New veil & my very late entry into the Historical Sew Monthly January challenge

I’ve gotten a lot of wear out of the veil I made to go with my Byzantine outfit in January 2016, but I noticed that it had stained lightly with wet, freshly dyed hair… so when I was washing fabric for the fourth version of my horned hennin, I decided to wash up enough linen to cut a new veil as well.

Marking linen for a half-circle veil. This linen is not as sheer or light as my previous veil.

Marking linen for a half-circle veil.

Based on Fabrics-Store’s linen, I’d estimate this around 3-4 oz/yd, though I bought it from a different seller who doesn’t note the weight of the fabric. My previous veil used 2.8 oz/yd linen from Fabrics-Store.

I folded the fabric in half, and marked out 71cm from the centre in an arch to make a quarter-circle on the fold – to make a new half-circle veil (the shape I find attractive and versatile).

My previous veil was entirely hand-hemmed… but I didn’t really feel like spending that kind of time on this one. I ended up doing a stitch, turn and press, turn and press and stitch on it by machine instead.

I did add the same embroidered “L” to one of the corners like I did on my last veil though…

The result is a heavier veil than the other one I have – I think it will work well for styles where I wear it under another hat (like my Byzantine costume) but I don’t think it works well on the soft collapsible horned hennins that I made. So… for that – I’ll be making another 2.8 oz white linen veil instead!

 

The Challenge: January 2020Timetravelling Garments: Create an item that works for more than one historical era, or that can be used for both historical costuming, and modern wear. It could be an apron that could do 1770s or 1860s in a pinch, a shift that can work under many decades of fashion, or a historical cape you also wear everyday, etc.

I am getting to the 2020 Historical Sew Monthly challenges EXTREMELY late, but this project suits this theme, so I’m calling it good. I’ll be able to wear this veil through several different costume projects – my Byzantine and 15th Century costumes specifically.

Material: 100% linen

Pattern: 1/2 circle, marked directly on fabric

Year: generic medieval – suitable for my 11-15th century costuming

Notions: thread

How historically accurate is it? The shape seems to suit many paintings and illuminations. The construction is entirely by sewing machine.

Hours to complete: About 10 minutes to cut, another 45 to hem and embroider.

First worn: not yet

Total cost: The linen was on a great sale for $4.95/yard (USA site plus shipping)  and this veil took just under a meters, but the leftover bits from the half-circle being cut out went into making my fourth version of a horned hennin.

Silk Road garb (Part 9 – Veil)

iPad selfie wearing my hat and veil

iPad selfie wearing my hat and veil

 

I really liked the photo of another costumer wearing her veil with her Propoloma, so made one as well.

Plus.. a veil just seems like something I’ll use for a variety of costumes.

I started with a meter of the linen gauze from fabrics-store.com. This is the 2.8 oz/yard linen, and I really like it. I suspect it will soften up nicely with washing which I think will be nice –however for pressing and sewing, the crispness was very good too.

I looked at Cathrin’s Katafalk page (https://katafalk.wordpress.com/2014/04/17/different-shapes-of-veils/ ) on the different shapes of veils, and thought that this shape was the most flattering.  I also thought that the half-circle veil looked the most similar to the veil the older women were wearing in The Birth of St John the Baptist, which means I could wear it with my Italian costume as well.

About four thread deep double-fold for this hem, secured with a running stitch (and a backstitch about every 5 stitches).

About four thread deep double-fold for this hem, secured with a running stitch (and a backstitch about every 5 stitches).

I cut a 1meter diameter by 70cm radius half-circle, pressed all of the edges with one very narrow fold, and then hand-stitched the next fold in place (folding by hand, not pressing) for a double-fold hem that is about 4 threads in from the edge – a total width of about 1/8th of an inch or 3-4 mm.

Hem on the veil is about 1/8th of an inch or 3-4mm

Hem on the veil is about 1/8th of an inch or 3-4mm

As I’m sure there will be many, many veils at events, and mine could easily be mistaken for another should I take it off, I opted to embroidery a small white “L” (for my last name) in one of the corners. The hand-done satin stitch goes over 2 threads in the weave, and the total “L” is about 8 threads wide.

Since I imagine a LOT of people at events will have 1/2 circle veils, I embroidered an "L" on mine to distinguish it from others, should it ever get misplaced.

Since I imagine a LOT of people at events will have 1/2 circle veils, I embroidered an “L” on mine to distinguish it from others, should it ever get misplaced.

Wearing


I also made two headbands of linen to pin around my head and pin the veil to, for when I’m not wearing the hat over top of it, but want to wear it on it’s own.