Viking costume reproductions

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular  sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline.

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline with slit front.

Since there haven’t been very many textile fragments found in Iceland of Viking Age clothing, I am including some of the re-creations from the “hands on” room at the Iceland National Museum in Reykjavik.  This was kind of a cool room, obviously geared largely towards children.  They included Viking Age clothing, Medieval Iceland clothing, and then examples of the Iceland historic national dress as well to dress up in and take photos.  They also had games, a saddle, and other things.

I took photos of a few items of clothing that appeared to be Viking Age reproductions – however none of it was tagged to indicate what kind of examples inspired the garments…

Purple under gown

The first is this purple dress as shown above. It has a center front two-piece gore (with a seam down the center) which is repeated on the back as well. It also has a two-piece gore on each side seam, adding extra flare to the hem. The neckline is rounded with a slit, and the neckline is faced with a narrow band of self-fabric.  The sleeves are rectangular, and sewn on with a straight seam.  The neckline is top-stitched with a hand-sewn running stitch.

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular  sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline.

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline with slit.

The sleeves are just rectangles.

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular  sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline.

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline with slit.

Another view of the center gore – this time the center back. (Another two-piece gore)

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular  sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline.

Reproduction dress with center front two-part gores, two-part side seam gores, and rectangular sewn-on sleeves, rounded neckline with slit.

A view of the side seam gores.

Apron dress

Purple reproduction dress under a tabard-style apron with sewn-on shoulder straps

Purple reproduction dress under a tabard-style apron with sewn-on shoulder straps

The next garment I photographed is this light grey apron dress. They chose a tabard-style apron (with no side seams or closures) which has sewn-on shoulder straps (rather than attaching with brooches), and trim decorating the top and bottom of the front.

I am curious about why they chose to include this garment like this. In my research thus far there doesn’t seem to be any support from wide, sewn-on straps, nor any evidence for bottom trim on the hem of the apron dress.  (This is why the length is so subject to speculation.) Additionally, in my reading there has been a lot of criticism of the sideless, tabard-style apron dress.

Purple T-Tunic

Purple reproduction top with T-shaped seams and shoulder tucks

Purple reproduction top with T-shaped seams and shoulder tucks

This top had interesting tucks at the shoulder, taking in extra material at the shoulder, while letting the extra width remain in the body. It also had a rounded neck, with a very high neckline. I haven’t seen any evidence for this style so far in my research.

Purple reproduction top with T-shaped seams and shoulder tucks

Purple reproduction top with T-shaped seams and shoulder tucks

Another interesting aspect of this top  is the seam placement….

Altered photograph showing off the seam placement on the purple garment

Altered photograph showing off the seam placement on the purple garment

I’ve exaggerated the seams above to make them more visible.  It appears that this is made from three pieces of fabric – one makes up the sleeves, shoulders, and chest, with a hole for the neckline.

The remaining two pieces make up a left side and a right side of the body.

Like the tucks, I haven’t yet found evidence for this construction method, though I find it interesting. It does however remind me of underdress construction from a Finnish discovery. When I have a chance to go over more of my research I might be able to confirm this.

Grey T-Tunic

 

Green/grey reproduction top with T-shaped seams

Green/grey reproduction top with T-shaped seams

The grey tunic is the same as the purple one, but without the shoulder tucks.

National Museum of Iceland
www.nationalmuseum.is
Suðurgata 41, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland
+354 530 2200

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