Since the High Fantasy Society is a medieval based fantasy game, all players are expected to clothe themselves in appropriate clothing so as to lend to the ambiance of the game. To allow new players the opportunity to join in and experience the game, there is some leeway given to them. In most HFS kingdoms, any non-newcomer player who is not wearing garb on a given day (even for part of the day) will not earn any class credits. Newcomers should have some form of garb within a month of beginning to play.
What you wear is entirely up to you. There is only one requirement for participation in the HFS: wear an attempt at pre-1650's and fantasy clothing.
The focus of the HFS covers a wide range of years and cultures, and so does the variety of clothing people wear. Outfits are made or purchased. They can be made with period and modern materials. Some people choose to wear a simple belted tunic and baggy trousers. Others will go to great effort to achieve an authentic as possible appearance from head to toe. Most of us are somewhere in the middle.
Some people wear styles from many different cultures and time periods. Others strictly adhere to the clothing that their "persona" would have worn. Still others will wear an Elizabethan gown to one event, a Norman tunic to the next, a Turkish belly-dancer garb to a hafla, et cetera. There's really room for everyone's interests.
The terms costume and garb are often interchangeable. However, since we are trying to portray people of the past, its more likely that the term "garb" will be used for the more accurate and authentic the garments.
For those of us who seek to understand people of the past by quite literally wearing their shoes, replication of historic clothing to a high degree of historic accuracy is essential. But this is by far the minority and only enjoyed by those whose fun revolves around that eternal question "Whatever Shall I Wear?"
All in all, we're people to whom dressing up in funny clothes and playing medieval is our idea of a good time. At whatever level you play, enjoy!
Garb is a vital component to giving the game the proper mood and feel. Anything that conceals the obvious mundane (modern-day) appearance of clothing is acceptable as a minimum, and this usually takes the form of a tunic or tabard. There are many people and places that sell quality garb (and some that sell not-so-high quality garb), but the best garb is made specifically for you. Note that all battlefield participants must be in "period" garb (tunic, robe, armor, etc.).
The basic garb is quite easy and cheap to make. The simplest garb is a plain tabard and a pair of sweatpants. A tabard is a essentially a narrow section of cloth (covering from shoulder to shoulder) with a neck hole cut in the middle, worn like a poncho and belted in place. More advanced garb includes simple or fancy tunics, cloaks and capes, breeches, mantles, and a huge variety of other garments. Every local library will have books on costuming, and most veteran players have become masters at taking common items and converting them to fine quality garb.
- Minimal Garb should consist of a minimum of upper body covering that appears to be period from a distance of 10 feet. No obviously modern or “mundane” clothing or accessories shall be visible on the upper torso. Exceptions to this rule should only be made for unusual circumstances. The rules will always allow any item required by the player for health reasons (eyeglasses, knee braces, etc.)
- Standard Garbshall consist of upper and lower body covering that appears to be period from a distance of 10 feet. No modern or “mundane” clothing or accessories shall be visible. All exposed items shall have a period look except for shoes and glasses. Shoes should be leather or natural colored (black, brown, etc) and not of blatantly modern design (example, leather combat boots would be allowed, but silver running shoes should not). Shoe covers to hide modern shoes will be appreciated.
- Court Garb usually consists of standard garb plus various accessories such as belts, pouches, hats, period shoes, jewelry, etc. These items are what make the difference between looking acceptable and looking good. Above standard garb should also include garb pieces that are more than just a “basic” tunic. Period trim, multi color, period fabrics, etc can bump garb up to the next level. Individuals should also be considered “above standard” if their clothing will stand up to the “period looking” standard from a close inspection rather than 10 feet.
Some items are discouraged from being worn visibly. These garments include: (Exceptions are often made for newcomers)
- T-shirts that are brightly colored, white, have visible logos, collars or pockets.
- Camouflage or military issued cargo pants.
- Modern jeans of any color except black or White.
- Modern hats or other headgear.
- Any fabrics with blatantly modern prints.
- Any item with obscene, offensive, lewd or banned symbols, pictures or words on them.
Common Garb Restrictions:Edit
- White belts are reserved for knights.
- Red belts are reserved for squires.
- Yellow belts are reserved for Pages (aka Men-at-Arms or Armsmen). A non-fighting page must also wear a gold "enchantment" strip if on the field.
- Unadorned large gold chains are reserved for Masters or Knights depending on the kingdom.
- Unadorned large black chains are reserved for Class Masters.
- Spurs are reserved for company Captains or Knights depending on the kingdom.
- The Phoenix can only be worn by Paladins or Anti-paladins or displayed as part of a kingdom's heraldry.
- The use of crowns and coronets is reserved for royalty and nobility.
- Most companies and many individuals choose to register their personal symbols and colors. Use of these personal symbols by others are disallowed. Personal symbols and colors must be registered to enjoy this protection.