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Topic: Renaissance theme, no pockets.
Message: Posted by: maxnew40 (May 27, 2011 08:19AM)
I wear 14th century garb with no pockets but a I have a pouch on my belt.

I am thinking that I will need a sort of tool belt to hold a few props and to have somewhere to ditch items. I work with leather and may make my own or maybe buy a tool belt.

Anyone else do a renaissance theme and solved the no pockets problem?

Message: Posted by: Payne (May 27, 2011 10:37AM)
I have a pouch on one side a ringed purse and a dagger on the other. I keep a silk and a length of rope tucked in my belt. Other small objects can be kept in the front of my tabard.

Message: Posted by: Mr. Woolery (May 27, 2011 02:03PM)
Master Payne is certainly the go-to guy for this sort of performing. I'll make a few general suggestions, but I have to say his advice will always trump mine because of his extensive experience.

Suggestion 1 - Look at some 14th and 15th century pictures of magicians. Most of the time what you see is a guy doing cups and balls. But you also generally see a fairly substantial pouch either on the right or in the center of his belt. In other words, a huge pocket. Only on the outside. If you are SCA, I have to say that's one of the things most often missing from a complete outfit - a place to put things. (The other two things that are often missing are headwear and proper shoes.)

Suggestion 2 - Hidden pockets are a good thing. I don't know how long people have hidden pockets in clothes for magical purposes, but it isn't hard to put something under the edge of a tunic, behind a tabard, in a hood, at the edge of a cloak, and so on.

Suggestion 3 - Baskets. Have a market-type basket with the more visible props in it. Carry it by the handle. No need to hide rope, scissors, bags, bottles, deck of cards, dagger, or any of a number of other items. This can also be deceptive. If you do a billiard ball routine, for example, openly take the first ball from the basket. You establish that your props are there. The others can use ball droppers or hidden pockets.

Suggestion 4 - Impromptu routines with common items. If at an SCA event you will find bowls, mugs, sunglasses, bottles of beer. What else? Work up some routines with such items and be ready. If you want, you can bring your own and seed the performance area ahead of time. What looks totally impromptu ("Anyone mind if I borrow this bowl right here?") is really you using your props that you put in place an hour ago.

I wear jeans often in real life and I have my keys and wallet in the front pockets so I never put magic stuff there that's any larger than a thimble. And that doesn't survive long. I also wear a kilt on hot days and put my stuff in a sporran. I'm used to not going to my pockets. Think about what you plan to wear and how you can get the most from it.

Hope that was helpful!

Message: Posted by: maxnew40 (May 27, 2011 02:36PM)
Master Payne I like the ringed purse that you use, I might have to adopt something similar.

I also have some bag patterns that I might use to craft a bag this weekend.

Once again, thank you for the sage wisdom!!!

-Max (Nigel the Nearly Mysterious)
Message: Posted by: Pokie-Poke (May 29, 2011 09:14AM)
I have a pouch on eather side of the belt, I had one that was on the front, but this is odd looking for a modern eye.
I othewise hang things from my belt, in my basket, or in my hat.
shoes, yup
hat, several
blue card, yep.
Patric is not far off on the SCA.
Message: Posted by: Mr. Woolery (Jun 1, 2011 06:34PM)
I'm no longer active (beyond the fighting, but never at events these days). However, I do sometimes think there are some good tricks that could be made SCA-specific pretty easily. You could shuffle someone's blue card into a deck of duplicates and use a card duck to reveal it! Or a torn and restored AA (with someone's new scroll from the court earlier in the day). Or a joke for history lovers - do Precious Metal (spoon changes into fork when you expect it to bend - joke mentalism) routine and look at the fork and ask "what in the world is this?"

Gosh, with this cynical attitude, I can almost convince myself that I'd have fun in the SCA again if I just used it as an opportunity to tease people with magic.

Message: Posted by: kazoo23 (Oct 24, 2011 03:34PM)
Haversacks, me friend, and a gibiscier will carry everything you need.
Message: Posted by: Anne (Jun 1, 2012 11:47AM)
Well, I haven't been into magic a long time, but I have been some years in costume-making and fatasy fairs.
Where we deal with not having pockets all the time ;)

I made some bags out of wool (felt), leather and so on. You can make them. I made many deck-of-cards-sized pockets before. Depends on what time-setting you are in.
I've been working in Archeon (Netherlands) as a woman from the dark ages, but most of my self-made costumes are more fantasy-related, so you are more free of what stuff to use for your costumes/bags. As in; I couldn't use buckels for my work.

Hope it helped a bit, if you need some more help, I'd love to help out ;)

Posted: Jun 1, 2012 12:47pm
Never mind me, just noticed it's a very very old post.
Message: Posted by: Mr. Woolery (Jun 2, 2012 02:45PM)

I like to refer back to some of the older threads and seeing someone add to them is good. Thank you.

Message: Posted by: Pokie-Poke (Jun 7, 2012 08:25PM)
And the renaissance was a long time ago, so you are just in time.
Message: Posted by: Motley Mage (Jun 8, 2012 11:14PM)
Everything old is new again, as the saying goes. And every new post brings the old to the fore. Thanks!
Message: Posted by: Motley Mage (Jun 29, 2012 10:39AM)
Hi Max--Not sure if you are still following this thread, but after seeing his name recommended repeatedly on the Ever so Sleightly forum, I am considering a Poacher's Pouch (Gibciere) from Frank Starsini. His site The Ambitious Card has lots of beautiful leather bags and pouches that may suit your (and my) style. It also appears to be the source of the ring-closure bag you admired above. Check this link: http://www.theambitiouscard.com/category.cfm?cat=pouch&title=Pouches%20and%20Cases
Message: Posted by: maxnew40 (Jul 2, 2012 02:32PM)
Motley, thanks for the link. I do some leather work myself and I am thinking I might be best served by making on for myself. Currently I am sing a satchel bag that I made in a aclass that was offered in my local SCA branch.

Message: Posted by: Motley Mage (Jul 3, 2012 09:23AM)
I did remember from you OP that you did your own leatherwork. Best of luck! (Perhaps you could post a pic when you've completed the project.
Message: Posted by: Pecan_Creek (Jul 3, 2012 11:18AM)
On the subject of pockets:
I am not as familiar as most with the SCA rules. But, I find it hard to believe that while pockets were not in general use at the time, a magician would not have thought of a secret compartment to conceal things.

Even if you would be banished, flogged or whatever if you have pockets, there should be no reason for any spectator to discover your pockets unless you showed them. After all they should be secret, right?

Would the hard core Ren Faire people really care? Or is it just a personal thing?
Message: Posted by: Motley Mage (Jul 3, 2012 12:04PM)
Mike, I cannot speak for others, but I too believe that secret pockets would almost definitely have been a "trick of the trade" for the period magician, and I KNOW that hidden pockets, holdouts, and such (in addition to the pouches the audience sees) are built into my act. And every Ren performer I know has some sort of secret pocket for keeping things not to be seen by the folk of the faire--cell phone, cigarettes, cash.
Message: Posted by: maxnew40 (Jul 3, 2012 03:51PM)
The Renaissance fairs and SCA events can be very different. In general a Renaissance faire covers a later time period than the SCA and also has many participants dressing and acting as mythical creatures like Fairies and Disney style pirates. The Renaissance faires I have attended are more about being entertained, while SCA events are more about participating. In the SCA you put on armor and fight instead of watching a fighting performance.

People in the SCA tend to try and replicate period clothing and practices much more so than the typical Renaissance faire. Many people in the SCA wont wear cotton because it was not really available in medieval Europe. Medieval people had many puches and purses and not so much pockets, but it isn't really a big deal. Look at the Hieronymus Bosch painting the conjurer to see what they might have worn.

Message: Posted by: Mr. Woolery (Jul 3, 2012 08:36PM)
Read through Hocus Pocus Jr, too. There are several points when the author mentions his use of pockets. Not just hidden ones, either. Now, we are talking about early 17th century, but that's not far from SCA period. When talking about the cups and balls, there's a mention that some people do it with a "budget" in front (that's a bag - probably the English word for a gibiciere, I'm thinking), others just open their codpiece!

For earlier impressions, I think the key is probably to ask what effect you want to do and then figure what you will need to do it. Will pockets really add that much? While I do suspect that hidden pockets were a utility employed by the conjurers of the time, I can't prove it and they really are not necessary. However, they would really help with some tricks!

Bosch is one source, but look at as many as you can find. Breughel has a woodcut of The Fall of the Magician Hermogenes in which a bunch of odd critters (some think these represent familiar spirits, others seem to think them more fanciful) surround the magician and perform tricks associated with the street magicians of the time. Puppets, acrobatics, gory stunts like the knife in tongue are all shown, as well as the ubiquitous cups and balls. I think this picture is perhaps a better documentation of the variety of material in a magician's repertoire than is the case with the Bosch painting. Not perhaps as realistic a representation, but it shows the variety of tricks performed.

Message: Posted by: Motley Mage (Jul 25, 2012 09:16AM)
Mr. Wooloery--Your note on "budget" is spot-on, I think: budget

budget: early 15c., "leather pouch," from M.Fr. bougette, dim. of O.Fr. bouge "leather bag, wallet, pouch," from L. bulga "leather bag," of Gaulish origin (cf. O.Ir. bolg "bag," Bret. bolc'h "flax pod"), from PIE *bhelgh- (see belly).
Message: Posted by: cirrus (Jul 27, 2012 01:18PM)
I suggest strolling larp sites for good pouches. The magician's pouches never look like something old style. Larp does. I have bought my bags over their also.
Message: Posted by: Steve_Mollett (Jul 28, 2012 06:11PM)
I received my Award of Arms in SCA partly through magic.
I used a folding table for cups & balls and other sundries, plus the gibciere.
I also had repro thumbscrews and Spanish Inquisition execution irons hooked to my belt to demonstrate "how I escaped the Inquisition in Toledo."
More than once, I entertained at feasts by performing fire eating.
Message: Posted by: funsway (Sep 22, 2012 02:52AM)
I always had several pouches made from converted leather purses (over the shoulder prepared with items for six effects -- though I preferred to use "found " objects. I also had a wide belt under which I had constructed some small packets and clips. Wigh some garb it is appropriate to pull the material over the belt and allow to hang down to cove clipped objects and purses.
Message: Posted by: Pokie-Poke (Sep 22, 2012 07:13PM)
The point of keeping the pockets or pouches in mind is not the secret hold out. but the every day..."I'll just put this ball in my po-----"
I quite often wear my ECW paints that have pockets, and make fun of them.

"You know this is impossible... these pockets won't be invented till 1630!"
and I use pouches instead of a gib. as the gib has you pawing in front of you privet parts, this dose not sit well with modern brain. a ring pouch on the side will act like a modern pocket, so it will not raise a flag when your hand finds it's way there.
Message: Posted by: malaki (Apr 12, 2017 04:43PM)
This is one of the advantages of wearing oriental styled garb. I, more often than not, wear a Mongolian del, which is a shirt that has a flat panel that fastens on the right. When wearing a sash, the entire front of the shirt becomes a pocket (ones that the Mongols would use). Within the sash I have had a small pocket sewn that is big enough for a thimble, a TT, Scotch & Soda and a lighter. Originally I would fold a sash to use the main fold as a pocket. After losing a couple of thimbles and a Scotch & Soda, I decided that there was not enough security in place. Keeping items from working their way out as you walk became a full time job. The sash with the pocket works better, especially when placed over my Motley Sash (a performance award that used to be given in Ansteorra). The knot of the Motley Sash is in front and creates a rim under the other sash which acts like a folded stop for items. This rig works very well for items that I might require on a moment's notice. The flat items in my shirt can provide me with at least 10 minutes worth of effects. My magic bag is based upon the old barrel bag. It is literally 1' in diameter and 3' long, with a supporting frame of walnut, turned on the lathe to look like bamboo. This frame allows great organization and a sliding tray for small items so they don't get lost in the bottom of the bag. The leather of the bag is tooled with all nine dragons from the Nine Dragon Scroll, painted by Chen Rong in the 13th century (My persona saw it, then reproduced it in a different medium). The bag holds enough magic to entertain for about an hour and a half.

My wizard's robe is based upon robes worn in the court of Kubilai Kahn, to whom I have offered my services. Longer sleeves fold back upon themselves, the lining creating a wide trim. Great for nesting your hands in cold weather, the hanging sections of sleeves act as a personal backdrop for performing sleight of hand. Also explains where the western wizard's robes came from.

These performing conditions are what caused me to create my own group of utility items. I created a device that pins to the inside of the clothes, with a sticky face that will hold a coin or thimble securely, ready for retrieval. This is an accomplishment, considering that my thimbles have been encrusted with rhinestones ala David Devant. Not period, but they show up extremely well, so I use them. The rhinestones make the audience think that they will have the edge in spotting them (they don't).

All of my patter in my routines are based upon my travels with the Polos, on the work I do for the Kahn, or creating my garb. "Thimbles are needed to create my clothing (believe me, you cannot buy this off the rack!), The hardest thing about using a thimble is keeping track of it!"

In the SCA, I often have to remind them that the C stands for "Creative".