Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Court Ensembles Challenge by Démodé

Welcome all!

This is a blog about a costuming project. A very special project for that matter... Perhaps I'll just give a little background. I'm Petri and I've always been fascinated by history - art history, history of fashion, historical dance, food... you name it. Wars and shenanigans; not so much.  In recent years I've been very much into the 18th century and its dances and costumes in particular. The other person behind this project is Riikka aka Madamoiselle Sand, a professional entrepreneur, costumer and re-enactor. She doesn't blog, though, so that was left for me to do.

A while ago the awe-inspiring Kendra of Démodé threw a challenge to create an 18th century court ensemble and finish it in time for Costume College 2014. Any court, any country, male or female. Level of historical accuracy to be determined by the participants. I was like "wow". I've always wanted to have a court ensemble for myself! As we know, the formal menswear at the time was quite as over the top and ostentatious as the ladies' couture. The problem is, I couldn't put together a decent peasant outfit.

I was crying my heart out over facebook and all and was ready to bury my dreams and comfort myself with the thought of time and money saved. Enter Riikka, the hard working and slightly mad costumer who cannot resist a challenge when given one... We had a little talk (about which I might have to post more details later) and came up with this:

The "Gala" or formal variation of the Gustavian Swedish National Dress. Nordiska Museet via Wikimedia Commons.

Yes, we're crazy, why do you ask? Now I'll be off to claim the outfit for us and play the game of mad court ensembles!


  1. Fantastic! Now, if we could also get you to come to Costume College next year. :)

  2. Yeah, that'd be great, but it's very unlikely, though. But perhaps a Scandinavian court ensemble rendez-vous would be more feasible?

  3. There are actually a whole bunch of members of Gustafs Skål making the national suit at the moment, though I think all are making the black version. Anyway, there will probably be a themed party in Stockholm next year. :)

  4. Theme party, yay! How cool would that be?! Must attend... Perhaps other Finns might be tempted as well. Although you don't see too many national suits on this side of the gulf... but we can fix that!