Review: Caribbean Shirt

Rating: ★★★★☆
Sea Wolf Clothing

Dressing like a pirate is the easy part. Well, not really. But intuitively speaking, if you’re attending a costumed event, then you already know – more or less – several ways to go about expressing your inner pirate. The tricky bit is how to go about indulging your swashbuckling id when cavorting amongst polite society – neighborhood barbeques, work parties, and timeshare presentations. Of course, some folks will just say, “bullocks” and dress like a pirate anyways. But most of us would seek a more sophisticated merger of our inner pirate and outer reality.

For years, t-shirts have been the mainstay for wearing your love of piracy on your sleeve (or more generally, your chest), while also dressing in acceptably modern fashion. But Seawolf Clothing has now taken a different tack with their run of “Caribbean Shirts.” And just what is a Caribbean Shirt? Think Hawiian shirt, but for (you guessed it) Pirates! Continue reading

Review: French&Indian War Shirt

Rating: ★★★½☆
Flying Canoe Traders

I firmly believe that the hardest historical clothing item to find is the “basic” garment. You’ll find the perfect billowy shirt, only to see that it has ruffles you don’t like. Or you’ll find a nice pair of slops, and they’ll have an elastic waistband.

Well, if it’s a basic baggy pirate shirt you want, you need look no further than Flying Canoe Traders’ “French & Indian War Shirt.” It’s loose fitting, 100% cotton, and cut to period standards – what else need be said? Continue reading

Review: Highlander Shirt

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

All Things Renaissance

A basic pirate shirt is a rare find – a proper cotton, elastic-free garment shouldn’t seem a tall order, but it is harder to find than one might expect. All Things Renaissance offers a small variety of such shirts, though, and while they may not QUITE be Golden Age of Piracy authentic (the tied collars is a bit early), they are pretty darn close.

I ordered the Highlander style shirt, figuring the the standard collar a bit more fitting for my needs than the banded collar (and steering clear of the “musketeer” style, as I wasn’t in the market for frilly.) The shirt arrived a good fit – the material is a bit heavy and rough, but in time it should break in nicely. It’s a very well-made, durable shirt – the seams are all double-stitched, and the shoulder is double-layered for extra durability. The sleeves have the unusual feature of being able to be buttoned or tied, although both options leave the sleeves a little too loose at the wrist for my own hands. I had originally believed the buttons to be plastic, but on closer inspection they did appear to be organic. I eventually learned they were in fact made from “Palm Ivory,” being a nut from New Greneda (an appropriately piratey touch, methinks.) Continue reading

Review: Pirate Shirt and Vest

Rating: ★★★★½

The internet is full of Jack Sparrow costumes, many of which do a fine job at capturing the basic shape and colors of his outfit. But quite often one thing is missing (besides Johnny Depp, that is.) One of the genius elements of the Jack Sparrow look is its bedraggled simplicity. The clothes looked period and well-worn. On the surface this is an obvious thing to do when designing a pirate captain, but it’s amazing how often it’s overlooked. And obvious though it may be, it’s also surprisingly hard to recreate. To make an outfit appear “period” while remaining visually interesting requires more than drab colors and old patterns – even little details such as hand-sewing, or utilizing course-woven fabric, can make a world of difference. Continue reading

Review: Swashbuckler Shirt

Rating: ★★★☆☆
Dress Like a

A pirate’s success in life depends on many factors, luck and skill amongst the very top. But perhaps even more important are the tools of the trade – a captain would never seek treasure without a map, nor would the bos’n splice the mainbrace without a marlinspike and keg of rum. And in a similar vein, no dashing swashbuckler should even think of crashing the governor’s ball without his ruffles.

Whether swinging from the chandelier or merely shouting, Continue reading

Review: Drawstring Pirate Breeches, Sash, Bandana

Rating: ★★★☆☆
Center Stage Costumes

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve window shopped at the Center Stage website – they have probably the best variety of your pirate “basics” around – several styles of breeches and slops, along with a whole line of pirate sashes and socks. And that says nothing of their absolutely gorgeous hat collection.

The first thing (aside from their online catalogue) that impressed me about Center Stage was their willingness to answer customer questions. I know that sounds like a gimme, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve emailed a vendor basic questions (Do you have more photos of that product? Can you give me a better description of the size of that item? etc.) only to have it fall on deaf ears – or to receive a reply that only addresses half my questions. No such concerns with Center Stage, they were more than happy to answer my questions, both via email and by phone.

What I ordered was the start of a basic pirate outfit – a pair of drawstring breeches, a sash, and a bandana. All arrived in a very timely manner, and all seemed very well made. Continue reading