Tuesday, June 25, 2019

A 15th century kidney pouch

With my newfound goal of improving my kit, I decided it was time to upgrade my kidney pouch to a fancier and more period correct version. I was largely inspired by my friend Gregor von Medehem, who jumped right into leatherworking in the SCA and has made a few very nice pouches.

Since I recommend the "what, when, where, who, & how" approach for starting A&S documentation, I'll use it here to help summarize.

  • What did I make? A leather belt pouch.
  • What's it used for? Carrying stuff! For me, it's to carry my phone, money/checkbook, car keys, tokens, & business cards. Anything longer than a checkbook won't fit into the main pouch.
  • When & where was it used in history? Western Europe, 14th to 16th centuries.
  • Who would have had one in period? This style of pouch was only used by men. It shows up in lots of contemporary art and archaeological finds, so its use seems widespread. Due to the fittings and level of workmanship, this particular pouch would have been worn by someone who is fairly well off.
  • What sources did I use? "Purses in Pieces" by Olaf Goubitz, & Gregor von Medehem's expertise and pattern.
  • What was my process? Read on...

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Finding my joy again

Those of you who know me and have been reading my blog know that I've been struggling the last couple years with depression and other issues. In general, things are now a lot better thanks to medication, therapy, good communication with my lady, and more. But part of it being better is finding new things that bring me joy to work on.

In particular, my current SCA/reenactor focus is working toward as authentic a "kit" as possible, and I’m having a blast!

Thursday, May 30, 2019

SCA garb and the "10 foot rule"

Greetings readers from your long absent author!

I have a teeny tiny favor to ask you all, especially when speaking/writing anywhere someone new to the SCA is in the audience:

Please stop using the phrase "the 10 foot rule" when talking about general SCA garb/clothing requirements.


Monday, April 1, 2019

Achievements & Depression

Two years ago today, I was recognized as a Peer in the SCA, and elevated to the Order of the Laurel. It was a goal I had been working toward for around 10 years. The vigil and elevation were amazing experiences. The scroll, gifts, and regalia that were crafted by my friends & my lady are dear treasures that have hundreds of hours of labor and love poured into them. I'm still overwhelmed by the generosity that exists within the SCA, and proud to be a part of it.

Despite achieving this recognition, I wasn't truly happy. I of course had happy moments. But overall, the last couple of years have been a struggle. I hit the bottom of a pretty deep depression about a year ago. With the help of therapy, medication, and a very understanding wife, I've slowly been creeping my way out of that hole.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

A Year of Changes

First things first: I want to apologize for not posting anything in the last ~year or so. There's still a ton I want to get to, but I haven't gotten to it.

I have all sorts of valid excuses of course... In February of 2016 my lady and I started looking for a new home together, and started getting ready to put our old home on the market. In June we closed on a new home, and we moved in in the beginning of July. From July through September we worked on the old house, put it on the market, and sold it. Since July, we've been unpacking, making some improvements to the new home, doing more unpacking, etc.

With the arrival of spring looming, it felt like we were almost done with the improvements and unpacking, and would be just about ready to get working in our new Scriptorium!

Unbeknownst to me, their Majesties, Highnesses, my lady, and my friends were all conspiring on a large surprise for me...

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Apprenticeship Indenture for Adrienne d'Evreus to Isabel Chamberlain

Project:Apprenticeship Indenture for Adrienne & Isabel
Words:Mistress Alys Mackyntoich & Mistress Isabel Chamberlain
Calligraphy:Lord Alexandre Saint Pierre
Paper:9" x 12" Parchment by David de Rosier-Blanc
Script:My own Secretary Hand
Pens:Mitchell #6 and #4
Inks:Ian the Green's Iron Gall Ink
Inspiration:Multiple, see below

Bureaucracy, red-tape and forms filled out in triplicate: not things most people think of when they think of beautiful documents. But in reality, almost as soon as humans invented writing, we started using it to record legal agreements between people. Medieval contracts are just as verbose as our modern day legalese. But in those days before carbon paper and ball point pens, they had a much more artistic way of handling the need for each party to a contract walking away with a copy: the Indentured Chirograph.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Tracing is Period & Good!

Pardon folks, but I'm a little fired up over something, and need to rant about it.

I often see new scribes who have been told or feel they must create original art, or that tracing from period sources is frowned upon or not allowed. Excuse me? There are so many things wrong with this idea that I'm having a hard time figuring out where to start... Oh... I know! Let's start with the fact that:

Tracing is a period technique!

Cennino Cennini provides methods for tracing and talks about why it is desired in his 15th century treatise, Il Libro dell'Arte.

"Chapter 27 - How you should contrive to copy and draw after as few masters as possible.  
... strive and delight always to copy the best things that you can find, made by the hand of great masters. And if you are in a place where there have been many good masters, so much the better for you. But I give you this advice: be careful always to pick out the best and the one that has the best reputation. And if, day in and day out, you follow one like that it will be odd if nothing of his style and manner rubs off on you."
-Broecke, Lara. (2015) Cennino Cennini's Il Libro dell'Arte: A new English translation and commentary with Italian transcription. London England: Archetype Publications. p. 47