The Innilgard Baronial Pavilion – design and construction

Innilgard wrote to the Lochac mailing list asking if anyone knew where they could get a new pavilion for the Barony.

My husband and I offered.  This is our biggest tent to date – the internal floor area is a bit bigger than 8m x 4m and the space between the poles is 2 canvas widths – 4m.

It’s based on the tent in this picture

Guidoriccio da Fogliano (detail) 1328
Fresco by Simone Martine
Palazzo Pubblico, Siena

One day I”m going to make one that looks more like this, with the stripes and the crows feet wall guys and the rectangular doors, but the Innilgard tent was a good start.

We did quite a few new things with this tent;  Innilgard wanted removable walls and we used a finial based on the extant one in the museum in Basel.  We also decided that we should provide 3 storm guys per pole, like in the fresco.

This is the plan and elevation I prepared so that Innilgard knew what they would be getting.

This version also shows the layout of the leather grommets around the roof eave for the guy hooks to go in.  After making the circus tent with alsomst random guys points, I knew I wanted guys at each quadrant for this one.

When you include space for the storm guys at a 45degree angle, you need a rectangular space at least 12.4m x 8.4m to set up this tent.

We decided to make 6 separate removable wall pieces, to give as much flexibility as possible.  To allow for the curve, we ended up with 2 rectangular pieces and 4 curved pieces.

This picture also shows the layout of the roof, with all except 2 seams sewn.

Here’s a picture of the wall connection technology;

We put the toggles 10cm apart.  In our next tent these will be further apart, probably 20cm.

We sewed the loops onto white tent tape and then sewed the tape onto the walls.

The toggles were sewn into the eave seam.

James made a jig with a piece of wood and nails to measure the distance between loops and the depth of each loop.  He would thread the cord around the nails and then mark the distances with a marker before sewing.

And here’s a picture of the roof finial we made, compare to the real one (!?) here;

There’s a ring on the other side too because James couldn’t make an asymmetrical thing.

We permanently spliced the storm guys onto the rings, so you always know you have the right rope and you don’t get tempted into using the rope to tie down a trailer, and then lose it.  (Thus speaks the voice of experience, sigh)

And lastly, here’s the cutting pattern.  If you leave out the rectangular pieces between the poles, you could also make a single bell tent 4.2m high, with walls 2.1m high and a diameter of 5.4m at the base and 3.4m at the eave.

Looking at this cutting pattern now, I can see that it wasn’t very conservative with fabric.  One of the things I usually really enjoy is seeing how little fabric I need.

We made the roof from 25m of 12oz canvas and the walls with 45m of 8oz canvas, that’s including the rectangular pieces that aren’t shown here.


5 thoughts on “The Innilgard Baronial Pavilion – design and construction

  1. That’s neat, it’s a very similar to our Giant Tent of Doom but ever so slightly smaller. One thing the person who designed that did that I think makes a big difference to the shape is that the seams aren’t straight, they’re catenary curves which gives it subtle but beautiful curves that still allow the walls and roof to be taught.

    We hung the walls off of toggles too, and found that with the way ours are sewn into the valence seam they pull the seam open when the walls are hung. They needed to have been folded over and sewn down. I plan on reworking it so that the walls hang directly from the stopper knots on the crow’s feet which are inside the tent.

  2. I love the idea of hanging the walls from the crows feet knots! We’ve recently moved away from removable walls, I’m just not happy enough with the final effect and it’s much faster construction to just sew the walls and roof together.

  3. I saw it on pictures of a handsewn repro tent from a Czech crowd and was a bit dubious about the idea, which is why I didn’t go for it the first time around, but having seen how the tent works mechanically with the crow’s feet now I think it’s a really good plan. Ours leaks around the eave because of the way the toggle loops pull the valence seam open, and the knots are nice and big and easy to throw a big loop over for the walls, which beats fiddling with toggles.

    The GToD weighs close to 120kg, so I doubt we could ever erect it if the walls were permanently attached. Raising the roof is hard enough!

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