The Vikings liked clothes and jewelry. The Vikings were proud of their appearance and liked to dress well. Most of their clothes were made of wool or linen that they had spun and woven themselves. The cloth was dyed with mineral or vegetable dyes of green, brown, red, yellow or blue. The men wore sleeved jerkins or three-quarter length coats over woolen shirts and long cloth trousers. On their feet they wore tall leather boots or soft shoes with short socks. The women wore long woolen dresses and linen petticoats which reached to their ankles. Their legs and feet were covered with thick woolly socks and soft leather shoes. Both men and women wore fur or woolen hats and cloaks when they went out in cold weather. Cloaks were fastened at the shoulder with brooches. Children probably wore the same kind of clothes as their parents. Everyone liked to wear gold and silver brooches, bracelets, necklaces, armbands and rings. Some of their jewelry was part of the loot from raids on foreign churches and monasteries.
The Vikings and there war gear. The Viking was not a soldier in the modern sense. He spent as much time being a farmer, sailor, trader and explorer as he did fighting; and he had to provide his own equipment. Armor to protect the body took many hours of skilled work to make. It was certainly expensive, and was probably worn only by Viking leases and their picked household warriors. The other fighting men would have worn their everyday clothes, relying on an iron helmet and a sturdy wooden shield for protection. The sword was the most admired and honored weapon, and many Vikings would have carried one. The other weapon which became almost the trademark of the Norseman, was the heavy, two-handed battle-axe. This fearsome weapon, swung by a big, muscular man, could shear through any armor. Some warriors are said to have been able to behead a horse at a blow. Men who could afford neither sword nor axe used a thrusting spear.
The northern people of Europe, the Barbarians, wore warm tunics and cloaks. They lived in colder, wetter conditions than did the people of the Mediterranean world. They needed to wear layers of warm and relatively close-fitted clothes. Celtic, Teutonic, Anglo-Saxon, and Viking men wore woolen trousers of various styles. Sometimes these were long and loose, or they were strapped onto the lower leg by bandages of linen or by leather thongs. A typical Barbarian wardrobe consisted of undertunic , shirts, trousers, overtunic, and cloak. Cloaks, tunics, gowns, nightgowns, boots, and mittens were often fur lined or edged with fur. The women did not wear trousers, but under their long tunics they sometimes wore leg coverings that were made of wool or linen. When it came to decorative details, individual cultures had distinctive styles. The Celts liked abstract patterns, while the Anglo-Saxons were especially fond of animal designs. In conclusion, the Vikings were very proud of their appearance. They wore beautiful clothes and jewelry and took great care in making their clothes and war gear. The Barbarians, on the other hand, were not as interested in beauty, they were interested in keeping warm because of the cold weather.