Viking-ish Peerage Ceremony

Phiala’s Elevation

At AEthelmearc Twelfth Night, in the Shire of Sylvan Glen, A.S. XXXIX (commonly known as2005), I appeared before Their Majesties Rurik and Angelik to ask them to sponsor a trade mission in search of silk, fabric, threads of precious metals and dyestuffs, that I might continue in her arts and make more beautiful things.

Their Majesties were rightfully concerned that I demonstrate my competence to manage such an endeavor, and asked that witnesses speak in support of my worthiness. After receiving the counsel of Master Cormac Dubh spoken by Sir Magariki Katsuichi no Koredono; Master Ruadhan O'Ceallaigh; Her Excellency, Vicountess Rosalind Ashworthe; and Mistress Thora Sharptooth as spoken by His Excellency, Master Tofi Kerthjalfadsson; Their Majesties agreed that it was indeed right and proper that I should equip a ship and undertake this voyage.

Their Majesties instructed me to be careful in my dealings, and to neither sell nor purchase any cloth of less than the two ells in width specified by law, and to ensure that all the cloaks from my loom are of two ells in width and four ells in length. To ensure that all measures would be correct, I was presented with a two-ell stick, measured by His Majesty and cut to length by His own hand. Their Majesties also presented me with the wreath, medallion and cloak so that all with whom I might trade could see my worthiness, and created me a Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Laurel.

Unfortunately, I was using a borrowed camera and most of the pictures came out poorly. Hopefully some of those taken by others will look better.

Phiala dressed

I had great fun (and much stress and lack of sleep) making new clothes for this event. The fabrics are both wool twills, and the underdress and apron dress were both hand-sewn. In a fit of geekiness, I sewed the entire apron dress, and most of the underdress, with one of the copper needles I’d made earlier.

Because I had a hard time finding this information earlier, I used a thin two-ply white wool thread to sew the apron dress. I used a running stitch for the seams, then on the inside folded each seam allowance over away from the edge and sewed it down. If done carefully, the anchoring thread goes under only a few of the twill threads, and doesn't show at all on the face of the garment. The underdress I sewed with self thread, pulled from scraps of fabric. It behaved very badly. Not only was it a single thread, and prone to twist, it was very wiggly after being woven and finished into a twill. I ended up using a silk thread to finish the hem, as by then it was Saturday morning and I was in a terrible hurry! I used a running stitch for the seams on this dress, then trimmed one seam allowance close to the seam on the inside, and folded the longer one over it and sewed it down.

My favorite piece of tablet weaving finally found a home on the front of my apron dress. It’s a three-color Snartemo pattern in naturally-dyed silk.

Snartemo trim

Thorvaaldr made me one-piece Viking shoes with toggles patterned after some found at Hedeby. I made the naalbound socks from wool singles I’d spun myself. Thorvaaldr and I both worked on the Viking-style banners. I did the artwork, we both painted, and he carved the poles from square stock using a drawknife.

shoes and sock

Lady AElfswyth, currently living in An Tir, made the book for my vigil, including the interior artwork. She’s amazing!

book cover book art book art

The vigil itself was organized by Dame Alicia Langland and Mistress Filipia Capriotti, and was very well done (of course). They even managed to make a hotel room look medieval.

Filipia also made the cloak. She promised there wouldn’t be a day-glo laurel wreath on it, and she made an absolutely perfect Viking cloak. I will acquire a better photograph. The wreath was a gift from Patrikia Maria Agrissa Sgourina. Instead of a medallion, I was given a string of beads contributed by many people. What a wonderful idea - thank you all! One special laurel bead was made by THL Hrefna in heppna Thorgrimsdottir, and will be added to the string. (I’ve coveted Tofi’s for a long time - thank you!)

cloak wreath and beads laurel bead

This met me at troll on Saturday morning.

no volunteers sign