15th Century Houppelande

15th Century Houppelande


The houppelande is made of green wool, lined with brown linen and partly lined and trimmed with grey fur. Underneath it I am wearing my orange kirtle and a white chemise. All visible seams have been handsewn.


15th Century Houppelande

Detail from The Deposition, painted by Rogier van der Weyden, ca.1435

Patterns used

No commercial pattern used.

More information

When I decided to attend a medieval market in november.I searched for the warmest costume I could find, the houppelande was on my wishlist so the choice was easy. A bigger problem was choosing what type of houppelande I wanted as there is a great variety in necklines and sleeves options for this costume. I love the look of the early houppelande with it's high collar and wide angel sleeves, but I am afraid it will make me look small and sturdy. With this version the neckline is still high but the sleeves are tight, which makes this costume both warm and practical.

My version of the houppelande is not the basic wide a-line dress as you often see. It is constructed like the Herjolfsnes coat (garment 63), described by Dame Helen in her Greenland theory. I had read that theory before making the herjolfsnes coat for my husband and when I was making the coat I saw that there was a lot of sense in what she was saying. I own a copy of the version sold by the Museum and I made the panels of the coat a little wider and the armscye smaller.

Alternate views

15th Century Houppelande

 (l)The following year I added fur to the hemline.


15th Century Houppelande

 15th Century Houppelande

The black leather belt is stamped with falling oak leaves and has a decorated pewter buckle and strap-end.It was purchased at the medieval market from Colin Kendall aka Maisie Nicholas. In the picture of my dress I am wearing the beautiful buckle on my back.

Costume made in 2004.