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Looking for Houppelande Pattern advice

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  • Carrie McGinnis
    Greetings! I have some lovely fabric that I would like to make into a houpe for myself. I have found several examples of a V-neck houpe with the more
    Message 1 of 7 , Jun 24, 2008
      Greetings!

      I have some lovely fabric that I would like to make into a houpe for
      myself. I have found several examples of a V-neck houpe with the more
      close-fitting sleeves that I like. I've started looking for patterns,
      and the ones I'm able to find don't really seem like they could have
      been made the way they're shown/drawn/described. Specifically, I was
      under the impression that early looms didn't make fabric quite that
      wide and I'm concerned about the drape if the piecing is off. Does
      anyone know if there are any surviving houppelandes and where I might
      find that information?

      --
      YIS,

      Milisandia verch Watkyn
      ________________________________
      "God does not play dice with the universe: He plays an ineffable game
      of His own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of
      any of the other players [i.e. everybody], to being involved in an
      obscure and complex variant of poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank
      cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer who won't tell you the
      rules, and who smiles all the time."
      --Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens
    • Kareina Talvi Tytär
      ... I can t help you with the main question, but I can point out that early looms were quite wide--specifically the warp-weighted loom. However, by as
      Message 2 of 7 , Jun 24, 2008
        Milisandia verch Watkyn wrote:
        >[snip] Specifically, I was
        >under the impression that early looms didn't make fabric quite that
        >wide

        I can't help you with the main question, but I can point out that
        "early" looms were quite wide--specifically the warp-weighted
        loom. However, by as late-period as the houppelande, I think "they"
        had switched to the much narrower, heddle based looms. Some details
        on the topic of looms and fabric width available in Hoffmann's 1974
        book "The warp-weighted loom : studies in the history and technology
        of an ancient implement" published by Robin and Russ
        Handweavers. ISBN 8200080943.


        http://kareina.livejournal.com/
      • Elisabeth de Besancon
        ... If you go to the yahoo group aotc (what happened when the age of the cotehardie group got too much spam), there is a great article called Alternative
        Message 3 of 7 , Jun 25, 2008
          >
          > I have some lovely fabric that I would like to make into a houpe for
          > myself.

          If you go to the yahoo group "aotc" (what happened when the "age of
          the cotehardie" group got too much spam), there is a great article
          called "Alternative Houppelande Construction" in the files. I like
          Cynthia Virtue's theory, but I think this construction is more
          plausible for some times/places.

          The only extant houppelande that I know of (and I just found out
          about it recently) is in a church in Prague. There was a post about
          it on either this list or aotc in November, I think (it was shortly
          before our Yule Feast).

          I've made several houppelandes, and I've had to piece most of them to
          get them as long and as full as I wanted. Because of the way the
          fabric falls, you really have to be looking to see the piecing. I'm
          going to make the Arnolfini houppelande as soon as I process my wool,
          and I'll have to sew lengths together as my loom only allowed me to
          weave about 36" widths.

          Pax,
          Elisa
        • Carrie McGinnis
          Thank you very much to everyone! This has all been extremely helpful information. I did go to the Yahoo Groups site for both this list and aotc. I did a search
          Message 4 of 7 , Jun 25, 2008
            Thank you very much to everyone! This has all been extremely helpful
            information.

            I did go to the Yahoo Groups site for both this list and aotc. I did a
            search but was unable to find the exitant houppelande. I'll cross post
            to aotc and try searching for it, as well, though. Thanks for the tip!

            --
            YIS,

            Milisandia verch Watkyn
            ________________________________
            "God does not play dice with the universe: He plays an ineffable game
            of His own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of
            any of the other players [i.e. everybody], to being involved in an
            obscure and complex variant of poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank
            cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer who won't tell you the
            rules, and who smiles all the time."
            --Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens
          • Tiffany Brown
            ... I pondered over available fabric widths for a while, and decided my problem with period fabric width was that I was assuming there was one standard width.
            Message 5 of 7 , Jun 26, 2008
              2008/6/25 Kareina Talvi Tytär <kareina@...>:
              > I can't help you with the main question, but I can point out that
              > "early" looms were quite wide--specifically the warp-weighted
              > loom. However, by as late-period as the houppelande, I think "they"
              > had switched to the much narrower, heddle based looms. Some details

              I pondered over available fabric widths for a while, and decided my
              problem with period fabric width was that I was assuming there was one
              standard width. But when I look in modern fabric stores there are
              115cm and 150cm fabrics, and then things like cotton lawn, silk
              embroideries and craft prints in 90cm, and a few fabrics in
              non-standard widths. And then in the furnishing fabrics sections
              there are 150cm and 240cm and a few things in between and occasionally
              something even wider.

              When I realised that there was no reason it wouldn't have been like
              that in period, things started to click. Different widths would have
              been common in different periods for different purposes and reasons.
              So certain widths were available as a standard cloth, but wider
              fabrics could occasionally be found, and were mostly used for
              furnishings (I've read that somewhere in an academic source, but I'm
              not sure where). So when you consider that wider cloth was available,
              you need to consider if it was a furnishing fabric, or if it was a
              rare wider fabric, which just like todya you might have had to
              compromise on colour and pattern in order to use. Me, and most of my
              friends would rather sew an extra piece together to use the really
              lovely fabric, than buy the ordinary fabric that is available in a
              wider width (and might cost more, if it's harder to weave). Also
              there were very complicated brocades (mostly silks) which tended to be
              narrower than normal because it was harder to weave these wider, and
              you could get a more consistent result with a single weaver working an
              arm width wide loom (or occasionally two workers working twice that
              width).

              For each period, I expect different widths would be the common widths
              of available fabric for standard fabrics, upholstery fabrics and fine
              brocades, and these widths would be strongly influenced by what type
              of loom was common (eg narrower early heddles vs warp weighted) , and
              also what fashions were common. (eg if they created a demand for a
              certain width of fabric). Also, loom technology or weaving traditions
              may differ in neighboring countries, and if the fashionable fabric is
              imported, it may be that that makes that kind of fabric a different
              common width from the local fabrics in their common width - eg
              imported silk dresses over local linen chemises.

              A lot of this is conjecture, but it helps me understand better the
              question I should be asking: "What type of width was common for this
              type of fabric in my period?", rather than how wide was possible in my
              period, and I hope it helps a few others. If you can see a flaw in my
              speculation/logic, or know of a good exception to the rule, I'd love
              to hear it. please discuss away.

              Teffania







              --
              . ___
              {o,o} The blog you are not looking for
              |)__) is definitely not at
              -"-"- http://teffania.blogspot.com
            • Lilinah
              This link to a picture of the extant houppelande was posted to the aotc list quite recently. http://www.kostym.cz/Anglicky/1_Originaly/01_Goticke/I_01_26.htm
              Message 6 of 7 , Jun 26, 2008
                This link to a picture of the extant houppelande was posted to the
                aotc list quite recently.
                http://www.kostym.cz/Anglicky/1_Originaly/01_Goticke/I_01_26.htm
                I've been to the site before - they've got a nice selection of
                photos of all sorts of extant garments, but do not always have much
                info about them.
                --
                Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)
                the persona formerly known as Anahita

                My LibraryThing
                http://www.librarything.com/catalog/lilinah
              • Heather Rose Jones
                ... Recently there s been a steady stream of publications on surviving medieval garments held at Prague Castle, including a number of garment types I haven t
                Message 7 of 7 , Jun 26, 2008
                  On Jun 26, 2008, at 11:09 AM, Lilinah wrote:

                  > This link to a picture of the extant houppelande was posted to the
                  > aotc list quite recently.
                  > http://www.kostym.cz/Anglicky/1_Originaly/01_Goticke/I_01_26.htm
                  > I've been to the site before - they've got a nice selection of
                  > photos of all sorts of extant garments, but do not always have much
                  > info about them.

                  Recently there's been a steady stream of publications on surviving
                  medieval garments held at Prague Castle, including a number of
                  garment types I haven't seen surviving in Western Europe (that is,
                  types that were worn in the west, but where no examples seem to have
                  survived there). It's quite delightful. I keep thinking that my
                  wish-I-could tour around Europe collecting information on surviving
                  garments definitely needs to include Prague. (And, hey, I can still
                  remember at least a dozen words of Czech.)

                  Tangwystyl
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