Italian tunic and surcoat 1338-1340

This outfit is based on this painting by Bernardo Daddi from 1338-1340. I fell in love with the colour.

The combination of a tunic and a slit surcoat from the same fabric is very typical of Italian dress of the late 13th and early 14th century. I have written a blog post about it here.

It is made from the fabric from hell - a rayon/silk satin that moves if somebody breathes in the same hemisphere, This meant that after making the tunic I took a few months break before I had found the energy/courage to cut the surcoat.

The tunic is hand sewn, partly because that's the only way you could do anything with it. The hem had to be re-cut twice because of the changing shape of the fabric and in the end Anna cut it directly while I just stood in the middle of the floor wearing it. It is hemmed with cotton tape, to give it some stability.

The tunic on its own:

By the time I was going to cut the surcoat Anna had read that spray starch could help stabilize slinky fabric, and it really did help. Lining it with thin pink silk also helped.

Around the sleeves, neck and side slit on the surcoat there is sewn gold trim and a row of small yellow rocaille beads. The tunic has gold trim and beads at the sleeves, and a broader bead embroidery around the neck.

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