Buccaneer Costume Design

The buccaneer outfit is a costume you can have fun with. The first year I started with the basics and I can’t tell you how that interest has grown in five years: imagine me recently walking into a flea market in Rye and swooning over a dagger for just £10. Or the unseemly tussle I got into in a Tunbridge Wells charity shop with another customer when we both grabbed the same red silk skirt. What’s happened to me?

Here are some tips, based on my own endeavours to create pirate costumes for my family and friends. You will be amazed at what you already own which can be used to put this look together. I just helped a new member and for £20 got her kitted out in a skirt, petticoat, corset, jacket, belt, blouse and baubles:

Pirate trousers: White or black jeans and striped pyjama bottoms look good. I recently bought an old striped cotton duvet cover from which we made two bandanas, two sashes and a pair of pirate pants (based on a salwar trouser pattern downloaded free from the internet).

Beltastic: Leather belts – charity shops in Lewes are a good source of these and you can buy a cheap riveting kit on eBay to help you customise them plus a hole punch tool so you can make more holes!!! Some of our members have joined various belts together to make baldrics to hold an assortment of weaponry.

Footwear: Both sexes should think comfort when it comes to their footwear. As SBS buccaneers we generally do a lot of marching. And when you’ve been doing that for a couple of hours holding a burning torch or three you really want a comfortable boot or shoe on your feet. So, ladies and gents, throw away those six inch heels unless you’re a masochist.

Coats and jackets: Buccaneer style coats and jackets: you can be fancy and spend a bit of cash on a proper period one but you’ll be looking at several hundred pounds. An option is to search for military coat or jacket or gothic coat or jacket on eBay and there will be an array to choose from. High Street shops often have a coat you can doctor with some braid, ribbon and nautical buttons.

Accessories: Useful accessories include a pewter tankard (you can get these in charity shops from £1 upwards and it saves slurping from a plastic and wobbly pint glass in the street); a hip flask (with something delicious in it to keep you going – this also negates too many trips to overcrowded loos with a million other bonfire folk), a water carrier (ex army/military ones appear regularly on eBay) and these can also be used for Harveys, though not at the same time.

I think that’s all I can think of to add, but please email me if you want any more help at sarahlazenbycomms@yahoo.co.uk