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DescriptionThis was my first real costume! This was for the 2007 Tennessee Renaissance Festival on which I was part of cast as a character performer. I played a peasant pickpocket named Kit Tanner. Originally, I was the town tanner/skinner by occupation, but we soon discovered that our little patrons were not fond of the animal skins hanging off my belt. Although they were just pieces of fur, no faces or anything disturbing like that, I had more than one child run screaming from me, crying, "She killed it! She killed them!" Sooooooo we opted to just leave the entire belt of furs off and change the entire focus of my character to the pickpocketing bit I had made up on the side. It ended up being an extremely good move. I still have people to this day that still remember that character! She may make an appearance again...
The festival that year was set in 1571 England. The costumes for the festival are not pre-bought, they're all handmade, custom to each cast member. I played a peasant that year so I worked with a few castmates who could sew to design my first ever costume.
Hat: A basic Renaissance Flat cap made out of cheap burgundy fabric.
Scarf: All cast members were required to wear two pieces of headgear as lice was rather a big problem in Elizabethan times. Instead of a proper snood or coif, I opted for a raggedy scarf (as my character was on the lower side of the status totem pole).
Chemise: Borrow from another castmember. It's a squareneck long cotton smock (that came down to my thighs).
Bodice: A custom made bodice with fabric from Joann's (they still have it!). It was made for my by another cast member (I helped out a little bit with the construction).
Sleeves: Thick brown shoulder covers (I'm not sure what fabric they're made out of. But they were stiff). Made by another castmember and tied with leather string through grommets on the bodice.
Belt: Borrowed from another castmember.
Pouch: Borrowed from another castmember.
Bloomers (oh yes, there's bloomers under there!): Borrowed from another castmember.
Skirts: These were skirts made from leftover scrap fabric from another castmembers studio. She made the skirts for me in exchange for helping out with chores around the costuming studio.
Boots: $20 flat black boots from Shoe Carnival. It took 5 years for those things to wear out, including going through all the mud and dust of the Renaissance Festival. I definitely got my money's worth!
Gauntlets: Commissioned, but they ended up being too 'modern' looking so I couldn't use them. I gave them to a very happy friend for a birthday gift.