A Challenge Met

Just a quick peek here at my project for the House Strangewaye’s Challenge that ran from April through the end of this month (and a bit beyond, I’m hearing). It’s a Kermit the Frog inspired 14th century wool hood with embroidered details and a tablet woven edge. I had so much fun dreaming about what to do with this one. In the end I settled on this project, as I also needed a green hood for the Foresters Guild.

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Curule Seat

Chairs have long been on my wish list for my kit. I’ve spent years looking at pictures of extant examples and images in manuscripts, pouring over blogs and examining what other people have made. I wanted to make something based on early examples that would be easily portable. When it became clear that I would need to bring a chair to my apprentice sister’s elevation ceremony, I decided that rather than bring one of our modern camp chairs, I would finally dive in and make something more period.

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Award of Arms: Adam De Prunelle

Some months ago I noticed a post on a Facebook group showing a garment fashioned by another member. This garment was a fantastic interpretation of one shown in a period manuscript, and was so striking that it stuck in my memory. So when I received a scribal assignment for an Award of Arms, I was thrilled to learn that it would be for this talented craftsperson.

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Making Roman Oil Lamps

A video showing how to use these lamps can be found here.

The objective of this project was to start learning how to make molds and build Roman style clay oil lamps. Rather than a study of period lamps, this article offers a description of the process I used to make them.

I began by studying images of historical lamps to determine the dimensions, proportions, and style of nozzle that I wanted my lamp to have. Using this information I sketched paper patterns of the top and profile, making sure to enlarge the patterns to allow for shrinkage of the clay during drying and firing. From these drawings I sculpted a solid clay version of the lamp, without holes, which would be the master used to make a mold. The original molds were often made of plaster or fired clay. Although clay molds are more durable, I decided to use plaster as it would be easier to work with and let me start making lamps more quickly.  

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Creating a Pair of Roman Carbatinae

This work is being submitted to the East Kingdom 2021 Laurels’ Challenge: Share your art!

Objective: The objective of this project was to start exploring Roman shoes, and to fashion a pair for myself.  My focus was on drafting a pattern to fit my own feet after studying drawings of finds from Romano-Germany, and then use materials that I had on hand to make a functional pair.

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A Token of Appreciation

In February I came across the East Kingdom Chancellor Minor’s Tyger Camp activity page for kiddos. My daughter was particularly interested in the “Toy Box” category where you could send in a request for a toy from the toy box, but I felt it wasn’t fair to ask for a toy without participating, so posed a challenge to her. We wrote an article for our province’s newsletter about the experience, but suffice to say, she met my challenge, and one of the bribes/things I had offered her was a certificate of completion. After a couple months percolating on what to do, I decided that I wanted to make her something with silly cats. This search led to the Book of Hours, Use of Maastricht (‘The Maastricht Hours’) Stowe MS 17, painted in the Netherlands in the first quarter of the 14th century.

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The Hours of Catherine of Cleves – Something on the Side

For me, part of what makes playing with the Society for Creative Anachronism so much fun are the opportunities to share magical and connective moments with other people. There have been many occasions lately where I’ve wanted to include notes with things I’ve sent out as part of my SCA activities, and not had cards or stationary that are in keeping with the spirit of the group. Ultimately I would love to have a stack of cards with hand painted ornaments on hand for such occasions, and maybe I’ll make that my next personal challenge. But since I haven’t yet done that, and it often feels important to send these things promptly when the moment is right, I decided to be gentle with myself and start painting designs to have printed on notecards.

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Personal Blank Scroll Challenge: The Rothschild Prayerbook

After a brief departure to complete a scroll assignment and then a scribal challenge from my Laurel to play with the Horae (Mary, Queen of Scots prayer book), I turned back to the personal blank scroll challenge I’m working on this winter/spring. After digging into the Bury Bible and Romanesque style painting, Camille had suggested I pick something with pearls. A internet search led me to the Rotschild Prayerbook was painted in Ghent or Bruges between 1505 and 1510 in the workshop of Gerard Horenbout, Simon Bening, and his father Alexander Bening. The miniatures and surrounding boarders are of the “richly varied trompe l’oeil type.” Though I don’t know the folio’s number, the page I found had an amazing, rich red background, and LOTS of pearls. Perfect.

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