Archive for the ‘SCA’ Category

A friend of mine is going to be elevated to the Order of the Pelican next month. For those who are in the SCA you will know what a huge honor this is. For those who who aren’t in the SCA, never mind. Just know that is is a pretty cool thing. I am arranging a vigil for him, and making him a new wool tunic. I’ve chosen a deep burgundy-purple wool for the tunic, and dark green linen for the pants. I have a light tan wool for the neck facing. I’ve used my poor drawing skills to trace an embroidery design around the keyhole neck. His device is acorns, so I’m using acorns as the focus in the design. I hope to use my handspun wool embroidery thread for most of it, but I will use a bit of commercial black silk to outline the motifs, and some store bought wool for the broad band of couchedwork at the edge for a border . Berwyn has an Anglo-Saxon persona from after the Norman Conquest. He’s not rabid about authenticity, so I think the pattern I have chosen will work. Now I have three weeks to embroider the collar and sew the tunic and pants. Wish me luck!


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This weekend I attended the coronation of Hrodir and Anne in the Shire of Orlova Dolina in the Kingdom of Northshield. It was a great day. I got to see old friends and spend time with almost everyone I wanted to. Except I didn’t get much of a chance to chat with Lusche or Daye. *pout*  But at least I got to say hello to Pete and Daye.    Lady Katherine d’Amiens is back in the Kingdom and was there for the event. So good to see her again!

During the last court of Tom and Sigrid they called Toramassa up and said they had something that belonged to him and they wanted to give it back.  Then they led Una, Toramasa’s wife, out and “gave her back” to him. She had spent the last year as their chamberlain.  Everyone got a good laugh out of that.

Tom and Sigrid stepped down and Hrodir and Anne stepped up.

Some great things happened. Kenric was raised to the order of the Pelican! A very deserved honor.  King Hrodir and Queen Anne swept into the eating hall and summoned him. As soon as he figured out that he was being put on vigil for the Pelican, his mouth literally fell open. Then he swore. This is the man that says maybe ten naughty words in a whole year.  It was fun to see. Too bad the only pictures I have of this are of his back. But I got a pic of his wife watching. They had some wonderful personal news too.

Speaking of good news, Patty Anne has a new job at last! I cannot imagine why other companies didn’t snap her up. She has more energy than any other ten people put together, she’s honest and generous  and works hard. So, she starts her new position October 1. She looked marvellous!

In other court news, Lady Asny Halfdansdottir is now the Honorable Lady Asny! She was inducted into the order of Bridget’s Flame. Dang! No pics of her. Too bad. She looked gorgeous as always.  Also, THL Kolbrunnr Gilsdottir was made a Baroness of the Court! Again, no pics of her. 😦  But her hat is so pretty, and it looks stunning on her curly red hair.

Last but not least is the news about Berwyn. Baron Berwyn was put on Vigil for Pelican at evening court. It was so clever. They had all the Pels up to make Kenric a Master of the Pelican, and just as it looked like everyone was going to sit down again Kenric turns to the King and say, “Your Majesty, I would like to beg  a boon.” 

King Hrodir, standing proud with his fur around his broad shoulders and his crown gleaming gold on his brow, said, “I know that as  a peer it is your duty and privilege to advise the Crown, but we didn’t expect you to begin RIGHT NOW.”

Gracious Queen Anne sat on her throne and waited with gentle courtesy for Master Kenric to continue.

Kenric, in his quiet, stubborn way, would not be disuaded from his duty. Anyone who knows Kenric knows that he will always fulfil his duties. 🙂 Quiet he may be, but when he sees a need or a hurt he will be relentless in remedying the matter.

Hrodir sighed theatrically. “Very well, if it is a right and proper thing…”

“Your Majesty.” said Kenric, “there is one in your realm whose service and virtues must be recognized. I would like to call to your attention the good Baron Berwyn…”

At which point the entire assembly roared while Baron Berwyn stood behind the throne with mouth agape and eyes popping.

And so it came to pass that Baron Berwyn was put on vigil for the Pelican. Here we are together in our matching purple silk Byzantine garb.

It was a wonderful event. Orlova Dolina, forever after this event known as the shire with the unpronounceable name, was grant full shire status. Countess Gwyneth was made a baroness of the court. Mistress Chonach (that’s probably a wrong spelling) was made a baroness of the court. Champions were made and oaths given. The feast was really good. The lentil, peas and hazelnut dry stew was surprisingly tasty, and I’m going to have to make the peas/bacon and barley dish myself sometime. I’m not a fan of lamb, but I liked that too.  The site was beautiful and the weather was great. A wonderful event all the way around.

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I am a part of the SCA, an educational not-for-profit organization that recreates the best parts of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The Society for Creative Anachronism is an international group, so chances are good there could be a group near you. The world is divided into Kingdoms, and each kingdom is divided into baronies and shires. I am a member of the Shire of Korsvag in the Kingdom of Northshield. There’s not much that I don’t like about it, but here are 13 things I love about it.

1. Playing dress up. I can wear a beautiful dress from the Italian Renaissance or Viking Age Scandinavia. I have more SCA garb than work clothes.
2. Being a Baroness of the Court. Is it small of me to enjoy wearing a silver and amethyst crown and having people call me “Your Excellency” ? It does wonders for a fragile ego.
3. Knights in Armor. Men in uniform are always hot. Sweaty too.
4. Knights out of Armor. Men out of uniform are hotter.
5. Watching fighting. This is possibly the greatest draw for non-SCAdians.
6. Making good friends. I know people from all over MN, WI, ND, SD, parts of Canada.
7. Learning the crafts of the Middle Ages like spinning, knitting, weaving.
8. Seeing other people’s pretty clothes and wonderful things they’ve made. It’s fun to see a 9th Century Viking warrior standing next to a 16th Century Englishwoman.
9. Learning court dances that are hundreds of years old.
10. Researching costume history. If my character is wearing an Elizabethan gown you can bet I’m pretty accurate in my descriptions, because I’ve sewn it and worn it.
11. Eating High Feast with five removes. Sometimes feasts last for hours. Removes (courses) are served with entertainment in between like singing or dancing or jugglers.
12. Chivalry, courtesy and grace. These are emphasized and held up as a standard in the SCA.
13. Bardic Circles. At night at camping events (and some non-camping events) bards gather around a fire and sing and tell stories, much as would have been done in period. I am not a singer but I am a story teller.

What hobbies do you have that take up a big chunk of your time and budget?

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As I’ve mentioned before, I’m in the SCA, a historical re-creation organization that focuses on the Middle Ages and Renaissance. One of the things we do is hold wars and battles. This weekend I went to a mini war in northwestern Northshield called Moorish Tavern. It is an annual event, aways held at the same campground near the Canadian border. There are battles, and feasting, and singing. And there is often rain, as was the case this year. The was a brief but furious downpour, with 40 mile an hour winds. Some tents were tested, and some were swamped, but none fell.

In addition to the usual fighting in armor with swords and shields, there was also a rapier tournament to determine who would have the honor of wearing the Princess’ Sleeve. The level of swords(wo)manship was outstanding. Sadly, in the final bout an accident occurred, resulting in Lord Marcus being rushed to the hospital with a dislocated knee. It must have been unbelievably painful, but he returned in a few hours on crutches and showed such high spirits and chivalry that the Princess named both he and Dona Margolit (his opponent during the final bout) as co-holders of the sleeve. She carefully cut it down the middle and gave half to each.
I was very excited to see Sir Yngvar, recently returned from Iraq.
Also, there is a lady whom I love as a dear sister and friend, the honroable lady Eabblean of Castel Rouge. She is generous to a fault, always making garb and giving gifts to her friends. So about a dozen of us got together and planned to make her some garb she has always wanted: an Elizabethan loose gown over a kirtle with all the appropriate jewelry, foot wear and head gear. She cried.
It was a wonderful weekend. I applied bug juice religiously, but it must have been wiped off mys feet by wet grass, because my feet look like smallpox victims. Yikes! Still, I had a great time!

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Crown Tourney

I spent Wednesday and Thursday reviewing what I had written, trying to catch errors and smoothing the rough edges. Today I printed off a couple copies of Sleeping With the Wolf to hand off to the proof readers at Crown. Even as I was making the copies I saw a few errors in spacing. Darn! Well, I’m not going to change anything now. I’ll let the proof readers get back to me with the errors they see. Tomorrow I’m off to the Northshield Crown Tourney. With the icy rain and snow (hello, spring in North Dakota!) I’m afraid the roads will be bad. A friend and I are leaving at 6:30am to hopefully be there by 10am for morning court.

What is a morning court and a Crown Tourney? I’m so glad you asked!  I’m in a historical re-creation group called the SCA. The SCA is an international organization that studies and recreates the Middles Ages and Renaissance just for fun. There are members all over the USA and Canada, and Europe, Japan, even Israel. The SCA has divided up the areas where members live and play into Kingdoms. I am in the region called the Kingdom of Northshield. Twice a year an armored tournament is held to determine the next King and Queen. We call that the Crown Tourney. The fighters are paired up and the winner of each bout advances to the next level until only two fighters are left. The winner of the last fight is the Crown Prince or Princess. Yes, women can fight and enter the Tourney to win the Crown. Not everyone in the SCA is a fighter. I am not a fighter. Many people do other cool things like brewing mead, making armor, sewing historical clothing, embroidery, woodworking, singing, jewelry making, blacksmithing weaving, cooking, spinning, book binding and illuminating books by hand… Just about anything that was done in period is done by someone in the SCA now. I myself am involved in various fiber arts like knitting, spinning and embroidering. I also make my own costumes. If I write that a character is wearing a Viking Apron Dress or a 16th century Florentine gown, you can believe I have a pretty good idea what that is like, because I’ve researched it, sewn it and worn it. See? Here’s an example of each:

For more info on the SCA go to my Kingdom’s homepage http://www.northshield.org/  or the Corporate homepage at http://www.sca.org/.

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