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Fancy Dress Pirate Costumes

Updated on January 3, 2011

Pirates & Pirate Halloween Costumes

Pirate and pirate wench costumes are probably one of the most popular fancy dress themes and Halloween costume categories there are, the resurgence in the popularity of pirates and their costumes has in part been brought about by a certain Jack Sparrow played by Johnny Depp in the extremely popular Pirates of the Caribbean films. Ever since their release, It seems that everyone now wants to dress up as a pirate!

The aim of this page is to explore just why pirate costumes are so popular and what are the best pirate costumes out there.

Male Pirate Costumes

The return in popularity of the pirate costume is probably down to the massive popularity of the Pirates of the Caribbean and so that would have to make a Jack Sparrow costume the most popular of all pirate costumes, but what other pirate costumes for men are there available and what are some of the best?

First off, what makes a pirate costume? By that, I mean how do you know when a person is wearing a pirate costume? If we take a look at what makes a pirate costume, we can then know what to look for in a great pirate fancy dress outfit.

Most pirate costumes consist of a loose fitting shirt that are tied at the top with a lace. Over that you wear some sort of a jacket. The Sailor pants and Boots are also important.

Headgear:

I have written a section below on The Pirate Hat but you could also choose to wear a Bandanna

Weapons:

Any pirate worth their salt has to be able to fight, and as such they need a weapon. The two weapons of choice are either a sword or pistol. Other ideas could include a Flintlock Musket, or a dagger.

Accessories:

Wig: long dark hair is always good!

Parrot on the Shoulder

Eye patch

Hoop Earing

Belt with large buckle

Now all you need now is to perfect the accent and pirate slang!

Captain Jack Sparrow Pirate Costumes

One of the most famous or should that be infamous fictional pirates is Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean films played by Johnny Depp in The Curse of the Black Pearl, Dead Man's Chest and At World's End.

As well as the films, Jack Sparrow appears in the children's books: Pirates of the Caribbean which follows this pirate through his teenage years.

Jack Sparrow Pirate Costume and Look

In the Pirates of the Caribbean films, the Captain Jack Sparrow costume as worn by Johnny Depp includes a wig as the pirate captain has dreadlocks as well as a red bandana.

Some Jack Sparrow costumes come with his signature pirate hat. The rest of his costume, is basically a traditional Pirate costume. In the films, Depp liked to stick to one costume and usually wore a lightweight silk tweed frock coat.

For complete authenticity, Jack Sparrow also has several gold teeth and a goatee beard that is worn in two braids as well as numerous tattoos and has been branded a pirate on his right arm by Cutler Beckett, underneath a tattoo of a sparrow.

Captain Jack Sparrow Costumes

Disney Jack Sparrow Pirate costumes are available in adult as well as children's sizes. There are also a few different designs available.

Female Pirates in History

There are now plenty of female pirates in films as well as in books like romance novels, but have you hear of any of the true to life woman pirates? Well they are not as famous as their male counterparts, the Long John Silver's and Black Beards of this world, but there is evidence that a few female pirates did sail the high seas.

Jane de Belleville

Jane de Belleville started out as a French noblewoman who eventually went against her country of France when her husband was convicted and executed as a spy. Because of this she decided to join the English during the invasion of Brittany in 1345.

With her money from the sale of all her possessions, Jane de Bellevill bought 3 ships and from then on no ship nor town near the coast of Normandy was safe from her wrath. With a flaming torch in one hand and a sword in the other, she must have been a fearsome sight to behold, as she burned whole Norman villages to the ground.

Charlotte de Berry

Then there is the story of Charlotte de Berry who was born in England in 1636. Because she wanted to follow her husband into the navy, during a time when women were not permitted, she dressed as a man. During an attack on the ship she was sailing with, she was discovered as a woman and forced onto a ship heading towards Africa.

The Captain assaulted the woman which made her vow to take revenge, which she did by leading the ships crew in a mutiny. Charlotte de Berry then beheaded the Captain and then became Captain herself and led ship and crew in raids along the African Coast, capturing ships heavy with gold.

Anne Bonny

Anne was married to pirate James bonny, Anne Bonn also had an affair with pirate John "Calico Jack" Rackham and later dressed as a man to join his crew. Anne later accidentally discovered another crew member Mark Read was also secretly a woman and the two became very close. Rackham demanded to know why they were so close and Read revealed her identity. Rackham allowed her to stay and revealed the women's gender to the crew. From then on they both dressed as men to fight but dressed as women at other times. Both were imprisoned in 1720 and it is believed Annes wealthy father arranged her release. Anne married and settled down in Charleston, dying in 1782.

Think of pirates, and pirate costumes... the colours that spring to mind tend to be black, gold and burgundy. Now what if I said I had found a fantastic pink and blue pirate costume! It is awesome and for me has to be one of the best pirate Halloween costumes I have ever seen. (The fact that the model also happens to be stunning has nothing to do with it!)

So If you are after a pirate outfit to get noticed in, may I highly recommend this costume pictured!

For this and other Pink Pirate costumes check out the:

Pink Pirate Costumes on Amazon.com

Sexy Pirate Wench Costumes

Whilst I guess that the original Pirates of the Caribbean were almost exclusively men, these days there are plenty of female pirate costumes or should we say in pirate talk, Pirate Wench Costumes.

Most of the womans pirate costumes that I have been able to find on the web, would probably best be described as sexy costumes although, if you look hard enough you can find a few that will keep at least some of your modesty intact!

Sexy Pirate Costumes for Valentines Day

There are plenty of pretty sexy pirate costumes available, so as a slightly different idea as a valentines gift for the man in your life, have you ever thought of dressing up in a sexy costume, say a sexy pirate costume for Valentines day?

Sexy Pirate Costumes on Amazon.com

As a male, I reckon apart from a bit of fun, it is an excellent idea and is sure to be a major surprise to your partner. You could even make a whole night of it, why not have a romantic dinner with a difference, by making the whole evening based around the theme of pirates .. ooogh err!

Vote for your Fav Sexy Pirate Costume

I thought it would be fun to vote for the sexiest pirate costume, a kind of walk the plank beauty contest where the winner gets all the booty and the looser .. well walks the plank.

Anyway vote for you favourite sexy pirate costume below and I will write about the top ones in the future:

Lady Buccaneer Costume - Medium/Large - Dress Size 8-12
Lady Buccaneer Costume - Medium/Large - Dress Size 8-12

The sizes below are specific to the costume in this listing. Other costumes may have different sizing patterns. For example, company A's size medium may be equivalent to company B's size large. Be sure to check the size chart closely to make sure you know what you are ordering. The list below may indicate that more than one size fits you. If you are unsure of which size to choose, then go with the larger size because these costumes tend to run small. Size --------- Dress SizeSmall/Medium - 2-6Medium/Large - 6-10

 
Pirate Renaissance Large
Pirate Renaissance Large

Feisty! Costume includes: Faux suede vest with mock under blouse with off the shoulder, dramatic sleeves. Expandable back panel in vest, and elastic at cuffs and bust to improve fit. Full-length skirt with contrasting mock belt and hidden elastic waistband. Available sizes: Small (6-8)Medium (10-12)Large (14-16) Manufacturer recommends machine wash. Boots and Sword Not Included

 
Hot Pink Pirate Captain Costume - Small/Medium - Dress Size 2-6
Hot Pink Pirate Captain Costume - Small/Medium - Dress Size 2-6

Sexy 5 Piece Pirate Captain Costume This Item Includes Mini Dress; Hat; Lace Up Coat with Ruffled Sleeves and Collar; Eye Patch (Not Shown); and Sword!{{RomaSizes}}

 
Lacey Pirate Lady Costume Adult - Adult Small
Lacey Pirate Lady Costume Adult - Adult Small

You won't find a more beautiful Pirate Lady. Includes a black lace and satin dress with gold and evergreen on black velvet boned corset and matching choker. Also includes a matching hat with gold evergreen velvet, black lace, feathers and ribbons.

 

Halloween Costume & Pirate Costume Links

Below are a few links that I have found useful. A few are to my own websites. If you have a website that is both useful and relevant to Pirate costumes, please feel free to drop me a line.

Fancy Dress Ideas

A blog about all types of Fancy dress and Halloween costumes and Ideas

Halloween 4 Costumes

A website selling fancy dress and Halloween costumes

The Pirate Hat

Most pirate costumes that you buy, will come with the pirate hat, but it is always worth checking to see, before you pay just in case. You wouldn't want to turn up to the pirate themed fancy dress party without your hat!

You may also wish to upgrade the hat that came with your pirate outfit, if so I have put together a few examples for you below. If you live in the UK an excellent place to buy a pirate costume as well as Pirate hats is Jokers' Masquerade Fancy dress & Halloween costumes, one of the best costume companies on the web.

Pirate hats For Sale

Amazon has an excellent selection of Pirate hats available

Pirate Swords

We all know that Pirates used swords, but what types of swords were they?

I guess if you wanted to make your pirate costume as authentic as possible, you are going to have to accessorise it with authentic weapons, so what types of Swords did pirates use?

Cutlass Sword

Of all the pirate swords, the cutlass was favoured by pretty much all fighting men at sea during the 17th and 18th centuries. The cutlass has a short, broad blade was the ideal weapon for hand to hand fighting on board ship - a longer sword would easily get tangled in the rigging. According to legend, buccaneers invented the cutlass. The long knives used by the original buccaneers to butcher meat for the boucan evolved into the famous short sword used by all seamen. These swords weigh around 3 pounds and are about 2' to 3' in length.

Broadsword

The Broadsword was not often used by pirates or sailors as their length and weight made them awkward to use in a crowded fight on a ship's deck. Although it is said that the famous pirate Blackbeard was decapitated by a blow from a broadsword. These swords weigh 3-5 pounds, and are around 3-3½' in length.

Pirate Booty on ebay

The modern day version of looking for buried treasure is finding a bargain on Ebay! Here are a few items that have a pirate theme that may make you shiver ...aaaarrr!

The Pirate Dictionary

You have the pirate costume, you've got the hat, now it is important to complete the transformation into a pirate or pirate wench, is to speak like a pirate, below are a few pirate phrases and their meanings that you may fine useful

  • Ahoy: Hey there
  • Booty: treasure
  • Buccanneer: this is a pirate who be answerin' to no man or government.
  • Davy Jones' Locker: the bottom o' the sea, where the souls of dead men lie
  • Grog: a pirates favourite drink
  • Jolly Roger: the pirate flag, skull and crossbones.
  • Landlubber: comes from "Land-lover," and is someone not used to life onboard a ship.
  • Lily-livered: faint o' heart, chicken or scared
  • Loaded to the Gunwales: drunk
  • Matey: friend or shipmate
  • Me hearty: friend or shipmate
  • Scallywag: A scoundrel or bad person
  • Shiver me timbers!: an exclamation of surprise
  • washbucklin': fightin' and carousin' on the high seas!
  • Wench: a woman or lady

Speak like a Pirate

To speak like a pirate you first you need to learn some basic pirate vocabulary (see above) and then you can use these basic rules to help you start sounding like a pirate!

Many thanks to the talk like a pirate day website for these tips.

  • Double up on all your adjectives and you'll be bountifully bombastic with your phrasing. Pirates never speak of "a big ship", they call it a "great, grand ship!" They never say never, they say "No nay ne'er!"
  • Drop all your "g"'s when you speak and you'll get words like "rowin'", "sailin'" and "fightin'". Dropping all of your "v"'s will get you words like "ne'er", "e'er" and "o'er".
  • Instead of saying "I am", sailors say, "I be". Instead of saying "You are", sailors say, "You be". Instead of saying, "They are", sailors say, "They be". Ne'er speak in anythin' but the present tense!

Pirate Flags

First off many people as if pirates really used flag like we see in almost all pirate films and the answer is yes!

The Jolly Roger is actually the name given to any of various flags flown to identify a ship's crew as pirates. Pirates would often customise their own version of their pirate flag, but the most common being the traditional skull and cross bones that we are all familiar with today as well as a plain black flag.

Pirates used their flags to frighten their potential victims into surrendering before fighting and thus saving the pirates a lot of work and danger!

Check out this site for more on Pirate flags

Pirate Movies

Probably one of the main reasons that fancy dress pirate costumes are so popular is the popularity of recent pirate films like Pirates of the Caribbean

If you have any comments on Pirates, Pirate Costumes or this page, I would love to hear from you.

Pirate Chatter & Comments

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