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holiday-gifts-lnks – 11/11/04


A set of web links to information on medieval holiday gifts by Dame Aoife Finn of Ynos Mon.


NOTE: See also these files: holidays-msg, Yule-msg, baby-gifts-msg, food-gifts-msg, Pennsic-gifts-msg, gifts-4-staff-msg, largess-ideas-msg, soapmaking-msg, toys-msg.





This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.


This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org


I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were removed to save space and remove clutter.


The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given by the individual authors.


Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear at this time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give credit to the originator(s).


Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org



From: aoife at scatoday.net

Subject: [Aoife-Links] Links: Medieval Holiday Gifts

Date: November 11, 2004 7:40:52 PM CST

To: aoife-links at scatoday.net


Greetings my faithful readers!


I seems like "That Time Of Year" is drawing nearer. You know the one. The

time when it's expected that you, the history fanatic, will have an edge

over the other folks who give gifts during the holidays. You can't give

ordinary bubble bath or hankies, of course not! You have imagination and

history on your side! It's the time of year where there are pre-holiday

parties and thus hostess gifts. The Holidays themselves abound with

gift-giving opportunities, and then there's the round of 12th night parties.

Only, if you're like me, you're on a holiday budget. And what that

translates to, giftwise, is a massive session of giftmaking.


It's often hard to find inspiration for the making of gifts, and this year

I'm hoping to help you out a little bit. Below you will find a source of

ideas for historically themed or inspired gifts, all handmade and for many

skill levels, suitable for SCAdians and perhaps others as well. If you are

even remotely handy with crafts (like most of us), this may the perfect time

to begin planning your list. Because if you don't start now, you could end

up at Wal-Mart at 11 PM December 24th, wondering what the heck to take to

your best friend's children and spouse the following day.....


Good Luck! I intend to try some of these myself. So to all those of you on

my gift list, don't be surprised if you find some of these things under the









Phiala's Stringpage: Small Leather TW Bag


(Site Excerpt--and congrats to Phiala for her upcoming induction to the

order of the Laurel :) Pouches were an essential feature of medieval

clothing; a survey of art of the Middle Ages from nearly anywhere in Europe

shows that both men and women wore one or more pouches attached to their

belt. I was inspired by a small drawstring leather pouch from London

described by Egan and Pritchard (1991).

SEE OTHER GIFT IDEAS: Tablet Weaving Projects at:


SEE OTHER GIFT IDEAS: Felt Balls Project at:



Lothene Experimental Archaeology

Medieval Leather Pouch


(Site Excerpt) The design shown opposite requires no sewing. The body of the

pouch should be cut with a diameter approximately three times the required

depth of the finished pouch. Leather thong or thick thread is passed through

the holes and the body portion is gathered up to form a bag shape.


Lady Sveva's Leather Bottle Patterns


(Site Excerpt--not the main page of this site caused my sustem to seize, so

DO NOT navigate to it! This page is fine, however)  There are basically two

methods to shaping your bottle...the 2 pieces sandwiched together, or the 3

dimensional pieced together. This second method is more difficult, and I

would recommend not doing that as your first type unless you have good

sewing skills and patience.


Decorative Leather Techniques

As used in the Middle Ages, ca. 1000 - 1500 AD

Presented by Viscount Colin deBray, KSCA, OL, OP


(Site Excerpt) Stamping uses metal or wooden stamps, struck with a mallet,

to produce a repeated design on the leather surface. Stamped designs are

found on 11th to 16th century leather objects. A great many 14th and 15th

century objects were decorated by repeating a stamped pattern; see examples

in handout.


I. Marc Carlson's 3 Fingered gloves pictures and pattern


(Site Excerpt) You may note that these gloves are found pretty much on

common peasants, and I suspect that they may just be a form of working

gloves that still allow a certain level of finger control.  Several people

have since pointed out to me certain tasks, such as holding reins that these

would be very useful for.


A Simple Medieval Shoe


(Site Excerpt) Materials (per pair):

Sole: vegetable tanned leather, 2.5-3 mm thick.

Upper & heel stiffener: vegetable tanned leather, 2.5 mm thick.

Thread: raw linen or equivalent. Nylon is not recommended.

Thonging: 5-6mm leather lace, 45 cm length.




15th century girdle book

for note taking and other uses

by Cynthia Virtue aka Baroness Cynthia du Pré Argent


(Site Excerpt) To wear it, the knot slips under your belt from below, until

the knot is over your belt, which keeps it from falling out.  To use mine

for taking notes, I can either leave it in the belt, and just pick it up and

start writing (I write in it "upside down") or I can take it out of my belt

easily and write.

FOR OTHER GIFT IDEAS (about eleventy billion good ones) SEE ALSO: Articles

and Essays of Interest to Costumers http://www.virtue.to/articles/">http://www.virtue.to/articles/


Book Binding for Beginners

Learn Hand Bookbinding Techniques

Order Bookbinding Supplies and Bookbinding Materials

Construct Your Own Hardcover Book To Preserve Personal Papers


(Site Excerpt) On this website, you will learn about the history of

bookbinding, the parts of a book, bookbinding terms, and hand bookbinding

techniques to construct your own hardcover book.


Making Handmade Paper

in 10 easy steps


(Site Excerpt) Below you will find a simple papermaking recipe to get you

started. If this is the first time you are making paper, don't be afraid to

experiment with different fibers, you don't have to stick with paper related

products. Add whole flower heads to the pulp mixture after it has been

through the blender. You can add scraps of yarn, tin foil, even seeds. Its

all comes down to what you want.


Recipes for old writing and drawing inks

Evan Lindquist

Emeritus Professor of Art, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro


(Site Excerpt) I have pulled from my files some old directions for making

ink. On this page I share them with students who would like to

experiment.Beware! These inks may be corrosive and harmful to expensive

writing and drawing equipment. There may also be toxic environmental effects

in mixing them. Before experimenting with these recipes, you must consider

the risks and accept responsibility for whatever happens.


Jean's Printmaking Home Page


(Site Excerpt--note that this site has a flash movie showing the delicate

carving motion on a woodcut) How to make a woodcut:Getting Started    You

will need:1/2 inch thick piece of wood, about 8 in. by 10 in. preferably

pine or birch plywood. You can use linoleum, if you wish, but it is best to

buy the stuff specially made for art work, called battleship

linoleum.Woodcutting tools or linoleum cutting tools.... Safety Rule!...A

woodcutting knife is a tool, not a weapon. Use your woodcutting knives with

care and keep them sharp by sharpening them on a stone which you can buy in

any hardware store. Watch the position of the woodcutting knife relative to

how you are holding your hands. You don't want to cut towards your other

hand. That is why this woodcut lesson is not suggested for children under

the sixth grade.....





Perky Snood Pattern


(Site Excerpt) I have a snood pattern I made for my daughter 2 years ago.

It is from a book I have written in the 1940"s.  All of the patterns are

from that time but I kind of remember what the one that Scarlet wore in

"Gone with the Wind" looked like.  I think this will work for you.  Very

simple and my daughter that has hair to her waist could get all of her hair

in it.  It is an open weave though. She had to use a pony tail holder and a

few bobby pins on her hair to keep it neat.


Early Medieval Clothes Patterns


(Site Excerpt) The patterns and descriptions given here are intended for

re-enactors rather than serious academic historians. Janet Arnold has

written an excellent series of books which are based on disections of actual

historical clothing from the 16th Century onwards and which give accurate

patterns. Most of the evidence for Early Medieval clothing is in the form of

fragments of garments and illustrations in manuscripts and other historical

records, so there has to be a certain amount of guesswork involved in



Dawn's Costume Site: Cloaks, Capes and Wraps


Links, and includes a section on how to add a hood to an existing cloak

SEE ALSO: How to make a Hood http://www.reddawn.net/costume/hood.htm">http://www.reddawn.net/costume/hood.htm


The Auld Garbmonger's free sewing projects (Tudor Cap, Cavalier Hat)


(Site Excerpt) Herein you will find the two free hat projects mentioned on

the Sewing Projects page of "The Auld Garb Monger's Renaissance Garb for

Manly Men" website. Just follow the links below and you will find complete

instructions for making either of the hats listed.


Making your own drinking horn

By: Baron Vladimir of Esztergom


(Site Excerpt) Finding the horn: Try to find a horn that has relatively few

flaws in it. Keep in mind that no horn is perfect. A lot of work will have

to be done to make even the best raw horns presentable. Choose colors that

will complement the pigment you will be using later. Clean the horn: The

inside of the horn must be cleaned and sanitized before any work can be



Links: Medieval Metal Casting (Silver, Pewter, Bronze, Gold, Iron, Steel)

and Smelting


A Past Links List I found posted quite by accident (THANKS!) that has myriad

sources on casting things from Metal.




How to Make a Chaine Maille Coif


(Site Excerpt) Coifs or chain hoods are traditional to nearly all eras and

styles of European armor. While I have seen many different approaches to

their design, there is only one I've found that combines grace, fit and

style. I will attempt to explain how to create my preferred design. The only

part that is different from what you have already learned is the expanding

pattern that makes up the top of the head.


Links to Plans for Model Trebuchets





How to make Invisible Ink


(Site Excerpt) The students in grades four - six will learn how to make two

types of invisible ink and write a message with each type of ink.  The students will write a paper comparing and contrasting each type of ink.


Justin du Coeur's Medieval and Renaissance Games Website


(Site Excerpt) Welcome to a page specifically dedicated to Really Old Games.

This page is intended to cover anything and everything pertaining to games

in the Medieval and Renaissance periods.


Stefan's Florilegium: toys-msg (lots of toy ideas here for young and old)


Note: There are MANY other files that can help you construct historical

gifts in the florilegium. Browse! It's fascinating!




Shire of Hartstone: Medieval Cookies and Other treats (note that this is one

of my former holiday Links Lists--thanks Guys :)


(Site Excerpt) A collection of links pertaining to Medieval Cookies,

Biskets, Waters, Fritters and many other "Sweet Tooth" delights.


Preserving of Foods through the Middle Ages


(Site Excerpt) I started by trying to find as many originals as I could, then went to the best secondary sources.  I also spent a day with Betty Cook, and

later many e-mail messages, and part of a day with Cariadoc.  So I thought

I'd start with the oldest medieval reference that I could find and work

up to the "newest" medieval recipes.


Medieval Beverages for a Hot Day

Euriol of Lothian


(Site Excerpt) The following recipes are found in An Anonymous Andalusian

Cookbook of the Thirteenth Century, translated by Charles Perry. The

redactions of these recipes were written in A Miscelleny (9th edition), by

David Friedman and Betty Cook. Dilute these syrups with water to taste for a

tasty beverage, or serve directly over shaved ice or snow for a tasty cold

treat. You can find some of these syrups at your local Middle Eastern market



Pynade (Medieval Candy)


(Site Excerpt) This is the "candy" version of the recipe, which leaves out

the chicken. The result is a sort of "pine nut brittle" with a pleasant

spice flavor.


Gode Cookery: Medieval Gingerbread


(Site Excerpt) The gingerbread being discussed in this article comes from

recipes originally used in the 14th & 15th centuries, and isn't anything at

all like our modern cake-like variety. It is in fact more like a candy or a

confection; however, it's very good and quite a treat, and I can recommend

it to anyone with a bit of a sweet tooth. I've made many versions of it and

and it is always well received. This type of gingerbread was among the many

sweets brought to Chaucer's Sir Thopas in Canterbury Tales: "They fette hym

first the sweete wyn, and mede eek in a mazelyn, and roial spicerye of

gyngebreed that was ful fyn, and lycorys, and eek comyn, with sugre that is





<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org