58466Re: [Authentic_SCA] Summer Garb: Middle Eastern
- Jul 19, 2010Fionnuala wrote:
>Summer garb? I'm an Elizabethan. There's no such thing. Velvets and(sympathetic grin) I was an actor at Ren Faires for a number of
>silk in January....velvets and silk in July. Just hydrate.
years, as merchant class, then as nobility, and it could be over
>Middle Eastern, when I used to indulge with an alternate persona,One shouldn't be freezing in winter in proper Persian clothing.
>froze to death in the winter and was only mildly comfortable in the
>summer in Persian garb. Got too fat and no longer fit into that garb.
Medieval Persians didn't want to be cold any more than we do, and
winters can be quite cold in Persia. One just needs appropriate
layers made of appropriate fabrics. For winter, they layered on qaba
make of wool and often wore fur lined qaba, as well.
>Use natural fibers so you don't die of heat.I agree, and they generally keep one warmer in winter, if one picks
the right fibers.
My personal experience is here in The West Kingdom, where most events
are weekend long camping. It is usually in the 40s at night, spring,
summer, and fall (and it can be in the high 20s at night at the week
long Estrella War in Arizona in February). During the day in The West
it can be in the 50s (even in the summer) to the 110s, depending on
time of year and event location.
My 14th c. Egyptian tunic is linen, and my underlayers (kamis and
sirwal) are also linen. Early on, i had tunics and sirwal made of a
cotton/linen blend, and also of cotton because cotton is historically
accurate for tunics in the Mamluk period. I have found that linen is
much cooler in heat and warmer in cold than cotton, and handles
humidity better than cotton, too. Real linen holds up well to machine
washing and various websites offer it at reasonable prices.
My Persian pirihan is sheer cotton, based on a couple surviving
examples. My outer kaba is dupioni silk lined with dupioni silk. My
inner qaba are often of cotton with appropriate prints lined with
china silk = habotai. They have kept me warm at events at night, and
i am sensitive to cold. I only wear heavy jacquard woven fabrics as
the loose upper layer and often skip that. Even though people then to
call jacquard ''brocade'', it is VERY far from real brocade. Real
brocade would be bearable because, except for the motifs, it is only
plain weave or twill weave and often quite thin. Little *real*
brocade is still woven today, tends to cost around US $1000 per
meter, and is about 36'' wide.
Let me add that different silks in different weaves behave
differently in heat, and i have found that with the addition
humidity, most silks can be *very* uncomfortable, even with cotton
Frankly, i have often been puzzled by the assumption in the SCA that
Middle Eastern clothing is necessarily cooler than European. In much
of North Africa and the Middle East, people wear outer garments made
of wool, even in hot paces. And traditional clothing quite fully
covers males and females, leaving only hands and feet exposed, and -
depending on location, traditions, and gender - neck and face. The
heads of both males and females would also be covered. This makes
sense as this protects the wearer from sunburn and dehydration.
In modern times, however, men and women in the Middle East often wear
polyester and other synthetics, and women's abaya (where they are
worn) are often black and synthetic, guaranteed to be miserably hot
and suffocating in summer and insufficiently warm in winter.
Yet even with this professed desire to wear Middle Eastern clothing,
i see SCAdians wearing all sorts of modern and fantasy garb, such as
the so-called Ghawazee coat with slits up to there! and a wide and
deep upper front window of opportunity, a garment that existed no
earlier than the 1970s (yes, late 20th c.), along with giant poofy
pants which are also not SCA period.
Frankly, early medieval European tunics are just as comfortable as
Middle Eastern and North African tunics and made of the same
materials: linen and wool. So i'm not sure why SCAdians who want
cooler clothing don't shift from later SCA-period European to earlier
European in the summer. I suspect that SCAdians go for ME in the
summer because of: a desire for a change from one's usual garb; a
desire for the ''exotic''; and cultural misunderstandings, such as
looking at and liking 19th c. European Orientalist art, much of which
did not represent reality, but was intentionally erotic, and was
stimulated by or stimulated sex tours by white male Europeans to the
Urtatim [that's err-tah-TEEM]
the persona formerly known as Anahita
info on Near & Middle Eastern garb, medieval Egyptian knitting, and
period feasts and recipes
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