Bazinthiad’s Fashions

illustration of woman wearing chemise, vestment, tabard, and surcoatWeather is warm in Bazinthiad (capital city of the Giralliyan Empire), and clothing reflects it.

Summertime gauzes are so sheer as to be translucent, and even winter silks and linens are thin, but a multiplicity of layers preserves modesty.

Next to the skin comes the chemise, a sleeveless shift, usually of a hue that contrasts with the rest of the ensemble. It’s a plain garment, although the sheerer the cloth, the richer the wearer. The illustration at left features a pale yellow chemise.

A vestment lies atop the chemise. Cool weather vestments sport long sleeves, hot weather ones feature short sleeves or none. The neck is often square. The lower hemline and the hems of the sleeves often display white or pale tone-on-tone embroidery. (Our model wears a pale gray vestment.)

Atop the vestment is the tabard, another sleeveless garment that falls to the knee. Its hems nearly always possess ornament; the most stylish feature embroidery across the entire surface. (The vestment at right is soft lilac with modest embroidery along its edges.)

Topmost comes the surcoat, a long robe with long sleeves and a hood. Wintertime surcoats are quilted. Summer ones are sheer. The fabric is rarely ornamented, but the hood characteristically features a complex tassel which indicates the wearer’s ancestry, age, and marital status. (Our model wears a soft slate surcoat with the hood draping down her back.)

Like all peoples of the North-lands, Giralliyans fear trolls and fear to be mistaken for trolls. This bias heavily influences the garb of Bazinthiad’s dwellers. They avoid bright colors, strong contrasts, sequins, seed pearls, and gems. Those are the signifiers of troll-queens and troll-kings.

Muted pastels are chosen for summer clothing, and darker somber hues for winter. Wealth is proclaimed by the sheerness of the fabrics, the fineness of the weave, the amount of embroidery, and the depth of braid or trim on hem edges.

Footwear is always sandals, from simple thongs to elegant dancing soles to boot-like affairs with a complex array of straps.

 

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