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Lily Alexander

How to get started for PIP

22 posts in this topic

Welcome to the Crew of the Mercury and Welcome to the wonderful world of Fort Zachary Taylor Pirate Fest and Pirates in Paradise.

This is the place for you to ask questions regarding everything from garb to tents. While the Mercury crew does not have garb standards, all attempts to have basic kit are encouraged. Your kit will grow with time and we will make every effort to help you on your way.

There are several links to threads below that deal with a good amount of information. This list is not all inclusive so check back often to see what we've added.

The Mercury Crew...

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12579

The Mercury, 1720 Clothing and Weapons...

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=9816

How to Begin...

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=13358

Getting Tentage ready...

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=10076

Others...

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12563

Your humble servants,

William & Lily

Edited by Haunting Lily

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The question of "How to get started?" has come up numerous times and will come up numerous times again, but for the interest of helping first time attendees to PIP, Lily and I thought that a thread was in order. Now we could approach the questions from various points of view, but I think a pragmatic start is best.

Now, what are the questions? Generally people ask about requirements first and the only true requirement is attendance. Everything else is secondary. I repeat...everything else is secondary. However, since it is assumed that anyone reading this is already planning on attending let's talk kit, because if you're going to attend a pirate event you'll probably want to look like one.

1 - Clothing.

Why clothing first? Well, frankly, if I have to explain that then you might want to practice swaggering in jeans versus slops. If you want to be a pirate, you really have to look the part. Clothing makes the pirate.

Now with clothing, the question of Casual Interpretation versus Historic Interpretation will come up, and while it is a valid question, it isn't the significant dividing question that it is sometimes made out to be. People who interpret Pyracy casually and draw from many inspirations and those who interpret pyracy historically from many specific sources are not factions on either side of a wall. Our hobby is not a gulf. It's best to think of pirates (hobbyists or re-enactors) as pirate enthusiasts at the same pirate table. While the various interpreters of pyracy might sit at different places of that table, they are in fact enthusiasts no matter how you define them. And, if you've ever been to PIP, you know that PIP above all other festivals is about as laid back as you might ever find. We work hard and then we play hard.

Remember, we share a table, not a border.

With that in mind it is always best to buy pirate, and when I say 'buy pirate', I mean purchase kit from within the pirate community at large whenever you can. This is recommended to help the hobby thrive and it can be achieved by buying and trading materials and kit from fellow pirates. Think of it as buying local. It also doesn't hurt to buy from skilled tradesmen who sell to other hobbyists, thereby bringing them into the fold (i.e., French and Indian War craftsmen, Revolutionary sutlers, etc.). In these two ways we maintain a good barter and trade with one another and we welcome sutler's anxious to broaden their sales market. this also helps to create more choices of good pirate products over the coming years.

Example: The better part of my kit comes from fellow pirates, such as a hanger from Dorian Lasseter, shoes and buttons from Mary Diamond, buckles and a Monmouth cap from Gentlemen of Fortune, a ditty bag from Haunting Lily, period lace from Captain Sterling, an upcoming sea chest from Edward O'Keefe, a pipe box from Jim Warren, stockings from the Weeping Heart Trading Company, and a sailor's knife from Big Mike. I have also expanded that circle to include Red Hawk Trading company, which dealt primarily with Mountain Men re-enacting, but now sells tents to many pirates here on the Pub.

The great thing about trading with fellow pirates is the story behind each and every item. Kit becomes its own history.

Now when buying clothing it is strongly recommended that you buy quality whenever possible. You get better wear out of quality. Also, you should consider the climate in which you will be re-enacting. Light, breathable clothing for Southern climbs and heavy for warmer. You really can't beat a good linen shirt, skirt or stays for PIP. Linen wears well and breathes better in the climate. Cotton will work, but linen comes most recommended, no matter what the pattern you use to cut it out.

2 - Shelter

After clothing, one must consider shelter. A tent, lean-to or some other shelter is recommended to keep one out of the rain when and if we have rain. Plain canvas awnings, wedge tents, wall tents, lean-tos and more elaborate sail shelters are all fine, so please see the various tent threads for recommendations. If you are staying at a hotel, you may still wish to have a tent presence on the beach, but that choice is yours alone.

3 - Personal history

You don't have to have a particular history for the type of pirate that you are portraying, but it does help. It can also make the experience just that much more interesting. Just ask Mission or Patrick. I personally recommend portraying someone based loosely on yourself. That way you don't have to try too hard.

4 - Weapons

Weapons are arguably essential and not essential, but if you can afford them after travel and clothing, get some. Weapons certainly enhance the look and feel of portraying a pirate and the general public and it makes the battles more entertaining for you and the public.

5 - Learning

Come expecting to learn. If you think that you already have all the answers, you'll miss out. There are a great many people with a great many talents ready to teach, so come and learn.

6 - Fun

PIP is one of the most enjoyable events that you will ever attend in terms of volume and volume (People and things that go BOOM!), so expect to have a very good time. Everyone at PIP helps everyone else. As with any growing festival it has a few growing pains, but PIP is like nothing you've been to before. Good People, good location, good food, good rum and you if you're lucky, you just might get to see a good hangin' or die gloriously in the fray. Either way, you'll be hooked.

7 - Eating and Drinking

While many folks who attend often have extras to loan, you may want to consider some eating and drinking utensils. Plate and/or bowl, knife, fork, spoon and something to drink out of.

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Well said master Red Wake ....come on out and folks will help you ....it's meant to be FUN!!!

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can't agree with william more.... we are as of right now adding to our garb, sailor's jackets, a few new and improved shirts, breeches, and trying to squeeze in a few ditty bags... don't think the justacorps will happen just yet...

yeah... okay, i bought a pistol from callenish, but i like guns, and i have an el cheapo sword for now, but improved garb stands out more...

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Wow!!! William, that was great.

7 - Eating and Drinking

While many folks who attend often have extras to loan, you may want to consider some eating and drinking utensils. Plate and/or bowl, knife, fork, spoon and something to drink out of.

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To expand on clothing a little. There is a lot of information that can be found in the Thieves Market and Captain Twill. From items for sale & trade to how to's. Please keep in mind before you start making purchases, trades or decide to make your kit from scratch, think about what type of impression you wish to portray. Authentic, hollywood, lower class, upper class, merchant, able body seaman, captain, to name a few. We will be more than happy to help you sort out what's what and who's who. Here are a few links to help you on your way.

This site has a lot of great information for all things pirate.

http://www.gentlemenoffortune.com/

Admiralty Slops Contract

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=4425&st=0

Minimum Garb Standards

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=11440&st=0

Top ten items for your pirate kit

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=4963

Chemises and shifts

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=1398...t=0&start=0

Stays and other female costume questions

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12280

Stays......the right foundation

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=14118

Now for the Mantua

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=10987

A Lady's Things

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12311

How to cock a hat

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=7412

Slops

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=1136...mp;#entry353911

Linen Shirts

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12196&st=0

Edited by Haunting Lily

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This thread would be incomplete without touching on a number of camping threads and the more specific subjects of re-enacting on site.

Getting tentage ready for PIP

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=10076

The Buccaneer Project

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=4392

Campaign Furniture

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=13833

wooden firebox

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12362

Period correct tools

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=12573

GAOP Encampment

http://pyracy.com/index.php?showtopic=7305

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Eye am keeping tabs on this thread.

I have been to many of event however

I have been impressed that this is the grand

enchalada to reenacting as a Pirate..

I plan on doing a few different impressions

Both Hollywood and Period Pirate...

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I have to say...This is a GREAT resource for everything regarding the GAoP and for PiP. Now I am really tempted to take a week off from work and go cause trouble down there B) Awesome Write up!!!

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Well then bring it brothers! It's all good at FTPFPIP we welcome EVERYONE!! It is the perfect event to be hollywood one day, and pc the next, or pc by day and hollywood by night. Anyway YOU wanna do it, just come and enjoy yourself on the island! Plus it's a great time of year to fly south for a few days, or check out the "other" west coast.

Edited by Cannibal Chrispy

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In 2007 I came down for PiP only managing to be there a couple days (the sailboat was too slow getting there) and had a great time. I missed last year as I was getting married in Siam. This year I plan on coming and bringing my Siamese wife. We are both young and getting started. I have an outfit or two (mix and match) that I can wear that I had in 2007 and most seemed to think it was fine (no shoes no hat though). This year I want to do alot better and will need to get her clothes as well. I have a nice linen shirt but it has more of an orient feel to it since I got it in Bangkok. What do you think of the two of us taking a more orient approach (after all she is from there)? Can you help with any pictures/ideas? As for a tent once again I am on a budget but I have a fair bit of lightweight sun shade material that is white from a sailboat. I was thinking of using this and constructing a tent from it. As for weaponry I am coveredwith a flintlock pistol (which will most likely be turned into a blunderbuss due to the lock size), another flintlock pistol (heavy dragoon), and a small grenade launcher pistol. I also will have a couple of bronze cannons that I can bring that are perfect for a couple skiffs since they are 22 inches in the barrel length and mounted on small naval carriages. I am starting work on a new sword hilt for an old blade that I got upcountry in Siam. My current hat is a simple felt tricorn (home made) which I would like to replace but money once again. I found a pair of boots that have laces which I most likely will bring but only wear if I am walking somewhere else as I prefer to go barefoot.

My wife has nothing so far but is in Bangkok for probably a couple more months so if I can get her some pictures of what to look for she most likely can find some things. The nice linen shirt that I picked up was $6, a pair of slops $3.

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In 2005, I attended PIP and the Fort Zachary Pirate Festival with my friends Mike and Andria. Andria is half Thai and decided to attend in traditional Thai dress. Now, as Thai dress remains almost unchanged for several hundred years, it was easy for Andria to find clothes that would work for the period.

At the time I could have explained each piece of her costume, but I've forgotten the names of them now. Still, here are a few pictures showing the wrap around skirts, pants and various tops she interchanged to compliment her traditional look over the course of PIP.

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The picture of this green dress doesn't do it justice, as it is made from an intricate hand dyed silk from her relatives in Thailand.

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Every fabirc she used was made from hand made silks or linen.

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The skirts and pants Mike and Andria wore at PIP are traditional fisherman pants stemming back almost 500 years.

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She could certainly marry East and West together with the right bits of kit and head coverings. Sadly enough I don't think anyone recognized the effort that Andria put into her outfits and her painstaking efforts to be period, albiet period from another part of the world. As her kit contained clothing that is still worn today, her attempts may have been misunderstood as some casual chiche of the modern day. An Eastern version of a modern interpretation, even though it was period.

Her largest personal complaint about her own kit was the utter abscence of daab sword, but we couldn't find a decent one prior to PIP.

e1291t20.jpg

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When we got married she was wearing a more traditional Thai dress.

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My thoughts were the first night/day she can be in more femine clothes and only speak Thai as though she just got here. By the second day her sarong has been switched out to something allowing more movement and she starts speaking a little english. By the third day she is in mens thai pants (traditional) and a more relaxed linen shirt. by the end she has made the transition to full pirate retaining a few Thai styles. I like the sword style and Im sure by the time her clothes are more "relaxed" she will be ready for something and there are some to be had fairly cheaply that I can dress up. After all I work with the Viceroy and casting.

I even think it might of been possible for the Commodore to of acquired his own Daab sword while travelling.

All in all this will be very overwhelming for her, she has only left Thailand once before so taking things easy might be best even if she does want to look like Elizabeth on POTC Black Pearl.

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ahoy V/S. When you reference the traditional fishing pants, I'm assuming you mean the red pair in the top photo. could you provide more detail in them?

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Just do a search for "Thai Fisherman's Pants". It's a style of wrap pants or shorts that go back centuries unchanged. You can get them in linen, cotton and hemp.

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Can we all get them. They look so comfy. We could start a crew trend? :rolleyes:

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Actually no on the red pants, these are a traditinal thai pants in royal purple, thai silk

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During a discussion with a fellow crew member last night I realized that we need to cover a few comfort subjects that might not be emphasized elsewhere. Here are a few extra bits of information that are offered as suggestions to make your stay more pleasant.

1 - Contact and Information

There is a lot to know and understand about the festival at large and at the fort. There is almost too much going on, which makes it so much fun. Do yourself a favor early on and gather as much information about the festival and those people that you plan to meet prior to the event. It's always a good idea to get phone numbers and plan assistance to and from the bus station or airport. Try to create a schedule for yourself, so that you aren't kicking yourself later for spending too much time not knowing what was going on. Make contacts and plans early.

2 - Foot Care

Baby your feet. You'll be on them all of the time. You can prepare yourself first and foremost by walking a great deal more prior to the event. Start a few months out and walk as often as you can. It's good for you and it will help you at PIP. Also, if you have new shoes, or need new shoes, get them broken in early. I learned an old mountain climbing trick years ago for long term wear or for breaking in shoes and boots. You buy some simply nylon booties and wear them inside your socks. This allows a little more give between your feet and the shoes as they break in and causes little or no blisters in the process. Also, do yourself a favor and get some gel inserts. You'll thank yourself later.

3 - Lighting

It isn't necessary to have a lantern at PIP, especially outside the Fort for other activities, but if you are staying late at Fort Zachary Taylor events, it helps to have one. Plus, it just feels right to bear a lantern in hand when marching through the period camps and the fort at night. It adds a certain something that is altogether lost with flashlights. There are numerous pierced lanterns and pan lanterns that will do the trick.

4 - Bed Rolls and Blankets

Even though the festival is at a Southerly latitude, the nights can get cold. It never hurts to have two good woolen blankets for warmth. Many of the pirates will be in hammocks and will use their coats as an added blanket, so ground bedding becomes less of an issues. Just know your needs before you go and plan accordingly.

5 - Water

Because the festival takes place all over Key West. and because it is at a Southerly latitude, and because you will likely walk a great deal, you must drink water. Trust me when I say that you don't want heatstroke. It can ruin your visit. Please take the steps necessary to carry water wherever you go. Onion bottles, leatherjacks and the like are all well suited for carrying water. You must stay hydrated. Heavy quantities of rum will not help you, so drink water. It helps stave off the hangovers as well.

6 - Needs

Voice your needs (and I do mean needs, not the animal attractions you might openly talk about when drunk). These needs can and should include medical requirements. I had a roommate years ago with diabetes who didn't voice his medical needs when we first met. As a consequence, he almost slipped into a diabetic coma because he had failed to prepare me for what to look for and how to recognize his symptoms. If you attend the festival with a condition or requirement that others are unaware of, you could be setting yourself up for a disaster. There are many pirates with medical experience at the festival, so do yourself a favor and let people know your requirements.

Needs can also extend into the realm of mental health, religious requirements or just plain social preferences. Some people do well with crowds and some people don't. Some people are afraid of water. Some people can't swim. Whenever you begin a new activity where you may be at risk physically or emotionally or may find yourself awkwardly out of place, please say so. Don't be embarrassed to admit a need, preference, or desire on points of food choices, phobias, social limitations, or any other need. We all come from different walks of life. The better part of us are square pegs in a round hole.

For example, as touching food in my circle of friends there are some very specific requirements. I have several friends who can't eat dairy. Some of them are vegetarians. One friend can't eat bell peppers, while another is deathly allergic to gluten.

We want everyone to feel welcome and to enjoy the comforts of the festival. Share your needs and wishes.

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Bump...

Lots of good advice here!

madPete

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Awesome and timely thanks for bumping it up Pete..

Dang...now I'm gonna be up reading

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The sailor's knife. I'm so very pro-knife.

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