Green Viking Hood

Green linen viking hood, by Sidney Eileen; It is linen, entirely hand sewn and embroidered with linen thread. Stitches used are herringbone stitch to finish the seam allowances and bottom hem, running stitch for assembly and accent around the hood opening, feather stitch for decorative reenforcement of the seams, and Oseberg rings for decoration on the hem.

Green linen viking hood

The finished green viking hood is linen, entirely hand sewn and embroidered with linen thread. Stitches used are herringbone stitch to finish the seam allowances and bottom hem, running stitch for assembly and accent around the hood opening, feather stitch for decorative reenforcement of the seams, and Oseberg rings for decoration on the hem.

The piecing of the hood is based on the Skjold Harbor hood find, but is adapted for linen and for the style of decoration I chose to use.  As is typical for reenactment, this one is made from two square gores sewn into two long rectangles.  The original was made from three squares of fabric, so the fabric was solid right below the hood opening.  I wanted to be able to fold back the seam allowances for decorative finishing (see below), so it made sense to have a seam there instead.

Green Viking Hood - Gore Detail, by Sidney Eileen. The finished viking hood. It is linen, entirely hand sewn and embroidered with linen thread. Stitches used are herringbone stitch to finish the seam allowances and bottom hem, running stitch for assembly and accent around the hood opening, and feather stitch for decorative reenforcement of the seams.

Green Viking Hood – Gore Detail. This photo shows the inside and outside stitch detail at the tops of the gores.

The hood was assembled with running stitch first, using linen thread pulled from the selvage of the fabric.  Machine-woven fabric typically has much higher quality threads in the selvage so it can feed properly through the machines as it is woven, threads that are very well suited to hand sewing, and already color matched to the body fabric.

I then folded the seam allowances to the outside of the garment and finished them using a tiny herringbone stitch in Londonderry linen thread size 30/3 (medium diameter).

Green Viking Hood - Opening Detail, by Sidney Eileen. The finished viking hood. It is linen, entirely hand sewn and embroidered with linen thread. Stitches used are herringbone stitch to finish the seam allowances and bottom hem, and running stitch for assembly and accent around the hood opening. This photo shows the inside and outside stitch detail along the front edge of the hood opening.

Green Viking Hood – Opening Detail. This photo shows the inside and outside stitch detail along the front edge of the hood opening.

Along the hood opening I finished the edge with a decorative running stitch using the same color of 30/3 thread I also used for feather stitch along the seams.  The feather stitch provided a decorative reinforcement for the seams to prevent stitches from popping.

Green Viking Hood - Hem Detail, by Sidney Eileen. This photo shows the inside and outside of the hem at one of the seams, detailing the the embroidery on both the inside and outside of the garment.

Green Viking Hood – Hem Detail. This photo shows the inside and outside of the hem at one of the seams, detailing the the embroidery on both the inside and outside of the garment.

The bottom hem of the hood is turned to the inside and finished in a quick tiny herrinbone stitch again using thread pulled from the selvage of the fabric.  To cover those stitches, I decoratively embroidered the bottom hem with Oseberg rings.  This embroidery is based on a small piece of wool applique embroidery found in the Oseberg ship burial, and, according to Anne Stine Ingstad in The Textiles in the Oseberg Ship, “This type of small embroidery is known from the graves in Birka, and there too it is placed along the edges of seams and applications.”  If you go check out her article, the section on the ring embroidery is close to the bottom.

The inspiration embroidery is a wool core with wool thread wrapped around it and couching it to the fabric.  For my version I am using linen thread, size 18/3 (large) for the core, and 30/3 (medium) for the wrap.

Green Viking Hood - Hem Corner Detail, by Sidney Eileen; This photo shows the inside and outside of the corner of the hem, detailing the couched stitching and how I navigated the ring embroidery around the corners.

Green Viking Hood – Hem Corner Detail. This photo shows the inside and outside of the corner of the hem, detailing the couched stitching and how I navigated the ring embroidery around the corners.

And for purposes of sharing on social media, here are a couple collage photos suitable for different platforms.

Green linen viking hood, by Sidney Eileen; It is linen, entirely hand sewn and embroidered with linen thread. Stitches used are herringbone stitch to finish the seam allowances and bottom hem, running stitch for assembly and accent around the hood opening, feather stitch for decorative reenforcement of the seams, and Oseberg rings for decoration on the hem.

Green linen viking hood

Green linen viking hood, by Sidney Eileen; It is linen, entirely hand sewn and embroidered with linen thread. Stitches used are herringbone stitch to finish the seam allowances and bottom hem, running stitch for assembly and accent around the hood opening, feather stitch for decorative reenforcement of the seams, and Oseberg rings for decoration on the hem.

Green linen viking hood

 

Project: Green Viking Hood

Green Viking Hood – WIP 1-3

The past couple months I have slowly been plugging away at another Viking hood.  This one is made from linen fabric, hand sewn with linen thread pulled from the selvage of the fabric, and embroidered with linen thread using herringbone stitch, feather stitch, and Osberg rings.  If you follow me on facebook, instagram, or twitter you may have already seen these photos as I took them.

Green Viking Hood - WIP 1, by Sidney Eileen; Made from linen fabric, hand stitched with linen thread. Seams finished with small herringbone stitch in linen thread.

Green linen fabric with linen small herringbone embroidery/seam finish.

I am finishing the seams in a manner very similar to the apron dress I made last year.  The seam allowance is folded over and stitched down using a tiny herringbone stitch in linen thread, and then the center of the seam is reinforced with feather stitch.

Green Viking Hood - WIP 2, by Sidney Eileen; Made from linen fabric, hand stitched with linen thread. Seams finished with small herringbone stitch in linen thread. Hem is in progress, being finished with linen thread in herringbone stitch.

Green linen fabric with linen small herringbone embroidery/seam finish, and herringbone stitch hem finish.

The bottom hem is finished using a rough herringbone stitch using more of the fabric selvage thread.

Green Viking Hood - WIP 3, by Sidney Eileen; Made from linen fabric, hand stitched with linen thread. Seams finished with small herringbone stitch in linen thread, and reinforced with feather stitch. Hem is embroidered with small Osberg rings.

Green linen fabric with linen small herringbone and feather stitch embroidery/seam finish, and the bottom hem embroidered with Osberg rings.

As a finishing touch I am embroidering over the bottom hem stitches using Osberg rings.  This embroidery is based on a small piece of wool applique embroidery found in the Osberg ship burial, and, according to Anne Stine Ingstad in The Textiles in the Osberg Ship, “This type of small embroidery is known from the graves in Birka, and there too it is placed along the edges of seams and applications.”  If you go check out her article, the section on the ring embroidery is close to the bottom.

The inspiration embroidery is a wool core with wool thread wrapped around it and couching it to the fabric.  I am using Londonderry linen thread for all my linen embroidery.  For my version I am using 18/3 (large) for the core, and 30/3 (medium) for the wrap.  In the photo above I am working right to left, but I have since tried working it left to right and found it much easier to accurately size the rings working in the new direction.

This stitch is far more time consuming than I had expected.  Each foot of hem takes about five hours to embroider, and the first few rings were nowhere near as even as the ones in the photo above.

Project: Green Viking Hood

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood – WIP3

After several more days of sewing my Skjolderhamn Hood is finished, so here are the rest of the work in progress images.  My viking hood is entirely hand sewn with linen, using a wool outer and linen lining.  It is based on the viking hood found on a body in the bog at Skjold harbour, and dates to the 11th century.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip18, by Sidney Eileen, After sewing the top of the hood closed, sew the other side of the gore closed, starting at the tip of the gore. Like before, I recommend pinning or basting the hem edge of the seam to prevent shifting of the layers.

After sewing the top of the hood closed, sew the other side of the gore closed, starting at the tip of the gore. Like before, I recommend pinning or basting the hem edge of the seam to prevent shifting of the layers.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip20, by Sidney Eileen - Detail photo of a seam once completed. Seam allowances are contained between the cover and lining.

Detail photo of a seam once completed. Seam allowances are contained between the cover and lining.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip19a, by Sidney Eileen - This is lining side of the hood after all the seams are finished. It still needs hemming, and the face opening needs to be made.

This is lining side of the hood after all the seams are finished. It still needs hemming, and the face opening needs to be made.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip19b, by Sidney Eileen - This is cover side of the hood after all the seams are finished. It still needs hemming, and the face opening needs to be made.

This is cover side of the hood after all the seams are finished. It still needs hemming, and the face opening needs to be made.

Due to the thickness of the wool I chose, and the fact that it is fully lined, self-hemming would have created a very bulky hem.  Instead, I decided to bind the edge in a manner similar to the collar edging for the Viborg shirt.  I say similar because to copy it exactly I would have had to turn the wool and linen edges in towards each other, which was not possible because of the seam stitching.  However, the collar on the Viborg shirt does show using a separate strip of fabric to finish the edge of a garment.

I also felt that a linen bound edge on the face opening would likely be much more comfortable to wear, which in the end was doubly true because of the small size of the hood and closeness of the hood opening around my face.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip21, by Sidney Eileen - I cut several 1.5" wide lengths of the lining linen to use as binding on the hem and hood opening. They are cut on the straight of the fabric grain.

I cut several 1.5″ wide lengths of the lining linen to use as binding on the hem and hood opening. They are cut on the straight of the fabric grain.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip22, by Sidney Eileen - I attached the linen to the hem using a running stitch at a depth of 3/8". The stitch is going through cover and lining.

I attached the linen to the hem on the outside of the hood using a running stitch at a depth of 3/8″. The stitch is going through cover and lining.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip23, by Sidney Eileen - At the corners of the gores, I took a couple small gathers of fabric so there will be enough length of binding at the corner to be able to extend around the outside edge of the hood.

At the corners of the gores, I took a couple small gathers of fabric so there will be enough length of binding at the corner to be able to extend around the outside edge of the hood.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip24, by Sidney Eileen - I evened up the hem in a couple places where it needed it before folding the binding over the edge and whip stitching it to the lining. I took a couple small gathers at the corner so the binding could flow smoothly around the outer edge.

I evened up the hem in a couple places where it needed it before folding the binding over the edge and whip stitching it to the lining. I took a couple small gathers at the corner so the binding could flow smoothly around the outer edge.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip25, by Sidney Eileen - This is a detail photo of the inside and outside of the bound hem at one of the seams.

This is a detail photo of the inside and outside of the bound hem at one of the seams.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip26, by Sidney Eileen - Next is to make the opening for the face. I re-drew the cut line in chalk on the outside of the hood.

Next is to make the opening for the face. I re-drew the cut line in chalk on the outside of the hood.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip27, by Sidney Eileen - I folded the hood perpendicular to the mark, making sure that the lining was smooth and in place underneath the cover. Then I could snip a small hole with scissors, and from there cut the whole opening.

I folded the hood perpendicular to the mark, making sure that the lining was smooth and in place underneath the cover. Then I could snip a small hole with scissors, and from there cut the whole opening.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip28, by Sidney Eileen - The front of the hood after cutting a hole for the face.

The front of the hood after cutting a hole for the face.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip29, by Sidney Eileen - Take a length of the linen binding and running stitch it to the opening of the hood. The stitches should run parallel to the opening, and be exactly the same length as the opening. Leave seam allowance at either end of the strip beyond the stitches.

Take a length of the linen binding and use running stitch to secure it to the opening of the hood. The stitches should run parallel to the opening, and be exactly the same length as the opening. Leave seam allowance at either end of the strip beyond the stitches.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip30, by Sidney Eileen - Fold the seam allowance at the end of the strip back onto the strip.

Fold the seam allowance at the end of the strip back onto the strip.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip31, by Sidney Eileen - Fold the entire strip of linen towards the opening of the hood and stitch the folded edge in place. Be sure to trap any raw edges inside the binding by only stitching through the folded fabric after pushing stray threads inside.

Fold the entire strip of linen towards the opening of the hood and stitch the folded edge in place. Be sure to trap any raw edges inside the binding by only stitching through the folded fabric after pushing stray threads inside.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip32, by Sidney Eileen - Fold over the seam allowance of the long side as you fold the linen binding entirely over the raw edge of the opening.

Fold over the seam allowance of the long side as you fold the linen binding entirely over the raw edge of the opening.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip33, by Sidney Eileen - Whip stitch the short edge of the binding to the lining.

Whip stitch the end of the binding to the lining.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip34, by Sidney Eileen - Whip stitch the long edge of the binding to the lining, and when you get to the far end fold over the seam allowance and stitch down the short side like you did before.

Whip stitch the long edge of the binding to the lining, and when you get to the far end fold over the seam allowance and stitch down the end like you did before.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip35, by Sidney Eileen - Bind both sides so they are even with each other. There will still be a very small spot of raw fabric at the very top and bottom of the opening.

Bind both sides so they are even with each other. There will still be a very small spot of raw fabric at the very top and bottom of the opening.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip36, by Sidney Eileen - There is no mention of stitching at the top and bottom of the opening on the extant hood, but I like to make my garments to last and that little untreated tip of the opening is a risk for tearing and raveling. Therefor I went over the tip with a handful of whip stitches to reinforce the area and ensure it lasts.

There is no mention of stitching at the top and bottom of the opening on the extant hood, but I like to make my garments to last and that little untreated tip of the opening is a risk for tearing and raveling. Therefor I went over the tip with a handful of whip stitches to reinforce the area and ensure it lasts.

One last detail was to make three rows of stitches along the top of the hood like the original, but I stitched the first two in brown linen thread that matched the wool, and the third I stitched in wool thread pulled from the fabric, so they don’t really show up in photos at all.

The first row of running stitches is parallel to the top edge, and about 1/8″ down from the top edge.  It ensures the very top seam stays nice and crisp.  The second row of running stitches is about 1/2″ from the top edge, and I think it exists just to make sure the layers all stay nicely together like in quilting.  The third row of running stitches starts just a bit above the top of the hood opening, and runs at an angle to the back of the hood, ending just a little bit below the second row of stitches.  This angled stitch forces the top front of the hood to sit forward from the face.  The three of them together create a pointed crest along the top of the hood.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - Inglamorous Selfie, by Sidney Eileen - Just a quick bathroom selfie to show the finished hood immediately after finishing it.

Just a quick bathroom selfie to show the finished hood immediately after finishing it.

As a side note, I realized once the opening was cut and I could try it on that it barely fits me.  The opening in the front of the hood is actually too small for me to be able to drop the hood around my shoulders, and if my head were any larger (I have a 22″ head circumference) I would not be able to comfortably wear it, and potentially not be able to get my head through the neck.  I amended the pattern I posted in WIP1 to provide alternative measurements for someone who is not petite, and I fully intend to make the next hood for myself quite a bit larger.  In the meantime, this one is perfect for snowy, icy, windy weather, because it is very warm and also impossible for wind to blow it down.

Nicely modeled photos in the full outfit will follow when I can manage it.

 

Project: Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood

 

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood – WIP2

I have made a lot of progress on the Skjold harbour style Viking hood.  I am making it from a brown wool outer and dark indigo blue linen lining, and hand stitching it using linen threads pulled from the selvage of the lining fabric.  The stitches I am using are taken from the Viborg shirt, a contemporary garment from the same culture group.

Since I am hand stitching it together, it will be easiest to sew if the seam allowances are pressed.  Normally I am working just in linen, which I can press with a fingernail as I sew, but that won’t work with wool.  Instead I am using the iron and ironing board, and have put a vinegar/water solution in the iron to ensure the seam stays folded over nicely.

First step is to prep one of the gores and the slash at the front of the hood.

Press the seam allowances for the lining and cover so that they are facing each other, hiding the seam allowances between the two layers.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip5, by Sidney Eileen, Press the seam allowance of the slit for the gore at the front of the hood. The seam allowance must taper towards the point.

Press the seam allowance of the slit for the gore at the front of the hood. The seam allowance must taper towards the point.

When hand sewing I usually try to keep the seam allowance at the normal width until I am fairly close to the point of the slash.  This means the seam is a normal strength and security along most of its length and won’t require special treatment while sewing by hand.  On a sewing machine it’s usually easiest to just stitch a straight line and backstitch it repeatedly near the point for extra strength.

By waiting to taper until close to the point of the slash, the shape created is slightly rounded, rather than a triangle.  This makes for a stronger gore insertion, but the abrupt widening of the slash does reduce the width added by the gore at the tip of the slash.  In this case it doesn’t matter because the gore point is a right angle, but for a narrower gore it can mean that less width is added at the top of the gore than might be expected.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip6, by Sidney Eileen, The gore slit, with both layers pressed in towards each other.

The gore slit, with both layers pressed in towards each other.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip4, by Sidney Eileen, Press the seam allowance on two adjacent sides of one of the gores.

Press the seam allowance on two adjacent sides of one of the gores. I recommend using a vinegar solution if you are using wool like I did.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip7, by Sidney Eileen, Press the seam allowances of two adjacent sides of a gore. The seam allowances for the lining and cover should be facing each other, hidden from view.

Press the seam allowances of two adjacent sides of a gore. In this photo the folded seam allowances are on the right and bottom.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip8, by Sidney Eileen, Arrange the gore against the main panel, right sides together. The corner of the gore with folded seam allowances on both sides should be just even with the point of the slit. The raw edge of the gore should be even with the bottom edge of the main panel. In this photo the gore is held even with the point of the slit using a safety pin, and the bottom edge is stitched together.

Arrange the gore against the main panel, right sides together. The corner of the gore with folded seam allowances on both sides should be just even with the point of the slit (on the left of the image). The raw edge of the gore should be even with the bottom edge of the main panel (on the right of the image). In this photo the gore is held even with the point of the slit using a safety pin, and the bottom of the seam is stitched together.

I am using a modified whip stitch from the Viborg shirt to sew all the seams of the hood.  The Viborg shirt is likely from the 11th century, like the Skjold harbour hood, and though not from the same site, they are from the same culture group.  I am using this particular stitch because the lining and cover are joined in a single pass using a modified whip stitch where one side of the lining is skipped on each pass. This creates a seam that is very flush, with no visible stitching to the outside of the garment, and a small line of the cover material visible on the inside at the seam.  It is beautifully elegant and efficient, and very practical for the fully lined garment I am creating.  I am stitching with about fourteen stitches per inch.  Only half those stitches are visible along the lining.

Viborg Shirt seam treatment for the side seams of the shirt. Lining and cover are joined in a single pass using a modified whip stitch where one side of the lining is skipped on each pass. This creates a seam that is very flush, with no visible stitching to the outside of the garment, and a small line of the cover material visible on the inside at the seam.

Viborg Shirt seam treatment for the side seams of the shirt. Lining and cover are joined in a single pass using a modified whip stitch where one side of the lining is skipped on each pass. This creates a seam that is very flush, with no visible stitching to the outside of the garment, and a small line of the cover material visible on the inside at the seam.

For detailed information on the Viborg shirt (and more stitch and seam diagrams), please visit Maggie Mulvaney’s translation of Mytte Fentz’s article, An 11th century linen shirt from Viborg.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip9a, by Sidney Eileen, Detail shot of the hand stitch I am using on the seams. It is from the Viborg shirt, and is a modified whip stitch sewing cover and lining together in one pass. On each stitch the closer lining is skipped, while both cover pieces and the far lining are barely caught by the needle.

Detail shot of the hand stitch I am using on the seams. It is from the Viborg shirt, and is a modified whip stitch sewing cover and lining together in one pass. On each stitch the closer lining is skipped, while both cover pieces and the far lining are barely caught by the needle.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip9b, by Sidney Eileen, Detail shot of the hand stitch I am using on the seams. It is from the Viborg shirt, and is a modified whip stitch sewing cover and lining together in one pass. On each stitch the closer lining is skipped, while both cover pieces and the far lining are barely caught by the needle.

Detail shot of the hand stitch I am using on the seams. It is from the Viborg shirt, and is a modified whip stitch sewing cover and lining together in one pass. On each stitch the closer lining is skipped, while both cover pieces and the far lining are barely caught by the needle.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip10, by Sidney Eileen, When you get close to the point of the slit, make the stitches closer together and a bit deeper into the main panel fabric. This will help prevent the seam from pulling free.

When you get close to the point of the slit, make the stitches closer together and a bit deeper into the main panel fabric. This will help prevent the seam from pulling free.  At this point I am probably making about twenty stitches per inch.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip11, by Sidney Eileen, Continue around the point of the slash with close stitches, transitioning to the other side of the gore when you go around the corner.

Continue around the point of the slash with close stitches, transitioning to the other side of the gore when you go around the corner.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip12, by Sidney Eileen, Once around the point of the gore, continue with close, deep stitches until you are far enough from the point that there is enough seam allowance to hold. Then smooth out the rest of the seam and secure the far end to prevent the layers from becoming misaligned while sewing. I used a safety pin.

Once around the point of the gore, continue with close, deep stitches until you are far enough from the point that there is enough seam allowance to hold easily. Then smooth out the rest of the seam and secure the far end to prevent the layers from becoming misaligned while sewing. I used a safety pin.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip13, by Sidney Eileen, The main panel of the hood, lining side up, with the front gore attached.

The main panel of the hood, lining side up, with the front gore attached.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip14, by Sidney Eileen, Press the seam allowance on all remaining raw edges that are to become joined seams. Press the top and sides of the main panel, and two adjoining sides of the remaining gore.

Press the seam allowance on all remaining raw edges that are to become joined seams. Press the top and sides of the main panel, and two adjoining sides of the remaining gore.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip15, by Sidney Eileen, Attach the gore to one side of the main panel, starting at the hem and safety pinning or basting the point of the gore to the main panel.

Attach the gore to one side of the main panel, starting at the hem and safety pinning or basting the point of the gore to the main panel.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip16, by Sidney Eileen, When that side of the gore is secure, pin the back seam of the hood at the very top, smooth out the seam to the point of the gore, and stitch the back seam together at the point of the gore. Continue sewing the back seam up towards the top of the hood.

When that side of the gore is secure, pin the back seam of the hood at the very top, smooth out the seam to the point of the gore, and stitch the back seam together at the point of the gore. Continue sewing the back seam up towards the top of the hood.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood - wip17, by Sidney Eileen, After stitching up the back of the hood, pin or baste together the center front of the top of the hood to prevent misalignment of the layers while stitching. Then sew closed the top of the hood.

After stitching up the back of the hood, pin or baste together the center front of the top of the hood to prevent misalignment of the layers while stitching. Then sew closed the top of the hood.

 

The only construction seams left are the very top of the hood and the other side of the back gore.  After that it needs hemming along the bottom, and the front opening cut and hemmed.

 

Project: Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood

 

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood – WIP1

I have started work on a Viking hood in the style of the Skjold harbour hood find, also known as the Skjolderhamn Hood.  I am basing my piece on the research presented in the Medieval Balticus blog, since I would rather just make something than spend time doing primary research right now.  Besides that, her research seems pretty solid.  The measurements she presents are in cm, so I converted those to inches, rounded up, and added a 1/2″ seam allowance on all sides.  My Viking hood pattern is based on the measurements she gives in her pattern graphic, and in her illustration of the original garment.

Skjold Harbour Viking Hood Pattern, by Sidney Eileen

Skjold Harbour Viking Hood Pattern

The 9.5” slit is for the front opening of the hood. The 11.5” slit is for gore insertion under the chin. The 1.5” length of attached fabric above the gore slit is slightly larger than noted on the original garment, which was about 1/2” in length. The increased length is to allow for differnt heming styles on the hood opening, and to give it increased stability. If you want a smaller connected area, increase the length of the hood opening, NOT the gore slit.  If you increase the length of the gore slit the gores will not fit smoothly into the slit and you will have to shorten your hem.

Most reconstructions I have seen show the body of the hood made with a long rectangle rather than a square.  I think this is partly for simplicity, and partly because it is a more efficient use of wider modern material, reducing the needed yardage to 1/2 yard.  The original square piecing would make more efficient use of a narrower hand-woven fabric, using most of, or the entire width.  If you make your hood using a long rectangle (resulting in no seam along the top of the hood), be sure to join a short section of the hood in the front above the gore and below the opening for the face.  I will mention this again later when I get to that point.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Hood - wip1, by Sidney Eileen, The wool outer fabric is marked and ready to be cut.

The wool outer fabric is marked and ready to be cut.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Hood - wip2, by Sidney Eileen, Basting the lining and outer layers together to prevent bunching or misalignment of the layers while sewing.

Basting the lining and outer layers together to prevent bunching or misalignment of the layers while sewing. The stitches are between 1/4″ and 1/2″ in length, using all-purpose thread since it’s cheap and will be removed later. I used an extra-long quilting needle.

Lined Skjold Harbour Style Hood - wip3, by Sidney Eileen, All the pieces have had the layers basted together and it's ready to start sewing.

All the pieces have had the layers basted together and it’s ready to start sewing.

 

Project: Lined Skjold Harbour Style Viking Hood

 

Medieval Open Hood Pattern

Red Open Hood, by Sidney Eileen - Linen hand stitched and embroidered with linen thread.

Red linen open hood with a linen embroidered scrolling vine pattern, mostly in chain stitch. Entirely hand stitched with linen thread.

This tutorial provides a basic medieval open hood pattern that should result in a hood that fits very much like the one I made for myself.  I give instructions on how to customize the pattern to fit you, and some ideas for simple variations on that pattern.  Historically, it is very likely that open hoods had a very short skirt on them, as those are the only examples I have found in illuminated images, but I made mine with a long skirt so it would better shield me from the Las Vegas sun while remaining cooler to wear and easier to put on than a full veil setup.

There are only two measurements you need for an open hood.  The first is the length, shoulder to shoulder, over the top of the head.  The second is the circumference of the head.

Measurements for a Hood, shoulder to shoulder over the head, and circumference of the head.

Measurements for a Hood, shoulder to shoulder over the head, and circumference of the head.

To get Measurement A:
Take the distance from shoulder to shoulder over the head.
Divide that distance in half.
Add seam allowance once (I recommend 1/2″)

For example, my measurement over the head is 26″.
Divide it in half, which is 13″
Add seam allowance once, for a result of A=13.5″

To get Measurement B:
Take the circumference of the head.
Divide that distance in half.
Add seam allowance twice.
Add one more inch.

For example, the circumference of my head is 22″.
Divide it in half, which is 11″
Add Seam allowance twice, 11+.5+.5=12″
Add one more inch, for B=13″.

Open Medieval Hood Pattern, by Sidney Eileen

Medieval Open Hood Pattern

Creating Your Open Hood Pattern

This pattern will produce an open hood like the one I made for myself.  I made mine with a long skirt specifically so it would be better able to help shield me from sun at hot events, but all the illustrations I’ve seen from the period show open hoods with much shorter skirts, maybe 3″ in length.  If you make it with a short skirt, you don’t need to add a gore.

Draw a horizontal line the length of (B).

To create the folded front area:
On the left side of the (B) line, draw a vertical line the length of (A).
Measure 1″ up from the bottom of that line and make a mark.
Draw a horizontal line 3″ long, from that mark.
From the open end of the 3″ horizontal line, draw a vertical line 1″ long.
Erase the vertical (A) line below the 3″ horizontal line.

To create the back seam area so it follows the curve of the head and neck:
On the right side of the (B) line, draw a vertical line the length of (A).
About half-way down that line, start a gentle curve inward.  The deepest point of that curve should be about even with the 3″ horizontal line, and about 1/2″ away from the vertical line.
Erase the vertical line alongside the curved line.

To create the skirt area:
Draw straight flared lines out from the neck of the pattern.  I made the skirt 8″ long on mine, but you can make yours any length you want.
Draw a curved line to define the skirt.  The base of the curve should be the same distance from the neck area as the length of the outer lines.

To create the gore:
If your skirt is longer than about 4″, you will probably want to add a gore.
Create a slash vertically up the skirt all the way to the neck area.  This slash should be the same length as your skirt.
Create two gores that are the length of the slash, plus seam allowance, on their straight sides.  For my 8″ skirt example, that is 8.5″ per side.
The angle between the two sides should be 90 degrees or slightly more to provide enough room for the skirt to sit loosely over the shoulders.

Optional Liripipe (not shown):
If you want, you can add a liripipe to the hood.  Just sew a long tube, tapering or not, to the top of the back of the hood before stitching together the two halves of the hood.

Note About Seam Allowance
Seam allowance has already been added when calculating (A) and (B), so you do not need to add seam allowance now.

 

Sewing The Open Hood

Sewing your hood is in concept very simple.  You just stitch together the two halves, sew in the gores (if needed), and then hem the whole thing.  It can be more complicated that that, especially if you are hand sewing, lining it, or wanting to do decorative work, but the exact complications will vary depending upon your particular situation.

If you are sewing it on a machine, I have a specific tutorial on How to Insert a Gore into a Slash.  If you are sewing by hand, you will want to use a similar procedure, but using hand stitches.

If you want to sew it by hand, please read through my Hand Sewing Tutorials.  Exactly which stitches you use depend upon what you are comfortable with, and how you want the finished garment to look.  For my own hood I used a running stitch to join the two halves, with a whip stitched seam finish.  The gores were sewn in with running stitch, and finished with a flat felled seam finish folded away from the gores.  The outer edges were finished with a basic whip stitched hem.

Red Open Hood Photos

I wore the open red hood I hand stitched and embroidered to Collegium Caidis, and before we left on the second day I took some photos of myself wearing it.  They have been added to my portfolio, and are also posted here for your convenience if you were wondering exactly how it looked on an actual human being.

Red Open Hood, by Sidney Eileen - Linen hand stitched and embroidered with linen thread.

Red linen open hood with a linen embroidered scrolling vine pattern, mostly in chain stitch. Entirely hand stitched with linen thread.

Red Open Hood, by Sidney Eileen - Linen hand stitched and embroidered with linen thread.

Red linen open hood with a linen embroidered scrolling vine pattern, mostly in chain stitch. Entirely hand stitched with linen thread.

Red Open Hood, by Sidney Eileen - Linen hand stitched and embroidered with linen thread.

Red linen open hood with a linen embroidered scrolling vine pattern, mostly in chain stitch. Entirely hand stitched with linen thread.

Red Open Hood, by Sidney Eileen - Linen hand stitched and embroidered with linen thread.

Red linen open hood with a linen embroidered scrolling vine pattern, mostly in chain stitch. Entirely hand stitched with linen thread.

Red Open Hood, by Sidney Eileen - Linen hand stitched and embroidered with linen thread.

Red linen open hood with a linen embroidered scrolling vine pattern, mostly in chain stitch. Entirely hand stitched with linen thread.

 

Project: Red Open Hood