17th Century Buff Coat: Quickie Update

Just a quickie update. Spent the evening dry rubbing the dark yellow ochre dye powder into my leather for the buff coat replication. I went into more detail into the dye and method here. I tried to use the bare minimal so there’s not a lot of extra powder that’ll go everywhere. I may take a brush to it later to help.

But it’s all done except for the collar — which I have yet to cut out.

Here’s a before and after look.

buffcoat-yellow-ochre

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Rose Tourney Recap & Becoming a Provost

Today was the East Kingdom’s Ladies of the Rose Tournament. I had the pleasure and honor of fighting for Duchess Elisanda of Meridies. The rest of our fencing half of the team consisted of Don Devillin, Uraka, Trian and Scrooby. It was definitely an interesting mix of a fencing team, but a solid squad.

I figured we’d do well in the fencing half of the tourney, but we far surpassed my expectations. We came in second place in fencing and our Rose team was fourth overall. Definitely a good showing. Really proud with how our team did. Everyone seemed to have a lot of fun, and everyone pulled their weight in getting victories. So I’m sure no one left feeling like dead weight (we had none).

Personally, it was a great day. I went undefeated in my bouts, which was comforting and a nice confidence boost since the past few practices have felt frustrating. A lot of it stems from trying to fine tune some techniques against good fighters. A recipe for frustration. So going 10-0 and only losing one limb during the entire run was pretty awesome. Hoping I can continue that trend at K&Q next month.

Also some other exciting news. I officially became provost to Master Donovan (provost is what the East is calling the fencing squires; not sure what other kingdoms are doing). We’ve been discussing it since after I got my OGR at GNEW; figured since today’s event was about camaraderie, courteousness, and pageantry, it was a good event to make it all official.

Panorama

Continue reading Rose Tourney Recap & Becoming a Provost

17th Century buff coat: Getting the right color (test dyes)

Next to the signature raised “ridges” in the buff coat seams that come from the butt-end stitching, the next most noticeable characteristic (and arguably the most noticeable) is that golden brown hue of the leather, as seen below.

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Some extant examples are a little more brown or grey, but this gives you the general idea of the look. This golden brown coloration is a byproduct of the tanning process. Tanners would “oil tan” the leather with lime and scrape the surface to remove the outer layer. This is what gives the buff coat that rough, unfinished look. Cod oil was used in a process called “kicking.” I’ve also read that yellow ochre was used to help get the color. Continue reading 17th Century buff coat: Getting the right color (test dyes)

Caliver vs. Cavalier: What’s the Dif?

In the SCA I have a French cavalier persona. I also started the Carolingian Caliver Company, a baronial fencing unit here in the Boston-area of the East Kingdom.

This has become humorously problematic as the number one mistake/mix up I run into with my fellow SCAdians is that they call the “Carolingian Calivers” the “Carolingian Cavaliers.” The mix up is understandable, though I sometimes wonder if people think I’m misspelling my fencing unit’s name when I write “Calivers.”

Regardless,  I figure I’d do a quick post to explain the difference between the two. Most people I run into know what a cavalier is, but are fuzzy about what a caliver is.

But because just because they’re spelled similarly, they’re very different things. Continue reading Caliver vs. Cavalier: What’s the Dif?

Researching swords, gonnes and garb during the 16th and 17th Centuries.