>>I'm looking for a source for some authentic trim, if such a place exists.
>>I'm looking for something appropriate for 12th Century Irish, or even
and Mary answered:
>Trim per se is not the appropriate decoration. Through virtually all of
>our period, including the one you cite, embroidery was done directly onto
>the garment in question. Passementerie is a poor second choice.
Actually, that's not quite true. I can't say anything about Irish fashions, but my primary
research focus is 12th century Norman and French fashions. During the 12th century,
tabletweaving was a fashionable and highly developed craft, utilizing (among and for
the nobility) silk threads, gold and silver brocading, and even embroidery on the bands
to bring out details. Pieces have been found attached to the remains of garments from
the period, and the trims are exquisite! The bands we see on statues and in
illuminations could quite plausibly also be tabletweaving (same general look as the
extant pieces, but usually with less detail) and are definitely used as _trim_.
I've been sketching out patterns I find in my research, and really need to get them up
on my website in the near future. There are quite a few geometrics: lattices, diamonds,
diagonals, "X's in boxes", and chevrons. There are also quite a few circles, ovals,
lemons, leaves, fleurs-de-lis, and half-quatrefoils.
If you're not ready to take up tabletweaving, I would suggest you visit my favourite trim
merchant, Calontir Trim <www.calontirtrim.com>. All the "good substitutes" I've found
came from him.
Even if one was doing embroidery instead of tabletweaving (or other narrow woven
works), there is plenty of documentation out there for the embroidery being done onto a
second piece of fabric that is later attached to the garment fabric. We just don't know
whether that was a case of choosing the layered approach or if the embroidered edge
was cut off an old garment that had originally been made with the embroidery on the
fabric of the garment itself. In any case, you won't go wrong doing your embroidery on
a band of fabric that you apply to your garment later. And since the backs of your
stitching will be enclosed, the work will age better.
Honourable Lady Arianne de Chateaumichel
Shire of Starhaven,
Kingdom of Trimaris
On the web at <http://www.chateau-michel.org