Research Library

The books that started my research adventure

If you remember, this all started with my idea that I wanted to have a dress… The Greenland Gown, made from the correct fabric, and made using period techniques. It all seemed so simple to me at the time. “I’ll just order some of the fabric…” But the fabric isn’t made anymore. “Well… I guess I can find the yarn and weave the fabric…” But the yarn isn’t available either. “I guess I’ll have to find someone who has the right kind of sheep, and…

I soon learned that making that dress wasn’t going to be easy. Before I could even get started, I had to figure out how I could find the sheep I needed to make the yarn to make the fabric to make the dress! And if I wanted it done the right way, I needed to learn what that right way was. That meant research. Lots of research.

One of the first research books I got was Medieval Garments Reconstructed: Norse Clothing Patterns by Lilli Fransen, Shelly Nordtorp-Madson, Anna Norgard and Else Østergård.

After looking through this book, I knew that I also needed to get Woven into the Earth: Textile finds in Norse Greenland by Else Østergård. My research then lead me to Thor Ewing’s Viking Clothing.

As I began investigating which sheep I was going to use to recreate the gown, another research book I found invaluable was The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook: More Than 200 Fibers, from Animal to Spun Yarn by Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson.

After that, the books started building up! There was always another fact I’d find in one book that referenced another authors work, and another book… That book would lead me to yet another book…

So, to save the rest of you from my insanity, I’ve complied a list of most of the books that have gotten us to where we are now, and include it below.

These books helped me learn about the clothing, economy, customs, nature and so much more about the Norse people. I highly recommend all of the books I’ve outlined here. If you’re interested in getting any of these books for yourself, please consider ordering them through this page. In that way, I get a small affiliate fee for sending you to You get to have your own copy of the book, and help the Greenland Gown project at the same time!

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