Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]
Welcome to Bronze Age Center. We hope you enjoy your visit.


You're currently viewing our forum as a guest. This means you are limited to certain areas of the board and there are some features you can't use. If you join our community, you'll be able to access member-only sections, and use many member-only features such as customizing your profile, sending personal messages, and voting in polls. Registration is simple, fast, and completely free.


Join our community!


If you're already a member please log in to your account to access all of our features:

Username:   Password:
Add Reply
Ideas for Andronovo reconstruction
Topic Started: May 15 2017, 03:07 PM (689 Views)
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Hello.

I know this topic is sort of halfway between China and the Near East, but I'm placing it here because some of the clothing finds I'm looking to for information come from Xinjiang.

I've been reading Elena Kuz'mina's The Origin of the Indo-Iranians, and the Andronovo clothing that she describes sounds pretty neat. I wasn't giving it serious consideration, but then I stumbled across this reconstruction that includes one of the knit caps. A few minutes of googling turned up a modern wool cap that looks nearly the same. It's got a polyester lining which will have to go, and the tassels could be reduced to almost nothing. About the patterns... they used somewhat similar ones on pottery, and the Yanghai trousers had wraparound patterns (albeit different ones) woven in. What do you think?

For the rest, Kuz'mina refers to "unfastened double-breasted clothes of caftan type" -- the Cherchen Man wears the same thing -- trousers, and high boots, so pretty much like Black Sea Skythians. I'd add a linen undertunic to spare myself a wool rash. The Cherchen Man also has a twisted cord which may be a sash, though I'm not sure from looking at photographs, and contacting Xinjiang Region Museum looks like a long shot given that their website's entirely in Chinese. Assuming that's what it is, it should be easy enough to make one.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
If nobody has any objections, I'm gonna go ahead and order the hat because it's on sale right now.

I'm making a spiral braid of wool yarn for the belt. It's pretty slow; I imagine I'll have it done in a couple months if I work on it a little every day.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan Howard
Member Avatar
Patron
[ *  *  * ]
Interesting project. Looking forward to seeing how this turns out.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Todd Feinman
Member Avatar
Patron
[ *  *  * ]
I'm looking forward to it too, Dan x 2
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
I'd been braiding with a disposable plastic bowl, but I found that the sharp corners were snagging the yarn and the notches were cracking toward the center of the bowl. Haste makes waste.

Yesterday I bought a craft store braiding disc made of some kind of high-density foam. It's sized for use with much finer yarn to create friendship bracelets, and in order to fit the thick wool yarns into the notches, I began rolling them in my fingers to tighten them up. This seems to have resulted in a finer, much firmer and less stretchy braid.

So far completed just under 10 inches, aiming for at least 40, so ETA around June 9.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
And my hat just arrived. Would it make sense to leave the cords on the earflaps? The literature doesn't mention anything about them, but they are useful for lashing the flaps down when it's windy.

Sorry for the blurry self-shot pic.
Attached to this post:
Attachments: braiding_disc.jpg (144.09 KB)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Okay, the Glorious Ninth of June is here, so better explain myself:

Twisting the yarns seems to have resulted in using up their original length faster than anticipated. I finished the first braid about a week ago, but it was a little shorter than I wanted. Plus, the first few inches look so different from the rest of it, and I couldn't figure out how to tie up the end, so it's just a random bunch of knots.

That being the case, I decided to start on a new one, with much, much longer yarns to be sure that I don't come up short this time, but due to that, it's coming along much more tediously. Moving all the yarns a quarter of the way around the disc takes 32 movements and adds a hair under 3/4 inch, so the entire braid will take about 2,000 movements. What really eats up time is that each time you notch one of these super-long yarns, you have to untangle it from the others. I'm not quite 28 inches done so far.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
My saintly mother, who is the one who knows how to sew cloth (and is actually a professional costumer), is adding linen lining to the earflaps of the hat. We figured lining the entire thing would leave it unable to stretch around my giant skull, and the earflaps are the only part that really need it. She's using an interesting zig-zag stitch that can expand a bit, rather than a regular running stitch, and there's some slack to the linen itself for the same reason.
Attached to this post:
Attachments: braids2.jpg (162.08 KB)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
It's useful to have a knife around camp. All the knives I've seen so far in Kuz'mina's book attributed to the Andronovo culture are similar to these:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Srubna_culture04.jpg
I'd have thought the middle one (and maybe all the others) was a javelin point, but the archaeologists always call them knives or daggers. In any case, with the half-tangs that are mostly oddly-shaped and always lack pin holes, they don't look like they could be securely hafted. Maybe some were just wrapped in leather.

The other idea I have, although it's not really an Andronovo thing, is a proto-akinakes. Native Way in the U.S. sells a small bronze akinakes from northern China which I think could be modified by grinding away the guard, cutting off most of the ring, making the blade more tapered, and adding a leather or cord wrap and perhaps an animal figurine. This would make it similar to the kind of dagger used in the Krotov culture, which was a Seima-Turbino subgroup in western Siberia at about the same period. I can't afford a custom casting as large as a dagger, but the Native Way one is unusually cheap even for off-the-shelf and I could get a jeweler on Sansom Street to cast just a horsey for me.
Attached to this post:
Attachments: hat_lined.jpg (109.32 KB)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Finished the braid last week, and yesterday I finished a small buckskin bag to hide my phone and wallet in. I've seen passing references to Tarim mummies being found with small bags, but can't seem to find any pictures. However, I think this design is entirely plausible. Those pottery patterns take on a tribal sort of feel when applied to clothing and leather.

From a practical standpoint, unfortunately the full-weight buckskin is a bit too thick to cinch the top entirely closed, though since it's allowed to hang freely, I don't think there's any danger of it turning over no matter how I lean, and it's deep enough that things shouldn't bounce out. Also, I decided to use a small amount of my dwindling supply of German-tanned buckskin because the commercial split buckskins I have on hand and the chamois they sell at Ace just seem too thin for holding objects as large as my new phone.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Sean Manning
Patron
[ *  *  * ]
Thanks for the update! I think that small bags and purses were more common than we think, because they were often worn hidden or left out by artists (and woven grass or untanned leather or coarse hemp don't leave much archaeological trace). The Romans left us some of those "armlet purses", and bags hidden under a skirt or stuffed up a baggy sleeve appear in a lot of cultures.
Attached to this post:
Attachments: bag.jpg (129.16 KB)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
The boot pattern is based on Missouri River's Plains hardsole moccasin, with the topline reshaped and an added leg. The pattern seems to be undersized, presumably because these are meant to be worn without socks or insoles. After cutting an upper three times, I finally have one that fits; it has the back half of a size 10 and front of a size 11 -- I normally take a size 9.

The two-piece uppers and the slightly curved seam between the foot and leg is my best guess from examining high-res photos of the Cherchen Man's left boot. I don't know where the individual pieces' seams are located or whether they're taped like this. However, I wanted a nice flat seam, since I'm planning to tie straps around the ankles to keep my feet from flopping out of the heels when I walk.

It still needs adjustment, but now it just needs to be a little narrower in the forefoot and arch and the topline should be a bit higher on the inside. It seems to me that making one side of the topline lower than the other caused the foot to fit lopsided, because it's forced into that position by the leg, which fits around your own leg and therefore can't be lopsided in the opposite direction.

The originals have been described as white deerskin and were over-the-knee in height. If I were to go whole-hog, I'd use either domestic braintan or white German buckskin, but a. I don't like the thought of having to clean white suede and b. it's just too expensive at this time. Instead I'm using a cowhide split. (For the Andronovans, I would suppose cowhide or sheepskin to be the most common material footwear material since they raised so many cattle and sheep, whereas deer would have to be hunted, but I understand sheepskin is a little thin if the epidermis is removed.)

It's a pity that some simpler, shorter shoes don't seem to be mentioned in the literature. Stitching this much leather is gonna be grueling.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Does anyone know whether there were any inexpensive, common blue paint pigments? I know lapis lazuli was occasionally traded from Afghanistan, but it must've been rare and expensive, so I can't imagine your average shepherd or Steppe cowboy having anything painted with it.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Todd Feinman
Member Avatar
Patron
[ *  *  * ]
Those boots ROCK, Dan, FYI. :)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Kineahora, this was the easy part :) This is gonna be the first pair of shoes I've ever made, so there's plenty of opportunity to screw up.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Sean Manning
Patron
[ *  *  * ]
Dan D'Silva,Jun 30 2017
03:29 PM
Does anyone know whether there were any inexpensive, common blue paint pigments? I know lapis lazuli was occasionally traded from Afghanistan, but it must've been rare and expensive, so I can't imagine your average shepherd or Steppe cowboy having anything painted with it.

I would look up the medieval and renaissance lists of recipes like Cennini and the Plictho dell'Arte dei Tentori and then subtract any which require materials which were too exotic.

Keep in mind that what was rare and exotic in Europe was not rare and exotic in Bactria, and vice versa!
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Part I and part II of the boot build-along are up on Blogspot.

Here is a linen undertunic, inspired by the one from Pazyryk (however, I couldn't convince Mom to do a center seam, so it has a one-piece front instead). I'm not sure that pullover undertunics were used at this early stage, but it appears that women's gowns were made essentially the same way, only longer, and in any case it's either this or make the jacket with multiple layers of lining so it won't give me a rash. This is Fabric-Store.com's "Wisteria" medium-weight linen. I'd hoped it would look like linen dyed with woad. Unfortunately, I think it's very slightly on the violet side. It'll be hemmed to be a little shorter than the jacket.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
I'm starting on my next round of foundry class tomorrow. I'm not allowed to make weapons, but any ideas of what else I should make? Right now planning on an Achaemenid arm fibula and a horse pommel for a Seima-Turbino dagger.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
Oh dear, I forgot to post this here: Part III of the boot project is up. It's seriously flawed.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Dan D'Silva
Member
[ * ]
I wanted a hemp braid sash for warm weather because I was afraid the wool one would itch through a linen tunic. Well, I couldn't find any hemp cord that was thick and soft enough for braiding, but yesterday I got a simple twisted rope which should do the job well enough. I cut it to length, knotted the ends tight and tied off the frayed ends of the cords with waxed linen thread.

It looks blueish because of the camera flash, but it's really just an off-white natural/semi-bleached color.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Go to Next Page
« Previous Topic · Chinese Studies · Next Topic »
Add Reply