Being a guide for SCA-folk who desire to clothe themselves in a simple but reasonably accurate Viking fashion, to do honor to the reign of King Thorson and Queen Svava.
Prepared by Duchess Marieke van de Dal This edition: 6/24/04 For further information, please don’t hesitate to email: firstname.lastname@example.org Copyright 2004, Christina Krupp
Very littleis known about the authentic cut of the Viking-Age men’s tunic.The Viborg shirt, below, is not typical in its complexity. Most likely, tunics were more like the first type shown.
Generic Viking Men’s Tunic See Cynthia Virtue’s website, http://www.virtue.to/articles/tunic_worksheet.html for full instructions. A similar tunic worksheet website is from Maggie Forest:www.forest.gen.nz/Medieval/articles/Tunics/TUNICS.HTML This tunic is very similar to Thora Sharptooth’s rendition of the Birka-style tunic, as described on her webpage, http://www.cs.vassar.edu/~capriest/viktunic.html
2.5 or 3 yds of 60” cloth works well for this layout. Most Viking tunics look best at knee-length. Underarm gussets are optional, but if they are omitted, make the upper arms roomy. Usually the bottom half issufficiently full with this cut, but for extra fullness, add a gore of fabric in the center front and center back.You may also omit the side gores and leave the side seams unsewn from knee to mid-thigh.
The Viborg Shirt The “Viborg Shirt” was found in Denmark, and is dated to the 11th C. Enough of the shirt survived that the pattern can be determined; it was quite complex. An English summary ofthe original Danish article can be found here: http://www.forest.gen.nz/Medieval/articles/Viborg/VIBORG.HTM Illustrations of the tunic are from the NESAT article; see the last page of this handout for a full citation. Tunic Details and Embellishments -- Neck openings may be oval, “keyhole” (round with a slit down the front) or even square, as in the Viborg shirt below. -- Sleeve length is usuallywrist, or mid-forearm. Very short sleeves are not represented in artwork or actual finds. -- An authentic and easy way to decorate your tunic is to edge it with strips of fabric in a contrasting color. These can go around the neck, on the sleeve ends, and around the bottom hem. In addition, any visible seams can be covered with braided cords or with herringbone-stitch embroidery. -- Card-woventrim is appropriate, but if strict authenticity is a concern, remember that most modern cardweaving trims bear little resemblance to what was used as trim by wealthy Vikings. The best card-woven trim to use is about a centimeter wide, it uses rather fine threads, and it’s brocaded with silver or gold in geometric patterns. A description with illustrations is here:http://www.housebarra.com/EP/ep06/10brocade.html. This sort of trim was often mounted on a brightly colored strip of silk that was then affixed to the tunic.Metallic trim was generally not used below the waist (you’d ruin it by sitting on it.) c2004, Christina Krupp (Marieke), email@example.com
Although “Viking stripey-pants” are commonly seen at SCA events, no evidence of actual striped pants fabric has been found ina Viking context. Tight-Legged Style There aren’t many actual finds of trousers or trouser-bits from Viking-age digs, but some artwork from the Viking world shows tight-fitting pants. The snug, footed “Thorsbjerg” trousers (shown front and back, left- ill. by Inga Hagg) and the footless Damendorf trousers are a bit early for Vikings, but they show that sophisticated tailoring was possible. Both ofthese had gore panels in the crotch and seat to allow for greater movement. Information on the patterns can be found in I.Hagg, Textilfunde aus dem Hafen von Haithabu or at Viktoria Persman’s website, www.frojel.com/Documents/ Document04.html If you are daunted by the complexity of existing Iron-Age trousers, you could also cut apart an old pair of pants to use as a pattern. When worn with a...