Welcome to the fifth Italian Renaissance Costuming Mini-Challenge. This challenge will run February 1 - 28, 2015, on the theme 'Turning Heads' - accessories for the head and face. The aim is to create one or more items that fit the criteria: 
  • an item in an Italian Renaissance style (for this purpose defined as c1450 - 1600) that was usually worn on the head or face: hats, veils, cauls, hairstyles, hooded garments, hair jewellery, earrings, masks, and makeup. I will also accept reproductions of period spectacles. If you have any questions, please email me.

How to Enter


All you need to do to register as a participant is to send me an e-mail (link below) providing your: 

  • legal name

  • location (state/province and country)

  • and a head and shoulders photo, all by no later than January 31, 2015.

Challenge Guidelines

  1. The item/s you enter must be started - from scratch - no earlier than February 1, 2015 (in your time zone).

  2. Your item/s need to be completed by February 28, 2015 (in your time zone).

  3. I will accept progress photos - that is photos of the in-complete item/s -  IF you wish to take and send them to me, as these are very useful for evaluation purposes. However, progress photos are NOT required.

  4. A photo of each completed item (or several photos if required) MUST be sent no later than March 1, 2015, so please ensure you have your camera, batteries, cables, etc., ready to use when you need them.

  5. A short write-up documenting your item/s period-accuracy and all hand-work done needs to accompany the photo/s. Please make sure that the e-mail address you use to email me is one that you use and check regularly so that I can contact you if needed.

If I've forgotten to address anything, or if you have any questions please ask before the challenge begins.


Only one winning item will be chosen, based on the following factors: period-accuracy (most important) hand-work (second in importance), and aesthetics (very subjective of course). The prize will be a Gift Certificate from the online retailer of the winner's choice, to the value of $US20, or $AUS20, or 15, or 15, to be provided by yours truly.

A little about the challenges. The inaugural Italian Renaissance Costuming Challenge (IRCC) ran from April to August 2011 in celebration of The Realm of Venus' tenth year online. It was the first challenge I had ever run, and a lot of fun for not only the participants, but for me too. I decided that since the IRCC leaves eight months of the year free, running a mini-challenge would allow for those who prefer a shorter, more focused challenge, or for those who want more! Thus was born the Italian Renaissance Costuming Mini-Challenge: a month-long challenge, usually on a theme voted on by those who participate on my Facebook Page

The first of our mini-challenges -  'Idle Hands', for items usually worn in or carried in the hand - ran in October, 2011. Subsequent mini-challenges have been 'Over and Above' (outer layers, Feb 2012), 'Perfectly Period Pink' (Anything in pink, for breast cancer awareness, Sept 2012), and 'Fabulously Fashionable Fur' (an item featuring fur, Jan 2014).


*These pages will be made available as necessary.

Banner image taken from: A Venetian Courtesan, 'Mores Italiae', 1575. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University, USA.




2001 - 2015 Anabella Wake (Known in the SCA as Bella Lucia da Verona) I hold copyright on all information on these pages, and on all images of clothing/costume that I have made. You are allowed to make one facsimile copy for your own use provided that this notice is included on each page. Please ask permission to copy, disseminate and/or distribute my work - I would like to know when and how you are finding this information of use.