Posts Tagged shade fly

Pennsic Prep Goes Into High Gear

29 July 2011

Gregor's Landsknecht Hat

Gregor arrived safely today (hooray!) to finish up last-minute projects and prepare for Pennsic! He tried on his new Landsknecht schlappe hat … I must say, I thought it was an unusual hat and I wasn’t sure how well it was going to work, but he REALLY wears it well! It goes well with his personality — big and a little off kilter! Love it! (Oh, and it seems to fit perfectly — I cut the linen lining on the bias so it would have some extra give, and it seemed to have worked! I love it when stuff works out as planned.)

Gregor was impressed with all the garb I’d made. He tried on the doublet and it fits him well! He offered he’ll try on his garb later so we can take photos!

We also did a test setup of the awesome pavilion that my friend Tracy (Duchess AnneMarie) is lending us for Pennsic. We managed to get it up without too much trouble and it looks awesome — it’s amazingly roomy inside. It’s 8’x’8′ at the eaves and 15’x15′ at the base. We also did some tests on the shade fly I put together. We need to finish that up, but it should work out nicely.

Doing a test setup of the pavilion

After the pavilion setup, we went to Lowe’s to get some 1/4″ hardwood plywood, wood glue, and ratcheting straps so we can make Gregor a shield. We’re going to try bending it around the tree in the front yard. We’ll see how that goes!

Gregor also showed me his full Gothic plate armor. Wow. It looks amazing … and very heavy and hot! He’s going to need a LOT of water to bear all that on the field.

So tomorrow will be shield bending, shade fly work, whatever sewing I can squeeze in, and (if my son has his way) some boffer sword repairs!


A Shade Fly for Pennsic: Ideas and Links

17 June 2011

Among my wish list for Pennsic is a shade fly to put out in front of the pavilion. What is a shade fly? Basically, a shade fly is a piece of canvas that is suspended with wood and ropes to provide a shaded area. I want one because I know I’ll prefer to spend my time outside (it’s supposed to be hot at Pennsic!) but I’m super sun-sensitive, so I need shade. A shade fly is my answer.

First, I checked to see how much a shade fly would cost from one of the pavilion suppliers. Panther Primitives wants $203 for a 14′ x 14′ fly made with 10 oz. Sunforger (cheapest option) — and that’s without poles/ropes, which are $174 extra. Plus shipping costs on top of that, so I’d be looking at $450 or even $500.

Second, I looked at how much it would cost to buy Sunforger canvas by the yard to construct it myself. I found 36″ wide 10 oz. Sunforger canvas for $6.25 yard. Since I wanted at least a 12′ x 15′ shade fly, that would be $125 + shipping for 20 yards of 10 oz. Sunforger. Still a little more than I want to pay right now. Perhaps in the future when I feel more secure in my fly/tent-making skills.

Third, I checked out alternate canvas sources. Joann’s has outdoor canvas for $20/yard — too expensive! Cotton duck canvas is $13/yard  — still too much. Even cotton twill is $5 yard, and I don’t know how well that would even work. Looking around online, I see people have had success with heavy-duty painter’s canvas drop cloths. Lowe’s has  9′ x 12′ 10 oz. cotton canvas drop cloths for $20. They aren’t “boat shrunk” like the Sunforger stuff, but I could pre-shrink them by washing them several times in hot water. And two put together — after sewing edges and reinforcing the center — would give me a shade fly of about 11′ x 16′.

So, after thinking about it quite a lot, I decided to get the drop cloths. They’re in the washing mashine now, shrinking, before I begin sewing. While I was at Lowe’s, I also got a 2″ x 4″ x 12′ ridge pole, some 2″ x 2″ x 8′ poles (8), lag screws (8), 10″ steel nails (10), and rope.

But now that I have it all, I realize I don’t see how I’m going to put this shade fly up by myself! I’m strong, but not that tall … and this is tall and big. I think I’m going to need to sew the fly (including grommets), attache the lag screws to the tops of the poles, and then wait for Gregor to come in July before we assemble and test it. He’s tall — he can help!

Here’s my inspiration for my shade fly, and about what I want it to look like:

A Simple Shade Fly

In the meantime, here are some useful links about shade fly construction:

Tent Information/Research (this is the main inspiration for my shade fly — post is about 1/2 way down by asbrand)

Shade Fly 101 by Maestra Giovanna

Shade Fly by Adventures of a Wanna-Be Seamstress