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Reconstructing the Arnegunde Kaftan Card Woven Trim — some background

Posted by on June 10, 2012

I have yet to find an image of the card weav­ing from the Arne­gunde kaf­tan. I had hoped with the recent con­ser­va­tion work being com­pleted, an image would sur­face. But no love there. So I will need to piece together the bits and pieces.

The most recent pub­lished men­tion of the card weav­ing is from Rast-Eicher’s article:

The tablet-woven band is made of at least 100 tablets and is about 6.5 cm wide. Nearly the entire width of one frag­ment was pre­served – with just a few threads miss­ing – but this one is oth­er­wise hardly vis­i­ble. The band is bro­caded with a triple silk thread (z-spun) and dis­plays a pat­tern of diag­o­nals and lozenges (Fig. 33.3). (2010)

So color me rather intim­i­dated by the “over 100 cards” thingy.  I will try a run at the design with fewer cards and make the piece in wool for a test run.

Sadly, Peter Colling­wood did not talk about either the Arne­gunde or the Bathilde/Bertille weav­ings in his book. He did describe the sim­i­lar Snartemo V tex­tiles from the 6th cen­tury. For a refresher here are the late 5th/early 6th cen­tury card weav­ing found at Chelles. Both of these were buried with high sta­tus women, so would prob­a­bly be a good source for inspiration.

A wide piece of woolen card­weav­ing from Chelles





The fol­low­ing piece has sim­i­lar­i­ties to the Snartemo V finds with the inter­laced lozenges.

Woolen card­weav­ing from Chelles





Links to web­sites with sim­i­lar styles of card weaving:



Rast-Eicher, A. (2010) Gar­ments for a Queen. North Euro­pean Sym­po­sium for Archae­o­log­i­cal Tex­tiles X. 208–210


Terms: , , Arne­gonde



2 Responses to Reconstructing the Arnegunde Kaftan Card Woven Trim — some background

  1. Eowyn

    Do you have any ref­er­ences for the Bathilde/Bertille weavings?

    • thealater

      Here are a cou­ple.… There are bits scat­tered through other sources.…
      Laporte, J.P. (1991). Tre­sor de Chelles: Sepul­tures et reliques de la reine Bathilde et de l’abbesse Bertille. Ville de Chelles: Musee Alfred Bonno.
      Laporte, J.P. (1986). “Tis­sus médié­vaux de Chelles et de Fare­moutiers.” In Tissu et vête­ment: 5,000 ans de savoir-faire. Guiry en Vexin, p.153–172.

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