Monday, August 31, 2015

A Brief Guide to Writing SCA Award Recommendations

Here are some notes from a presentation I gave on writing SCA recommendations in Lochac:

Writing Award Recommendations is a great way for the Crown to get an insight into what is happening in your local group. Awards are a way of recognising important contributions to the game we play, but the Crown cannot be everywhere, and relies on information provided by the populace.

Writing recommendations is a simple process, and can be done by anyone, irrespective of rank. If you have considered writing a recommendation for someone who has demonstrated excellence – DO IT. The Society flourishes through the good works of people around us and they make our group better through their efforts.

The SCA Lochac Canon Lore website has a list of people’s Kingdom level awards, where you can see what awards a person already holds. Some people choose to consult this website and/or to recommend someone for a specific award. Whether awards are given (or not given,) and the type of award is entirely up to the Crown, and for this reason I personally don’t specify what award I am recommending a person for. I specify the nature of their accomplishments, and leave it up to the Crown to decide what (if anything) is appropriate. Different people do thing s differently, and there are variations between groups and Kingdoms.

It is important to consider WHY you are recommending someone for recognition. Recommending someone because they are your friend, a great guy, or because they have no awards is not appropriate. Some areas to consider when writing recommendations include Courtesy, Grace, Prowess, Chivalry, Inspiration, Skill, Service, Courtliness, Hospitality, Dedication and Teaching.

You can use Courtly Language to write your letter, or you can use plain English – or a blend of both. All are fine.

Some things to remember;
Be respectful
Be clear
Be specific and give details, e.g. skill levels, positions held, events attended, classes taught, articles published, presentation, personal qualities
Keep a record of what you have written
Don’t exaggerate
You can copy the Baron and Baroness in
Don’t expect a reply (although you might get one)
Don’t expect the award to be given out. This is the decision of the Crown. You have done your part in writing the recommendation.

Friday, August 28, 2015

SCA Banner Device - Squirrels

After a couple of false starts, I recently managed to get another banner device finished.

The device is made of wool felt. The design elements are cut out and sewn on. Then embellishment is added with embroidery. I initially used tapestry wool, but the result was too thick and bulky so I unpicked it and used some fine embroidery wool. The ermines were made from large seed beads and drop beads, and the small details were sewn with DMC cotton floss. Some metallic thread was couched down, and then I added another piece onto the back to make the shape more solid.

The completed piece will be added to the Baronial device banner.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Embroidered Seam Treatments

I have been helping a friend out by working some simple embroidery over the seams of one of his early period tunics. The ground fabric is wool and the embroidery is in DMC Perle cotton. The combination is very pleasant to work with, and works up easily.

Blanket stitch on edges supplemented with a couple of stitches in the middle

I like to use this trick to keep my stitches relatively even; I mark the distance between the stitches on the index finger of the hand I use to hold the piece of fabric that I am embroidering.

Little cross stitches in blue with an orange anchoring stitch worked in the centre

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Man's Elizabethan Nightcap

A man's embroidered Elizabethan nightcap that I made in 2010.

The base fabric is cotton-linen blend and the design is adapted from period sources and worked in black silk thread. The spangles are gilt metal, sewn on with three stitches of sewing thread.