Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Moonlight Fugstumes

Moonlight Costumes specialises in "the finest renaissance costumes, renaissance clothing, medieval costumes, and medieval clothing available." Let's take a look.

Oh joy, cheap satin and puckered seams, not to mention only the faintest hint of, um, Medieviality. One wonders why they call this the Avalon Princess when Avalon isn't associated with the Renaissance... which has to be what they're going for if they're dabbling in high waists and split skirts.  I suspect the puffs on her arms are sewn to the bodice instead of being a separate chemise. And though I don't mind people doing this as long as it looks more or less like the real thing, she really ought to have lacing sleeves of some kind over them.

The same could be said of nearly all their period gowns, really. They mostly follow the same pattern, a high-waisted dress with either a plain satin skirt or a split in front, and either with faux chemise sleeves, straight satin ones or little puffs at the shoulders. Not ugly, perhaps, but not period and generally boring. Oh, and they commit the crime of really, really, really fake lacings.

For the guys, it's mostly knight costumes with fake chainmail and occasional misplaced shoulder-flaps on the tunics. They're modelled with baggy pants and modern lace-up boots, and even leather gloves with studs.

There's also the usual rogueswear: a lace-up doublet thing with cap sleeves, worn with a poet shirt. Let's get something clear. In the era of doublets with caps like this at the shoulders, people weren't using belts to tighten them. There was a seam at the waist, with a very short length of fabric below. They didn't lace up; they buttoned. They were never worn without sleeves (unless maybe someone was doing hard work in the summer heat), and by this I mean possibly adorned but predominantly straight sleeves worn over the chemise. They would have been worn with puffed slops that stopped above the knee and not with baggy trousers. Rougeswear may be great for a Ren Faire, but it's not accurate... and at least it should be tailored better than this.

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