Living Out History – Reenactment Clothing and Outfitting for the Enthusiast
Do you enjoy living out history? You know the drill, dress up in your favorite reenactment clothing and spend a few hours or even days living in a totally different time period. It has to be the closet thing to time travel we have come up with yet. The problem is finding the correct reenactment clothing and outfitting supplies for the proper time period you are reenacting out.
Perhaps the most difficult place to begin in attending and participating in reenacting history is with the clothing and outfitting. That just may be because the die-hard reenactment enthusiast is a stickler for detail of their outfits and clothing. You want to be careful about mixing the different dress of the time periods. Styles changed rather quickly back then just as they do now.
Here are a few guidelines when choosing your reenactment clothing and outfits.
1. Get rid of your vanity. Our 21st century obsession with always looking stylish and with the latest fad just doesn’t cut it in most reenactment clothing styles. Get your period styles down pat including your hair styles and make-up.
2. Make sure that you are using the period type of fibers. Natural fibers are usually pretty safe. Wool, cotton, hemp, linens and of course lots of leather if you are into the pioneer days or the mountain man (woman) look. Watch out for the colors as many of our modern day colors were not found on period clothing and fabrics.
3. Keep an eye on the buttons and sewing of your reenactment clothing and outfitting. Make sure that all visible stitching is sewn by hand using the right style of thread or rawhide. Your buttons need to be period buttons so if you are into the pioneer days period don’t use plastics but use natural material for your buttons and other fastening devices.
4. Use the right period accessories as well. Your shoes ought to be period correct if at all possible. You might be able to slide a little if your pants or dresses are long enough to cover but as soon as possible get period foot coverings right down to the socks. Also, if you wear glasses invest in period correct frames. Once you find the frames you can have your prescription made to fit them.
Finding the right reenactment attire, clothing, and accessories can be difficult especially for a price that suits our fancy. Flea markets can be a good source but sure do take a lot of time going to them when we would much rather be living out history reenacting. Many times you can trade with fellow enthusiast or buy from them. You can also buy patterns and make your own. If you want to go all out and you are keying in on the Daniel Boone’s day and age you could always shot and skin your own bear with a rifle like old Betsy. Of course then you will also have to learn how to tan and preserve the leather for you hat and vest. Might make a perfect thing to do when you are involved in the reenacting venue.