Friday, 15 September 2006

How long is long enough?

I've got an inferiority complex about the length of my skirts. I always think they are too short - I figure they should be brushing the ground. But I've never stopped to check if they should be. I've been basing this bias on what I see other costumers wear, but from later periods, which may well have longer skirts than mine. I also don't have a pair of period shoes that I'm happy to wear outdoors yet (really must fix that), so my modern shoes lift me an extra 2cm off the ground. And 2cm is halfway to the ankle.

So looking at 12th C artwork, an we always see a ladies shoes peaking out from the bottom of her skirts. Here's one example, and if you look at the way the folds of the skirts fall, at the very bottom they change from vertical to semi horizontal - flaring out and draping over the feet. But not by much. Some other artworks are shorter and don't flare out, a small handful are longer and have bigger flaring out bits at the bottom.

I think my skirts on my red dress are probably not as bad as I think, so long as I stick to period shoes. You can see part of my shoes under it, but not all of them (and in some of the period artworks you can even see the heel of the foot), and the length is very practical for working in and outdoors use. Given that it is a working garment, I'm happy enough with the length. My green dress is often too short, but that's rather hard to measure as it depends how much I've bunched up the lacing at the sides on any particular day. I'll definately make the next court garment I make a cm longer than floor length though, just to be at hte other end of the scale. (to the despair of my laundresses).

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