How to Look Good on a Budget, c. 1280

manuscript illustration of youth modeling white undergarment Cantigas de Santa Maria

Your clothing should be pleasing and fine, cut to your figure. If you have no expensive cloth to make clothing, then have it cut nicely from something less than the best, so that it looks good and you appear well dressed. If you lack good clothing, you should accept this: but let your shoes and footwear, belt, purse, and knife be the finest you can have… Be very careful not to wear unkempt clothing, for anything torn is lovelier by far: one appears ill-bred when wearing unkempt clothes, but torn ones simply cannot be helped. It never takes great skill to make something lovely look nice, but one who knows how to wear well what is not lovely appears pleasing and courtly.

Amanieu de Sescás, Enssenhamen de l’escudier (trans. Mark D. Johnston)

Stretch your fashion budget in a “distressed” tunic! The courtly look is all in the accessories.