Thank God, Not All Black and White

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Did the Pilgrims really wear black and white, and do I have to?

Thank God, Not All Black and White

We think of Pilgrim clothing as all black and white, but historians say it was more like a 256-color display. So don't think you have to choose that turkey costume or pumpkin costume rather than wear boring white and black Pilgrim Thanksgiving costumes.

If you and your kids don't feel like dressing in the usual black and white or brown Pilgrim costume with bonnets and hats, you can wear purple petticoats, green vests, periwigs (those white English judge/George Washington hairpieces) or natural hair...just don't add any Pilgrim costume jewelry. Save that for your Native Americans (who didn't wear loincloths in winter, by the way.) Pilgrims let the colors of their clothing speak for themselves. They didn't all wear buckles, either--that legend started much later.

A Pilgrim costume with black and white clothing is a good choice if you're pretending you're a Pilgrim at Sunday Mass. But even the governor of the Massachusetts Colony, William Bradford had a red waistcoast, violet cloak and gray suit with silver buttons.

The everyday Pilgrim costume was typically green or brown, so for children, green or brown Pilgrim Thanksgiving costumes are good choices. Also, young boys often wore dresses just like the girls. However, since you're not sticking strictly to the typical Pilgrim costume as we think of it today, your boys can don their big-collared suit with pride. Just don't limit yourself to black and white--the Pilgrims themselves were fearless and bold.



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