June 2019 – February 2020
This Roman outfit is made up of a tunica (the outer tunic), and a subucula (a sleeveless under-tunic). Everything I needed to get the project underway can be found at Dulcia’s Roman Closet.
The first step was to work out the correct measurements for cutting. And then one of the only decisions was what linen to use. A leftover length of portofino in the stash worked well for the under-tunic. The portofino is quite sheer on it’s own, but was great as a bottom layer. And the tunica is made with 3 yards of Dharma Trading’s 4.7oz linen, which I hadn’t tried before. It’s a nice looking, smooth linen which falls between light and medium weight. Too heavy for the undergarments I normally sew, but seemed a good pick for this project. Both tunics are sewn with 3/8″ seam allowances, and then hand felled. The resulting seams are 3/16″ wide, and the tunic’s hems are narrow as well. Roman tunicas, in period, were woven to size. So this is the best I could do to keep the seams discreet.
Aaron’s wearing the tunica belted around the waist with a narrow linen sash. The garment has about 9″ of excess for blousing and it hangs to knee level. A pair of leather sandals was easy enough to come by. And his papyrus scroll was made with the How to Make a Scroll instructions at Dartmouth Ancient Books Lab. It’s only 5 pages long, which is apparently short for a Roman scroll. But it looks good enough to me, as a simple prop. The papyrus paper is very brittle. So I sprayed the paper down with water, before rolling it into the final scroll shape.