Make a Simple Medieval Dress

This dress is based on simple shapes and uses remarkably little fabric. Most people can get the size they need out of 3m of a standard 60″ wide fabric.

Choose a decent linen or fine wool for accuracy, but the dress will also make up well in more
fun fabrics such as velvet or furnishing brocade.

The pattern is broadly based on fourteenth century examples excavated in Greenland and adapted  very slightly for ease of manufacture.


This layout is the one I use but the shapes are simple enough to juggle on the fabric.

Wider gores will give a fuller skirt, and you may wish to shape the sleeves and avoid an under-arm gore.


Cutting Out:
Cut four panels about 30cm wide using the full fabric drop. This allows for a  finished bust size of up to 42″, if you need a larger size,make the panels wider.

Cut four gores 60cm by 100cm (one will be in two pieces)

Cut two sleeves 30cm by 60cm

Cut two kite-shaped gores approx 30-20cm

Sew the gores to the panels.

Pin shoulders and try on. Mark neck and shoulder.

Trim body of dress to make shoulders fit, sew shoulders.

Sew in sleeves and underarm gores. Turn dress inside out and try on.

Take in sleeves, back seam and under bust opening to fit.

Finish seams, hem neck , hem and bodice opening and add lacing to complete.


Patterns for shifts, aprons, head coverings etc may be found in my booklet Making Medieval Underwear, a practical guide, available from the shop for just �£2