Being Katherine of Aragon


  A few years ago I was contracted to ‘do’ Katherine of Aragon for  one of the events organized by Black Knight Historical. I have done Tudor work with them before,at another event, organized by Griffin Historical, at The British Museum in London.  No specific character was required at that time, but within minutes  I was branded Anne. Not my favourite character ( I can hear the outraged cry of many Ann’s fans!), but it was fun 🙂 I have been Anne a couple of time later and always enjoyed it.


Anne at the British Museum


BKH event in Kent – after hours fun. Anne has a new steed!

 But it was Katherine that always had a special place in my heart- for her serenity, patience, unwavering convictions and sheer obstinancy. Also, she was a foreigner here and has come to love the country as her own – and we share that trait too.   The commission required more studying, learning about Katherine’s background and ( but of course! ) a new outfit.

Since the timing for the event weas loosely agreed on the early years of Katherine;s marriage to Henry, 1510-15 or do, the new gown was based on the  tournament roll picture, where Katherine, freshly delivered of a son, watches her handsome prince joust.


The Westminster Tournament Roll, the College of Arms.


The project was interesing, epecially recreating the early bonnet, but it was done ( the article how to recreate the look can be found here🙂 –  and Katherine appeared in the Peterborough Cathedral for the Royal audiences, side by side with her husband the king, for the first time.


 It wasn’t the last time either – the event and the show was so popular, it has been booked, again, and again. It is a regular feature at the end of January, as a part of Katherine of Aragon festival held there. the festival commemorates her death ( Katherine is burried in the cathedral) and celebrates her life: there are  lectures,  tudor interpretors, dancing, music – in short, both education and entertainment combined.

 And of course, being out so often,Kathrine needed another gown too… this one is silver tissue:-)



at Katherine’s grave, holding her symbol – a pomegranate.

  I have come to realy enjoy the event –   and not only because wearing a nice frock and being a royalty for a day, in lovely surroundings is fun. Interacting with public is different everytime – people ask different questions every year and as I prepare for the audiences and do my research, there is always something new to be learnt – about the customs of the period,  the dance, or about the remarkable woman who sat on the English throne next to her famous husband. or just as a chance to brush up on my Spanish:-)

 A short video form the last festival can be found here

 The knowledge and the kit came useful as well – Katherine appeared at the Blicking Hall, together with the other queens, and the new dress, with a new hood, served for Mary Tudor, the sister of the  king, for another event – a Christmas at Blickling Hall.




  articles how to make tudor gown and French hoods if you want to have a go:-)


 Many thanks to the event organizers, as well as a certain Thoomas More, and a faithful lady in waiting, Eleanor:-)

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9 thoughts on “Being Katherine of Aragon

  1. Pingback: Peterborough Heritage Festival 22-23 June 2013 | A Damsel in This Dress

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