Useful Medieval Links and Resources

General Information

Netserf- a clearinghouse of internet links and resources covering almost every topic: Archheology, Famous People, Cultures and Laws, it is your best starting place for doing indepth research on the internet about the Middle Ages.

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Picture Galleries

* Warning! Many of these files are large in size and may take a long time to load for those with slower internet connections.
Currently being updated, visit the Manuscripts & Illuminations section for many illustrations of daily life and people.

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Do-It-Yourself Costumes

Sites that provide Instruction, Patterns and How-to's for basic medieval garb

Independent Pattern Companies - these are smaller companies that offer more historically accurate patterns that are often much simpler to sew than most commercial patterns. Quality of instructions and service vary though. Below are a handful of the many smaller companies out there:

Long Ago Patterns -Medieval and Rennisance Patterns from various independent pattern companies.

Free Bassic Patterns for Ladie's Medieval Clothing -For the intermidiate sewer, printable cutting diagrams to layout on fabric, perfect for basic wardrobe.

Commercial Pattern Companies- while the advantages of being able to find these patterns at almost any local fabric store and even on sale are great, often these patterns are more difficult than necessary and not very accurate. If you are more comfortable using a pattern company you know, than you can find acceptable medieval patterns under the "Costumes" section of each catalog, usually toward the back.

Simplicity Patterns
McCalls Patterns
Butterick Patterns

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Buying or Renting Costumes

Websites and Address of Rental Companies within the Tri-State Area. Also includes sites that sell afforadble costumes.

Most costume rental companies have a small selection of medieval or renissance clothing that you can rent for the day. Just look under “Costumes” in you local yellow pages. I have included a small selection I found below also.

When contacting these companies be sure to specify the date you would need the costumes and have your families measurements already taken:

Length from waist to floor
around the upper chest
around the neck
length of the arms

Be sure to ask for a final price over the phone so you not surprised at the register. Rental places often have extra fees they must charge- such as for alterations and re-stocking. Often, the more you rent, the greater chance you can bargin for a discount.

Frank Bee Costumes Infant- adult, located in the Bronx, also sells on-line. 718-823-9792

Creative Costume Co. NYC, Adult clothing only, rental and sales. 212-564-5552

M Gordon Novelty NYC, costumes and masks. 212-212-696-9664

Costume Depot NJ, rental and sales. 973-492-6090

Costume Resources: The Renaissance

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Medieval Life

Further information about the daily life during the Medieval Ages

Life in a Medieval Village By Gwyneth Morgan

An older book- but one of the best basic overviews of daily life during the Medieval Ages. Follows the life of a Farmer and his family for a year. Plenty of illustrations, this is a book the entire family would enjoy.
Reading Ages: 9-12

What was it really like to live in the Middle Ages? -an excellent, easy to use website that offers a brief overview of all the aspects of life: politics, clothing, homes, arts, etc.

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Knights and Armor

Further information about the History, Lifestyle and Equipment used by Medieval Knights.

The World of the Medieval Knight By Brett Breckson
An indepth look at the life of a medieval knight, Exquisitely detailed illustrations. Older children who are desiring further information about knights will love this book.
Reading Ages: 10-12

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Manuscripts & Illuminations

History, Scanned Images and Organizations dedicate to the education and preservation of this lost art.

Book of Hours- one of the most famous book printed suring the Medieval Ages. This site provides a good history about the book and the illuminations.

Leaves of Gold - Illuminations from the Philedelphia Collection, excellent collection, easy to navigate site.

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Kid's Activities

Websites and Books specializing in children's activities to help educate and understand the Middle Ages.

Knight's & Castles: 50 hands-on Activities to experience the Middle Ages
(A Kaledescope Kid's Book) By Avert Hart and Paul Mitchell

If you get only one book, it should be this one. Brings History, critical thinking awareness of lifestyles to young kid's through games, songs, activities, etc. Easy to read, short chunks of information with great illustrations.
Age: 7-12; varies by project

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Everything about Construction, History and Daily Life within a Fortress called Home.

A Medieval Castle (an Inside Story Book) By Fiona MacDonald and Mike Bergin

Good Overview of the Middle Ages in relation to the architecture of that time period. Good Illustrations however not always historically accurate.
Reading Ages: 9-12

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