When I first joined the SCA I had absolutely no clue as to what I wanted in terms of persona.  As time went on, I found myself falling head over heels in love with all things Elizabethan.  I liked the look of the clothes, the history, everything about England at that particular time.  But I also like other ‘looks’.  I can’t say that I took the time to explore the history of the Italian gowns I attempted, I simply mimicked the portraits.  
Now that I’m older and have returned to the SCA after a long absence, I find that I’m not the same person I was who was gaga over all things Elizabethan.  There’s something about England in the 13th century that really speaks to me now.  Magna Carta, the Baron’s Revolt, Simon de Montfort, the Albigensian Crusades…hell, all the Crusades…it’s such a rich tapestry.  And the real bonus?  The clothes are super comfy and I can dress myself!  (My Elizabethan clothes were pretty comfy, too.  But being able to dress myself is awesome when I have to chase my daughter around!)
And that brings me to the thrust of this post.  In my last post, I talked about wanted to flesh out my persona and my friend Sandy left an interesting comment.  Sandy observed that fleshing out persona sounded interesting and that she wanted to do a bit more research other than looking at a dress and saying, “Hey, that’s pretty!”

Her comment got me to thinking about how we in the SCA choose the time periods we each attempt to re-create.  What is your driving force?    When you look at a period in history, are the clothes of the period your driving passion or is it the history of the time?  Or do you gravitate toward the culture of a particular country and find ways to incorporate that into your SCA experience?

I’ve shared, in a round-a-bout sort of way how I came to love the 13th century.  I’d love to hear how you came to the period in history you’ve chosen.  Or, if you haven’t chosen one at all I’d like to hear about that as well!

2 thoughts on “Choices

  1. I started my adventures in historical costuming when I was in junior high school and working at the Minnesota renaissance festival on the weekends. I've kept going with an interest in Elizabethan England but when I started to think about an SCA persona I started to look around at other parts of Europe because I was looking for a place where the major characteristics of the modern me felt normal.

    Venice in the late 1500's felt like a place where I could have been born without any twisting to make my being fat, sensual, bi-racial and obsessed with pretty clothes fit in. I find the history more and more interesting as I explore it, but it was realy feeling like I could see myself in the artwork which set my heart on Venice.


  2. Oddly enough, I was on the fence when I first joined, between Japanese and something European (I thought Mordreth's chainmail hauberk was very cool.) But between a friend having a similar interest in Japan, and some loud-mouth at one of my first events loudly proclaiming I'd “never get it right…” I jumped off the pier at Osaka, and the rest is history. 🙂

    Though, in my dotage, I'm putting together 14th century European armor (I *finally* have my pig-face bascinet) and may occassionally wander out as an errant Scotsman. 🙂


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