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Black Sope

The earliest recorded evidence of the production of soap-like materials dates back to around 2800 BC.  A formula for soap consisting of water, alkali, and cassia oil was written on a Babylonian clay tablet around 2200 BC.  The type of fat and lye used will determine the hardness of your soap.  Black soap, derived from […]

Zen 2.0

Warning:  Photos include graphic images of animal hide tanning When my geriatric third-hand goat became infirm I determined it was time to end his suffering.  With the help of his previous owner we humanely euthanized him.  While the meat was not edible due to his age I decided to experiment with curing the hide.  With […]

Sewing Natural Fur by Hand

Sewing with natural fur can be a little intimidating at first but hopefully this quick tutorial will help alleviate some of the anxiety many people feel. Let’s start with the best tools for the job: A sharp knife (I use an x-acto but a box cutter, razor blade, or similar works) Strong thread (I use […]

Persian Royal Clothes

I have been remiss in posting this since it was done almost two years ago but better late than never! In May of 2018 my friends Antonii and Ciar were invested as Prince and Princess of the Mists, Kingdom of the West, and they asked me to be their clothing coordinator for the reign.  In […]

A Fez of Maintenance

One of the things that I love about the SCA is the “Cap of Maintenance” as an article of regalia for those elevated to the Order of the Pelican.  (Here is my recreation of a 14th C. Bycocket Cap of Maintenance: https://historicalheadwear.wordpress.com/2016/08/11/a-14th-century-cap-of-maintenance-bycocket-hat/)  So, when a friend who does a Persian persona asked for a “Fez […]

Items from 10th Century Hedeby (Haithabu)

Hedeby (Old Norse: Heiðabýr; German: Haithabu) was an important stronghold in Viking Age Denmark from the 8th-11th centuries CE and, along with Birka in present-day Sweden, it was the most important Viking trading center in Europe.  During this time it flourished under the control of Danish Vikings. Hedeby is located near the modern city of […]

The Lengberg Castle Bra

Lengberg Castle, located in southwest Austria, was built by the earls of Lechsgemünde beginning in the late 12th century. During an extensive reconstruction in the summer of 2008, a vault filled with waste was found beneath the floorboards of a room on the second story of the castle, where it was likely left during a […]

Medieval Wooden Comb

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a comb is “a flat piece of plastic or metal with a row of thin teeth that is used for making hair neat.” The word originated in Middle English, from Old English camb; akin to Old High German kamb comb, Greek gomphos tooth and the first known use of the […]

A 14th Century Cap of Maintenance (Bycocket Hat)

At the beginning of the 14th Century the bycocket (byecocket, bycoket, and many other variations in English as well as “chapeau a bec” in French) came into fashion. This is a hat worn by both men and women, often while riding, hunting, or hawking. The hat is made with a tall crown that has an […]