Irish dress from the period is marked by large voluminous sleeves on the chemise, called a Leine worn by both men and women. Over this men worn a Kilcommon jacket. it was a variation on a Doublet with thin sleeves the lay open over the undershirt. Earlier men might wear a Inar Jacket. Close fitting and made of wool, the Inar was kite shaped and reached the waist. It was decorated with tablet woven strips at the hem, neck, and sleeves.
The tunic of Ireland is called the Ionar. It was worn by both men and women, over a leine. Women's were typically longer, but not as long as their chemise. Men's were shorter, barely longer than their hips.
Men and women both wore stockings or Trewes or Tuis on their legs, trewes would be held up by points attached to the small clothes. The could be plain or striped. There is no evidence of party colored hose. Women's stockings were held up with tablet woven or leather garters.
Women had more variation of dress in Ireland with front and back lacing kirtles. The Irish version of the kirtle is often called the Shinrone Gown. It had the popular open hanging sleeves of the period and spiral laced in the front. It had a waist seam and four large gores.
Outter wear ran strongly to cloaks; the unfitted version, which had no hood called a brat and a more fitted version that could have a hood called a Fallaing. Illustrations show what could have been a mantle as falling to waist length or to just below the knee. It seems to have been closed down the front to about waist level and to have been put on over the head of the wearer as it is not shown with any brooches for fastening.
The most commonly used dyes of the period were madder ( reds, pinks, rusts etc. ) weld ( yellows ) and woad ( blue ). There have been many textile finds from around Ireland showing traces of these dyes. While some of the textiles have been of a single colour, others have been found which have combined bands or squares of contrasting colour in the weave. (There is no evidence for tartan). We know that the Vikings imported large quantities of highly coloured cloth of wool, linen and silk to augment the home produced material. The most common colours found in Dublin have been reds and purples. We also know from annalistic accounts that the Irish deliberately raided Dublin and Limerick for their cloth supplies.
Common Irish Kit
- Leine Mna : ankle length linen dress decorated at cuffs, hem and neck, close fitting sleeves, one colour.
- Ionar Mna : over dress or tunic, woolen, shorter than leine.
- Brat : rectangular cloak made of wool, single colour usually fringed and decorated with embroidery at hems. At least same length as the wearer's height. Keep embroidery patterns simple for lower ranking individuals.
- Caille : veil or headcovering. This would appear to have been a fashion item worn by most women. Could be of fine linen or silk. Young girls would probably not have worn veils as a rule.
- Crois : Belt of woolen tablet weaving or leather.
- Mala : Pouch or small bag worn on the crois.
- Broga : Shoes of leather or hide, derived from the Old Norse word "Brok".
- Pennanular Brooch
- Trius : Knee length trousers, could be striped
- Osain : Tight trousers similar to hose, with a stirrup under the foot.
- Inar : Jacket which was short and could be sleeveless or short sleeved.
- Short cloak : Should only reach to below the waist. Full length brat should not be combined with jacket and trews.
- Broga: Leather shoes, usual 10th century patterns, but no added heels or hob nails. Either one piece or else sole and upper.
- Brat : Long cloak, about same length as wearer's height, keep decoration simple, tablet woven fringe of a contrasting colour can be added
- Leine Fir : Which seems to have been worn gathered about the waist when working or fighting.
- Crois : Belt, usually of leather but could be of woven wool.\