For glory!
Sumptuous materials and vibrant colours secure Dawn's place as the land of glory.

Overview

Dawn is the land of valour; the classical images of gleaming plate, of brightly coloured banners and traditional heraldic devices provide the imagery for the nation. Where the Marches is gritty and down to earth, Dawn is the opposite in glowing primary colours. There is a sumptuous nature to the materials and tones used, idealistic in design instead of practical. The Arthurian, pre-raphaelite and neo-medievalism movements all provide strong themes and forms to the nation.

There is a touch of tragic flaw to the people here though also, with elements of Shakespeare's tragedies and Tennyson's poems threaded through their lives, leaving shadow in contrast to all the glorious polished armour.

Also see Dawn costumes and Dawn icons and artistry.

Feel

Arthurian, competitive, gleaming, glorious, romantic, Shakespearean, tragic, triumphant.

Breakdown

Influences

Idealised high medieval, Pre-raphaelite, Arthurian

Materials

Linen, velvet, silk, damask, brocade, fur linings and trim, butter-soft kid leather and suedes.

Colours

The palette is summer, a meadow in full bloom. It’s a myriad of bright, floral colours, accented with some darker jewel shades. Gold, emerald green, bright reds, clear sky blues set off against an occasional sumptuous black. Whatever the colour it should be vivid and lush but remain tasteful.

A cote with elbow length sleeves, with clean lines, elegant and simple design. The belt and pouch are richly dyed leather suggesting wealth, but metal accents reinforce the Dawnish theme.

Clothing

The classic dress for all genders is a long robe with full sleeves or houppelande. The cloth may be silk, velvet, brocade or fine wool and could be subtly patterned. They are often fur trimmed. These are generally worn over a long shirt, well cut trousers and high legged boots.

Some Dawnish might choose to wear a dress or bliaut instead, with simple flowing lines and quite a low neck line, possibly revealing a chemise or shift below. Sleeves are again often extravagantly long.

Houppelandes may be worn over a long shirt, well cut trousers and high boots.

Headgear for everyone is extravagant, and it is definitely headgear rather than hats. Chaperons are often worn to impress, and the type of headresses worn by Arthurian women are the stuff of legend and fantasy. Circlets and headbands are also popular for all whether made of gold or simple leather.

Jewellery is exquisite - a jewelled dagger sheath, a filigreed necklace, a pair of combs, even the poorest will have a piece of treasured jewellery handed down.

Armour

Most knights wear the most flamboyant armour they can afford, often covered with a surcoat bearing their personal or house heraldry. Some will wear mail, some with plated reinforcement, and some a full harness. Knights Errant often wear less armour but everyone who is part of a noble house will sport their colours.

High quality leather armour mimics the form of plate – breastplates, gorgets with articulated arms, vambraces etc may all be worn and often bear their owners’ heraldry as a form of rich decoration. Full length ‘coats’ of leather scale or plates may be worn alone or under more leather armour.

The armour is designed not only to protect in war but also to proclaim their glory and make their deeds all the more memorable.

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Plate harness covered with a splendid surcote bearing personal heraldry, hghly ornamented. Rich colours and fine ornamentation.
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Shields

Shields are highly popular in Dawn, as much for their decoration as their ability to protect. Heater shields are the favoured shape, decorated with personal or household devices.

Weapons

The archetypal Dawnish weapon is the medieval broadsword, but ornate warhammers, maces and axes are also used. Missile weapons are rare; archery is seen as a fitting contest of skill, rather than a glorious weapon of war.

Noble costume

Noble costume should aim to be resplendent. The cut is simple - sleeves may be dagged but are not slashed or puffed - but the fabrics are luxurious, the colours are rich and hems are lined with fur or ermine. Often costume is in house colours or embroidered with the house’s device.

With dresses, cuts are simple, but the materials, the colours, the linings and the trims are rich, detailed and luxurious. Silk, velvet and brocade are ideal.

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Simple cut, but rich fabrics hemmed with gold
Three well-dressed Orzel nobles in chaprons. Flamboyant, bright colours, rich textiles, and an emphasis on form over function mark this as particularly Dawnish. Iconic dagging on the hood worn by the left-hand figure, andfFur trim on hems and sleeve openings to display wealth.
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Costume: model's own
Simple cut, with rich colours and detailed decoration, especially on the man's cotte. The woman's dress is especially rich with wide sleeves. Jewellry is fine, and in both cases headgear is worn
The armour, fur, and sword mark Rhi (R) as a noble, while Adam (L) could be a noble or a high ranking yeoman retainer - most likely a seneschal.
Rich textiles,clean lines, and bright colours. Finely woven fabric with a shiny texture reinforces the wealth of this Dawnish noble.
Simple cut, rich colours, House heraldry on the chest. Simple leather mage armour.
Rich colours, reflecting the House heraldry. Simple designs, especially on the dress, with full sleeves.
Fur is often used to decorate cloaks.
Costumes: models' own
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Hems are often trimmed with fur or ermine.
Rich fabrics and a fine hat.
Rich colours and heraldry combining the House Rondell insignia, and the personal image of the griffin rampant - note the detail on the pouch.
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Personal magical might wedded to significant political power defines the most potent enchanters and enchantresses.
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Yeomen costume

Dawnish Yeofolk wear less resplendent costume than their betters, but many are prosperous and most still dream of joining the nobility. They mix easily with the nobility and richer yeomen may look similar to nobles from an impoverished house.

Costume: model's own
Costume: model's own
Yeomen echo the costume of the nobles, and while it often includes vibrant colours it is likely to be a little less ornamented and more practical.
Yeomen wear less resplendent costume, but a rich or respected yeoman may look similar to a poor noble.
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While few yeomen can afford a full harness, a mithril breastplate provides valuable protection when a retainer accompanies their noble into a dangerous environment.
Some yeomen eschew the bright colours of the nobles, and favour more practical clothing. This yeoman is wielding a bow  as a weapon of war - something few nobles would wish to do.
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Costumes: Models' own
A proud retainer wearing the heraldic colours of his noble house.
Surcote and tunic by Jude Reid
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Shield by Skian Mhor

Headwear

Dawnish Headwear encompasses all the more elaborate medieval variety of hats, up to the start of the Renaissance. Headgear for all genders is extravagant, and it is definitely headgear rather than hats. Chaperons are often worn to impress, and the type of headresses worn by Arthurian women are the stuff of legend - henins, crispinettes etc. Regal jewellery such as crowns and tiaras are common for all Earls and powerful nobles.

Stephen Lunn, in crown.
An extravagant conical hat with trailing fabric.
A conical hennin made by Purple Zebra Costumes
Extravagant headgear can take a number of forms, but often suggests a crown.
A simple circlet of flowers also makes a fine addition to Dawnish costume.

Jewellery

Jewellery is an important part of costume for male and female Dawnish nobility. Ideally it should be ornate and bejewelled to emphasize the status of the wearer. Jewellery is exquisite - a jewelled dagger sheath, a filigreed necklace, a pair of combs, even the poorest will have a piece of treasured jewellery handed down. Fillets, circlets and headbands are also popular for all whether made of gold or simple leather.

Circlets, headbands, and even crowns are very popular in Dawn.

Plate

The very wealthiest Dawn Knights possess a harness of plate, but it is more than just armour. The nation, house or personal symbol maybe etched, engraved or decorated on the armour. Alternatively a rich embroided cloak could be thrown over the plate. A beautiful surcoat or jupon emphasizes the knight’s regal nature.

Plate is often worn over mail, either heavy steel mail or lighter mithril mail.
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A rich cloak is often worn over plate, especially in House colours.
A range of Dawnish plate. Each of the De Rondells demonstrates their house allegiance in a different way, while the knight-errant in white has yet to choose a personal heraldry but wears a non-traditional white-and-gold rather than the blue-and-gold common to many knights-errant.
Personal symbols are often etched, egraved or decorated on armour and even the poorest noble strives to wear something indicative of their House.
Even without a surcote, this noble suggests his House affiliation with the richly died padding he wears under his harness. The pouch is accented with the personal heraldic device of a griffin rampant.

Mail

Mail is highly valued, either worn under plate or by itself. Ideally such armour should include a surcoat or a robe decorated with a house symbol, often a fabulous beast like the dragon.

Tancred wears a surcote bearing his personal heraldry over a shirt of thick, heavy chain.
Mail is worn with a surcote or tabard in House colours.
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Leather

Leather armour is common in Dawn, and is often worn by yeofolk and knights-errant. It should range from simple protection to something designed to look as stunning as possible.

Shields

Shields are highly popular in Dawn, as much for their decoration as their ability to protect. Heater shields are the favoured shape, decorated with personal or household devices. The traditional Dawnish shield is a heater or a kite shield. Whatever the shape, a shield is the perfect place for a Dawnish noble to display their personal arms or the insignia of their house

Heater shield bearing prominent heraldic device.
Shield by Skian Mhor
Heater shield with insignia; a noble might use personal heraldry, or that of their house, or in some cases might adopt the device of a house with which they are testing.
Dawnish shields often show personal heraldry related to their bearer.
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Mage Armour

Mage armour, like other Dawnish armour, is often ornamented and may bear heraldic devices.

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Children

Young children are an opportunity for noble houses to display their wealth and power. Squires are dressed in robes decorated with the house symbols. Older children, noble or yeoman, want the most expensive clothes their parents can afford. Even when it is not ornamented, it is often strikingly coloured.

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Rich colours and fine, decorated fabric echo the kind of clothing this young woman might wear when she passes her Test of Mettle.
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