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Costumes and Textiles of the Tudor and Elizabethan Eras

We're spoilt for choice with sixteenth century costume sites! So many budding costume writers and costume-makers are online there's no time to list them all and we've selected only a sample of what's on the net. Many of the pages we've listed have good links pages so click below to explore more.

Please support this site! You can now buy Tudor costume books and period dress patterns through our Tudor Books US or Tudor Books UK aStores.

Tudor Costume Reference Sites
The biggest or most helpful Tudor & Elizabethan costume websites on the web.
The Elizabethan Costuming Page
 -The oldest and most widely referred Elizabethan costume site.
The Renaissance Tailor
 - Practical information on constructing sixteenth and early seventeenth century costumes.
The Costumer's Manifesto: 16th century links
 - Probably the biggest links page for sixteenth century costume. Takes a while to load but very comprehensive!
The Costume Page
Renaissance and Elizabethan section in a meta-site of general costuming links. Infrequently updated but HUGE in scope and useful for many aspects of costume study and reproduction.
So You'd Like To... Make Tudor And Elizabethan Costumes
A good Amazon.com Guide. Great as a starting point for finding useful costume books and DVDs of Tudor costume films.

Tudor Costume Introductions
Overview articles on the history and wearing of Tudor costume.
An Overview of 16th Century Fashions
Practical information on constructing sixteenth and early seventeenth century costumes.
Elizabethan Costume: History and Technique
An introduction to Elizabethan costume by the well-known maker of Elizabethan costume-patterns, Margo Anderson.
History of Costume in the Time of Henry Tudor, 1500-1550
An overview of early Tudor styles.
Elizabethan Period Costumes
A brief Renaissance Faire overview of Elizabethan clothing.
Overview of an Elizabethan Outfit
A quick tour through the layers of a late sixteenth century woman's clothing.
What to Wear - Elizabethan Men
A short description of the layers of an ordinary late sixteenth century man's outfit.
A Tour of 16th Century Fashion
Pictures of costumes from Western Europe.

Tudor Garments
Links highlighting specific items of clothing worn by Tudor people.
Elizabethan Smocks and Chemises
The basic linen garment worn by all women and girls.
Elizabethan Shirt
The basic short linen garment worn by all men and boys.
Elizabethan Petticoats
The underskirt worn by all Tudor Englishwomen.
Making A Tudor Kirtle
The basic dress or underdress worn by all Tudor Englishwomen.
History of the Elizabethan Corset
An article on this late Elizabethan garment then known as a 'pair of bodies' and worn only by wealthier women.
History of the Spanish Farthingale
A stiffened underskirt worn by fashionable wealthy women all over Europe.
Hose in the 16th Century
An informed article on men's and women's stockings.
YOU CAN make a Manly Man's Renaissance Costume Yourself!
How to make men's costumes of the Renaissance by the 'Auld Garb Monger'.
Drafting Doublets
The Tudor and Elizabethan man's upper body garment, later worn by women too.
How to make Basic Trunk Hosen
Worn by Tudor and Elizabethan men.
Dawn's Pattern for Fitted Breeches
A later style worn by Elizabethan men.
Late Period Outerwear for Men and Women
The various kinds of coats, cloaks and overgowns.
Elizabethan Ruffs
Starched neckwear worn by men and women.
Tudor and Elizabethan Coifs
Linen headwear worn by all respectable Tudor Englishwomen.
The English Gable Hood
An early Tudor headwear fashion for wealthy women.
French Hoods: Their History & Development
Headwear worn by fashionable women all over Western Europe.
Tudor Bonnets for Men and Women: A Portfolio of Images
The 'bonnet' was a type of hat worn by both sexes in Tudor Times.

Tudor Textile and Costume Articles
More costume history articles, also picture galleries, instructions and patterns for making your own.
Elizabethan Sumptuary Statutes
Laws enacted which governed what the different social classes of people could wear.
Mid-Tudor Clothing from The Mary Rose
Men's clothing recovered from the wreck of Henry VIII's famous warship.
Tudor Dress: A Portfolio of Images
Pictures illustrating earlier Tudor costumes.
Tudor and Elizabethan Portraits
Paintings of royalty and nobility throughout the period.
Tudor England: Images
Pictures of the Tudor royal family.
The Arador Armour Library
Almost all Tudor men were trained to use some kind of weapon and armour still played a vital role.
The Elizabethan Corset Page
More information on corsets and corset-making.
The Spanish Farthingale Page
More info on Spanish farthingales and how to make one.
The Use of Lower-grade Silks in the Renaissance
Paraphrased from an academic book by Luca Mola, this discusses the use of slubbed or waste silks in period.
The Painted Face: Cosmetics during the SCA Period
Cosmetics techniques and recipes in the Renaissance.
The Zen of Spiral Lacing
How to lace-up garments the period way.
A Starch House of the Better Sort
Information on Elizabethan ruff-making and starching.
Suggested Yardages for Elizabethan Garments
Calculating how fabric quantities for making different garments.
Knitting in the Sixteenth Century
An article on this overlooked aspect of Tudor costume.
Hand-knitted Elizabethan Hose
Instructions for knitting your own stockings!
A Brief Introduction to English Academic Costume
The clothes worn by academics and clerics in medieval to Tudor England.
Colours Used in Elizabethan Dress
A list of period colours and their definitions.
Fabric Printing in the Renaissance
A period alternative to embroidery that was less expensive.
The Dyewoorkes
A survey of dyeing and dye recipes from the Middle Ages to beyond the Tudors.
Basics of Late Period Costume Detailing
Types of decoration.
'Les Singvliers et Novveaux Povrtraicts', 1606
Period lace-making patterns by Federico Vinciolo reprinted from the 1587 edition.
Medieval and Renaissance Wedding Page
Not actually costume, but you may find it useful if you're planning an historical wedding.

Costume Around The World
Sites focussing on Renaissance costume outside Britain.
Le Poulet Gauche
Costume in late sixteenth century France.
A Festive Attyre
Costume mainly from Renaissance Florence and other regions of Italy.
The Realm of Venus
Graphics-heavy site of costume from Renaissance Venice and other regions of Italy.
The Landesknecht Costume Site
Early German Renaissance costumes for men and women.
The Frazzled Frau
A huge gallery of sources images for women's German Renaissance dress.
Working Womens' Dress in 16th Century Flanders
The clothing of ordinary Flemish women in late sixteenth century Flanders (now part of Belgium).
The Polish Costuming Resource
Costume in Poland before, during and after the Renaissance.
Scottish Clothing Resources
Not always easy-to-navigate but interesting, getting down to basics and reviewing the sources.
Persian Clothing in the 16th Century
Persian fashion for men and women.
16th Century Persian Women's Clothing
Persian fashions for women and example of recreated clothing.
A Turkish Lady's Ensemble
Self-explanatory!
Saya Espanola
Late sixteenth century Spanish costumes by the author of the Frazzled Frau but not as comprehensive.
Dutch women's clothing 1500-1530
Early Dutch and Flemish costume.
'Habitus Praecipuorum Populorum' by Hans Weigel
Pictures from a 1577 German book of costume pictures. Not accurate representations but a contemporary view.
'In Frauwenzimmer' by Jost Amman
Pictures from another 1577 German book of women's costume pictures. Again it's not accurate but shows how some 16th century Germans saw the fashions of other countries.

Commercial Patterns
Historical costume patterns for Tudor and Elizabethan fashions.
Medieval Miscellanea's 'Period Patterns' Range
The original medieval, Renaissance, Tudor and Elizabethan costume patterns, fairly straightforward and mostly reliable though not always authentic in cut. The historical notes are full of details and period pictures.
Margo Anderson's Historic Costume Patterns
Patterns of noble to working costumes for men and women in a wide range of sizes. A little costume-y in style but easy to use and with some historical notes.
The Tudor Tailor
 - An informative tie-in site for the highly readable 'The Tudor Tailor' costume-making book and patterns which cover noble and working costumes for men, women and children.
'Out of a Portrait' Patterns by Lynn McMasters
Well-explained patterns for a range of period headwear, accessories, dolls and historical dolls' clothing.
Reconstructing History Patterns
Now doing authentic patterns for Tudor costumes partly based on the 'Tudor Tailor' book. Sizing unreliable and not recommended for beginners.

Some of the 'Big Four' dressmaking pattern companies have now expanded their costume ranges making Tudor costume-patterns more easy to find. None of them look very sixteenth century but they're fine if authenticity isn't a problem. Look up the online 'Costumes' sections of McCall's Pattern Company, Butterick Sewing Patterns and Simplicity Patterns for Sewing Projects, then check them out at your local dressmaking store.

Costume-makers
A selection of the many professional costumiers and dressmakers. There are cheaper makers of costumes but you get the quality and authenticity you pay for.
Ninya Mikhaila: Historical Costumier
Detailed Tudor costumes by another professional, mostly made for Hampton Court Palace and Kentwell Hall.
Melanie Schuessler: Costume Design and Construction
A variety of exquisite costumes by a professional costume-maker, from the flamboyant to the more humble.
Jane Huggett - Historical Costume
Accurately-researched, very real-looking costumes and stunning embroidery by the author of 'Clothes of the Common Woman'.
Suzi Clarke--Costumier
Lovely costumes by one of the earliest professional UK costumiers. Photo gallery not sorted chronologically.
Deborah Lough Costumes
A variety of costumes from a well-known and wide-ranging UK costumier.
Costumes by Lynn McMasters
Beautiful showpiece Elizabethan costumes and patterns.

Modern Reproductions, Research and More
Just some of the many costumes, dress diaries, textiles and research websites by professional and amateur costumers all over the world.
Reproduction Costumes by Janet Arnold
Garments made by the foremost expert on Elizabethan costume and period costume construction.
Kentwell Hall on Flickr
Images from the famous annual recreations at Kentwell Hall.
The Tudor Group Image Library
Pictures from the events of one of the most authentic Tudor living history groups.
Festive Attyre Gallery
Beautifully-designed, well-sewn costumes by the author of A Festive Attyre
Sempstress
Prolific costumer with dress diaries, articles and resources.
Seamstrix
Lovely Elizabethan costumes for men and women.
Margo Anderson: One Tough Costumer
Striking Elizabethan costumes and patterns.
Lady Drea's Wardrobe Unlock'd
By the author of The Elizabethan Costuming Page.
Raveness.com Renaissance Costuming
Costumes from all over Europe.
Tudor Costumes
The dress diaries of a first-time UK costumer. Not updated but interesting to read.
Extreme Costuming
Amazing authentic costumes and accessories focussing on the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods.
Mode Historique
Lovely 16th century costumes of various styles and accuracy. Also thought-provoking articles.
Does this make me look fat?
A variety of beautiful amateur costumes including a stunning, professional-looking German Renaissance dress. Engaging dress diaries.
Lia de Thornegge's SCA Adventures - Clothes
Many well-researched, well-made costumes from medieval to 16th century, covering different national styles.
Elizabethan Mafia - Clothing
Galleries, diaries and articles on Tudor costume and sewing.
Isabella's Frocks - Leaves From An Album
Beautiful, real-looking 16th century costumes by a UK amateur, mainly Tudor and Elizabethan for Kentwell Hall. Not updated.
The Tudor Costume Page
Amateur UK real-looking working and middle-class costumes from Kentwell Hall with instructions for making your own. Not updated.
Eva's Costuming Page
Real-looking costumes from many eras including medieval and renaissance.
Alina's Wardrobe
Costumes, needlework and weaving, all mainly 16th century English, well-researched and accurately reproduced.
Elizabeth's Tudor Pages - What's In My Wardrobe
Tudor and Elizabethan costumes with detailed dress diaries.
Gen's Costumes
Well-researched medieval to Tudor costumes.
Oonagh's Own
So many pretty renaissance costumes, mainly Venetian and Italian Renaissance!
The Purple Files
Costumes and research for the 16th century, mainly Renaissance Florence.
The Curious Frau
Dress diaries and research into German Renaissance and Elizabethan costume. Also cookery and much more.
Costumes by Angela Friedman
Well-sewn costumes including Tudor and Elizabethan from a costume technician.
Pyotr's Sewing Projects
Detailed men's and women's costumes.
Lady Nessa of the Lox Costuming & Accessories Page
Costumes from many periods.
Anya's Documentation Site
Photos and articles on reproducing Elizabethan costumes.
Guy's Costumes
Elizabethan men's costumes by a talented amateur tailor!
Constance Fairfax's Commonplace Book
Picture research mainly based on the paintings of Flemish artist Pieter Bruegel.
Démodé Renaissance Creations
Costumes of many periods including a growing number of 16th century Venetian.
Lorenzo d'Este's Site of Stuff
A few reproductions of existing costumes including the doublet and plunderhosen of Erik Sture
Most Marvelous and Comely: Medieval and Renaissance Costuming
Mainly Italian Renaissance costumes.
Brooke's Photo Gallery
A range of Tudor and Elizabethan costumes.
My Elizabethan Costuming Adventure
Costumes for men, women and children.
An Entangled Weaving: Tudor and Elizabethan Costuming
Costumes, spinning, weaving and other textiles.

Please support this site! You can now buy Tudor-related books and more through our Tudor Books US or Tudor Books UK aStores.