Clothing was made in the home by the ladies of the house. It was the mother’s responsibility to make the clothing for her family, with the help from her daughters or from slaves employed in the home.
The main cloth used in ancient Greek clothing was wool. First the wool was soaked in hot water to rinse off some of the grease. Only rich people would dye the wool because it was expensive. The Greeks used different materials to produce dye for their clothing: for brown dye they used oak bark; for pink, roots of the herb madder; for yellow, stalks of weld; and for blue, dried wood leaves would be used. After these processes were complete, they spun wool into yarn. Using a large loom, women wove the yarn into cloth to be used for fabric.
Sometimes flax was also used to make clothing. The processing of flax into cloth was a long procedure. The plants had to be gathered and combed to remove all the seeds and then soaked. The stalks were beaten to soften the fibers. The finer fibers were used for under clothing or tunics. The rougher fibers were made into bags or aprons.
Perfume was made by mixing different items with oils. Some typical types of items were cinnamon, basil, almonds, roses, lavender, and lilies.
For footwear, leather was the most commonly used material. An animal was skinned and the hide was soaked in a water and urine (or pigeon dung) mixture to remove the outer layer of hair and glands. After being scraped, only rawhide remained. Oils were applied to soften the rawhide. The rawhide was then soaked in water and oak bark for weeks to waterproof the leather. It was then cut and formed into sandals and other materials.
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