14th Century Headware: St. Brigitta’s Cap

It’s been just about a year since I made my first medieval dress for myself, a Gothic fitted gown out of dark teal linen. Now it’s practically the only dress I wear since it’s the most historically accurate. Here’s a picture of me and my husband at March Crown at Invocation. I’m wearing a hood on top.

Photo credit: Joel Schonbrunn

With this type of dress, you have options for headwear. There are examples where women are not wearing anything on their heads:

Romance of Alexander

And there are examples of women wearing just a veil:

14th century woman with veil

And examples of women wearing a veil and wimple:

Woman in veil and wimple

Or just a wimple:

Woman in wimple

There are various other examples of other headdresses, too. But these are the types I see worn most frequently in the SCA.

I’ve worn a simple half circle veil before, pinned to my hair underneath. It generally works well, but I usually have to use bobby pins to keep my hair up which are a) not period and b) very uncomfortable.

Apollonia with veil and wreath
Photo credit: Sandra Linehan, Compass Star Photography


Photo credit: Sandra Linehan, Compass Star Photography

I wanted to have the option to secure my hair and veil better and also have a foundation on which to pin a wimple if I want to wear one. So, I did some Internet research and found something called the St. Brigitta’s cap.

I’ve been wanting to make one for a while ever since the tutorial I found on Katafalk.  Last weekend I decided it would be nice to do some handwork, so I went for it. It took me the whole day to sew because I did it all by hand. I ended up doing the needlelace embroidery up the middle seam like on the original and in Katafalk’s other tutorial. I left off the embroidery on the band across the forehead since mine probably won’t be seen very often. Plus, I was ready to be done. 🙂





I’m pretty sure I did the embroidery wrong, but I’m calling it close enough.

Since making the cap, I have lost my veil, so I don’t have any pictures of me wearing it in full garb yet. That just means I’ll have to make another one!


About Apollonia

Apollonia lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, and plays in the SCA in the Kingdom of the West. She loves learning about and making stuff.


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