Pirates have long captured the imagination of people around the world. From Blackbeard to Captain Jack Sparrow, pirates have been portrayed in various forms of media. But what did pirates actually wear? Here’s a brief history of pirate clothing and fashion.
The Golden Age of Piracy, which occurred in the 17th and 18th centuries, saw pirates wear clothing that was practical and functional. Pirates often wore clothes made from durable fabrics such as canvas or linen. They also wore leather boots and hats to protect themselves from the elements. Pirates would often steal clothing from their victims, so their clothing varied depending on what they plundered.
The Pirate Shirt
The pirate shirt was a staple of pirate fashion. Pirate shirts were often billowy and loose, allowing pirates to move and fight freely. They were made from lightweight fabrics such as cotton or silk. Pirate shirts often had a laced-up front or a ruffled collar. Pirates would often wear a vest over their shirt, which was usually made from leather or wool.
The Pirate Coat
Pirate coats were often long and made from heavy fabrics such as wool or leather. They were worn to protect against the wind and cold, as well as to intimidate their enemies. Pirate coats often had large cuffs and lapels, and were adorned with buttons or gold braiding. Pirate captains would often wear coats with more elaborate designs than their crewmates.
The Pirate Pants
Pirate pants were often loose and comfortable, allowing for ease of movement during battle. They were made from durable fabrics such as canvas or linen. Pirate pants often had a drawstring waist or a buttoned front. Pirates would often wear long johns underneath their pants to keep warm during cold weather.
The Pirate Hat
The pirate hat is perhaps the most iconic piece of pirate fashion. Pirates wore hats for practical reasons as well as for style. Hats protected pirates from the sun and rain, and also helped them to intimidate their enemies. Pirate hats were often wide-brimmed and made from leather or felt. They were sometimes adorned with feathers, ribbons, or other decorations.
The Pirate Boots
Pirate boots were worn for protection and to help sailors keep their footing on slippery decks. Pirate boots were often made from leather and came up to the knee or higher. They had a flat sole and a low heel, allowing for ease of movement. Pirate boots were also often equipped with buckles or laces to help keep them on during rough seas.
Pirates loved their bling! Pirates often wore gold and silver jewelry, which they plundered from their victims. They wore earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and rings. Pirates also wore jewelry made from bones, shells, and other natural materials. Jewelry was an important symbol of wealth and status for pirates.
Pirates often carried weapons with them, not just for fighting but also for intimidation. Pirates carried swords, pistols, and knives. They also carried grappling hooks and boarding axes for taking over enemy ships. Pirates would often decorate their weapons with engravings or carvings to make them more intimidating.
Modern Pirate Fashion
Today, pirate fashion is often associated with costume parties and Halloween. Modern pirate fashion is inspired by the clothing worn during the Golden Age of Piracy, but with a modern twist. Pirate costumes today often include corsets, fishnets, and other sexy touches. Pirate fashion is also seen in popular culture, with characters like Jack Sparrow and Elizabeth Swann in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
In conclusion, pirate fashion has evolved over the years, but certain elements of pirate clothing have remained the same. Pirates wore clothing that was practical and functional, but also stylish and intimidating. Pirate fashion has continued to inspire people today, with pirate-themed costumes and fashion trends. The history of pirate clothing is a fascinating glimpse into the world of pirates and their unique sense of style.