abendgules: (tea in winter)
I enjoyed it enormously, this Sunday morning, on iPlayer.

Spent Saturday afternoon and evening at the local revel learning two 'new' Italian dances, taught by Lady Anne.

At the end, before we dressed for dinner, I presented the Bigger on the Inside shawl to her, which I finished last week. It was well received.

The revel was lovely: good turnout, good food, and a nice selection of dances to round out the day.
abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
...with about a dozen attendees, and 10 people to feast.

I think the bunting sort of undermined the embroidery theme for the revel crafts - two people ended up trying embroidery, and the rest of the attendees seemed to be working on their heraldic bunting.

While I'm always happy to see more heraldry at revels, I  hope the embroiderers don't feel hard done by!

If I've counted correctly, we should have a new 'string' soon:
- Oriane (the first person to add sequins! will look splendid)
- Contanza
- Elias
- Edith
- Arnaut
- possibly a former member's arms, TBA

After a social Saturday, my inner hermit took over my Sunday schedule, and I stayed in, painting more Thamesreach escutcheons for future splendidness (using up the last of the blue fabric paint left to us by Brygyt Strangeways) and watching movies on TV.

The bunting project tends to run in cycles, where I (or other people) do lots, adding several sets of arms, then it rests as we admire the outcome, then we work on it again.

In fact, Robert and I found we'd run clean out of the preferred tape for hanging new bunting - I hadn't realised just how much we'd used recently. So he's in search of a new roll of twill tape this week.

I'm thinking of writing it up as a long-term heraldic display project for the Baelfyr. I don't know of any other similar projects, and I think it adds a lot to our shire's presence. Any opinions?


Mar. 25th, 2013 08:11 pm
abendgules: (self-portrait)
...started with a feline home invasion. I woke around 3am to find two cats in the bedroom, where we usually only keep one.

I don't know who was most alarmed, me, Haggis or the stranger, who proved to be a huuuuge black tom with a white moustache and goatee, very handsome.

He'd inhaled Haggis' dinner, not a crumb left in the dish, then set out to explore the rest of the flat, finding us on the top floor.

He was chased back downstairs, and looked suitably chastened at being caught (vs the ginger tom who was evicted at arm's length hissing spitting and clawing), and Haggis spent much of Saturday peering into corners and under furniture, checking for further invaders.

At 9am [livejournal.com profile] larmer and his family rang, to ask for shelter, as the airlines had scrambled their reservations, which we were happy to offer, so we had a further cheery, impromptu visit before the Larmers headed off to the museums again.

We in turn headed to the revel, to extend the reach of the heraldic bunting of the shire with new additions, as others pursued the arts of tabletweaving. I think we can expect another 4? 5? personal arms to the next length of bunting. Hurrah!

The potluck feast once more was an embarrassment of riches - Ruth's aigredouce was excellent, as was her pease pottage, [livejournal.com profile] emoni made an apple and pear pie, [livejournal.com profile] exmoor_cat whipped up angels hair (marscapone cheese sweetened, served on biscuits, yum), and [livejournal.com profile] zmiya_san a chicken dressed with orange and poudre douce.  Nom nom nom. What a splendid foodie bunch we are.

Sunday was lazier; the Larmers had left in the wee hours for their connection, so we could lay about the morning, as is our wont, followed by a great deal of axe-sharpening (previously mentioned).

While it was all pleasant...it wasn't as restful as hoped-for. With work as stupid as it is at present, I'm desperate to recuperate on the weekends.
abendgules: (15thc_worker)
This past weekend saw Thamesreach's nearly-annual fencing revel.

It marked the anniversary of my fencing authorisation (2 years now!) but with my complaining elbow, I didn't get nearly as much fencing in as I'd hoped. After some teaching, and a brief run through of melee engagements, my right elbow demanded time out. Sigh. I think I'm going to request some physio sessions from work.

However: we still had a fine turnout, and I ran an authorisation to allow a newly arrived Atlantian play in this land.

I was really happy to see the number of attendees; 17 adults at table, plus 3 kids, and three adults who'd dropped in during the day, and not stayed the whole evening.That's pretty respectable, really, with a mix of old hands and new faces both. We'd had a run of low attendance over the past few months, and it's great to see people coming back, and new folks turning out.

We also had live music! Our newly arrived Atlantian family is chock full of talent *and* instruments, so we had live music for brawles and petit riens.

We have some plans for the coming revels (music, Yule feast, tabletweaving...can't remember past that), which is encouraging. Having someone else running the revels is a relief to me. I'm happy to help (and Robert and I did lock up in the end) but am happier still not feeling on the hook each month. I feel free to contribute without the sense of obligation.
abendgules: (Confesse)
It felt like a boozy weekend:

Friday drinks to mark the departure of a colleague,

Saturday revel (1/2 bottle of watered wine, which caught up with me the next day)

and then a splendid Kerala Indian meal with [livejournal.com profile] armillary and Sorcha with more yummy wine, to celebrate their impending wedding. It was rather refreshing to have modern food with Society friends, in modern clothes. :-) I now have to look up Kerala cooking - I know I've had it before, in Ottawa. It features dosas prominently, and lots of fish and coconut dishes.

The revel was a rousing success - Robert outlined the basics of pewter casting, and the first 9 attendees got to tackle their own flat-faced lump of bone-dry plaster of Paris (advanced soapstone or mudstone substitute) with sharpened nails and assorted files.  

Since Robert made his own first pieces with a Swiss army knife and pieces of hardened wire, he doesn't see why you need anything fancier for your first attempt. 

Lots more folks turned up, but there wasn't enough plaster blocks to go round - the second platter of plaster was still damp, and damp 'stone' and liquid metal don't mix.

What really caught peoples' attention, of course, was watching the liquid metal - Robert had brought a portable butane heater and melted pewter to test the moulds, and shortly had an audience. There's something magical about watching it - pouring like mercury - and then hardening in a snap. I'd seen the same draw at the Fettered Cock, but I've grown used to the spectacle, and now take it for granted, where this fresh audience was un-jaded.

And, of course, having it work - it's very cool getting a result, and almost everyone did, if not exactly what they'd hoped for - but it was a far better result  for most than I'd expected, because I know how long it can take to get a mould right. 

Our revel feast was small but delicious, as always, and we have a series of dates and proposed themes to look forward to, hurrah.

I've finished Lev Grossman's sequel, 'The Magician King', and found it much, much darker than I'd anticipated - not suitable for the trigger-prone. I think I would have been happy reading 'The Magicians' alone, without the sequel, though the arc about one of the characters learning magic on her own (outside the 'conventional' stream of US-based magical-Eton-for-college-students) was brilliant.

I also love the idea that Venice is only staying afloat thanks to magical supports and props and without them it would plunge into the swamp.

Have now tried out 2? 3? Jim Butcher books in The Dresden Files, and while worth trying, I've decided not to persue him further. He just seems a bit too glib, and his magic seems to come easily, where Aaronovitch's characters (and Grossman's too) struggle bitterly to get even a toehold into magical practice - suits my view of what magic should be like: freakin' hard, or else we'd all do it to avoid housework.

In another vein, greatly enjoyed 'This is not a game' by Walter Jon Williams. Brilliant take on what happens when you create live-action games for a living; will work for you if you liked Rule 34, or Halting State, by Charles Stross.

Ahem - take care googling for 'rule 34' as it appears some websites have taken the rule to heart...

Will post about the visit to the Guildhall gallery next time!
abendgules: (Romanesque rules)
My supplies have arrived! so I'll be sniffing and sorting this evening and possibly figuring out what to make first. 

Unfortunately I don't have extended free time to sit and play immediately - we're booked the next 3 weekends (revel, Collegium of the White Mountain, Battle of the Elms) so it may be a week or so before I get back to it in an evening, unless I give up other (time-sensitive) projects, which I'm reluctant to do. 

From unpacking the delivery, though, I can tell that the benzoin gum makes up a much larger part in the smell of the 'white powder' dry shampoo (left by the splendid Ynes) than I realised. I'd never handled benzoin before so I hadn't known its smell at all. Fascinating stuff! 

I'm now debating getting a dedicated mortar and pestle. Robert has a splendid one, used almost daily; I don't want to mix edibles and not-intended-as-edibles. Nothing I'm handling is toxic, but I don't know how well potentially sticky things will clean off. I can get another M&P from Brick Lane easily enough.

[livejournal.com profile] isiswardrobe nominated me for an award! how cool is that? Maybe I can grow up to be a real blogger. :-)

In other news: Robert is teaching intro to pewter casting this weekend at the revel, and Mistress Oriane is bringing her gilding supplies to demonstrate her favourite scribal pastime. We should be awash in craftiness on Saturday.

On Sunday, I'm catching up with my cousin Sarah, who is passing through the city for a wedding. We're going to the last day of a display of the London city livery companies.

Then there's dinner out on Sunday - a whirlwind social life, that's me.

abendgules: (Default)
 Our last revel in Thamesreach was held in the historic town of Ware (formerly home of the Great Bed of Ware, now in the V&A).
We booked Place House, an orignally medieval or Tudor building, much re-used and rebuilt, that is now available for hire. Ware is now a prosperous suburb neighbourhood of London, rather than being a staging town one day's ride out of the city, and it was no harder to reach Ware by train than it is to reach our regular more pedestrian revel site within town. It's a bit smaller than the regular site, but has a lovely garden that we sat in to take in the air after dinner. 

At the revel one of our shire members with an Elizabethan persona had asked to be shown how to sign her name - what would her persona know?

Happily, it's one of the periods where we have a fabulous example - Elizabeth I had a beautiful renaissance hand, and many examples of it survive. So I could actually bring a book about handwriting, an example of Elizabeth's hand, and a calligraphy book with a nice Italic hand to show her how to re-create it - plus pens and ink.

The example of Elizabeth's hand (shown at the recent Lambeth Palace exhibit) is actually a short para she added to a letter of Cecil's, going out to one of her court, explaining she was just getting over the pox, and that soon you'd never know she'd been ill.

Aside from the cool historic detail, it shows beautifully that Cecil had a 'classic' batarde secretary hand (something I associate with the 15th c), and Elizabeth was raised as a modern prince, and taught the newest and coolest italic hand as part of her 'renaissance' education. They couldn't be more different.

The Lisle Letters, a book I'm slowly chugging through, also has several examples of correspondence in English, French and Latin between various members of the house of Lisle and their staff. They're practically illegible except to the practiced eye. 

It's a small thing, but it was very satisfying to be able to say, 'well, I probably have a book about that', and know that I could give a reasonably complete answer.
abendgules: (archery)

I've posted less of late from the office. Since I've asked, repeatedly, to have more responsibility, it behooves me to actually, um, be responsible. And boy, I've been responsible this week. Whew.

When I get home, I sometimes check my e-mail, but I find it so easy to fall into the abyss that is the Intawebs, I try to stay off the laptop at home.

However, I've had a very full month or so of fine mostly-medieval-like activities that deserve note.

The clever Dom Duarte [livejournal.com profile] goncalves  has continued to build good relations with CADW, and arranged for a free booking at Tretower House in south Wales, not far from Raglan and Hay-on-Wye (the book village, known for its literary festival in the spring). It's in a beautiful small valley, and you can see why a nobleman would want his tower in the centre of the valley - uninterrupted views of all the hills around him. The air is a mix of garden and sheep pasture smells.

The sheep are very skittish, especially considering they have strangers trudging through the corner of their field to reach the tower almost daily. On the other side of the house is a small pasture and a tiny stable for two small ponies and a couple of donkeys.

We've visited Tretower before, but not since CADW refurbished its main hall with wool hangings, a beautiful painted canvas covering the hall wall behind the high table, sturdy trestle tables and benches, and some fine cupboards.

The hall has been subdivided with additional walls, shortening it slightly, to create some new kitchen staging areas, specifically a space for butts, and for the pantler. The house used to have two additional wings, possibly the original bakehouse and brewery, but they were knocked down in the early 20th century. Their outline is still preserved in the  garden, where the paths mark their shape distinct from the grassed areas.

The kitchen and prep areas have also been furnished with more tables and benches, new chests, and lots of table settings, jugs, platters and kitchen implements.

The SCA and other groups have actually used the kitchen in the past - some selected trusted cooks have been allowed to use the hearth to cook meals, and one of the finest meals I've enjoyed was prepared here by Master Paul, Thomas Flamanc and my lord Robert. However, at the moment, the chimney is home to some protected species of bats, and all fires in the chimney are banned til they move on.

At this weekend, this didn't slow down Thomas Flamanc and Lady Edith, who set up Thomas' raised cooking box and spit, and set to making a range of fine foods for lunch and dinner. Lunch included lentils with onions, and elderflower fritters, among other delicacies.

Dinner was a fabulous rich goat stew and a compound salad by [livejournal.com profile] jpgsawyer , cold roasted leg of lamb by Sir Vitus, and two different forms of gooseberries - one a 15th c version, almost a gooseberry custard with eggs and cream, and a 16th c version with butter and breadcrumbs, by [livejournal.com profile] jpgsawyer  and [info]edith_hedingham,  and Paul and Anne respectively. Both were cooked, and both were amazing each in their own ways.

One of the reasons for me going was to enable archery to take place - Mynydd Gwyn have purchased a couple of straw butts, and we set one up for practice in the corner of the garden. After the public left, we moved it to the shaded part of the field, and measured out the distances for a royal round for Duarte, Heinrich and me to shoot. I surprised myself by shooting 60 on a royal round - best score I've shot in years, and certainly my best ever on a RR with a longbow.

Heinrich's form improved a lot over the weekend (though he's rather excitable and stops paying attention to his form halfway through an end), and he was still at it on Sunday, so it must still be fun. I find it a bit hard to judge if he's enjoying himself - he's a funny sort of kid.

Milady Anne and I puttered on our respective instruments over the weekend - she has proper renaissance recorders and takes lessons, while I'm tootling a tin whistle. Yes, it's post-period, but dang, it's easy, and louder than a recorder, even if it's a bit brassy. I'm hoping to play for dancers at Raglan fair this year.

The treat of the weekend was sleeping in the hall - setting up our rope bed and sleeping in the large upper hall in one wing. It was cool and comfortable enough for a summer sleeping bag, and was a joy to wake up in.

Robert, Vitus and Duarte are full of plans for event bids for this site - summer Coronet, or possibly a summer coronation. The catch with the coronet is that two weeks later is Raglan fair, and most people are only willing to trek all the way to Wales once a year.

We didn't want to leave, any of us. We ate a mountain of splendid leftovers (after a fine breakfast as well!) before rather slowly packing our bags into the assorted vehicles.

Photos are by Robert, hosted on the Armour Archive.

abendgules: (Default)
Another lovely revel passed.

We fell short on the fencing front, but everyone attending seemed very happily engaged in stitching, discussing heraldry, looking through books, and trying their hands at calligraphy.

Our shire bunting is in need of an update - we haven't added any armory to it since Alaric and Nerissa arrived, so I thought it was time to add more. I cut out several Thamesreach escutcheons (shield shapes with blue Thamesreach fesses), and handed them out to Nesta, Arnaut, and Katherine - and Edith finished one on the day, and was well on her way to finishing her arms escutcheon as well.

Sir Vitus spent some time cutting out a most beautiful plum shot silk for a fighting surcoat(! seems wasted on fighting kit!) while opining on the state of the College of Heralds, and Lady Katherine finished a beautiful Elizabethan coat of red silk with black linen lining, which she modelled that evening with a new gown. Time well spent!

For Thamesreach folk: I have a few more 'sets' of shields cut out for those who want to add their arms to the shire bunting but you don't have to wait on me or anyone else - feel free to assemble your own from your own leftover linen and scrap fabric.

Current cut-out sizes are about 8x10" or 7x9"-ish, before assembly.

I don't think we'll have a new bunting string ready for Winchester, but we could have to ready for next revel, or for Thamesreach on Tour in Ware in July.

As ever, we ate extremely well. Special mention goes to Lord Thodoric who brought his own baked trencher, prepared from salt pastry.

We even managed three dances together, which was very satisfying, but very warming on a warm evening.

I think we totalled 18 people (includes 3 children), plus one baby in a bucket, with four people attending their very first revel.

We're blessed with a convivial and crafty shire, and I take great delight in attending each one.

...Of course, having just looked through [livejournal.com profile] liadethornegge 's Double Wars pictures, I feel like Nordmark's A&S puts ours in the shade. Sigh. Wish I could have been there.
abendgules: (prickly)

...lest your head pound like a very poundy thing the next day.
Most of my Sunday was spent recuperating from Saturday revel, after what I thought was a very modest intake of white wine, provided by the lovely Sir Tristam Langswerd of the Far Isles, who joined us for good company.
Headaches aside, the revel was excellent: 
a fine turnout of fencers for training with Cedric and Robert (I honestly didn't recognise half the folks hanging around getting ready to fence! wow!);
Nerissa, Nesta and I all got scribing stuff done;
Cedric and Kiera's daughters did some fine painting;
and a circle of ladies knitted and did fibre-ish things ([livejournal.com profile] zmiya_san  brought her new carding tools, and was being helped by the toddler to card wool).
We had about 16? 18? for potluck feast, and as usual noone went hungry.
Sir Tristam's presence prompted some singing, and his story-telling was most welcome, and he was happy to join us for a couple of dances.
abendgules: (15thc_worker)
I enjoyed the weekend revel at Archway this weekend.

We had fewer brand-new folks than I expected, but can't complain at 20 seated for feast in the evening. 

Wherever I looked, folks were busy stitching, measuring, pinning, laying out and discussing patterns. (Only in the SCA can you have a sewing session with more laptops for costuming references than sewing machines.) Ynes, Anne and I brought the bulk of the resources - Ynes has a costume book library to die for.

At least two folks come away with new patterns, and we got a new chemise, gown and overgown cut for Baz.

We are really blessed with a foodie shire that cooks; [livejournal.com profile] edith_hedingham , Robert, Vitus, [livejournal.com profile] armillary , [livejournal.com profile] jpgsawyer , Paul and Anne had all cooked medieval food. There's still lots of cheese and bread, but wow, some mean pies and roasts.

After dinner, milady Anne and Master Paul led the dancing, and a few hardy souls worked on their galliard techniques.

Blessedly Hargrave hall is getting some TLC with freshly polished floors, new paint, and new accessible loos, including one on the main floor! which means no more running downstairs for every kettleful, hurrah.
abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
Our spring local revel was once more a fine occasion, blessed with lovely mild weather, keen attendees, good food and dancing.

Click for more shameless bragging  )
abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
Thamesreach had another successful revel yesterday, and got a pile of decorative sewing done to boot.
[livejournal.com profile] edith_hedingham  was driving the sewing, arriving with nearly 20 m of blue and white broadcloth, fresh from Walthamstow Market, to make long banners with - they lend themselves well to the high ceilings of St. Ethelburga's hall, and will go well with the blue and white Thamesreach linens. It's also timely because we can decorate at Crown with them.
So [livejournal.com profile] zmiya_san , [livejournal.com profile] nz_bookwyrm , Peregrine, Emayn and another guest and I laid out, cut and pinned together banners, per pale argent and azure, and [livejournal.com profile] edith_hedingham sewed seams, resorting to a certain number of 'sewing words' when the machine didn't cooperate.
She got all the long seams done, which was pretty good going, and she and I are stitching hanging loops and tops and bottoms at home.
It proved a useful time for several folks, when they weren't cutting and pinning: Peregrine had brought his infernally clever plied cord maker (a doorknob and a cup hook, attached to Emayn's best wooden spatula) and together they were plying long lengths cord for gown lacing. He'd learned the technique from Aldwin, [livejournal.com profile] mbroidress 's husband, at University just past.
Plied cord proved a better solution for Thomas, one of our local members, who needed laces for his doublet and hose - he tried about 3 turns on my lucet, then thanked me for trying to teach him, and asked if he could buy it somewhere. I referred him to Peregrine.
 [livejournal.com profile] nz_bookwyrm  took some time to cut out a new tunic, and Catherine Weaver managed to warp up her laptop Ashford loom in record time, and set about starting a piece as the evening progressed.
We also had three young gents visit for some training at arms practicing of martial arts & sciences (people under 18 don't fight, but they can do A&S). We'd met M. with his mum before, and this time another parent came w/ two of young M's friends in tow. Robert offered them some footwork and ranging advice, and when Vitus and his family finally arrived, Vitus could confirm to them that this was all good stuff, and baffling them by demonstrating a shot that came from behind M's head.
One gent and his dad had to leave early, but two stayed, and seemed to enjoy themselves (though one of them hid in a helmet and behind a shield once the dancing started).
[livejournal.com profile] nusbacher and her daughter A. arrived in time for feast, (possibly having been trapped in the same traffic as Vitus), and A got to model her lovely new gown in burgundy and pink, complete with a ruff. I complimented her on the ruff, and [livejournal.com profile] nusbacher  explained it had been a gift from [livejournal.com profile] damedini  some time ago, for receiving a Purple Fret - and indeed the ruff was cunningly edged with purple fretwork.
nusbacher also brought her  banners - a red one with de Taahe arms in the canton, and a gold motto across it in honour of God and our duke, and another 'little seen' banner of the prince's guard (not sure if this was MK's Ealdormerian guard, or the prince of Ealdormere's guard).
Feast was a pretty impressive spread - at least four folks had brought 'real' dishes, including two of Edith's test dishes for Crown. I hope noone went away hungry!
The dancing worked well - brawles, Petit Vriens, Amoroso, and peas brawle. We will have a basic knowledge of dance for St. Ethelburga's, and hopefully [livejournal.com profile] sismith42  and milady Anne can lead us gently through more dances.

Thank you to everyone who attended, brought fine food, and danced. I hope you went home as tired and happy as I did.

abendgules: (catching snowflakes)
Ok, not quite as romantic as it sounds, but still, pretty pleasant.
Spent the weekend w/ the shire of Mynydd Gwyn, including [livejournal.com profile] maredudd1066 , [livejournal.com profile] blue_dormouse , [livejournal.com profile] goncalves , and assorted other locals. Kiara (formerly Danielle of Mynydd Gwyn) cooked an impressive meal for 14 - her first feast! - and we had to roll away from the table.

The fighters got in four hours solid practice and instruction which was good for everyone, particularly (but not exclusively) the newest fighters. Almost everyone came away groaning from stiffness and bruises - both Maredudd and Robert had whopping bruised legs.

I got a leisurely afternoon of puttering and chatting with the ladies of the shire, which was a rare opportunity - for all that we're neighbours, we're usually busy at events! so we could just sit and visit. Wenllyn brought the tiny lovely Lara to meet us, all of 3 weeks old and so baby stuff occupied a lot of conversation.

Valeria arrived midafternoon with a very handsomely attired Macsen (17 months) - his dad had whipped him up a short parti-coloured houppe that week, which went beautifully with his cap and hose. Macsen is a happy active guy, who thought that the kitchen was the coolest place to be (after watching the fighting) - apparently life in his household centres on the kitchen, so if anyone is there he wants to be there too, watching and supervising. He was very good natured and even when he was tired, mostly just wanted to play rather than fuss. It's always nice to meet a toddler whose company you enjoy! and his collective of shire babysitters were all glad to see him.

He got a huge laugh from his shire when he dipped his finger in his dad's whisky glass, tasted it, and went back for more - which of course made him do it again and again. I expect he slept pretty well!

On the Elizabethan gown project I got most of the huge ugly grommets removed, and finished the holes with buttonhole stitch. The holes are still huge, but less obviously hideous. I consulted Maredudd and Julian about shoulder roll sizing and positioning, and the difficulties of interpreting Janet Arnold's very detailed images - masses of details are not the same as instructions!

We stayed over chez Dafydd and Kiara's home outside Bristol. In addition to SCA they do (US) Civil War reenactment, so I took the chance to view Kiara's (female) wardrobe and quiz her about reeanctment costuming and sewing. Her 19th c. wedding dress is a very handsome one, and she and Dafydd had glass-plate photos taken for their Civil War wedding - they really look like they stepped out of an American family album!

Part of weekend events is the travel (drove w/ HG Alaric), which gives you several hours to chew over and solve the problems of the SCA. Alaric 's a skilled fighting observer (well, duh) and trained as a teacher. He sees things in people's fighting that I miss completely; I always learn something about fighting listening to him talk over the day's bouts.

We got home in time to sprawl for the afternoon and do a whole lotta not much, except flick channels. Polanski's Oliver Twist is a good rendition, but a bit grim; perhaps I've grown used to thinking of it as a musical.

After a lot of hemming and hawing over expenses, we've decided to do Coronation after all, whizzing to Germany in the Vitus-vagon on 1 Jan, and back (Channel ferries permitting) in plenty of time for work on Monday 5th Jan, so Robert made the resrervations this weekend.
Hope to see some friends there!
abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
For [livejournal.com profile] exmoor_cat : you don't have to spend anything on medieval cookbooks.
If you want to start cooking stuff for revels, you can start here!

Medieval and Renaissance Food

Medieval Online Cookbooks

Happy browsing!
abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
I'm so wrapped up in starting work I haven't posted about how cool our last revel was!

Great wrap-up for the year ) In all, I'm really pleased with our last few revels. We've had good attendance of 12-20 folks (best yet, w/ 24 people last weekend); we've worked on group projects and shared skills; we've had some fine meals; and last weekend we had 'real' dancing (ie. not just me dragging people out). [livejournal.com profile] edith_hedingham  was remarking on how much the group has grown  - our first revels were about 6 or 7 people, wondering if it was worth it, when we could just as easily simply go to the pub for a lot less effort.

After a couple of years, it now seems worthwhile, and we've pretty much reached the point that not everyone has to attend for the revels to work, and it feels worthwhile.

Things still to build on:
- Table settings: helping folks round out their feastgear, so we all have one or two serving dishes to use on the potluck table
- Remembering to bring enough candles! we definitely need them in winter

Something I've considered - attempting to make dinner more medieval, by concentrating on 'period' topics (ie avoiding TV, computer talk, and work topics). This is an awkward step - you don't want folks to be tripping over themselves trying to avoid saying 'I arrived by Tube', but at the same time, I'd like the revel to feel different from the rest of the ordinary day.

Talking about learning skills, new projects, past events and reminiscences, discussing the SCA itself, could keep the 'feel' of the conversation away from modern life just for a bit, with only a minimum of 'it took 3 hours to reach the event in our vehicle', or 'I sent a message ahead, but didn't hear back'.

So I think I'll try this myself, and see how far I get. It won't work every time, but it would be nice to put TV and computers aside for a couple of hours every month!

abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
I lives in a splendidly cool shire!

Our local revel this weekend brought out a total of 12 folks to spend the afternoon. We sat over a pot of tea, chatting about heraldry and Good Heraldry Design According to Genevieve, then switched gears to drag out pieces of scrap fabric and prompt some ideas about how to use it. 

Peregrine  (can't find his blog, sorry) and Emayn, our two new arrivals from the Crescent Isles, were pressed into service to suggest how to make a 14th c. hood, and advised [livejournal.com profile] thorngrove about how to cut her fabric to get a short cloak out of it. I came away with a  small piece of beeeeoooooooooooouuuutiful brocade from [livejournal.com profile] thorngrove , to make a small pouch from.  Glorious!

When I looked around, everyone seemed happily engaged -sewing, embroidering, measuring and sketching, browsing heraldry books and making plans.

With the changing seasons, we now need our candles in the evening! All of them! Have to remember candlesticks and more candles in future.

We had a splendid small meal, and then cracked open the copies of Henry V to do some reading.

My sweetie was (unsurprisingly) asked to lead, variously as Chorus, Canterbury, or Captain Ffluellen (with a passable comic Welsh accent) and also Harry himself. [livejournal.com profile] nz_bookwyrm , [livejournal.com profile] zmiya_san , [livejournal.com profile] exmoor_cat , [livejournal.com profile] thorngrove , [livejournal.com profile] nusbacher  and Julia WINOLJ all took parts, and we read...

the prologue, the intro by the priests, the bit about the tennis balls, the tussle between Nym and Pistol, the argument between Ffluellen and the other soldiers about the disciplines of war, the English lesson between Katharine and her maid, the siege of Harfleur, the Englishmen the night before the battle, 'Today is called St. Crispin's', and a comic ransom scene between a Frenchman and Pistol (I think) - it's a fun scene left out of Branaugh's Henry V, and Robert thinks it's a great loss.

Reading this list over, we actually hit quite a bit of it!

Before I knew it, it was 9.30 and time to pack up.

This was one of the most pleasant recent revels I can remember: good company, getting fun things done, breaking bread, and drinking wine.

The shire seems to be settling in around a dozen people - as in, we had 12(!) people turn out to go shopping last week, we had 12 people turn out to the past couple of shire meetings, we had 12 people show up to the revel.

It's not always the same 12 people (though there are some regulars), but it's becoming a sort of norm.

I have to adjust my head: I brag about us now being the biggest shire in ID, but honestly, part of me still thinks of Thamesreach as being about 5 people, wondering how on earth we can bootstrap this group into activity.

My head ached only a little bit on Sunday, though I was more sluggish than I liked, and didn't get any of my planned calligraphy done.

I did, however, cut out and piece a new bonnet for Robert (motivated by using up scraps, and this is a lovely piece of linen), and a new napkin with the last of the linen, and pressed and pinned my partlet.

Robert took home two roast chicken carcasses from the revel, and made a wonderful rich Turish soup with lentils, which filled the house with roasty-chickeny-savoury smells all afternoon and evening.

[livejournal.com profile] thorngrove  is coming round this evening to discuss chemises and possible tunic-making in time for the coming University.
abendgules: (seneschal_cat)
I've posted some very jaggy video footage of Master Cernac and [profile] goncalves trying out the Fiore techniques taught by Lord Karl Skarpe,  with Cernac's experimental broadswords. Best viewed on the smallest screen available.

This was my first try at using the video feature on our camera. Guess I need to up the resolution!

Per request: Pepys Diary, which you can subscribe to w/ RSS on LJ. It'll get added to your friends list.


abendgules: (Default)

August 2016

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