Tag Archives: design

A Knight’s Hood – 14th century appliqued hood

I have been honored  for the last few years by a good friend to serve as his consort in tournaments for the Society of Creative Anachronism,  in the East Kingdom. This past summer, Jibril al-Dakhil became a Knight of the Society. I had promised him that I would make him a gift befitting. As with many projects, this one had it’s challenges.

He did not have a preference between a hood or a cloak. He has fairly simple tastes and did not want anything too over the top, but that being said it had to kick ass:)

His persona is that of a son of a Spanish woman who fell in love with a moor (son of a nobleman).  He turned against his faith when forced to choose between family and service. He grew up in southern Spain, and went off to the crusades and became a squire to a European knight. While he still remains true to his roots he is a Christian warrior. As befits his somewhat humble background he prefers simple accoutrements, and in fact as a new knight he is still building his estate and his wealth.

This was  my second item entered in our Kingdom’s Arts and Science competition this past weekend. When I was asked to talk about the hood I brought his persona into my explainations of material and design choices. I think my favorite moments were when I was discussing  access to the fabrics ( Merino wool from Spain because his mother was Spanish, and the Cashmere wool, that he likely “aquired” during the crusades) and when I explained that unlike the elaborate hoods described in wardrobe accounts, he was still a lowly knight and had not yet made his fortune, so he would not have been able to have a garment dripping in pearls and precious metal. The documenation linked below talks more about this. 

My goal was to completely hand make a hood, representing his new order, incorporating his personal heraldry, make the garment as period accurate as possible, but also keep it practical for SCA use and his desire to keep it somewhat simple. In my opinion I accomplished this goal and also somewhere during making of it, I fell in love with it. I am very proud of how it turned out, and I only hope the recipient loves it as much as I do.

PS, as of this writing he has still not seen it:) Yes, I am mean that way. Enjoy, and please, I would like to hear from you on what you think.


Embroidery design

As I said in an earlier post, I wanted the design to incorporate some of my heraldic elements but also look like the inspiration gown. The gown in the portrait as oak leaves, which is a strong heraldic element throughout Germany. It is also very symbolic of strength etc.

My first design looked like this:


It looked very modern and somewhat like a tattoo. I decided that I was trying to put too many elements into the design.

Design 2
This was the next design, just filling in space with oak leaves like the portrait.


It still felt off ( I was later told the scale was off slightly and that’s probably why it felt wrong)
So it was back to the drawing board literally.

After looking at embroidery and manuscripts I found one that I fell totally in love with:


A german manuscript from around the same time period, it had everything i wanted: lovely lines, some flowers to add color , incorporates elements from one of the other Swabian gowns and will fit with my personal elements .

So the design is not redrawn yet. I may just literally design as I go. We will see.