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Company of Saint Sebastian kit and equipment standards (continued)



Joined and single leg hose


Vincent wears joined hose

Photograph SW Churchill, 2009

  Joined hose

Common throughout the period, joined hose are the equivalent of modern, skin-tight, hip-slung trousers. They stretch along the bias enabling them to be relatively tight fitting whilst retaining a degree of 'give' to prevent splits.

Made from wool cut on the bias, joined hose consist of leg sections, a combined back and crotch section and a modest cod-piece (providing adequate cover to preserve decency, whilst holding everything in its proper place!). They are attached with points to a pourpoint or doublet to ensure that they are held up properly.

In England, during the period, hose was of single colour. ('parti' hose - in two colours - were common as a fashion in other parts of Europe).


Image: Tips

You will need: 1 yard (or 1.828 metres) of wool and some linen for pattern making and to line the codpiece. Remember to cut the wool on the bias (at just under 45) to ensure that it can stretch. Also remember that wool has two sides and ensure that each half of the pattern is the mirror of the other.

Start by making your back piece by cutting two panels and joining them as illustrated.

Cut two leg sections (one mirroring the other) and stitch to make tubes. Rotate until the seam is central to the back.

Affix the back section to both legs. Hem along the top.

Cut two small panels of wool and of linen following the shape of the codpiece illustration. Stitch the outer curves of the wool together (repeating for the linen). Stitch the lining and the outer together, leaving the portion at the base undone.

Turn the codpiece through the hole at the base until it is the right way in.

Stitch the base of the codpiece to the bottom tip of the back piece where it extends through the legs.

Finish by adding pairs of point holes (positioned to match those on your doublet or pourpoint). Add a pair of point holes to each side of the codpiece (matched to reciprocal holes on the hose). Add single point holes at either side of the front hem to tie together.


Making joined hose


Illustration WW Forsythe, 2009

Additional notes: Hose may seem simple but the manufacture process is quite time consuming and is very easy to get wrong. We suggest making and fitting a linen pattern before cutting any wool.

Regarding measurements: The outer leg measurement should be taken from the hip, and the drop for the gusset and back panel according to the wearer's inner leg measure. We suggest making the cod piece last as its measurement can be derived from the gap at the front of the hose (and the outer curve tailored for the wearer's comfort).

Both joined and single leg designs require points to suspend them from a doublet or pourpoint. Although often seen at re-enactment events, 'magic' hose - that either stay up by themselves or are held by a belt - were not used in the fifteenth century.




Ian wears single legged hose

Photograph SW Churchill, 2009

  Single leg hose

Less common during the period were single legged hose which, although worn, were considered a fashion from the previous century. Essentially they are much the same as the joined hose (above) though they lack the back/crotch section and cod-piece - leaving the breeches exposed at back and front.


Image: Tips

You will need: 1 yard (or 1.828 metres) of wool and some linen for pattern making.

The instructions for single legged hose are the same as those for joined hose. However, you do not need the back section or codpiece Simply cut two legs, stitch and hem.

  Making single hose


Illustration WW Forsythe, 2009

Additional notes: as mentioned above, single hose became less fashionable throughout the fifteenth century. When seen on the field it is more the exception than the rule. We suggest using joined hose unless you specifically require single hose for a re-enactment.




Commission of Array
Archery & Archers' Equipment
Armour & Sallets
Padded Jacks & Arming Doublets
Pole Arms & Hand Held Weapons
Doublets & Gowns
Livery Coats
Shirts & Other Linen Garments
Joined & Single Leg Hose
Belts, Pouches & Accessories
Boots & Other Footwear
Hats & Headgear
Miscellaneous Other Items
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This site was designed by WW Forsythe and is Company of Saint Sebastian, 2009. All photographs and other artwork are property of their respective owners, used with permission and credited accordingly.