Friday, February 11, 2011

Greek Clothing

A few years ago the household decided to go primarily Greek. As our main event each year is Pennsic, and Pennsylvania summers are ridiculously hot and humid, it only made sense to have most of clothing light, comfortable and linen.

The basic layer of Greek clothing is the chiton.  There are two forms of chiton, the Doric chiton and the later Ionic chiton. The "Doric" style was simpler and had no "sleeves", being simply pinned, sewn, or buttoned at the shoulder. The "Ionic" style was made of a much wider piece of fabric, and was pinned, sewn, or buttoned all the way from the neck to the wrists and the excess fabric gathered by the zone or girdled at the waist.

Some Doric style women's chitons

With himations, or wraps:

A men's chiton:

Chitons are probably the easiest garb in the world to make.  Most of these were made by cutting to the appropriate length, sewing up the open side, cutting one arm hole and hemming the raw edges.  The shoulders are tacked into place but can be fastened with ties or brooches.  The fancier ones are made by folding over the top to create a double layer.  The chiton is then gathered and belted as desired.  A himation can be wrapped in a variety of ways over the finished chiton. 

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