Painavaa asiaa / Weight matters 11


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Tänään asiaa painosta –  ei ihmisten vaan mekkojen!

Useimmiten kesän markkinoilla kävijät sortseissaan kyselevät ymmärrettävästi siitä, miten kuumia keskiaikamekot ovat. Kerta toisensa jälkeen olen vakuuttanut, ettei villamekko ole niin kuuma kuin ensi silmältä luulisi. On ohutta villaa, on hengittävää sataprosenttista villaa ja niin edelleen.

Sen sijaan käyttäjäkokemuksen kannalta keskiaika- ja nykyaikavaatteiden painossa on huomattava ero. Keskiaikaisessa asukokonaisuudessa  – kun lasketaan yhteen  alusmekko = n. 2,5 m (150cm leveää) pellavaa + mekko=n. 3m villaa + päällysmekko=n. 3m villaa + päähine n. 1,5m pellavaa + vyöt ym. , tulee pelkästään näistä – ilman mahdollisen vuorauksen laskemista mukaan – yhteensä noin 10m kangasta. Ja se on aika paljon. Pitäisi joskus punnita paljonko se kaikki painaa.

Painoasia tuli mieleen liittyen harkinnan alla olevaan projektiin. Yllä olevassa kuvassa on vasemmalla vuonna 2008 valmistunut Herjolfsnesin kaavaa mukaillen tehty punainen mekko ja oikealla Moy Bog- mekko vm. 2010. Ensi silmäyksellä niissä ei näytä olevan juuri eroa. Mutta: mekko vasemmalla painaa 1,6 kg kun uudempi kollegansa oikealla painaa vain 700g. Se on siis alle puolet toisen painosta!

Molemmat mekot on tehty suhteellisen samanapaksuisesta villasta. Herjolfsnes- mekossa on enemmän helmaa ja kiiloja, mutta huiman painoeron suurin selittävä tekijä on pellavavuoraus. Painavampi mekko on vuorattu kokonaan ihanan tukevalla (= paksulla) luonnonvärisellä pellavakankaalla, kun Moyn mekkoa ei ole vuorattu ollenkaan, vaan siinä on vain kapeat pellavasuirut nyörityksen ja napituksen vahvikkeina.

Oikeastaan minusta vanhempi punainen mekko on tosi ihana. Mutta olen silti käyttänyt sitä hävettävän vähän. Painon lisäksi alkujaan täsmälleen sopiva pellavavuori on (kuten pellavalla on tapana, toisin kuin villalla) venynyt käytössä. Olen sitä kertaalleen jo lyhentänyt, mutta  nyt se taas pilkistää villahelman alta (näkyy muuten yllä kuvassakin). Se imee maasta kosteutta, joka nousee helmassa ylöspäin. Ja se kosteus viipyy pitkään. Yllä on siis mekko, jossa villa on kuivaa mutta pellavavuori on tuntitolkulla polviin asti nihkeä. Yh.

Olen siis ajatellut huoltaa vanhaa kunnon mekkoa, että saisin sen uudelleen tehokäyttöön. Olen ajatellut karusti napsaista pellavavuoren lyhyemmäksi niin, että se vuoraisi vain mekon yläosan, kuten Margareeta I:n kuuluisassa kultaisessa mekossa. Tavallaan omat kokemukset ovat auttaneet näkemään hienouden siinä ratkaisussa. Vuoraus tuo tukea sinne missä sitä eniten tarvitaan, muttä se on jätetty pois sieltä, missä se ei ole välttämätön.

Millaisia kokemuksia teillä on vaatteiden vuoraamisesta? Oletteko muuten ikinä punninneet keskiaikavaatteitanne?

***

Weight issues! Not with me, but the dresses!

When out and about in medieval clothing, people often ask whether it is super warm. I tell them that wool can be quite comfy and not so warm. But you know, I think the biggest difference in what medieval clothing feels like vs. modern clothes it the weight.

Counting linen underdress + dress + overdress + headdress easily adds up to 10 meters of fabric to ba carried around and that’s quite a lot. I should sometimes weigh how much an entire outfit adds up to.

I started thinking about dresses and weight regarding a project I am considering. In the picture above, you can see two red dresses that look quite much alike. The red dress on the left was made in 2008 and is based on the Herjolfsnes dresses, with some modifications (i.e. lacing and other details).  On the left, there is the Moy Bog gown from 2010. At first, there seems to be very little difference in the two dresses. But the older one weighs 1,6 kilos while the other weighs only 700 grams! The other one is more than double the weight of the Moy bog dress!!

The Herjolfsnes one has more gores and more hem, but the biggest difference to explain the weight is that it is fully lined in fine, sturdy natural colored linen. The Moy Bog one has only thin strips to support the lining and the button holes.

I’ve used the heavier dress fairly little since the newer one was finished. It’s a shame really, since I think it is actually quite lovely. Besides the weight, the linen lining has another unpleasant quality. Due to it’s linen character, it stretches (I’ve adjusted it once already) with use and starts peeking out from under the hem (look closely at the picture and you’ll see it peeking out). The linen also powersucks moisture from the ground, the capillary phenomenon raises it up the fabric and being linen, the moisture stays put. So even once the grass has dried, the dress is still damp up to around my knee on the inside. Yurgh.

I’ve decided to give my faithful old dress a maintenance round so that I woul use it more. I’m thinking about cutting the linen lining off up to approximately around my hips, in the style of the linen lining in queen Margareta’s golden gown. My experience has led me to really appreciate that solution: the lining gives support and sturdiness where it is needed but it’s not hanging around being a bother in areas where it wouldn’t be so necessary.

What do you think? What are your experiences in lining clothes? Have you ever weighed your dresses?

 


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11 thoughts on “Painavaa asiaa / Weight matters

  • Magdalen

    Sattumalta punnitsin laukun (kevyehkörakenteisen putkikassin) viime viikonlopun ruotsinmatkan jälkeen, kun halusin tietää, paljonko laukkuni mahdollisesti saattaisivat painaa ensi kesän lentomatkaa ajatellen. Se painoi noin 12,5 kiloa ja sisälsi yhden pellavalla vuoritetun lyhythihaisen ja vajaahelmaisen mekon, kaksi villaista vuorittamatonta mekkoa, yhden villalla vuoritetun villamekon, BB:n, yhdet renessanssihousut (ei omat… mutta ovat aika painavat, koska pellavakerroksia on monta), asusteita kuten kengät, huntuja, sukkia yms. pikkusälää, ja perussetin ruokailuvälineitä.

  • Maria Neijman

    Hi!
    I’ve totally skipped linen as lining in my clothes. When lining, I prefer to use a thin wool. Except for buttonhole lining, where I prefer linen. Why? I always have difficulties with the two different materials behave diffrently and that linen sucks up sweat and moist and get me cold that way. But also, when seeing pictures of clothes with lining, it’s rarly in a colour that looks like linen. It’s more common with green, blue and so on.

    My underdresses are always made I a length that are approx 15 cm under my knees.

    Lovely dresses by the way!
    /maria

    • Elina

      I definately agree. I have a dress that is lined in wool and that is great, no problem really. I like the partial linen lining in tight dresses where the wool needs support, but that’s mainly in the torso. I’m trying to remember why I originally made a full lining – probably because everyone is always saying how difficult it is and that just really tempted me to try.

      My underdresses are about calf-length so they don’t suck up mud. I have been inspired by you to cut some more off, since also less hem=less weight in the underlayer!

  • Artemisia

    Yes, I have a 1750’s dress with natural linen for the lining, and after I washed it it stretched! I have no solution for that problem, but for my medieval dresses I usually don’t line it at all, or turn the lining into the underdress. (The lining is attached to the bodice, but free from the skirt.)

  • Keri Peardon

    I was under the impression that medieval dresses were only lined to about the hip level (where the gores start). If you assume that the lining exists to provide firmness around the body–since the linen and wool don’t stretch the same, they sort of balance each other and prevent the dress from stretching out of shape–and to help reduce stress on seams where they are tightest, then it would stand to reason there’s no need to waste fabric lining a dress below the hips. It’s just not necessary. (If you need warmth, just add another dress, sideless surcoat, etc.)

    When I read the Museum of London’s book, “Clothing and Accessories” more carefully, I noticed that almost none of the dresses they found were lined. Silk facing–kind of like a heavy ribbon–was used around the neckhole and sometimes behind the buttonholed to keep them from stretching out. An edging of tabletweaving was woven directly onto the edge of the front opening to keep it from raveling. And that was it.

    It may have been that those were dresses for warm weather, but it’s more likely that they were the dresses of lower and middle class women, and only wealthy women lined their dresses–just as today, the difference between a cheap suit and an expensive suit is the fact that the latter is lined.

  • Kristiina

    I’ve edged the hem of my linen 14th-c. undergown with a guard of fulled wool on the inside – a strip of maybe 8-10cm, not too thick. That added to the comfort immensely, because the wool will take much, much longer to feel wet or to let moisture up any further. It also helps the hem stay a nice shape, away from my ankles. Maybe it would be worth it to cut off some of your linen lining from the hem and replace it with a wool guard? My wool was just some thin-ish scraps that I fulled in a hot machine wash.

    It’s lined also in linen down to hip level, to make it sturdy enough to hold the tracts of land in place when laced closed. I have another one that is a linen-silk blend, lined in linen in the same way, but that’s just to give it some more body. (It has no inside guard of wool, because it’s got a velvet guard at the hem already – as I didn’t have quite enough of the main fabric – but I should put wool there as well! The velvet doesn’t feel quite as clingy when wet as linen, but it doesn’t feel dry like wool either.)

    I have a big houppelande made of white viscose velvet printed with gold-painted patterns, and I had to line that one as well for more body, as the velvet is really limp. I pieced the lining – used some leftover white dupion at the top, a half-circle of bourette silk for the hem, and a lavender-blue silk mix to line the sleeves. I’d still like to put a wide guard inside the hem, because it has a train and is overlong even at the front, but maybe not wool, maybe just some hard cotton that’s been boiled a couple of times. It does have some body, because it’s edged with white fox fur, but a guard would protect the silk lining and the stupid thin velvet. :)

  • Kristiina

    PS. I think the houppelande is about 3 kilograms – I had to approximate some when I tried to weigh it, so maybe some more, but thereabouts.

  • Panth

    I’ve not weighed any of my medieval clothes. My current dress is a lovely coarse Irish linen, rather than wool (due to money constraints when I was starting reenacting). It is not too problematic in the wet, but it is very short compared to most reproductions I see – about ankle length (this was an accident…).

    However, my cloak… oh, my cloak. It is a 1/2 circle. Outer is thick fulled wool, lining is medium weight linen. It is SO heavy. I was told when planning: don’t line it, and certainly don’t line it with linen – it isn’t necessary and it’ll soak up the dew making it cold, clammy and even more heavy. Silly me ignored the advice. Silly me now has a heavy, cold cloak. I would change it, but I known enough now that I don’t want a new cloak – a longsleeved overdress would be much warmer and more practical.

    IMO, I’m not sure you necessarily *need* to line things at all. Like others have said, most of the evidence is for facings, not linings.