Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Journeyen for Foundation HEI

About a year ago I fitted the patterns for twenty two journeyen, 'tunica sine manicis' or sleeveless tunics in one afternoon. I have never had so many men in my hands in such a short time slot ever before, I can tell you. These journeyen were for the ground crew of Foundation Historic Educational Initiative (short: HEI) for their jousting display.

The Ceasar Tapestries (detail), c. 1460, Historisches Museum Bern.

Thanks to Bertus Brokamp's research (the chairman of the foundation and accidentally also my boyfriend) I didn't have to do much else but pick my favourite example and recreate that. Bertus included a wide array of sources in his report, from written accounts to paintings, playing cards, and tapestries. I really liked the button closure on the playing card journeyes and the pleated skirt of the journeye on the tapestry above.
We decided on black wool cloth for the outer fabric and bleached linen for the lining. Only the bodice was lined. The folds in the skirt are five layered rolled pleats to give them a good volume.
The patterns were shipped to Poland, so that Gabriela Glinianowicz at Amictus could turn them into the finished journeyen.

Another part of the production I had only a small role in, were the gold embroidered emblems that were stitched on the front and back of each journeye.  The design for the emblem was made by Bertus (with some comments and suggestions from me here and there). Since Foundation HEI portrays Bruges jousters, the crowned letter 'b' was incorporated into the design. The crowned 'b' was used in Bruges on the livery of the city militia in the 15th century and orphans in the 16th century. It was also used as a quality mark in many guilds. The floral motif is taken from a 15th century effigy of Joos de Bul, one of the jousters they portray.
The badges were handmade in India by Badge of Honour using gold and silver bullion and silk thread. This type of embroidery isn't a 100% correct for the period, but it was as close as we could get on the budget we had to work with. I wasn't really up for embroidering 44 of the badges by hand either.

The journeyes were first used in Nyborg, Denmark and then on several other occasions during the summer and autumn. For a group shot of both the jousters and the complete ground crew, click here.

The photos in this post were taken by me at two historical tournaments this summer: the first in Nyborg, Denmark, organised by Foundation HEI, the other in Schaffhausen, Switzerland, organised by Arne Koets Events.

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