The Medieval Tailor The Medieval Tailor

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The Fourteenth Century

These pictures show a selection of my work from the past twenty years. As far as possible I have only featured individuals who have given their informed consent; if you appear here and would rather not, please contact me to have the picture removed.

The ‘Tailoring revolution of 1340’ was the beginning of truly fitted clothing. Fit was taken to its extreme (at least for men), before the inevitable fashion swing towards the unisex gown.

The High Medieval cote and surcote developed into a fashionable suit of interchangeable garments — if you could afford it. Buttons replaced sewing up the cote sleeves.

Woman in a grey dress sewing by a window.

The civilian doublet was the first truly shaped and fitted body garment; the skimpy outer garment is nowadays known as a cotehardie. The hood is high fashion.

A close fitted 14th C doublet

The fit evolved as tailors developed their methods and patterns. The hose weren't made for this wearer, though — and it shows.

Man in a bright blue doublet and badly fitting hoes.

Fit requires fastening, and buttons became a fashion statement.

Buttoned sleeve of a blue doublet with yellow sopts.

Women's clothing became more shaped too, but an outer layer was usual. Buttoned gowns are often seen on brasses in the 1370s and 80s.

Woman in a black dress and elaborate horned viel.

Unmarried girls had something a bit more daring. The sparkly silk caul is the beginning of a long line of preposterous headgear.

Blue and yellow silk hat.

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