Thursday, April 08, 2010

Heddeby Pouch

Yes, I have been working on some other 10th Century arts and crafts while off the mats.

This is a simple pouch design I pulled off The Vikings reenactment society website. I've made several of them. All it takes is some leather scraps, heavy duty scissors, a strong hole punch, and some matching leather thong. There's speculation pouches could also be made from heavy cloth, but no remains have been found.

What did a Viking carry around in their pouch? I don't know. Their clothes didn't have pockets. Typically a large, often decorated, belt pouch was worn, and these probably went inside that to divide contents. I suspect small draw pouches were used to carry valuables for trade and commerce. On journeys, they probably carried tinder inside the pouches.

Cut a circle from the leather scrap, but be sure to leave two tabs or flaps on opposite sides of the circle. Then punch corresponding holes around the sides. You'll need a multiple of four to make the drawstring work. Why 4? I don't know, I'd love to hear a coherent explanation. Then string two thongs in opposite directions through the holes so they will cinch shut.

You can make the pouches any size and you're limited only by the size of leather you use. In the last picture, the black pouch is slightly larger than the tan one.

1 comment:

vikinginireland said...

It's four because you have two cords that both have to start and end on the outside.

For one cord, if you just had one hole, one end would be inside and one outside. Two holes means both ends can be outside. Likewise for three, four, etc holes. So you can see that you need a multiple of two holes for one cord.

But you have two cords that need both ends outside, so multiply by two to keep the sides even. So you need a multiple of four holes.

Counter examples: Try to work out what would happen if you had an odd number of holes, one end would have to be inside.

If you had six holes, both ends could be outside, but one cord would use four holes and the other would use two, so it would be unbalanced.

If you'd a huge number of holes, a mismatch of two wouldn't be noticed, but I don't know how big your pouch would have to get to still look even.