The Eighth Annual Italian Renaissance Costuming Challenge

April 1 to July 31, 2018


Beatrice de Moreby
California, USA

My name is Beatrice de Moreby. I reside in California, U.S.A.

I am a novice in Italian Renaissance costuming, but not a novice to sewing. Ever since I seriously started following blogs that revolved around historical costuming, the SCA, and art history I have seen posts detailing entries to various historical costume challenges. Those challenges just seemed so fun. I'd already been overhauling my SCA persona and had settled on 1480-1500 Florence as my new period/region before finding this challenge, and I am so excited to participate. My planned outfit is inspired by the Annunciation of San Martino alla Scalla by Sandro Botticelli in 1481, though not meant to be a reproduction of it.

My proposed outfit:
1. A Camicia
2. A Gamurra (with sleeves)
3. A Giornea or Cloak
4. A set of two necklaces, and possibly a hair net and/or a pocket.

First Update

I chose to work on my undergarment for this first month. The camicia is made out of a lightweight cotton, gathered at the front and back. I used the "How to sew a Venetian Camicia" on The Realm of Venus as a starting point. As my cotton was more stiff than expected I cut the sleeves less full than is instructed. It has worked out rather well, as the stiffness in the cotton would make a fuller sleeved camicia uncomfortable when wearing a pair of sleeves with a gown.

Gusset in progress

I hate hems

Cuffs and cat

The finished camicia

Second Update

The red gamurra I am making is essentially finished, minus a few smaller details like sewing down seam allowances and tidying up loose threads. The bodice is lined with purple brushed twill for support. In the Annunciation painting I am using as inspiration, there is not enough of a view of the bodice for any indication whether the gamurra is front laced or side laced. However there are other pieces of art around the time the Annunciation was painted that show front lacing gamurras. Three of those women are clearly wearing front lacing gamurras. My gown is front laced in keeping with the style of those paintings. The accompanying sleeves are, unfortunately, not quite finished in time for this month's update.