It used to be that if you wanted to know what people wore 700 years ago you had to find the names of rare, large books and order them from interlibrary loan, or visit period funeral monuments and see what they were wearing. It was all a lot of work.
Nowadays, it is as easy as typing a few words into a search engine online. And once you start down that rabbit hole, you can, with a little thought, find yourself looking at digital scans of real books from the last thousand years and more, primary resources for what people wore.
Hence the title – with such resources available today, there is no real excuse for anyone interested in wearing decent looking clothes to get it wrong. Of course some may not have time, brainpower or whatever to carry out the research. Even so, there are now lots of books on the topic, blog posts and suchlike, showing pictures and discussing accurate costume.
So this post looks at a specific example of mens costume from the 14th century, and how manuscript illustrations can give a great deal of detail for those who actually want to get it right. Continue reading