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I love a good pirate costume as much as  the next person. You can be a sexy pirate, a rugged pirate, a cross dressing pirate (and I’m really talking about the ladies here. Please men, be nice to us and don’t don corsets and bad rouge. Hairy cleavage is not attractive.) , a fairy pirate (well, I’ve seen it anyway), a steampunk pirate, a Disni-fied pirate, etc. I’ve been a pirate wench (a la small additions to a Ren Faire costume), a scantily clad pirate, a corseted pirate and even a Middle Eastern pirate and my favorite, the traditional long vest (called a weskit) and pirate coat. If you want to be a classic pirate, consider avoiding a corset.

When we in Western culture think pirate, we usually think of the Golden Age of Piracy. This was roughly 1650 – 1730 (at least according to Wikipedia), the time of Blackbeard, Anne Bonny, Henry Morgan and other well known pirates. This is the time portrayed in one of my favorite pirate films, Yellowbeard, which if you haven’t seen it, is a fun Monty Python romp and not to be taken too seriously, and of course, the 4 Pirates of the Caribbean movies, and Treasure Island (the movie and novel).

What did a real pirate look like? (more…)


Our Puritan’s previous costume was damaged, when the garage it was stored in flooded 2 years ago. He attempted to salvage, and repair it, but it literally fell apart while preaching fire and brimstone to the masses. This unfortunate garb was made from a black, narrow-well corduroy fabric that did not breath well. As a result I offered to make a new costume for the following year.

I am currently obsessed with linen. In keeping with this obsession, I decided to make the long jerkin and the matching pants in a medium weight linen, which would breathe much better then the corduroy.

The shirt fabric was another find at the 99 cent fabric store. When I bought it, it was a light peach color. I attempted to lighten the color further using a RIT dye remover. This did not lighten the color so much as change it to a more vibrant light pink. This was, however, after the shirt had been made and had to be completed for that weekend. Lesson learned. Dye the fabric or remove the fabric dye, before you make the piece, in case it does not turn out the right color.

He does love the shirt regardless, and claims that it was washed by mistake with a harlot’s red petticoat.

This costume was originally made for a Halloween Steampunk Mad Hatter Tea Party. The tailed vest is is a Rogues of Thread original design, made from a flat-folds find and is terribly synthetic and hot. It’s red and gold striped, lined and collared in black satin. This was my first attempt at a Mad Hatter’s hat. While visually successful, it wasn’t the most comfortable thing in the world. Considering that it was more prop than head wear, I’d still consider it a success. I’ve learned much about hat making since then. This hat will need to be recreated at some point in a wearable style.


The rest of the costume is mostly made up of secondhand store finds: cotton velvet skirt, a silk blouse, red stockings and Swiss Army WWII goggles.


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