were an ensemble. Emphasis on explicit explanations of good ensemble practices.  Minimum age: 8.

Recorder Ensemble Hour 2
Master Christian d'Hiver

  Bring some recorders and a music stand. If you have copies of the Rosenberg books, bring them, too. We'll take a look at some music, as if we were an ensemble. Emphasis on explicit explanations of good ensemble practices. During the second hour, we'll spend time looking at a difficult piece.  Minimum age: 8. No prerequisites, first hour is not necessary to take the second hour.

European Dance for Everyone!
Lord Dragomir Sasul

  We will cover a wide variety of dances that were done through out Europe. Covering English Country, Italian, and French Bransles. The dances will be a wide variety and all the steps you need to know will be taught beforehand. This class is for everyone from any skill level. The class is two hours to allow time to do as many dances as possible if you can only be there for an hour or less that is okay.


Hand Sewing Techniques
Lady Caitlin nic Raighne

  You may not want to sew an entire outfit by hand, but learning just a few basic hand stitches can allow you to make clothes or other items without a sewing machine, or to make things sewn with a machine less obviously so by eliminating visible machine stitching. This class will teach the most basic hand stitches and seam techniques used in period.

Basic Embroidery
HL Issabell St. Charles

  Learn basic embroidery stitches.  Materials will be provided for practicing.

Weaving: An introduction of the basics
Lady Judur bint Abd Al Wahid

  First hour is a class that gives a little basic history, shows the student what they may need to get started, and how to start weaving.  Second hour continues with more practical, hands-on:  making your own cards, drawing patterns, and weaving.
 Limit:  10 students.  Cost:  $5.00 for supplies and handouts.

Rigid Heddle Weaving: More than just ups and downs
HL Esther bat Moshe

  1st hour: Discussion of rigid heddle (not card) weaving. Explanation of what a 'picked pattern' is. Books and samples of picked patterns will be available. Also a loom warped for people to try. No limit.
  2nd hour: Warp a loom to weave a picked pattern. Must have own loom and two colors of string. Choice of patterns will be provided.
Limit 4.  Some card/inkle weaving knowledge is helpful for the second hour.

HL Kathryn Daggett

  No description provided

Introduction to Fabric
Lady Catrijn vanden Westhende

  This class will cover the basics of fabric for people new to making clothing. Main topics are fiber content, common weave types, thickness/heaviness, and how those properties work (or sometimes don't) in a piece of clothing, with swatches and example garments passed around for reference.

Understanding Cloth- Using the properties of textiles to their advantage
HL Marguerite des Baux

  This is a combined lecture and hands-on discussion of the properties of cloth. I will discuss the differences in fiber, structure, and color, finishing techniques, and other properties of cloth that make one piece of cloth more suitable than another for a given use. I will bring examples to demonstrate the differences.

Basic Fingerloop Braids
HL Giraude Benet

  The fingerloop braiding technique was used to create both functional and decorative braids that were used for many purposes in the Middle Ages and beyond. This class will present the basics of how to make fingerloop braid and will cover several braid patterns of five and six loops. No fee for the materials and basic class handout, but copies of Compleat Anachronist #108/Fingerloop Braids will be available for purchase.
 Size limit:  six students

Life Sciences

Ségnat ingen Fháeláin

  No description provided

Early Medieval Gardens, 600-1200CE
Susan Eberly

  A brief overview of what a sampling of primary sources can tell us about early medieval vernacular gardens, tapping such treasures as the plan of St. Gall and the waterworks ground plan of Canterbury; documents that deal with the landscape, such as the English and Anglo-Norman charters, the Domesday Book, and Charlemagne's Capitulare de Villis; medieval herbals – Dioscorides, Pseudo-Apuleius, the Lacnunga, and the Læcbok; word lists like that of Aelfric; and works of medieval gardeners themselves, such as Walafrid Strabo and Henricus Anglicus.

Getting Started with Sourdough
HL Brighid O'Mahuna

  I will lead the class in the preparation and problems associated with making bread from a sourdough starter. Participants will receive everything they need for the two week needed in the growing of a sourdough starter, with live cultures, to use for bread and roll making.

Leather Drinking Vessels
Lord Eric Thorn

  A how to class on making leather mugs and glasses, from cutting the leather to the finshed item and the step inbetween.

Looking at Pots- tips from a potter
Sir Lars Vilhjalmsson
An opportunity to learn from a potter how to evaluate the pots available to prospective buyers. "What makes a good pot good?" Construction methods and firing technologies will be discussed. Period, non-period, and anachronistic, will also be discussed.


SCA Fighting: A non-smelly tutorial
Sir Lars Vilhjalmsson

  A question and answer session for fighters, and non-fighters, about the core physical activity of our system of governance. All levels of experience welcome. Discussion will go where the questions lead it. No armour, or fighting experience required. If your question is about a weapons system, bring your weapon(s). No actual combat will take place.

Straight to the Point
HL William Fletcher of Carbery

  How to straighten wooden arrows for archery:  Each participant may bring one arrow that they would like to check and or straighten.  The arrow must be of wood not bamboo. 

The Book of Drills and Melees
Sir Lars Vilhjalmsson

  An opportunity to review various types of training scenarios and fighting event schemes used to train the Calontir Army in years past. Ideally suited for those wishing to plan fighting events or train small to large armies. Taught by a former Dean of the Calontir War College, author of "the Book."

SCA Culture

Ask a Peer: Triple peer question and answer session
Sir Lars Vilhjalmsson

  An  opportunity to ask one or more triple peers about student/peer relationships, or the process of becoming a peer without a specific mentor. Questions on other subjects will also be welcome, though the quality of answers will vary.

SCA on a Shoestring
Lady Jacqueline de Meux

  Ideas and discussion of how to participate in the modern middle ages without breaking
the bank.

Recruitment and Retention Forum and Networking
HL Vincent de Vere

  Recruitment is vital to the future continuation of our hobby. Retention goes hand in hand with recruitment. The most effective way to have recruitment in your group is not to have it all on the chatelaines shoulders, but something every member is part of. This will be a guided discussion about recruitment and retention techniques and resources as well as networking between those interested in R&R. It is open to the official and the unofficial recruiters in our Society.