|Size||Chest Measurement||Hip||Length (from shoulder)|
|One Size||fits up to 50″ / 127cm||fits up to 70″ / 178cm||66″ / 168cm|
Note: In our women’s clothes we’ve abandoned ‘standard’, modern sizing because it is far from standard, and tends to cause more confusion than provide accurate information. So, please judge your size by your chest and waist measurements. For this gown we’ve given only the maximum size range because the pleating gives an extremely flexible and flattering fit – it really does fit and look great on most sizes. Although it is made of yards of fabric with generous sizing the beautiful drape of the silk allows for a flattering fit in your size. Pair it with one of our tapestry stomachers to complete the look. The bliaut runs long so that you can wear it in the authentic fashion of the period – trailing along the ground or hem it to your desired length.
Silk colors: Black, Purple, Burgundy, Golden Brown, Dark Green, Emerald Green, Bright Blue
Burgundy-a dark brick red
Golden Brown -a rich gold-copper color
Dark Green -a rich, forest green
Emerald Green -a brilliant medium green
Bright Blue -an intense blue
Note: Please note, with the difficulty of accurately representing colors on a variety of monitors, the color names are meant as descriptions along with the swatches. Please use both when deciding on what color to order. Also, despite how the colors may appear on your monitor the same color names in Wool, Silk and Linen are different and do not exactly coordinate.
About our Bliaut
The Twelfth Century was an era of cultural and technical innovation that has been called both the High Middle Ages and the Little Renaissance. In southern France, troubadours wrote a new form of music that sang of courtly love, while the rough-and-ready knightly class adopted a new ideology of its own: chivalry. The brutality of the Crusades not only caused the birth of new, distant kingdoms and the new knighthood of the Knights Templar and Hospitallers, but reopened a gateway to the East that brought an influx of new ideas, technologies and materials. The great, Gothic cathedrals, universities, and the reopening of the silk trade were all children born of this new cultural flowering. It was also an age of legendary personalities, whose names have survived the centuries: Henry Plantagenet, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Richard the Lionheart, William Marshal, Saladin and the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa.
One such example was the new form of pleated bliaut that appeared in this period. The bliaut was one of the most elegant, and unique garments of the High Middle Ages. It had both male and female forms, and appeared in several variations. We have chosen a design for the lady that was popular during the youth of the redoubtable Eleanor of Aquitaine (1150s – 1160s) for its combination of style and comfort. The loose, airy dress has broad angle-wing sleeves and is naturally pleated throughout its length. It can be worn loose over a simple chemise, with a broad, double-wrapped belt, or in full, court ensemble with both belt and stomacher, a beautiful style that was unique to this period. One dress, three different styles! Based on contemporary artwork, and made in 100% China Silk, our pleated bliaut comes in a dazzling array of colors that are designed to coordinate with our Silk stomachers and double-wrapped belts. The perfect gown for both formal occasions and hot weather – it is both regal and extremely comfortable.
Drawing after sculpture from Bourge Cathedral, circa 12th century in Bourge, France
Drawing after the Effigy of Queen Clotilda, circa 12th century in Corbeil
Drawing after column sculpture on the portal of Chartres Cathedral, circa the 2nd half of the 12th century in Chartres, France
Directions for Pleating your Bliaut
- Hand wash separately
- Remove excess water by wringing, let dry slightly
- Twist body and arms, leaving neck edge free, twist around itself once more and secure end
- Leave to dry completely
- When dry, pleating is set
- Store rolled up to maintain pleating between wearings