Sunday, 20 September 2009


My son Philip has taken up sword fighting and he decided that the protective garment he need to wear under his leather armour looked like it had been made out of one of mum's quilts....
After looking at a number of pictures on the internet I found these great instructions by "Inga the Unfettered"...
This gave me somewhere to start.
Particular issues that Philip asked me to consider is that he live in Sydney Australia and in summer it is hot. Therefore I took the option of detachable sleeves so that they could be easily removed to allow him to cool down - this also meet the need for free arm movement at the shoulder. The thickness of the gambeson is variable - double thickness being in the areas that get more blows: the upper arms, shoulders. The kidney area is has a double thickness wide belt that is worn under the main gambeson - and is designed for removal between fighting bouts because of the heat. The elbows are a single layer of fabric as he wears metallic guards of this area and so thinner is better for ease of movement and heat. I found that I need to add pleats in the shoulders and in the lower back to get it to sit right while having enough fabric in the upper back to allow him to move freely.
I chose to quilt my fabric first as I have a large quilting frame - and doing it this way is easier on my back and neck. I used about 2.4 meters of fabric at 1.2m wide and nuwool wadding. (Nuwool wadding is 80% wool and 20% polyester so it will not shink or felt)


  1. Very cool. Well done. :)

    Design a great day,
    Janet M. Davies - New Zealand

  2. Good serviceable jacket! Our sons get us to do things out of the ordinary I am making and embroidering a surcoat (long sleeveless coat with stand up collar in velvet) like Aragorn wore in Lord of the Rings for Son's Celtic style wedding.

  3. Dear FranC, i would love to see a picture of the jacket when it is finished

  4. Praises to his good mother and her powerful needle. May he vanquish all foes and defend all honor in such a grand garment.
    Yours in Service,
    Leslie in Maine
    aka Lady Gwendloyn of Albion

  5. very similar to the one I made my son Nathan. He is a heavey fighter with a SCA group in Sydney.

  6. It looks fabulous! Well done that girl.
    Have sent your link onto another fightin' man!


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