Common Women’s Clothing in the Early to Mid-17th century
A constant challenge for women in lesser-known re-enactment periods is what to wear. Although there is a good deal of portraiture for the period, hardly any extant garments exist, and this makes knowing exactly what was worn difficult. The Tudor/Elizabethan Patterns of Fashion by Janet Arnold stops abruptly in 1620 and the next volume doesn’t begin until 1660, ignoring almost entirely the period of the 30 Years War and the English Civil Wars. Add to this the even more scant information on common people’s clothing, and you can see the problem.