(other people might prefer to call it a cotte, a cotehardie, a kyrtle/kirtle or some other word, but I try to avoid using historical terms until there's a clearly defined terminology for medieval garments available)
I'm very happy with this dress. It's made of a wonderful, lightweight, slightly fulled 2/1 wool twill, laces up the front and gives me ample support without being constricting. The bodice is lined with linen to prevent the twill from stretching. Since this photo was taken, I've made the sleeves even tighter by adding buttons to them to make it a little more 'fashionable' (and it's always nice to be able to roll up your sleeves when you do the dishes...).
I make all my tailored medieval clothing by fitting them onto myself and adding gores; the pink dress is no exception. I do have an assistant - my rather rigid and unsquishable dress dummy, but for the final adjustments and to get the bust support right I need to wear the dress myself. It's a little tricky fitting a dress with no one to help, but it can be done. It also helps to be stubborn, patient and not afraid of pricking yourself with pins...
With the pink dress I wear my shortsleeved
This over-dress is also made of 2/1 wool twill, but it's heavier than the pink dress and more fulled. I had very little of this fabric so while I wanted to use the short-sleeved dress from Herjolfsnes as a model, I didn't have enough to make the side-gores go all the way to the armscye and had to settle for a simpler cut. I also had to piece the sleeves together from several pieces (a rather common practice in the middle ages). The sleeves are a bit too long in these images so I shortened them a little after the photo session. I haven't seen too many medieval images showing short-sleeved overdresses like this one (short-sleeved without tippets or flared sleeves, that is), so if anyone out there has some art references to share, please drop me a line!
Both dresses are completely handsewn with waxed linen thread.
Photos: Tobias Högström/Svarta Galten