If you are interested in reenacting, you will want to know the types of clothes worn by the Vikings. It includes the armor and cloaks used, as well as the colors and textiles they wore. As a result, you will have an easier time dressing in this style.
Leg coverings were used to keep the legs warm and the trousers free of moisture. Some were knee-length, fitted, and full-length. Depending on the style, there could be elaborate gores around the crotch area and belt loops on the waistband.
Among the wealthier, more elaborate versions of these garments may have had embroidery along the edges. In addition to being functional garments, these garments were also worn to communicate social status.
The most common fabric for Viking clothing was wool. It was almost indestructible and was very useful for cold, harsh winters. However, leather was used occasionally for outer clothing.
Leather was also used to make footwear. Shoes were similar to ordinary booties, with soft soles and leather laces. A typical pair of shoes would last a couple of months.
During the winter, some women wore long cloaks draped over their shoulders. It kept them warm and concealed their weapons.
Other garments included smocks and tunics. Undergarments were made of linen, which was comfortable.
A cloak was one of the most famous pieces of clothing in the medieval world. Cloaks were large rectangular wool garments that covered the shoulders and arms. They provided protection from the cold, wind, or rain. The cloak was often lined with contrasting wool.
Cloaks and other types of apparel played other roles in society. They were also used to show rank or esteem in the community. And they could serve as a love token or a premarital love token.
During the Viking Age, the use of animal skins for warmth was common. Several cloaks, shawls, and jackets were made from fur. Other textiles were woven from worsted wool in twill patterns. The fabrics were attractively textured and dyed in vivid colors.
Men’s clothing textiles are a study topic with a rich archaeological record. Recent research suggests that linen was a standard fabric for outer garments.
Other fabrics were costly. Silk was imported from Asia, while leather was used occasionally for outer garments. It would have been difficult to import such fine materials into Scandinavia.
Another unusual technique used to make clothing was nalbinding. This method uses a spiral pattern to bind yarn. The result is a durable and nearly indestructible garment.
Using this technique, a man could construct a wide range of patterns. Interestingly, the nalbinding technique was not used for cloaks but for mittens and socks. Check Men’s Vikings Clothing to learn more about this.
Traditionally, the highest-class Vikings wore silk garments. For the lower social classes, the choice was wool.
The colors of Vikings’ men’s clothing were vibrant and varied. During this time, wool was the primary fabric for garments. These textiles were carefully woven and dyed, creating attractive, textured patterns.
Cloaks were an essential item of Viking men’s clothing. They were designed to cover the neck, shoulders, and hips. They were hung past the knees and secured with a brooch. Many cloaks were made of wool, but others were constructed from linen.
Other types of clothing included tunics, hats, gloves, boots, and shoes. Shoes were often made of leather and were comfortable. Some styles had built-in socks.
Men also wore undergarments. Trousers had no pockets and were held up by a belt. In some cases, they had elaborate gores in the crotch area.
A cloak pin could also be used to fasten the cloak. A ring-headed type was penannular, and a tri-lobed brooch was sometimes used.
Other fabrics included wool and linen, as well as leather and silk. Wool was woven with a twill pattern and often dyed in bright colors. Linen undergarments were more comfortable than those made of wool.
During the Viking era, various weapons were used to fight opponents. One was the seax, a long, heavy knife. It was a simple weapon, but it was considered a big deal in the era.
However, the most effective shields were designed to protect the wearer from harm. A Viking shield could be a meter wide and stout enough to withstand the rigors of battle.
Besides protecting the warrior from harm, the shield also showed off the warrior’s skill and bravery. Some Vikings painted their shields before battle to highlight their skills. Various colors were used to indicate different tribes and factions.
Some shields, such as the four-on-one mail or the byrnie, were used by professional warriors. Other shields were improvised. To protect against edged weapons, Vikings would often use thick padded leather garments.
In addition to the seax and the shield, other objects of interest were also worn on the body. These included antler grips for swords. They were expensive and a sign of high status.