Flying by the seat of my tunic

Well, here goes nothing! I’ve started the tunic for my Rus Viking SCA persona. I used some old fabric my mom gave me to kind of mock it up a bit, then I started on the real fabric.

So far, the tunic (what little there is of it just yet) seems to fit okay. A little snug in places, a little big in others. But I don’t need it to be 100% perfect…it just has to hold up against a rapier. I’m starting on the outer linen layer, then I’ll do the inner cotton layer once I’ve got the measurements down pat. Then, bada boom-bada bing, tunic will be ready for the next event (or even the next fight practice, if I can get my husband’s done before then as well).

Even though I’m using rough patterns I found online, since those “patterns” were just vague sketches of what shapes to cut out (with measurements based on someone smaller than I am) I’m pretty much winging this. I mean, I haven’t found any historical patterns for what I’m trying to do that are readily available, so this is like my “make it work” moment here.

I’d post a pic of the tunic as it is currently pinned on the dress form, with one sleeve pinned on, but that just looks silly. No, I’ll wait until I have it basted down and I’m certain that it’l fit. If it doesn’t, I’m kinda screwed, but I think it will. I just need to stay calm and keep on truckin’.

Hopefully this Friday we can order the gear we need for rapier fighting. So far, I need a mask, gorget, hood, and gloves. My husband needs gloves and a codpiece, but he already has a mask and gorget from when he used to fence. We have a friend who is supposedly going to give us gloves (since my husband loaned some to this friend’s daughter and they somehow got lost before he gave my husband’s gear back), but I don’t know if that’ll make the cutoff time for the next event. The guy might actually be at the event, so maybe we’ll get them then, but I worry that we won’t have gloves in time.

I got my first rapier-induced bruise this past weekend. Kinda proud of it, tiny though it is. Why am I proud that I got hit? Well, it’s because I actually was out in the field (well, a field of sorts–we practice at the local park). Even after I got frustrated a couple of weeks ago, I geared up and got back into it. I didn’t cry, I didn’t freak out, I just practiced until I needed a break then practiced some more. I get the feeling that most of my “opponents” are taking it easy on me and just being nice when they say I’m doing well (and I know they’re letting me get hits in sometimes when I otherwise would not have gotten them), but it still does give the ol’ confidence a bit of a boost when you get a hit in or when someone tells you “good job” when it’s only your third time “taking arms,” as it were. So this first bruise is a sign that even after I embarrassed myself I got back up there and toughed it out.

Here’s hoping I don’t embarrass the shit out of myself at the next event!

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