a bon fine- not anne of cleves motto

I think in Anglo-centric writings and art history there has been a lot of context missing when interpreting the clothing depicted in the portraits of Anne of Cleves.

I have also been looking through modelbuchs at embroidery and found some patterns that seem to be used in art (if not in entirely there are deer/hart that look to be worked in a similar fashion.

I was not able to find any pattern for the scrolling embroidery/weave of the fabric of Anna’s haube which reads “abon fine.”

This phrase has been interpreted to be her personal motto. However this same pattern is found on the clothing of other women across the Germanic states.

https://www.hampel-auctions.com/a/Conrad-Faber-Faber-von-Creuznach.html?a=80&s=193&id=80756&acl=770796

Conrad Faber, “Faber von Creuznach”
PORTRAIT EINER JUNGEN FRAU
Tempera/ Öl auf Holz.
53,5 x 38,5 cm.

Conrad Faber was active in Frankfort, which is to the South and East of North Rhine.

 

The motto also appears on the brusttuch of Barbara Schellenberger in a portrait by Hans Burkmair.

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hans_Burgkmair_d._%C5%BD._-_Barbara_and_Hans_Schellenberger_-_WGA03702.jpg

Barbara and Hans Schellenberger
Date Barbara: 1507, Hans: 1505
Current location
Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, room 11

Burkmair was active in Augsburg and this portrait is of an Augsburg citizen.

Here the phrase is “a bon fino” In all cases “a bon” is contracted to read as “ABON.”

And on one of my favourite gowns of one of my favourite women in fashion history:

http://www.hdbg.de/portraitgalerie/gemaelde-18-zoom.php

Bildnisdiptychon -Rechte Tafel: Bildnis der Maria Jacobaea von Baden, Herzogin von Bayern
Maler: Hans Wertinger
Datiert: 1526
Bild: Öl auf Holz, 69 x 45 – Inv.-Nr. 18

Of special interest is that his appears to be worked in pearls while the previous seem to be woven or embroidered in dark silk on gold, or may even be gold work.

Anne of Cleves has this motto in a similar pattern (capitalised on a geometric scroll effect outline, worked in alternating diagonal directions on a wide band.

Holbein’s portrait quite clearly show the design worked in red on gold. This may be woven as are most bands on hauben from this region. Most commonly they are purely geometric designs but of a similar scale.

Bruyn in particular captures the gold threads of woven patterns of women of Cologne.

St John’s copy of the Bruyn portrait (note the portrait I believe to be the original has a flat pearled baret masking the view of her haube. I believe the copies to not include the hat are copies as they do not perfectly represent the Stickelsche as it appears in work direct from Cologne. )

The design is worked upside down in comparison to all others (and this is repeated in other copies.) It is also worked in a pale colour, in the small digital copies it appears white or off white.

So this leads me to the most recently discovered potential portrait of Anna.

https://www.artuk.org/discover/artworks/anne-of-cleves-15151557-queen-consort-to-henry-viii-134673

 

This portrait certainly matches facial features quite closely, and the haube looks the same as those in other Bruyn copies.

However after a decade or more of looking at North Rhine paintings what sticks out to me is that this is absolutely not the clothing of Nobility of Cleves, Julich, and Berg. This is absolutely perfect for middle class clothing of Cologne. Very wealthy but very clearly of someone affected by sumputary laws.

Red velvet sleeves and busttuchs are found repeatedly in inventories/documents of burgersfrau of Cologne.

The pendant is absolutely of a common shape, the girdle of a common type, the single wide chain necklance. Even the black on black fabric of her goller (kleyr) and gown.

The partlet under her gown is likewise of a type that puts her firmly in the city of Cologne.

It is also quite late in style. I would put this at 1550s. But this stage the Stickelsche (Sticklenchen) starts to look like a wing nut with a flat top and not just width at the upper side but lower side and is quite flat in regards to depth.

Commemorative paintings are not unusual, what is unusual is to lower the apparent status of the subject. Gold brocade trim on the gown at the very least would mark the subject as of nobility.

The painting looks from the surface to be from Bruyn’s workshop. The curved top of the canvas, the shaded plain background, the flat table top in front of the subject. These are also seen in the other copies of the other Bruyn painting.

Without access to information about the painting itself this asks many more questions than it answers.

In all the copies the words are upside down and in pale paint on warm gold. Could this indicate they are painted by someone not familiar with the physical properties of these hauben? Could that indicate they are all copies from outside of her homeland?

If so how can the details of this portrait match so well to the garments of burgersfrau of Cologne?

If this is by Bruyn (possibly the younger) does this mean the princesses could have worn clothing not indicative of their wealth? Or is this a deliberate statement?

Or could it be simply a portrait of an unrelated woman from Cologne?

There is very little in the way of imagery of real people from Cleves, Julich, and Berg from this time to be found online or printed in books. I have been very lucky to have a copy of the inventory of Jocabe of Juelich-Kleve-Berg but it is very definitely from a time where the Spanish influence has nearly overwritten the local clothing style. I have also been lucky enough to find/be lead to collections of inventories of women of Cologne.

A future blog post will explore the artwork of the Duchy, specifically those of the Duchess Maria and her Daughters (Sibylla, Amalia, and Anna.)

looking into jewelry making

So I spent all of Saturday wiring small filigree pieces for my Amalia of Cleves ensemble. I was thinking of taking the velveteen off and putting brocade on, but then I may as well go whole hog and make the frock described by Hall for Anna. I have very big glass pearls to potentially work for the decoration. (I spend all day yesterday asleep because I totally forgot my body is in the chronic phase of my disease which means it’s a bit sneakier.)

I made the pieces match the rest of the pieces I had already made. I have run out of flowers but have a few different kinds.

And that is a smaller gold borstlap made more rigid I think it will be fine over my current front lacing leibchen/mieder/ and will work with a side lacing version too.

 

I’m finding more and more information to understand their clothing- most of which support of my theories- some were a bit out there but I seem to have been right :). In the mean time also better understanding about Cranach so that I can get that part of The Frazzled Frau back. (I have a cunning plan- it changes a little but I think I have it 🙂

Anyway. I am loving the pieces, and how I matched them, and stylistically they would pass with maybe a few “where did you get that from” if people got close. But ultimately I like them.

 

But I now have a really good feel for the scrolling shapes of the style, and have a few pieces that can mix and match. So I think it’s time to actually sculpt. And I may even be able to try something else that I think is very needed.

I think lost wax is the most appropriate method so that means making a silicone mold after sculpting so that I can reproduce them.

 

I want to do this part myself but will need help with the molding process as I do want these in metal so as to feel the same as the original- possibly be the same as many originals. If you ever go on ebay- take a look at the small metal findings of brass and bronze rings. There are so many they are actually affordable for collecting now.

I have my own small bronze seal that appears to have a squirrel on it.

 

Also I was going to do this in 3D. And I may still. I wasn’t sure how to do scrolling and petal shapes. Well okay actually I do know. I can do the basics in Sketch up and detail in  But I do know how to carve wax to those shapes.

 

And it’s very exciting. But it means getting all my research up as I go or no one will know why I’ve done something the way I did.

 

 

cleves headgear

I still need to do some tidying, and I am definitely making a few more of these, so it’s not totally complete right now. I need to sit it slightly further forward too.

 

(Wearing my Kimmy Schmidt cardigan because it’s so much part of my new me- allowing myself to wear several colours at once.)

I added more pearls yesterday to the embroidery of the pink hat and sewed up the brim.

 

The seam allowance was caught through all layers with a pick stitch every 2″ which anchored the gathering running stitch into short curves that follow the edge. The prick stitches are nearly invisible on the other side.

The pearls were removed from the frame. I made two more circles of the same heavy duty fusible/shape-forming material to add extra support the pearl platter shape and basted a layer of shot silk to the inner most circle.

Then clipped the extra fabric to the same depth and gathered to create the turn under.This was easy as the support circles kept the shape perfectly.

I bound the edges and trapped the gathers in place. The silk is bias cut. I used to also believe this was fairly wasteful until I started to think like a workshop. Bias is not at all wasteful if you use a short length over several projects.

As an example. The skirt for the gown that this hat is made for used 3m of velveteen for the hem guarding. That is more than I used in the skirt. It is in part because I was cutting on the fly but I kept my seam allowance to a minimum.

But I used three strips of bias tape for the hem facing and about the same for the underskirt. And I have a lot of silk left over.

So, think about how many projects you can use your bias strips for and dedicate a length to that 🙂

 

The cap was pulled apart a few nights ago during a bit of insomnia and then I got to test a few lengths of brocade.

I decided on a denser piece of the same saree I used originally on this form. And I used the same silk as used in the bias tape to tidy the inside. I do not have any curved needles but I found a cheapie one that could be bent and oh they are perfect for this kind of seam.

 

The internal part of the headpiece can be of two shapes. This curved edge is seen in both linen and silk versions but I haven’t seen it with the flat cap as well. Only with a fairly pointed piece to put a jeweled strip over.

 

Sorry for the use of English terms. I don’t want to use terms that come from the area as I’m not convinced we have them correct. All the terms at this point are in a bit of fluidity. i think I’m getting closer and will do a proper run through very soon.

pearling

I had to tidy my current costume stash and workroom. My workroom luckily was just some sweeping, I thought I left it in a more turned over state. So hooray!

But I have had to sort my entire stash to be able to find things. But I do now have everything in order of Want To Do 🙂 So I’m also making sure I actually do stuff now 🙂

So Netflix and Craft today. More pearls on my little hat and also to make up little hat.

my pink cleves gown and some inspiration behind it

From Facebook: Emily Gibbs‎ to Canterbury Faire 201829 January at 19:58 · Kaikoura Suburban, New Zealand

I am so inordinately happy with this! It has everything I love about the Cranach Saxon style with the weirdness of everything in the Nordrein (North Rhine.)

But it is weird. I’ll break down all the weirdness as I go but of note is the tone on tone. I deviated a little from the original, or rather combined two (three) figures in one. So the pink ground of two and the crimson velvet borders of another.

But tone on tone is very definitely part of this region, especially in the red/pink tones. And especially as velvet on a flat fabric.


Bildnis einer Frau 
Zuordnung:kölnisch
Datierung:um 1555/1560Sachbegriff:Gemälde
Sammlung:Köln, Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Sammlungskontext: Stiftung Dr. Hubert Dormagen / Kerp, Inventar-Nr. WRM 3300, Zugang: 1980.12.31, Dauer: ab 1980.12.31

Kostüme der Männer und Frauen in Augsburg und Nürnberg, Deutschland, Europa, Orient und Afrika – BSB Cod.icon. 341
Publishing place: Augsburg
Year published: 4. Viertel 16. Jh.
Pages: 384
BSB Call Nr.: Cod.icon. 341
Project ID: BSB-Hss Cod.icon. 341
URN: urn:nbn:de:bvb:12-bsb00011752-7

Thuringen, I am not sure, Cologne (see what I mean by variations of spelling!)

So this is just one manuscript, and the Cologne image might be shot gold and red, but it is from the period. this is a hand drawn costume book, so little concern about it being coloured in at a later date. This work is full of pink as a main fabric. Full. But I am specifically looking for the tone on tone elements.

The Triumph of Maximillian is another illustrated book full of pink. But here again I have limited to tone on tone in red/crimson.

 

Title Triunfo del Emperador Maximiliano I, Rey de Hungría, Dalmacia y Croacia, Archiduque de Austria :… de quien están descritas y colocadas en esta colección las acciones gloriosas de S.M. Imperial, durante su vida…
Date entre 1501 y 1700?

Edition S.XVI-XVII Type Manuscrito

Subject Maximiliano I, Emperador del Sacro Imperio Romano Germánico

Page 96 and 97 and 97 again.

(these are huge zoomable images)

 

 

 

(Royalty Guide and Wikicommons respectively)

Sophia von Mecklenberg, married the Duke of Brauchweig, part of estphalia and so also has the mix of influences.I did not know of this image until today, however I am familiar with the two pieces of stonework depicting her in a very similar dress- I had it set aside as research for the sleeves, this confirms that the sleeves are weird, hooray! She was buried in Cell an

But the colours are nearly identical to my frock 🙂 So that is exciting. I was working with a limited range of fabric.

I knwe of her through the following images from Bildindex (handy hint, grabmal is a great search term for looking for images

 

Grabplatte der Herzogin Sophia von Mecklenburg
nach 1541 Grabplatte, Grabskulptur,  Sandstein

Standort: Celle, Kirche, Evangelisch-lutherische Stadtkirche Sankt Marien, Chor

Gedächtnis: Sophia (Mecklenburg, Herzogin) Herzogin Sophia von Mecklenburg war die Gemahlin Ernst des Bekenners

Also a full 3d view

  

Epitaph des Herzogs Ernst des Bekenners und seiner Frau Sophia, Herzogin von Mecklenburg
Cornelis Floris (2) (Werkstatt) 1576 Epitaph, Grabskulptur Alabaster

Standort: Celle, Kirche, Evangelisch-lutherische Stadtkirche Sankt Marien, Chor (Nordwand)

Gedächtnis: Ernst (Braunschweig-Lüneburg, Herzog) Gedächtnis: Sophia (Mecklenburg, Herzogin)

So side track aside there are many more examples of red based tone on tone garments of the wider region.

 
Both by Noclas Neufchatel.

Brady hart Gallery and wikicommons and liveinternet respectively.

These are of course from Nuremberg and so are quite a distance, but we see the range of tones for tone on tone (also the red dyed braids!!!)

 

1516 Circle of Hans Holbein the Younger (1497-1543) Portrait of Dorothea Meyer, wife of Jakob Meyer zum Hasen (Basel)

From Barbara Wells Sarudy’s post about winter clothing

Kunstauktionshaus Schloss Ahlden GmbH 2017 

Christoph Amberger
(Um 1505 Nürnberg – 1561/62 Augsburg) attr.;
Portrait der Maria Hieronymus Sulzer

This is much more suble, and leaning towards the crimson on yellow seen at about the same rate.

 

so pink and crimson works

Yesterday was a bad luck day. It started with a health wobble (very old one, and it was definitely a whole lot better than it used to be) Mr Carlo going missing, rain, pale mamma duck lost one more duckling, I couldn’t find the glass jars I know one of the cheapie stores in Westfield or outer shops has, then my rheumy appointment was cancelled as I was already out there and finally Spotlight did not have any black velveteen which is what I wanted my pink Cleves gown trimmed in.

But they had a very dark maroon-crimson which actually I really do dig as a tone on tone type of deal. The colour and texture is definitely found in inventories- mainly as sleeves- and also in some illustrations. So I really only am unsure if that specific combo is okay. But the Duchy of Kleves, Julich, und Berg was much brighter and more in the Saxon mold than Cologne which was a free city and thus did not have any aristocracy and so portraits tend to show much more sober colour schemes. But I have seen a sort of lilac, lots of warm and cool red, and even a yellow gown on figures representing real people. Religious figures then to have much more

It also ended in Mr Carlo rushed to the vets as he was dealing with septicemia. He is a tiny kitty, about half the weight of any other cat I have met. So he is more delicate than he thinks and injuries are a lot harder on him.

 

Today we were hit harder by the storm and pale mamma lost all her babies in the wind. But she has just brought them around again a few hours later. Mr Carlo is a lot happier, he is liking pats and even tummy scritches. So today is much better.

I even finally scanned my passport photos and finished my online application so that is great.

Also Mr Ginger Fluff is sheltering on my bed from the storm. He is finally starting to properly rest.

 

So I feel okay about sitting and sewing today.  It’s been a slow morning for the above reasons but it’s still productive.

more clevische kleidung

Today I got my lining put together and pinned into the pink Cleves skirt, reshaped my hulle and steamed it into a nice curve (yep, millinery, so much steam and pressing and more steam and the stink of ammonia, and lanolin, and and more steam.) I have set it aside so I can make another pressing shape as my wulsts are really squishy.

And I did manage to tidy some of my inventory files. It’s still heavy on accessories other than hats and garments other than gowns. Which are you know, the most important part.

But I may also have a lead on looking for secondary texts. Gewand is used a fair amount so I’ve been brute force searching.

Meanwhile I do need to actually put those files in their proper places and transcribe them.

 

Of course the very best files are photos of documents but they are not of a resolution that I can read them. Which is annoying.

 

But, that is a lot of ironing of line lining and wool hat so… i’ll get that put away and get the files in place.

a new hat

I am going full Cleves all the time 🙂 Ever since I read Anne of Cleves by Mary Saaler I have wanted to make all the outfits described as hers. I haven’t hit a jackpot in terms of a list of her wardrobe before she left for England but Hall cronicles her appearance enough. And I have gone and read a digitised reprint and it seems to ring true. But before all that I am trying to make a hat seen in my favourite protrait of her.

 

This was sold in London in 1930 and disappeared until The Rosenbach recently revealed that they had this portrait, https://rosenbach.org/blog/long-lost-triplets/ (Please note I have tried to adjust the perspective). This shows a gold coloured baret over a gold covered stickelsche with pearlwork (the colours can be identified in the Rosenback photos while the details can be seen in the copy from Saaler.

The St Johns University portrait. On the left from Saaler, on the right a photo directly of the portrait as per the Art Fund websitehttps://artuk.org/discover/artworks/anne-of-cleves-223303

 

The St John’s Portrait is the one that is was X-rayed and discovered that her nose was originally painted longer. Of course historians have take that to mean he nose was made smaller to flatter. I believe it to simply have been a mistake. The Rosenbach portrait is clearly the most sensitively and deftly painted of all these portraits.

 

There are a few files of the St John’s portrait that are of different contrast levels. However I do believe this to be a different copy. It is clearly different based on the fall of the shadows of the fruit and the gloves. The tacks around the edges of the painting are not in the same position as the St John’s painting either.

https://web.archive.org/web/20030315083403/http://www.asn-ibk.ac.at:80/bildung/faecher/geschichte/maike/bilderkatalog/tudors_stuarts/abb20p.htm

Most files are now over at: http://www.kleio.org/ except this portrait. So I do not know the provenance.

This is from a photograph at the Witt Library and is part of an article in Burlington Magazine, “A Portrait of Anne of Cleves” March 1992, issue 134 pages 172-175. This is the only copy that keeps the three rows of brocade of the skirt- the majority of skirts of this region overlap so the three rows make sense in this light.

And this is a copy at Hever Castle itself. https://www.hevercastle.co.uk/news/6th-january-1540-henry-viii-married-anne-cleves/

 

So that is five copies of this portrait from close to her time in England- though in absolutely classic dress from her home. The mix of Dutch and Saxon styles is particularly clear.

 

another wrinkle sorted

I have been trying to work out a way to have fancy chemise sleeves as per my Cleves dress and just was getting very lost. Until I remembered that I already have the solution. pins!

This is my c1560s woolen Cologne gown. This is taken pretty much from the de Bruyn Trachtenbuch. So the skirt overlaps at the front to allow it to be worn open or closed. The sleeves are half length with matching hanging sleeves. The sleeves are actually half length and then matching hanging sleeves pinned on.

This is not totally interpretive. Hanging sleeves are listed separately in inventories and it is possible to see the pins in the woodcuts.

(A. de Bruyn, citizens from Cleves.)

Okay so they look more like thumbtacks here, on the far left, but that curvy line is also seen in obviously pinned on fitted sleeves (also found in inventories.)

Note also the watered silk lining on the far left. And what is a likely glossy lining on the far right. Note the turn backs of the sleeves and skirt. And the short sleeves over fitted sleeves. This is a fantastically modular wardrobe,

(A. de Bruyn, citizens of Cologne)

So you can see my wool gown is much more Colone in style but uses the Cleves plate for the pins information. I think other plates show pins used horizontally, which is how I use mine.)

The sleeves for my earlier Cleves dress are probably held on in a similar way. I’m assembling my current cache of images and documents to see if it does have support not just makes sense. It is also helping me figure out how to use my decorative under sleeves as well. No one puts brocade or heavy embroidery on something direct to the skin or part of a washing chemise.

So, very excited, I’ll be able to make more sets of hanging and under sleeves for my earlier dresses which makes them possible to be worn for a week long event.

cleves redo

I am remaking my linen Cleves/Cologne dress into a simple kirtle. To do this I removed the half length sleeves and turned the seam allowance under. I over handed the red linen and canvas layers to the canvas layer, then turned the seam allowance of the black linen lining and overhanded the edge to the previously turned seam allowances.

I also unpicked my overhanded waist seam to move the overlapping skirt edges to line up with the fastening end of the bodice.

I will need to cut down the neckline as the high curve is after 1550, while a slightly dipped square neck is more appropriate pre-1550.

Otherwise it’s very much the same- perfectly round waist, skirt fullness directed to the back. Side seams that appear to be in line with the back of the arm, very stable neckline.

Later the bodice appear to lengthen a little but it’s actually more to do with a more vertical bodice line- once you pull the body in tighter the bust is raised and the neckline creeps up. Narrower shoulderline completes the apparent lengthening.

Ideally that is 🙂 In reality bodies resist most extreme changes so I ‘m going to remove the hooks and eyes and add lacing rings so I can leave the kirtle open a little in front to soften the torso shape.

The skirt front gets an additional pleat that points to the back to reflect some of the artwork in costume books of the time.