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Note: this page is intended primarily for the costumers of the Society for Creative Anachronism, and written

as such; however, hopefully, its usefulness is not limited to them: the same comments and directions are applicable for theatrical costuming and other applications. The translations and directions are by Masha Gedilaghine Holl, and may be printed for personal use. For commercial use, please contact me at [Here].

The patterns and instructions on this page are based on Russkii istoricheskii kostium dlia stseny, Isskustvo: Moscow, 1945, by N. Giliarovskaia [Russian Historical Costume for the Stage ]. The patterns system Giliarovskaia gives work. However, it is highly recommended to prepare a mock-up of the garment from cheap fabric such as muslin before cutting the actual fabric intended for that garment. The basic pattern is intended for people of average height, average girth, and for men rather than women, therefore some measurements will need to be adjusted, such as overall length, sleeve length, etc. I give more extensive directions for the few garments I have actually constructed from these patterns. In general, they will apply to all the garments in the book, but details will vary. These patterns and directions are not complicated, since everything is based on straight lines, and the curves are usually easy to draw. However, because adjustments are necessary and construction details differ from commercial patterns, first-time costumers should seek assistance from experienced costumers. The historical comments to the patterns are by Giliarovskaia. For additional comments on the history of medieval Russian clothing, see section IV.

I. General Directions. In the introduction to the third section of her book (the actual patterns), Giliarovskaia provides the following key: "The drawings of the patterns are made according to a scale system. This is a

system in which the pattern is drawn on the basis of chest measurements. Divide one-half of the chest circumference by 48. The unit in the drawings corresponds to 1/48 of half of the chest circumference. For an average figure (48 cm) the unit may be 1 centimeter. For other sizes, increase or decrease as necessary the measurement of the 1/48 of one-half of the chest circumference. Drawing of the patterns always begins at the vertical line, the top of which is marked with the letter A. Horizontal lines originate from the vertical line, to the right or to the left." (page 64). In other words, measure the chest of the person for whom the garment is intended, and divide by 96 (by 2 then by 48). Theoretically, the system works either in inches or in centimeters, but using centimeters provides more precise measurements. To create a pattern in the size you need, multiply the numbers provided in the master pattern by the personal unit you just obtained (1/96 of the chest circumference). Transfer the pattern to paper (I use banner paper or butcher paper, available in rolls of various widths at craft stores, office supply stores, or even in some grocery stores). Use the edge of the paper for the vertical line and mark the point A from which all vertical measurement will be taken. Then measure and connect the dots following the master pattern. If the garment extends both to the right and to the left of the vertical line, offset it as necessary. Essentially, you will be working from (x,y) coordinates, but from the top (right or left) instead of the bottom. Then create a mock-up in cheap fabric, fit as necessary, and finally transfer to the fabric chosen for the garment. After you try it once, you will realize that it is really a simple and efficient system. And more importantly, a universal one, as it is based on individual measurements rather than arbitrary sizes. Important note: the drawings are not to scale! Do not attempt to enlarge them and print them out! Transfer them to paper following the instructions! What to call all these garments? The names Giliarovskaia gives are usually accurate and documented for the Muscovite (post-Mongol) period. The Kievan period, however, is more of a problem for costumers and linguists alike. The consensus at this times seems to be that the mid-thigh to knee-length shir for men, and the undertunic for women, were both called srachitsa, sorochitsa , or sorochka , and that rubakhacorresponded

instead to "garment". The overtunic, or outer garment, was called svita , not kaftan , which is a later word, of the Muscovite period. The cloak worn over the left shoulder, leaving the sword arm free, was called the korzno , and it was a distinguishing garment of the Rurikid princes. The fur coat, sewn with the fur to the inside and covered with fine cloth on the outside, was called, as it would today, shuba .Shapka was a man's hat, kokoshnik ,kika were women's headdresses (the names may refer to different types of headdresses, but I am not sure which). The veil was called povoi .

II. Patterns with directions.

1. Basic Shirt/Undertunic (Sorochka).

Cut 4 of each piece; the sleeve can be cut on the fold: place top horizontal line on fold and cut 2. The back of the shirt may also be cut on the fold: place vertical A on the fold and cut 1 Shirt Body; the same can be done with the front of the shirt if it is to be a pulled-over garment rather than a buttoned shirt. For additional comments, see below. Check sleeve length and overall length: this is best done as the pattern is transferred to paper. Do not forget to add seam allowances to your pattern! Alternately, add seam allowances directly on the fabric (I use 1/2" or 3/4" allowances).Transfer pattern to fabric and cut.

To assemble the garment: Sew

two front halves of the shirt body together, repeat with back if necessary. Sew together the two halves of the sleeves (1), if necessary (omit these steps if you cut on the fold). Attach shirt front to shirt back at shoulders -- 1. Attach gusset to gore -- 2.

Attach gore+gusset assembly to sleeve -- 3. Attach completed section II (see pattern) to shirt body -- 4. Sew side seam along sleeve, gusset and gore -- 5. This pattern can be easily modified from a pulled-over to a buttoned shirt: Cut 2 front Shirt Body pieces. Sew together if desired, leaving an opening in front. The neckline of the shirt back can be modified. For an offset shirt opening, cut front piece of Shirt Body on fold. Cut an opening off-center. Modify back neckline as above. Assemble shirt as instructed. A collar can be added to the modified neckline. The pattern produces a shirt that is approximately knee-length, i.e. a men's shirt. To make a women's tunic, lengthen the Shirt Body and the Gusset by extending the vertical lines after transferring the shirt pattern to paper: the resulting tunic will be wider at the bottom than the shirt. Add fullness to the tunic by widening the gores at the bottom.
2. "Kievan" Tunic.

Because of lacunae in Giliarovskaia's drawings, this pattern requires a mock-up before cutting the good fabric. This garment may be made into an over-tunic or into a coat, depending on the fabric used. As a coat, it must have a front opening. As an overtunic, it may be either a pulled-over or a button-front garment. Use shank buttons, preferably clothcovered, and loops, not buttonholes. Loops can be easily made from rattail cording. Calculate Unit as directedabove. Transfer pattern to paper, then to fabric. Do not forget seam allowances: it is recommended to use generous allowances in the mock-up (about 1"). If the pattern is placed on the fold, mark carefully the top of the shoulder (corner A) on the sleeve. To adjust the length of the sleeve, shorten as needed, but keep the size of the top (wider) edge. The bottom edge (narrower edge on the pattern) may be modified as desired to obtain a different shape of the sleeve, although it is recommended to follow the pattern precisely the first time. Cut 2 each of Back and Front, and 4 of Sleeve. Alternately, place vertical A on fold and cut 1 Back, 1 Front, and 2 Sleeves. Sew together 2 Back halves if necessary. Sew together 2 front parts if this is to be a pulled-over garment. Sew together halves of sleeves. Sew Back to Front at shoulders. Attach sleeve to body. This is the difficult part: Giliarovskaia's pattern does not indicate the size of the inset (see 29* on the pattern). Match shoulder seam with top (or seam) of Sleeve. Baste sleeve in place. The top (wider) edge of the sleeve must fit precisely in the inset, turning corners. The bottom seam on the sleeve will meet with the body seam under the arm. Adjust the seam allowances on the body of the garment to fit the

sleeve, not the sleeve itself. Sew side seam along body and under sleeve. Fit and adjust body length. Note that Russian garments never trail on the ground, and usually reach the ankle, or just below. An overtunic often reveals embroidery along the hem of the undertunic: adjust length as desired.

3. Novgorod Shuba (coat).

The pattern is based on a number of representations of saints (and ordinary people in icons) that diverge from the Byzantine standard. Instead of chitons, wraps and capes, the people are shown in coats cut with a short front and a longer back, and long sleeves that reach down almost to the hem.

Judging from the iconographic representations, the coat was usually worn as a cloak, i.e. wrapped around the shoulders and fastened around the neck. However, Giliarovskaias comment is that it could be worn as a cloak, which seems to imply that it could also worn as a coat. According to later illustrations, the sleeves could be worn pushed up and gathered above the wrist, or sewn with slits in the upper part of the sleeve that served as opening for the arms. Note that there the hemline is straight: this way, it will be longer in the back than the front (see illustration). As with other patterns, it is best to make a mock-up garment out of cheap fabric before transferring the measurements to good fabric. It may be necessary to adjust the overall length of the garment and of the sleeves. You may choose to redraw the pattern to the final length while keeping the width of the front suggested by Giliarovskaia, or simply to crop the excess fabric from the bottom (the width of the garment at the hem will be reduced).

The seam of the sleeve should meet with the underarm seam of the body. Adjust the sleeve and the armhole to fit. The sleeve shows two lines near the shoulder seam; they represent trim, not cutting or sewing lines. For the rest, follow the directions for the Kievan Tunic (sewing order, matching seams, etc.).

Links. Masha Holl's Page: my main page. Published stories, announcements, contests. See what I'm up to. Otter Creations Web Services: The creator of my websites. Website and language services. Creation, editing, workshops, and more. Essays on Russian History. A page I maintain. It contains interesting links to Russian History sites. Russian Folk Tales. Another of my pages. Annotated translations of Russian folk tales and Russian folklore links. Slavic Interest Group: the SIG is an informal group composed of members of the Society for Creative Anachronism interested in the study of Russian, other Slavic, and East- and Central-European cultures. Russian Notes: A daily compendium of Russian news. Life and politics in Russia and the former Soviet Union.

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Maria Gedilaghine Holl, 1998. The patterns on this page are my drawings, based on those in Giliarovskaia's book. All other graphics are mine. Permission is granted to copy them for personal use. For commercial use, please contact me:

[Here] . If you use any of the graphics on this page, please indicate the author: Maria Gedilaghine Holl, and the URL of this page.

Basic Clothing Patterns for Medieval Women


ALL PATTERNS - BASIC EAS T-T!NIC - EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ WI%E SLEE#ES - #ER EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ #ER WI%E SLEE#E BASIC LACE% or !NLACE% T-T!NIC - &ITTE% ME%IE#AL 'IRTLE - S!RC"TES - $""%S - $"SE

Basic Laced or !nlaced T-T(nic


A basic, laced or unlaced T-tunic early medieval gown. This is another one of the easiest gowns to make and it can be made from expensive fabrics for the upper classes or for feasts and banquets. It hangs like a sack in a very unattractive manner until the belt is on, when it drapes much nicer. It can be made in one solid colour or in two colours as shown for a more upper-class look. It can be made with gores the triangle pieces! which make the bottom part of the gown more voluminous and use up the fabric scraps, or without. If you"re not a re-enactor and are #ust using this pattern for stallholder clothing or for banquets, you can cut the sleeves all in one hit. This gives you a total of nine seams to make the entire dress. That"s it. $ine seams. %ou can lace the front, or the back if you want a fitted gown or leave it a little roomier and pull it on over the head with no lacing at all.

$o) it goes together


- &rint the pattern below on A' paper. - The pattern will take up half the page. - (ut the other half the page off and throw it away. - $ow you have your long, skinny piece of fabric. - )old it in half lengthwise on the dotted line. - The heavy black lines are where you cut. - *hen you have finished cutting, unfold your paper. - Assemble the front and back big pieces so they look like this- the long straight pieces are the front and back seams. - )old the sleeves pieces along the dotted line and tape to the shoulders at the top.

The front
- &lace your small gores at the sides of the front of the dress. - +se some sticky tape to tape them in place to remind you where to sew them. - ,ecide if you want to lace the front. If not, sticky tape the seam closed to remind you to sew it. - If you are lacing at the front, sticky tape the lower part of the dress from the hips down.

The *ac+
- ,ecide if you are lacing at the back. If you are, leave the back seam open at the top. - The back wide gore goes from the bottom of the hem and up the middle seam. - -ticky tape your gore on to remind you where it goes. - There will be more fabric than you have skirt when it comes time to pin the gores on, so either ad#ust your hem or make the tops of your triangle gores a little less pointy. The gores go to the hips for this one to give a more slender fit through the body which does up with lacing.

,eneral notes
- *hen it"s all cut out of fabric, you will need to ad#ust this to your own body si.e. &ut it on inside out and pin the body area to fit you a little. Allow for your bust to get in and out. %our sleeves taper outwards and you can go all the way to the selvedge of the fabric. - %our lacing holes should be /cm or /.0cm apart. If you make them any wider apart than this, your gown

will gape and pull and look terrible. It"s worth the extra lacing holes to make your dress sit better.

The Pattern C(tting ,(ide


1ight click on your mouse and -A23 A- to your computer or click on the picture and drag to your desktop. &rint on A' paper.

Basic Clothing Patterns for Medieval Women


ALL PATTERNS - BASIC EAS T-T!NIC - EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ WI%E SLEE#ES - #ER EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ #ER WI%E SLEE#E BASIC LACE% or !NLACE% T-T!NIC - &ITTE% ME%IE#AL 'IRTLE - S!RC"TES - $""%S - $"SE

Eas- "ver T(nic )ith Wide Sleeves


A 4asic T-tunic 5vergown for early medieval periods. This is possibly one of the easiest gowns to make and it can be made from expensive fabrics for the upper classes or for feasts and banquets. It hangs like a sack in a very unattractive manner until the belt is on, when it drapes much nicer. This one is made with a centre seam instead of a fold for a particoloured gown and no gores to show what results can be achieved with a very basic pattern. It can be made with gores the triangle pieces! which make the bottom part of the gown more voluminous and use up the fabric scraps, or without. If you"re not a re-enactor and are #ust using this pattern for stallholder clothing or for banquets, you can cut the sleeves all in one hit, meaning if you don"t have gores, you have two side seams to make the entire dress. That"s it. Two seams. It is an overgown, so you need a gown with fitted sleeves underneath as a 6ady never showed her bare arms. It can be slightly shorter than the undergown to show off the colour of the gown underneath. The large pattern below is a 7+I,3 5$6%, to show how your pieces will go together. The idea is that you can print one out on an A' piece of paper and cut it out of paper to make a little mini-gown. This will help you see how it goes together and to avoid cutting fabric the wrong way.

$o) it goes together


- &rint the pattern below on A' paper. - The pattern will take up half the page. - (ut the other half the page off and throw it away. - $ow you have your long, skinny piece of fabric. - )old it in half lengthwise on the dotted line. - )old it again on the dotted line where the head hole goes. - The heavy black lines are where you cut. - *hen you have finished cutting, unfold your paper. - )old it across the shoulders so it looks like a dress. - That"s it for the basic dress. %ou would sew from the sleeve, around the underarm, down the sides of the body and down the skirt to the hem. - If you want to use the extra gores to make the skirt fuller, turn them around and they go like this at right!. - +se some sticky tape to tape them in place to remind you where to sew them. - There will be more fabric than you have skirt when it comes time to pin them on, so either ad#ust your hem or make the tops of your triangle gores a little less pointy. The gores go to the waist for this one, so the gown can hang in folds from the belt. - *hen it"s all cut out of fabric, you will need to ad#ust this to your own body si.e. &ut it on inside out and pin the body area to fit you a little. Allow for your bust to get in and out. %our sleeves taper outwards and you can go all the way to the selvedge of the fabric.

The Pattern C(tting ,(ide


1ight click on your mouse and -A23 A- to your computer or click on the picture and drag to your desktop. &rint on A' paper.

Basic Clothing Patterns for Medieval Women


ALL PATTERNS - BASIC EAS T-T!NIC - EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ WI%E SLEE#ES - #ER EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ #ER WI%E SLEE#E BASIC LACE% or !NLACE% T-T!NIC - &ITTE% ME%IE#AL 'IRTLE - S!RC"TES - $""%S - $"SE

Basic T-t(nic. !ndert(nic or "vert(nic


The 4asic T-tunic for early $orman medieval gown or for 2iking T-tunic. This is possibly one of the easiest gowns to make, and it looks nice made in a nice colour with embroidered bands at the neck and sleeves and worn with a coloured belt and hood. It hangs like a sack in a very unattractive manner until the belt is on, when it drapes much nicer. If you pick a bright blue or green it is very lovely8 It can be made with gores the triangle pieces! which make the bottom part of the gown more voluminous and use up the fabric scraps, or without. If you"re not a re-enactor and are #ust using this pattern for stallholder clothing, you can cut the sleeves all in one hit, meaning if you don"t have gores, you have two side seams to make the entire dress. That"s it. Two seams. It also makes a nice linen shift or undergown. The large pattern below is a 7+I,3 5$6%, to show how your pieces will go together. The idea is that you can print one out on an A' piece of paper and cut it out of paper to make a little mini-gown. This will help you see how it goes together and to avoid cutting fabric the wrong way.

$o) it goes together


- &rint the pattern below on A' paper. - The pattern will take up half the page. - (ut the other half the page off and throw it away. - $ow you have your long, skinny piece of fabric. - )old it in half lengthwise on the dotted line. - )old it again on the dotted line where the head hole goes. - The heavy black lines are where you cut. - *hen you have finished cutting, unfold your paper. - )old it across the shoulders so it looks like a dress. - That"s it for the basic dress. %ou would sew from the sleeve, around the underarm, down the sides of the body and down the skirt to the hem. - If you want to use the extra gores to make the skirt fuller, turn them around and they go like this at right!. - +se some sticky tape to tape them in place to remind you where to sew them. - There will be more fabric than you have skirt when it comes time to pin them on, so either ad#ust your hem or make the tops of your triangle gores a little less pointy. The gores go to the waist for this one, so the gown can hang in folds from the belt. - *hen it"s all cut out of fabric, you will need to ad#ust this to your own body si.e. &ut it on inside out and pin the body area to fit you a little. Allow for your bust to get in and out. %ou can leave your sleeve holes straight, but this pattern works well with the sleeve tapered from the elbow to the wrist which leaves plenty of room for movement around the shoulders. &erfect for busy activity.

The Pattern C(tting ,(ide


1ight click on your mouse and -A23 A- to your computer or click on the picture and drag to your desktop. &rint on A' paper.

Basic Clothing Patterns for Medieval Women


ALL PATTERNS - BASIC EAS T-T!NIC - EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ WI%E SLEE#ES - #ER EAS "#ERT!NIC WIT$ #ER WI%E SLEE#E BASIC LACE% or !NLACE% T-T!NIC - &ITTE% ME%IE#AL 'IRTLE - S!RC"TES - $""%S - $"SE

#er- Eas- "ver T(nic )ith #er- Wide Sleeves


A 4asic 5vergown with very wide sleeves. This is another one of the easiest gowns to make and it can be made from expensive fabrics for the upper classes or for feasts and banquets. It hangs like a sack in a very unattractive manner until the belt is on, when it drapes much nicer. If you"re not a re-enactor and are #ust using this pattern for stallholder clothing or for banquets, you can cut the sleeves all in one hit, meaning you have two side seams to make the entire dress. That"s it. Two seams. It is an overgown, so you need a gown with fitted sleeves underneath as a 6ady never showed her bare arms. %ou may line your sleeves in a contrasting colour for a showy effect. It is an overgown, so you need a gown with fitted sleeves underneath as a 6ady never showed her bare arms.

$o) it goes together


- &rint the pattern below on A' paper. - The pattern will take up half the page. - (ut the other half the page off and throw it away. - $ow you have your long, skinny piece of fabric. - )old it in half lengthwise on the dotted line. - )old it again on the dotted line where the head hole goes. - The heavy black lines are where you cut. - *hen you have finished cutting, unfold your paper. - )old it across the shoulders so it looks like a dress. - That"s it for the basic dress. %ou would sew from the sleeve, around the underarm, down the sides of the body and down the skirt to the hem. - *hen it"s all cut out of fabric, you will need to ad#ust this to your own body si.e. &ut it on inside out and pin the body area to fit you a little. Allow for your bust to get in and out. %our sleeves taper outwards and you can go all the way to the selvedge of the fabric. - %ou can line the sleeves from a contrasting colour if you like. It"s best to cut the fabric by using the sleeves you"ve #ust cut as a pattern.

The Pattern C(tting ,(ide


1ight click on your mouse and -A23 A- to your computer or click on the picture and drag to your desktop. &rint on A' paper.