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Time Periods => WWI (The Great War) => Topic started by: Sturmkatze on March 12, 2008, 08:25:46 PM

Title: Rolling Gamaschen (Wrap-Puttees)
Post by: Sturmkatze on March 12, 2008, 08:25:46 PM
Rolling Gamaschen (Wrap-Puttees)
by Pick Mattock

Reprinted, with permission of the Editor, from On the Wire, Vol. 1, No. 1

A seldom failing mark of a newcomer to WWI reenacting is the man?s wrap puttees: If white socks show or the fellow looks like he has both legs curved the same way, then you?ve got a tenderfoot. The solution is simple: Wrap your puttees the way the experts do.

The secret is to begin your wrap at your ankle, above the shoe top or overlapping the shoe top just a bit. The end of the puttee should be placed upon the inside of the ankle, or perhaps just in front of the lacing of the shoe. Experience will soon show you which area is better so that the upper end of the wrap finishes at the side or rear of the calf out of sight.

Then, begin wrapping the puttee downward. That?s right, downward. Cover the shoe top and the bump made by the knot of the laces. (The laces have previously been tucked into the tops of the shoes so they won?t show below the puttee) When you have reached the top of the instep where the shoe begins to swell outward broadly, wrap the puttee neatly and parallel with the ground, then start up the leg. Each turn should be about 1 inch above the bottom of the previous wrap.

The rolled puttee should be pulled tautly away from the leg to maintain tension on the wrap. This gives a tight fit, which will: (a) hold the puttee to the leg, and (b) give support to the calf of the leg.

The final wrap should be neatly parallel with the ground, with the 1-inch tape band lying neatly upon itself in the center of the wrap, and the free end tucked neatly under the tight band. The triangular point of the wrap should be out of sight on the side or back of the calf, as mentioned before.

Now take a look at yourself in the mirror. Dummkopf, did you wrap both legs from left to right? Always wrap from the inside of the leg, around the front, toward the outside of the leg. Ne c?est pas?

Now it?s time to learn yet another secret?how to roll the puttees for storage. For when it IS time to store the dry puttee, it is rolled up with the tape end in the center! The tape hangs free as the puttee is carefully rolled without wrinkles upon itself. When the puttee is completely rolled up, the tape is wrapped without wrinkles, perpendicular to the cylinder: i.e. across the top, down the curved side, across the bottom, and up the curved side, then neatly tucked under itself!

An awful lot of words to explain such a simple thing, but then, some of you blokes ?ave an orful ?ard time getting? an idea into yer loaf a? bread.