Borrekapuangen ‘2018’, part two

 

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This summer hit us northerners hard with its’ immense and unusual warmth. Borrekaupangen was filled with sweaty and drowsy vikings, and I felt a bit lightheaded myself. I wondered if it was ever this warm during the Viking Age, remembering a gist of something I read somewhere. As I strolled through the marketplace I though of what it was really like back then, in every way. There are so many questions and so few answers… The thought of living to see felt both stressful and calming at the same time. The more I thought of it, the weirder it got until I just had to lay it aside and do something grounding and physical, like squeezing my boyfriend’s hand (“hey, we’re here, right now”). You see, I can easily get tangled up in thought experiments, backtracking and overthinking. On one hand it feeds my creative processes, but if I feed it too much energy, it kills them. All of us have creation and destruction forces within us – order and chaos is completely normal, but normal is utterly surreal. Life is so strange and at times it feels as if everything is moving in circles. This train of thought came and went as I greeted friends at the marked and picked up shiny object to behold. So…what was it like during the Viking Age? We won’t know for sure, but somehow, I feel sure of this- There’s nothing new under the sun. The human race is not that innovative and my reoccurring thoughts are not that original, in any way. So…What is the moral of my random common sense life lesson? I hope the archeologists dig up more viking graves that will make us ask more questions. I want to know more, and I am sure you do too.

Sól, The Viking Queen


 

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Borrekaupangen, Sudden photoshoot in front of The Gilde Hall

 

 

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This Majestic Viking Hall is a reconstruction of a great mead hall from the Viking Age. Imprints of such halls were found in 2007 by archeologists, which strengthened Borre’s position as a centre of power, even before the Viking Age. Archaeological theories, and even the epic of Beowulf has been taken into account in the reconstruction- simply because we do not know what these halls looked like. This excites me the most about the viking age- the mystery and the art. On the exterior, shingles have been carefully laid and tarred, and Beautiful wood carvings adorn the upper walls and the entrance.

This is a popular spot to shoot photos for modern day vikings. After pillaging the market, I had to pose like the queen I am;) The viking garb is something I made a few years ago, and I made it according to the Oseberg style, a long train apron dress in diamond twill. The underdress is not based on archeological evidence – as it has no arms…! I know, shocking…. *rolls eyes* According to some russian women and…men(!!) on instagram I might as well be naked simply because I am showing my shoulders. Bahahah! I know ,what the actual fuck? On another note, I doubt that vikings covered up that much. They worshipped fertility gods and goddesses for fucks sake. Let’s take a moment to appreciate that<3

For more info about the Gilde Hall, click HERE

What is do you love the most about the Viking Age?

Sól, The Viking Queen 

 

Borrekaupangen ‘2018’ (part one)

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Walking amongst The Borre Mounds is almost a religious experience to me. It always has been, and always will be. Borrekaupangen is the biggest, biannual viking market in Norway, and it is my favourite.  I had an amazing day filled with positive energies, hugs, friends, and beauty. Several blog readers came up to me to chat, I felt humbled and happy. Other vikings invited ut to stay to join the gilde, it felt as if they genuinely wanted us around, which was nice. We had to leave early but I swore to myself that next time, we will be staying for a whole week. I shot pictures, complimented the craftswomen – and men, and felt the sun warm my bare shoulders. Time stood still.

I bought some necessities, but the most important thing I brought home was warmth in my Heathen Heart. A feeling of belonging, a feeling of being Home. 

More pictures to come…

Sól, The Viking Queen

Kulturhistorisk museum, Oslo

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Gazing at bronze, silver and gold that has been dug up and put on display tends to give rise to more questions than answers. I kind of like that. It might even be the main reason why I love the Viking Age so much; The beauty, the mystery, the unknown. Viking Art and craftsmanship litterally makes me stand and gasp in awe. Next time I visit I will remember to pay more attention to the information. I shall not be blinded by the shiny jewelry! Good fucking luck, future me.

Sól, The Viking Queen

Kulturhistorisk museum – Stave church portals

 
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Ål Stave church, Hallingdal, 1100
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Stave church portal, Sauland church, Hjartdal, Telemark c. 1200

You know me – I love museums. Kulturhistorisk museum (in Oslo, Norway), is one of my absolute favorites, and I have visited it numerous times. Never have I ever met anyone as excited as I am at museums. I take TONS of pictures, get down on one knee and speak softly to the wood carvings as I photograph them. To me, this is the best form of meditative exercise there is. Every time I behold these carvings feels like the first. There is always a new detail to take notice of, no matter how many times I’ve seen them. I think this goes without saying, but I adore norse wood carvings and one day I hope to have a replica of one of these as my front door… sigh… THAT would be absolute bliss.

Would you like to see more photos from this museum? 

Sól, The Viking Queen.

Geiranger, Norway

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Geiranger is one of Norway’s most famous tourist sites. It is believed that the name “Geiranger” stems from the old norse words “Geirr” (spear) and “angr” (fjord). The Geiranger fjord is 15 kilometers long, and 600-1500 meters wide. Signs of settlement in the area can be dated back to as early as 10 000 years ago – and it is believed that most of those inhabitants were reindeer hunters. Findings that indicate settlements from the younger Bronze Age have also been found in the area around the fjord. Today, there are approximately 230 people living in Geiranger. Do not let this fool you, if you decide to visit Geiranger you will not be alone; there are SO many tourists there! I met a biker gang of over 30 Brazilians as I gazed upon the fjord this summer (lol.. not to worry -they were very friendly and goofy and I helped them take group photos) Anyways  – I am still amazed at how beautiful my country is. Don’t get me wrong – I love traveling to other countries, but there is just something extra about the “Troll energies” 😉

Sól, The Viking Queen. 

The dress from Hel

 

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You know when you get this nifty idea that “you should just make one quick dress before the next viking market”? You know – that genius idea of throwing together just one more piece of garb for shits and giggles? Don’t do it. Just don’t. I got that idea three days before Gudvangen and that’s when I made the mustard chemise I am wearing in the pictures above. In all honesty, the dress was awful to make. Sure – It came together nicely in the end, but it was a living nightmare to sew together…. Here’s what happened:

I used no pattern. I always, always make the pattern on the go – just out of my head. This time was no different, all fun and games. One probably thinks this is where I went wrong, but that’s not it. You see- even though the measurements were right, sewing the different pieces together was painfully impossible. I sweated like a pig during the whole process which -by the way- lasted for days (hahahaha!!). I had to re-do all the seams five(!!!) times. I have never in my life had so much Hel with a viking dress as this one, and I’ve made quite a few – even hand stitched ones. At one point n the sewing process I was certain that the dress itself was cursed and I was so angry at it that I almost destroyed my entire sewing gear. While I was sewing this horrible dress, I cursed, sweated, laughed hysterically, cried and bled. Seeing my own blod drip from the needles fueled my anger and naturally, I gushed it into the seams of the chemise with full force. I wanted to burn the dress, I wanted to bury it. Truly, I thought to myself -this dress must have been ordered from Hel.

Why was it was so difficult to make…? Like I said – I spent days working on it. The last hours of the last day before departure I was so flustered that my mother offered (or rather – forced me to allow her) to help with it. “I am sure we can figure this out quickly of we work together,” she said. Boy, was she wrong. To this day none of us can understand why this dress was so difficult. I mean – we did everything right, we even double checked each others work – but it just wasn’t going that well for us. As you can see, we managed to conquer the dress in the end. We both worked on it up until one hour before departure to Gudvangen going on no sleep and way too much coffee. Yes, ladies and gentlemen – sometimes sewing is an awful experience. As we did the last fitting, me looking as if I had survived the last warrior on the battlefield, my mother gazed at me and said; “That colour does not do you any good, my dear… It is really NOT a good colour for you.” It was dead silent for about a minute and then we both laughed so much that we cried. I think we got an hour of sleep before my friends came to pick me up.

I am sure that I’m not the only one who has been struggling with a sewing project (for reasons unknown and despite following all the right steps) – I might be one of few to speak up about how awful making simple viking garb can be, but I know you are out there, suffering in silence between needles and endless seams. Don’t give up! But please, don’t be a fool like me. Start on time before a viking event. The Gods know it is stressful enough as it is. LOL.

Sól, The Viking Queen.