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Wandering through a Medieval Gypsy Camp

Before giving my talk on medieval medicine at Abbeystowe last weekend, I was able to get away for a bit of a ramble through the various encampments and merchant stalls at the festival.

I enjoyed every one of them, learning about the history of so many different people groups, cultures, and countries, getting to see firsthand how they lived in medieval times.

One of my favorite spots was the medieval gypsy camp, especially because most of the gypsies were elsewhere dancingΒ  in their stunningly beautiful costumes and I could wander at my leisure.

I was delighted by the brilliant color everywhere, from the thick carpets underfoot to the flags dancing in the breeze and richly hued tassels dangling from tent poles and tree trunks.

And I could happily sit around that campfire for hours, chatting with dear friends or just gazing contentedly into the flames.

The tents made me feel like a little girl again when I used to build blanket forts with every afghan, scarf, and throw I could find. It was so lovely to hide away in there, my own little world.

I loved the jewelry, the headdresses, the ropes of necklaces and layer upon layer of garments perfect for twirling. It’s the sort of garb that makes every woman look and feel dazzlingly beautiful.

I was most intrigued by the details: the richly embroidered cushions, gorgeous ceramic drums, and cheery flower pots overflowing with blooms.

I was particularly charmed by the children’s toys that hung around the camp within easy reach of little fingers: a leather camel with orange tasseled saddle, a basket of tiny rag dolls, and a beautiful bear dressed in her very own gypsy dress. I would’ve loved such things as a girl.

The encampment was a marvelous escape, a place of fairytale dwellings and fanciful garb and very pleasant daydreaming.

What is your favorite part of the medieval gypsy camp?




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Jackie Smith - Oh my – this took my breath away. The camp, the colors and your photos – what a combination. . .seriously and simply stunning!

Breanne Mosher - That is absolutely gorgeous. I loved these photos. Such colour and depth of textures and refreshment. I must keep my eyes open for rugs and blankets and scarves. And those lanterns, so dreamy!

Andi Perullo - Oh my what lovely photos! I must admit the Medieval time period doesn’t really call my attention, but your posts might have changed my mind!!!

budgetjan - I can see why you loved the gypsy camp. My kids would love those tents they were very big on draping sheets over chairs and playing within, both inside the house and in the garden. Living outdoors would be liberating (in good weather that is). You could no have planned your visit to their camp better. I love all these photos so much, and I think the final three in collage were an excellent way to end.

sarah @the_hedonista - How fantastic. We see plenty of colour here in Dubai, but this is something so completely different. Will have to add to my bucketlist for UK for next summer!

Maureen | OrgasmicChef - wow.. I couldn’t choose one thing. The amount of time that goes into this just boggles my mind. Fun!

Krista - The detail and work at these events is mind-boggling, @disqus_2LQ5qLN5aY:disqus πŸ™‚ We work for nearly a year to get everything ready. It’s so fun and satisfying though. I absolutely love it. πŸ™‚

Krista - I’m glad I can share some of the beauties of medieval times with you, @GlobalButterfly:disqus πŸ™‚ I think you would’ve made a fantastic gypsy. πŸ™‚

Krista - Oh yes, @breannemosher:disqus , I can totally see you making sumptuous little gypsy nests for your girls (and you!). πŸ™‚

Krista - I’m so glad, @95ea44c9817c2c8c2a30b7104fdf81c1:disqus πŸ™‚ I feel the same way about this camp – in awe. πŸ™‚

Krista - Your kids and I would’ve gotten along VERY well indeed, @budgetjan:disqus πŸ™‚ I LOVED my blanket forts. πŸ™‚

Krista - Thank you, @sarahthe_hedonista:disqus πŸ™‚ I’m so glad these images delight you too! I hope you find a similar event in the UK. πŸ™‚

Krista - I can’t choose either, @OrgasmicChef:disqus πŸ™‚ I love all of it. Especially all the creativity and hard work and time – amazing. πŸ™‚

Lauryl Lane - Wow. Wow. Wow. This is so beautiful and the attention to detail is absolutely remarkable! Thank you for sharing your experiences with all of us!

A Medieval-ing I Go » Rambling Tart - […] leave for History Alive where we will meet up with our medieval group, Blackwolf, for four days of medieval camping, eating, and general jollity. I’m so […]

harrykuheim - Where is this? One of my Bucket List items is building a Gypsy Caravan of some sort.

Medieval Medicines and Modern Spiders » Rambling Tart - […] We are home at last from our grand medieval adventures at the fabulous Abbey Medieval Festival. […]

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