Thursday, May 7, 2009


Just created a twitter account. I need to see how this stuff works, and see if we can get our group into the 21st century.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Pencel Picture

Company Saint: Julian the Hospitillar (depiction of the pencel based on an extant Flemish work)
Design: Speculative
Company Color: Violet (based on letter to Louis XI describing Charles' Companies of Ordinance)
Execution of design: Jorge Kelman of the Guild of St. Luke in the UK.
Method: gesso and gold leaf with paint on silk

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Pincel for the Armet

Bob's custom and historically made pincel arrived about two weeks ago. This piece is absolutely stunning. Jorge out did himself. This little symbolic flag of the 10th company of the ordinances, though speculative, is probably one of the most accurate flags of it's type out there. A few modernisms such as fabric dye and some modern pigment (historic ones were highly toxic) are the only things that keep this from being 100%.

The saint image is speculative but based on an extant 15th century Flemish image of St. Julian the Hospitaller and works very well. This image of St. Julian in the boat with his wife and a traveler was chosen as we did not want to be mistaken for another company of the ordinance with St. Eustace as the hunter.

I will post pictures shortly.

Few things in the Project Hopper

Medieval Canon: gun tube purchased. Bill and Bob are looking at the mods and will hopefully have it ready for 2009 and participation in a live fire artillery shoot.

Medieval repro scabbards: Bob has had one made for his Del Tin Tewkesbury sword. It looks tres fab. He's had some additional stuff done to the sword to dress it up, such as having it regripped and having something really special done to the pommel and is also have new and proper sword belts made. He is also have his rondel dagger redone. The blue has been removed and it's having a new sheath and belt made.

My sword will be going out shortly for the scabbard, belts, and having a special mark put on the blade.

My archer's glove is on it's way from the UK. This is the 3 fingered variety as seen in a Flemish tapestry (can't think of the name at the moment -but will post it when I remember).

We're still waiting for Matuls to arrive.

So things are moving a long.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Review: Arms & Armor German Branch Sword

Arms & Armor

Location: US


German Branch Sword

Catalog No.: 078

Arms & Armor’s German Branch Sword, (Gothic Bough or Writhen) is a “riding” or “arming” sword meant for every day use. The sword’s original measurements were based on desperate sources which proved to be incorrect and Arms and Armor has updated the blade to its accurate dimensions.

The original, owned by the Royal Armouries in Leeds, now on loan to the Frazier museum in Kentucky, is a branch style sword. The pommel has a twist with three pruned branches. The grip ends in a washer and is peened. The grip is a carved wood with a roped fillet ring mid-grip. The guard is also a twisted branch that terminates in three pruned ends. The blade itself is long, with an overall length of 43 and 3/16" and tapers to an acute point. All the furniture is gilt. (on my sword all the furniture is steel with no gilding.)

My branch sword is a slight modification on that in the Arms & Armor catalog. I chose not to go gilt on the furniture; instead, the pommel, guard, and fillet ring are naked steel. The wooden grip is nicely carved in a twisted branch form and is oval in cross section; fitting the hand well. The color is a warm caramel brown with a glossy finish. The blade is long and elegant and definitely made for thrusting and cutting. Its balance point is approximately 1.5 - 2 inches from the guard. It is light, weighing in a little fewer than three pounds, and is quick, making an impressive sound as it cuts the air. Its lightness will make it an ideal weapon for practicing cuts from horseback.

Bob just happened to do a test thrust, and with barely any effort at all, it slid into and through a box, and if you’ll pardon the cliché, it was like a hot knife through butter. Part of this is due to the fact that it came “sharp”, and I don’t mean in the “un-sharp sharp” of re-enactment blades since. This sword is designed to cut. The edges have been honed to razor sharpness, something to be aware of if you order.

Hopefully in the next few weeks, we will put it through its paces on horseback.

The sword lacks the dark grip I had asked for, looking for a more “black and white” coloration rather than the coloration of the extant piece. Not a huge disappointment, but it would have been nice. However, on the plus side, it doesn’t have any kind of smith mark. So, in order to make the sword truly unique among other re-enactment blades ordered from the same source, I am having a smith’s mark placed on it and it will have a custom, historic scabbard to finish it off.

I will post pictures when I have the chance.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

WPI Filming

A big Thank You
to everyone from WA who participated at the WPI Higgins Filming. We had an interesting weekend. Wolfe Argent has been involved in a Higgins/WPI video project that started back in the Fall with the horses and dealt with medieval "shirt fighting" and a high table scene this past weekend. It was fun and hectic. We were treated to dinner afterward.

Our weekend began with the purchasing of various edibles for the high table. We decided to make a pottage. The favorite has become "Savory Green Soup" from the book Pleyn Delit. Anyone who has had this soup absolutely loves it and cannot stop eating it...even cold. It's delicious.

We bought a lovely roast and just put a rub of salt and pepper on it and put it in the rotisserie. It came out medium rare and had a very mild flavor. Sometimes the simple spices work the best.

On Sunday, Bob and I loaded my car, a dodge of the stratus type. You'd be amazed at how much stuff you can fit into this car. In the trunk, three LARGE tupperware containers of clothing, in the back seat, the delicate trestles for a table, the robust trestles for a larger table, a legged bench chest that contained the board clothes, pewterware for the high table, napkins, glasses, mugs, bowls, cutlery; and a vast wardrobe of uppercrust clothing for various extras on the set. Alas, we needed a second car for the board itself, plus other members kit and accessories.

Arriving at the museum, we off-loaded the car. When the museum closed, we were off and running. With the help of Rachel and Renie, I put on my full regalia: brocade and velvet under gown, silk modesty panel, brocade foliate overgown, Yorkist livery collar, broad belt, and hennin with long silk veil. Rachel wore my other Burgundian gown and flowerpot hennin. Despite the fact that the gown was a few sizes to large, it looked all right.

We became the members of the aristocracy who sat in on a Master teaching his students (extras) and became the focal point for the high table. Andy and Pieter did a wonderful job as carver and butler. The book of Carving came in quite handy.

After the dust had settled, we packed the car, changed, and sat down to a lovely dinner provided by the museum as a thank you to the volunteers.

We didn't get home until almost 10 pm and then many of us took off the following Monday due to a snow storm that dumped a foot of snow in our area. Weee...

Here are some behind the scenes Photos. Keep in mind that any photos will contain modern objects as these are set up and after shoot photos.


Tuesday, November 6, 2007

From the Desk of the Coustillier

Hi all,

Renie has been doing some footwork and an event that she participated at a few weeks ago may result in two things:

1. An event site for a living history encampment/event
2. Insurance

I have to say that item 2 is a huge deal.

Bob's contacted the site owners, and it was a positive contact. Only issue is that since the days are getting darker earlier, Bob and I can't review the site during the weekdays, as by the time we got to the site, it'd be dark, and with the approaching holidays, it'd be difficult. Bob suggested a weekend, but they are having too major events there and then it's Thanksgiving. So we'll be waiting until after the turn of the year.

But this could be the opening we've been waiting for. Keep your collective fingers crossed.