I was invited to an Elizabethan event by the fantastic Black Knight Historical (http://www.blackknighthistorical.co.uk/) which meant that a whole new Tudor kit was needed. With much help from my ever patient Mum, we made a grey over gown, that was trimmed with fur at the bottom. In hind sight, making said over gown out of very thick wool was a bit of a warm experience shall we say!! My favourite part about making this new kit though, was actually getting to make some blackwork items for myself and getting to wear them :D!!! Before now all the blackwork I had been producing had been as commissions for other people, so I always had to wave goodbye to the pretty embroidery. Until now!! I was working on the embroidery for the best part of 2 weeks:
Coif - 3.5 days
Partlet - 5 days
Shift - 2 days
Overgown - 1 week!!
The coif was a total pain, mainly due to a mistake in the measurements, meaning that initially it was too small for my head. A lot of unpicking later, restarted with the right measurements and all went well. The coif is based on one I found online (I forget where) and just totally fell in love with. Some of the flower patterns in the diamonds are taken from the Warwick Shirt. (http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/web/corporate/pages.nsf/links/aa47f702d5996adc80257149002da95e) I used a pattern from the Tudor Tailor for the coif. (http://www.tudortailor.com/) The coif also has some pearls sewn into the small diamonds, to make it look that bit posher.
The partlet has all be handsewn. I found the pattern for the collar on the Blackwork Archives. This website really is amazing and has some great patterns on it :) (http://www.blackworkarchives.com/)
The collar was actually pretty easy to do, and the pattern seemed to appear really quickly. For the detailing down the front of the partlet I used the line running through the middle of the flowers to tie it all together. The same pattern is used across the front of the shift, and around the cuffs.
All the blackwork was done using silk from The Silk Mill. I have to say this thread is a joy to work with! (http://www.thesilkmill.com/)
I really enjoyed making the whole kit, as well as having great fun at the event, where I was doing blackwork displays. It was lovely to finally get to wear some of my own embroidery at last :) Here's a shot from the day of the event, in full kit with my embroidery frame working on the second cuff for my next commission!
There are more detailed shots of everything in this blog over in the gallery section of my website - www.embroideryemporium.co.uk :)