To put the crowning touch (pun absolutely intended) on your Merovingian haute couture ensemble, hair styling is very important. We don’t have a lot of information to go on, but there are some bits of goodness floating around. I found some videos on Roman hairstyles on YouTube and am sharing them with you. They should give you starting points to making Merovingian hairstyles to go with your awesome clothing. Have your slaves watch these videos so they can do your hair correctly.
I’m getting ready to draft the pattern for my final garment of the Arnegunde outfit, the outer coat. I’ve finished the embroidery for the front opening and I’ve ordered the gold thread for the cuffs.
There are so few extant garments from this period making it hard to know how they were constructed. This is just a list of websites and resources for information on garment construction (and some other goodies).
Gallo-Roman tunic from Martres de Veyre. 1-2 C.
This is by no means an exhaustive listing. But it should give you some starting places to begin your research, or to add to your current research. Eventually, I will have this annotated as I get things translated and assimilated.
If you know of any resources that not listed here, please put them in comments. Thanks!
And here’s a gratuitous picture because it’s purty.
In studying archaeological textiles, it helps to track back the the technology and social influences on your chosen fiber culture. For the Merovingians, their direct descendants were both the vast Roman linen estates in Gaul and the Sassanian silk weaving houses. John Peter Wild wrote a book on Roman textiles and also inspired others to write another book on the influence Roman textiles.
J. P. Wild. (1970) Textile Manufacture in the Northern Roman Provinces. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
and this is the book it inspired…
Penelope Walton Rogers, Lise Bender Jorgensen, Antoinette Rast-Eicher, (2001). The Roman Textile Industry and its Influence. A Birthday tribute to John Peter Wild. Exeter: Oxbow Books, 2001.
Going back even further, we have a book on Pre-Roman Italian textile production. (Yes, the author of the previous review)
Gleba, M. (2008): Textile production in pre-Roman Italy. Oxford: Oxbow.
And while we’re on the subject of ancient Roman textile production, here’s a decent bibliography which should give you a good start. It’s not exclusively Roman or Merovingian (but we won’t hold that against them!)
and look over there! Sassanian textiles!
There are a number of graves from les Martres de Veyre that have yielded textile finds, including some amazing complete garments. Now, I may not a chance to travel over there to see the artifacts, but luckily, others are luckier… and they post their photographs on the intarwebz,