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Border reiver women

Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 9:17 pm
by hazyma
Can anyone point me in the direction of pics of Border reiver women's costume?
I know that Tudor would do but is there any evidence of actually what women up here wore during those times - the Victorians romanticised it-I want authentic!!

Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 11:27 pm
by Phil the Grips
Pretty much what everyone else was wearing at the time. There was no real way of distinguishing them from anywhere else in Britain. Maybe they were the equivalent of "rural cousins that wear tweeds" when in town but still serviceably and fashionably dressed.

Ideas here-
http://www.theborderers.info/Photos.html

No arisaids, plaids or anything else similar either!

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 8:42 am
by hazyma
Wow -fantastic site! Thanks so much! Believe it or not the piper that I've been recommended to contact even appears on this site. What a small world we live in. On reflection that is a stupid comment -of course the world of the re enactor is small, it's what makes us so special!!

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:04 am
by hazyma
And now how do I make the costume? I've got the Tudor Tailor , done a corset making workshop and bought the material 3 years ago with EH but I have no idea of patterns etc!!

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:09 am
by red razors
there are patterns in the TT to follow; you just need to scale them up.

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:29 am
by hazyma
But aren't they a bit posh for reiving women?
Honestly I have made dozens of medieval frocks but move me on a 100 years and I go to jelly!!

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:30 am
by Phil the Grips
hazyma wrote:And now how do I make the costume?
get yourself a tailor :)
http://www.deborahloughcostumes.com/

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 10:16 am
by Mick,M
If your at the top end like Jan then you would be as posh as Dumfries , Carlisle, Newcastle or even Edinburgh could supply.
Then lower down the social scale you go, so the lower the posh value, like pix and rae.
but don't fall for the plaid wearing scum trap, border Scots just didn't do it and most riever family's were spread over both sides of the border.

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 10:18 am
by Mad Mab
hazyma wrote:But aren't they a bit posh for reiving women?


The basic kirtle pattern will work well enough as a base. (You can also buy full sized patterns from the Tudor Tailor website). Besides, it depends on what station your aiming for. There were noble women up here (not huge numbers but they did exist.) and Townsfolk would dress differently to those out in the counrtyside. There were merchant's wives and a fair few operating their own businesses.
You can also get patterns for common women's clothing at Reconstructing History and Clothing of the Common Woman (or something like that :oops: ) which comes in 2 parts from the Stuart Press (check which period you're wanting to cover cause there's a range of them) are also helpful in building a wardrobe based on your station.
One of my Winter projects is going to be completely re-vamping my elizabethan wardrobe. Planning is fun!

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 10:25 am
by Phil the Grips
Mad Mab wrote:One of my Winter projects is going to be completely re-vamping my elizabethan wardrobe. Planning is fun!
That's ambitious! My planning consists of "Do I swap my rapier for a basket hilt next season or not?" :)

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 12:08 pm
by Mad Mab
Phil the Grips wrote:
Mad Mab wrote:One of my Winter projects is going to be completely re-vamping my elizabethan wardrobe. Planning is fun!
That's ambitious! My planning consists of "Do I swap my rapier for a basket hilt next season or not?" :)


Nah, not really. I move in fits and starts. (Besides I've got to do something to make a hole in the fabric pile or it's going to develop a life of it's own and chuck me out of the flat! Again!) :shock:

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 4:56 pm
by hazyma
I am actually a Hetherington so I guess I'll have to be a farmer's wife and not as posh as Dumfries etc will allow!

Thanks people for all your suggestions (although I have to confess I have a lovely piece of plaid which I would love to use.....) :wink: [/img]

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 5:27 pm
by Mick,M
nooooooooooooooooooooo! don't do it :lol:

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 5:29 pm
by hazyma
Oh all right then!!As a member of one of the most authentic medieval groups around, i just don't think it is in me! :wink:

Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 11:41 pm
by Mad Mab
Out of curiousity, which period in the border history are you aiming for?

Posted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 8:59 am
by hazyma
To be honest i haven't got that far -I'll probably look to see when the Hetheringtons were at their dasterdliest(!!) and choose around then! As far as costume goes tho, presumably it isn't too important as things moved slowly up here. Is there a shortage in certain periods -is that why you ask? :?:

Posted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:19 am
by Phil the Grips
At the higher end of fashion, with major local ports, diplomatic, trade and military travel to Ireland, the Low Countries, Germany and France etc etc etc there would be no "things moving slowly" due to being "out of the way".

The borders were very much more populated then than they are now and news and fashion would travel just as fast as anywhere else in reasonably densely populated parts of Britain.

I'm assuming you are going for C16th as a baseline though many forget that "reiving" happened in the late C15th(hobilars/prickers) up to the C17th(moss troopers/cravats). It's just that the C16th is the popularised bit and also coolest :)

Posted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:52 pm
by Mad Mab
Phil the Grips wrote:At the higher end of fashion, with major local ports, diplomatic, trade and military travel to Ireland, the Low Countries, Germany and France etc etc etc there would be no "things moving slowly" due to being "out of the way".

The borders were very much more populated then than they are now and news and fashion would travel just as fast as anywhere else in reasonably densely populated parts of Britain.

I'm assuming you are going for C16th as a baseline though many forget that "reiving" happened in the late C15th(hobilars/prickers) up to the C17th(moss troopers/cravats). It's just that the C16th is the popularised bit and also coolest :)


It was happening from the C14th. Huge great scope with some big clothing changes even for the poor.
Phil's right, the borders weren't a quiet backwater. They would probably have been slightly behind London fashion due to distance and, of neccesity, a bit more practical but they wouldn't have moved slowly.

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:35 am
by hazyma
OK. Ignorance exposed and accepted! :oops:
Probably the late C16th then cos earlier would be too similar to my medieval kit and i need to explain to the kids how much fashion changed in the busy Borders! :oops:

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:18 pm
by Mad Mab
Definately recommend the Stuart Press books for getting basic ideas of what you want to do and what sort of woman you want to portray.

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 3:15 pm
by Jim
Is this what a Reiver looks like? :lol: :wink:

Image

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:01 pm
by hazyma
Yep, friday night in jedburgh - they're all out! :twisted:

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 7:08 pm
by Phil the Grips
Looks more like a Morpeth man to me

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:24 pm
by hazyma
Just got back from morpeth and they've all got wellies on tonight - not a plaid in sight!!

Posted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 9:12 am
by Nigel
Phil the Grips wrote:
hazyma wrote:And now how do I make the costume?
get yourself a tailor :)
http://www.deborahloughcostumes.com/


Many thanks as always Phil

Posted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 7:10 pm
by Mad Mab
Phil the Grips wrote:Looks more like a Morpeth man to me


Watch it y.......actually, no, it's a fair comment. :lol: