Female, Full Entry

1200 CE European Female Cote

Title: 1200 CE European Female Cote
Entry #: GGB2021.038
Alternate Names: Gown, Frock coat, Tunic, over tunic 
Year: 1200 CE
Time range: 1100-1400 CE
Era: High medieval
Gender: Female
region: Europe
Countries/cultures: Europe, French, English
Maker: Ayla Von Johanaa
Difficulty: 2
Confidence: Image Examples


A loose tunic dress like garment with a wide neck hole pulled over the head. Used in many parts of Europe for a wide range of the high meddle ages.


This garment, or variations of it can be seen in many paintings and illustrations that cross over several regions and time frames.  People from many stations in society use this functional garment, from laborers to merchants and higher. Varying slightly from its beginnings before 1100CE and fading in fashion for all but laborers late in period.

In general it is slightly more tailored tunic with the neck hole held closed by use of buttons rather than the earlier broaches.  Buttons may just close the neck hole.  The cut is usually full producing a baggy garment belted at the waste.  Worn with an underdress and sometimes a kirtle or other dress layer and possibly with a gown outer layer. 

Sometimes underrepresented in the SCA, cotes can easily produce a medieval look with an easily constructed garment.

Red dress with embroidery along cuffs, neckline and hem line worn with a mantled hood.  This was a dress constructed in the tunic like style similar to examples from 1100’s to 1200’s with slight bell sleeves.  Worn over a tunic style underdress.

Inspiration Images

Common Materials

  • Fabrics:
    • wools, silks
  • Ornamentation:

Effective Substitutions

  • Fabrics:
    • wool blends
    • linen blends
    • cottons
    • lighter weight upholstery fabrics that simulate period patterns
  • Ornamentation:

Ensemble Components

  • Cote
  • underdress
  • veil

  • hood
  • coif
  • could be covered by a surcote


  • belt
  • pouch
  • shoes


The Medieval Tailors Assistant, by Sarah Thursfield, has instructions on constructing such garments

Version: 2
date: 2/27/2021
Source of Period Pic: 1- the Morgan Bible, c. 1250: the wife of Manoah ,2- 1200’s, Strasbourg Cathedral and Strasbourg
Model: Ayla Von Johanaa
Photographer: Vincent de Vere

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