Black & red early-period coat – April 2017 HSM

Black wool-blend coat to add to my Viking Age garb kit. This has a red and black twill reverse facing and hand embroidery using pearl cotton.

Black wool-blend coat with red and black trim

While most of my outerwear garments are for my Viking Age costume kit – I realized that this coat could really be for any early period that I might want to do, since the shapes are so similar across different styles.

Once I was finished with my term as Montengarde’s Emerald Rose, I wanted to shift my SCA wardrobe away from so much green, and back to my typical more goth aesthetic. I acquired some black wool-blend twill fabric, some red and black wool-blend twill fabric, and some black and grey wool-blend fabric (with an interesting basket-type of weave) from my former teacher and despite the partially synthetic content, I decided to start there.

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Istanbul: Entari

Completed Istanbul outfit

Completed Istanbul outfit

After starting on the Hirka, the next garment I wanted to make for my late-period Turkish costume was the Entari, described from my overview as:

“Medium-weight A or bell-shaped coat. Fitted to the waist and shaped with side gores with an overlapping front gore. Usually floor-length. Round or v-neck. Closed down the front with small buttons and loops or long frogs. Often depicted unbuttoned from neckline to chest and waist to floor. Most often with wide, elbow-length sleeves, though also shown narrow and wrist-length. Occasionally extremely long maunche-like sleeves with slits. Most often made of silk, lined in cotton. Rarely trimmed, but the inside edge was often faced with silk.”

Since my Hirka was bright orange-pink (shot fabric) lined with coral, I wanted something equally bright for my Entari. I originally planned on using the hot pink silk noil I picked up at the Grandmother’s Fabric Sale in Red Deer, but I didn’t think I had enough of it to accommodate the large side gores as well.

I opted instead to select some hot pink linen that I picked up at a different Grandmother’s Fabric Sale (I think… I might have also got it free from a former teacher). Like the Hirka, I decided to block print this as well with a similar motif.

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Wool Norse coat

Wearing my second Norse-style coat (along with a hat and outfit I'll blog about later!)

Wearing my second Norse-style coat (along with a hat and outfit I’ll blog about later!)

A while back I made a coat/caftan for my Norse costume out of basketweave linen. It was very large, and although it’s wearable, I really wanted to make one out of wool instead, and more fitted.


Fabric 'haul' from the Grandmother's Fabric Sale 2014

Fabric ‘haul’ from the Grandmother’s Fabric Sale 2014

I bought some wool at the last Grandmother’s Fabric Sale (seen on the very bottom of the pile to the left) with the intention of using it for a Norse caftan or coat. It is a pale grey with a dark grey and royal blue Houndstooth plaid. The fabric feels wonderful, but a little burn test suggests that it probably has a small synthetic percentage, which I don’t love, but don’t mind.

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Basketweave linen Viking coat


A coat for my Viking “wardrobe” hadn’t really been on my mind, until I ordered some fabric from – which I had hoped would work for an apron-dress, but when it arrived it was far too heavy to hang correctly. Since I didn’t really have anything else in mind, and the Historical Sew Fortnightly challenge  for early August was for something for “the Great Outdoors” I thought I would try out a Viking coat instead.

Unfortunately, I didn’t finish it in time for the August 15 deadline, so it’s really a late entry!

Since much of what I’ve read suggests that coats would have been made of wool instead of linen, this is already stretching a bit, but if nothing else it will make a good mock-up before making a wool version if I decide to make one…

The fabric is basketweave in navy and black 100% linen. The website suggests that the fabric is just navy, but it’s actually a black and navy weave. (It also comes in ‘maroon’, ‘black’, and ‘multi’, though the fabric is not reorderable, so it may not be available later on..) The website description says that the fabric is:

“This linen fabric is lightweight with a basketweave woven texture and a full-bodied drape. Perfect for dresses, pants, skirts, jackets and even home decor such as window treatments, pillows and tote bags!
Washing Instructions : Dry clean to maintain original texture or machine wash/dry low/remove promptly to soften.”

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