Medieval clothing can be seen in movies, like Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Braveheart, The Lord of the Rings, Macbeth, etc. The clothing of that era differed according to the class the people belonged to. The medieval social class system was divided into the lower class, which consisted of the peasant and homeless people. The middle class was of the people who owned their own homes and were able to pay the taxes. The upper class consisted of the royal people like aristocrats who lived in a castle or a nice manor. Upper classes wore more exotic dresses made from silk and special materials, while peasants wore basic common attire. Here are the styles of clothes worn by men and women during medieval times.
Medieval Clothing for Men
Below are the clothing patterns of men according to different classes from the medieval era.
- Peasant men mostly wore woolen jackets with woolen pants or knickers, sometimes accented with a cotton shirt.
- Peasant males also wore tunics, which were of medium length with stockings or bare legs.
- The tunics would be usually cinched with a sash or rope.
- Peasants could not afford accessories, like hats or shoes, but sometimes, they wore shoes and hats, which were made out of cloth.
- Rich men paid a lot of attention to fashion.
- They wore expensive and colorful clothes, which were made from wool.
- Wool was easy to find, but clothing made out of silk and satin were considered to be better.
- Tailors and seamstresses were also hired to customize the clothes and fit them according to their individual size, for the medieval clothes of wealthy men.
- Aristocratic men mostly wore a jacket and a hose.
- They sometimes also wore tunics with a surcoat.
- The sleeve designs for rich people were more elaborate than the working classes.
- The materials were mostly made of exotic materials, like silk and satin.
Examples of Male Characters from Medieval Period-Based Movies
- Heath Ledger in a peasant squire attire can be observed in the movie 'A Knight's Tale'.
- The musketeers clothing and royal attires of men can be observed in the movie 'The Man in the Iron Mask', which stars Leonardo di Caprio.
Medieval Clothing for Women
Given below are the medieval clothing for women according to the different classes.
- Peasant women wore clothing similar to the wench. The attire consisted of a long tunic commonly called kirtle.
- These kirtle were made of different types of materials, but mostly of wool or linen.
- They were sometimes laced in front like a corset or were laced down at the back.
- Normally, a loose-fitting shirt was worn under the kirtle, in case the kirtle was short-sleeved.
- Long-sleeved kirtles which didn't need an undershirt, usually had bell sleeves.
- Wealthy women of the medieval age wore some of the most elaborate gown designs.
- In earlier medieval period, the attire used to consist of a long tunic like a gown and elaborate head covers.
- The color of the clothes distinguished a wealthy woman from a noblewoman when it came to clothing.
- The clothing of aristocratic women consisted of flowing gowns with beautiful looking head covers.
- Rich people who could afford exotic materials, used silk to make their gown. Their clothes also had intricate sleeve designs.
Examples of Female Characters from Medieval Period-Based Movies
- The movies of 'The Chronicles of Narnia', series show the sisters wearing medieval women dresses.
- In the Disney animated film 'Beauty and The Beast', Beauty can be observed in a kirtle, and later in wealthy clothes.
If you are looking for a particular dress for a play or a costume party, then either look online or visit a party supplies store. So, select the appropriate medieval clothing attire according to the character you want to reflect and have fun at your party.