I have acquired quite an interest in Norse culture, encompassing literature (Icelandic Sagas), history, symbolism (jewelry), clothing (cosplay and Ren Faires), Norse religion/philosophy (Asatru/Heathenism), and incorporating Norse ideas imaginatively into an RPG environment (Castles & Crusades). I simply find it fascinating at multiple levels both for my academic research and personally.
One of my sources for things both historical and entertainment is the Swedish company Grimfrost. Their products aim for some historical realism and entertainment, since they have supplied TV shows such as Game of Thrones and Vikings with material.
My delivery today was an eclectic bunch of material which included several shirts, a couple of rings, horn tealight holders, horn shot glasses, a couple of historical books, a seax based on an archaeological find in Hedeby, and an axe based on a find from Sojdungs Fole in Gotland, Sweden.
This will feed my academic interests, but also add character to my home both personally and for entertainment. When you add it to what I already have – war horns, dining set, drinking horn, helmet, tunic, trousers, etc. my home is really filling up with character. I think it is in part because I am a philosopher and a historian that I love old things. I’ve only been in my home since 2019, but I think I am building some great character into it.
A few days ago I revealed a new Viking helmet and tunic I got myself. Today I put on some of the other Ren Faire gear I have to see the more complete ensemble – I am quite happy!
The padded coif I have will make the 11 pound helmet (12 gauge steel with chain aventail) much more comfortable to wear when I attend Ren Faires. My sword, jewelry, cloak, and pouches (some are covered up by the cloak in the pictures), along with some new bracers symbolizing Yggdrasil (the world tree) that will be arriving soon, will add even more character to my overall appearance.
Attending the Minnesota Ren Faire (late August through early October) should be fun next year. It will be refreshing to dress noticeably different from the garb I’ve worn over the previous 20+ years. One thing I’ve noticed, however, is how much weight I’ve gained (some of the belts I wear to hold my sword and my pouches are feeling a little small!). I’ll need to work on that!
I still like my sword (although it is obviously peace bonded at Ren Faires), but I could still use a Viking shield, and am on the look-out for a nice one to carry at Ren Faires and mount on my wall the rest of the time. I also need new footwear. Those long knee-high leather boots aren’t Viking appropriate, and after 20 years (as I enter my late-40’s) my body is changing and they have become too small and uncomfortable for me. I have gained weight as I mentioned above, but I also now have flat feet and am on medication for gout, so I have to be very picky when it comes to footwear, since I need space in my shoes for special insoles with arch support. As a result, these issues have changed my foot size from 12-13 feet (American) to size 14-15, which makes it very difficult to get footwear, especially niche Ren Faire/cosplay footwear.
Once I get my Viking bracers and trousers I will probably do a third round of pictures. Maybe by then it will be snowing outside (I am in Minnesota and it is mid-December!) and I can get pictures out doors! I should also do a photo comparison of how I’ve changed in 25 years of attending the Minnesota Renaissance Festival!
Anything I’ve ordered and received in the post during the last few weeks I’ve wrapped up and put under my Christmas tree, but not this from the Swedish company Grimfrost – this is a Christmas gift I wanted early!
For around 25 years I’ve dressed in a Renaissance-era leather doublet, gloves, tights, leather hat, etc., at the Renaissance Festival. But I am now much more of a medievalist focusing on Norse, Celtic, and a more stripped-down and earlier Medieval European look and feel. Plus, thanks to the youth of today, cosplaying is a thing at conventions, game stores and at home, so I can have a lot of fun with this when the helmet isn’t on the helmet stand!
This is just a quick look at how I looked today when I put on my Viking Tunic, the helmet, and unsheathed the sword I already own. Once I fill out my new set I will post more pictures.
However, the helmet is 12 gauge steel and the aventail is made of chainmail, so each are about 5lbs, meaning the helmet is 10-11 pounds in weight. Just wearing this for a few minutes while walked around smiling and laughing at how cool I look and taking these photos made me realize that my head and upper body would get sore wearing this initially, so I will have to do it in small spurts (then again, who wears a medieval Viking helmet regularly and for long periods!).
A personal journal to share my artistic works, to write about Norse shamanism and traditional paganism, European History, Archaeology, Runes, Working with the Gods and my personal experiences in Norse shamanic practices.