Talk Like a Pirate Day

Talk Like a Pirate Day celebrates it’s 12th birthday today! What started out as a joke between friends has grown in strength year on year with even schools joining in the fun allowing kids to dress up in pirate costumes.

Maybe the reason why this novelty ‘day’ has been so popular with the general public is that it does not break the bank to join in with a few Pirate accessories, rather than having to purchase an entire pirate outfit. With so many Pirate accessories from a basic eye patch (see notes below as to why Pirates wear eye patches) to Pirate wigs, Pirate Pistols and even a Treasure Map, you can do as much, or as little as you want to.

Visit the official Talk Like a Pirate Day site

Here are a few phrases that may help you get through today!!!(or not as the case may be!)

  • Aye – Yes, I agree
  • Arrrrr – I agree to a certain extent but another drink might help
  • Arrgh – How can I come to a decision? There’s no drink!
  • Avast behind! – Look at the stern on that!
  • Black Spot – Notorious area for pirate ship collisions
  • Corsair – Unique atmosphere surrounding a gathering of pirates
  • Shanty – A pirate drinking song – usually involving stronger drink than the lemonade/beer mix with a similar name
  • Tar – Thanks, sailor

Meanwhile, has it ever occurred to you to wonder why an essential part of the pirate look is an eye-patch? They can’t all have suffered optical injuries? Apparently, the answer is that if you keep one eye ‘in the dark’, it enables you to see (and shoot) better in low-light conditions. So now ye knows!

Props & Frocks has a huge selection of pirate accessories and pirate costumes

Brownstock Tickets

Props & Frocks is the only place, near Woodham,  where you can purchase Brownstock tickets at the 3 Tier price….

30th Aug – 1st Sept

  • Rudimental
  • The Fratellis
  • Mark Ronson
  • Tom Odell
  • The Pigeon Detectives
  • Duke Dumont, and many,many more…

Check out Brownstock Festival 2013

Hurry, while stocks last and save £5.00 on your ticket price.

Gorilla Costumes

Gorilla Costume Ideas

This is a blog post devoted to Gorillas. Not the real thing, but Gorilla costumes and costuming, which, of course, is what we do here at Props & Frocks in Essex.

We are well aware of the various variations of primates such as Gorilla, Chimp, Monkey and Orang-utan, and although our primary focus is upon the Gorilla, the piece may wander into generalised ape territory for reasons which may become clear. Incidentally, we have noticed that whilst Gorilla costumes are fairly easy to find, Orang-utan outfits are more of a rarity – unfortunately a bit like the species itself. This is especially frustrating for fans of Terry Pratchett (where an orang-utan (aka The Librarian) plays a pivotal role in many of the stories), fans of King Louie from ‘The Jungle Book’, and those who, for their own reasons, think that turning up as Clyde, Clint Eastwood’s ‘pet’ in the ‘Every Which Way’ films would be a great original ideas. But we digress..

The main purpose of our interest in Gorillas is that they are one of the few costumes (apart from those featuring weaponry) that males seem keen to wear to parties and other events; They are hot, impractical and usually feature an overhead mask, which makes speaking, eating etc. rather difficult, but the customer is king and why let practicality get in the way of a good idea? As an additional element of interest, in the City of London each year, in a somewhat unique event,  there is a major fundraising fun-run in aid of the Gorilla Foundation, called The Great Gorilla Run. In 2013 it’s on Saturday  21st September and the novelty is that those taking part by running/walking/staggering the 7km course do so dressed as gorillas. And not always just plain gorilla outfits – many are gorillas in costumes!

Inspired by this event, let’s look at the basic outfits: As with any costume, you get what you pay for – a cheap gorilla costume is usually just an all-fur suit with a rubber mask whilst the better quality outfits can feature a latex chest insert and a better quality, heavier latex-based overhead mask.(Of course it’s true that the lighter, cheaper version might be better for running in, but you make your own choice). You might also opt for a fur balaclava headpiece rather than an overhead mask for a number of very practical reasons. In the end, most people wear what they feel they will be most comfortable in – running vests and shorts over the suits –  but here are other options for gorilla dress-ups, not all necessarily suitable for fun-running unless you fancy a real challenge!

Gorilla in a Tutu (or Ra-ra skirt): An outfit with the benefit of extra visual impact with little extra effort. Unlike some other costumes, most tutus are elasticated, so should be able to fit around the waist of a gorilla costume. The concept can also be useful for a Movie party as such an outfit features in the film ‘Cabaret’.

Gorilla in a T-Shirt: Again, a fairly simple option, with the advantage that T-shirts can be found (or created) in extra large sizes to accommodate being worn over the gorilla costume.

Gorilla Bride: Third of the simple outfits – don’t need the full rig, just a white tutu or net skirt and tiara/veil will do.

The Urban Guerilla: Gorilla in combat gear or, in keeping with the City of London setting, bowler hat and bowtie (an umbrella might also be useful!).

Primate of England: Is a gorilla in an archbishop’s outfit possibly not Politically Correct? Hopefully, if it’s in a good cause, nobody will mind.

Optimus Primate: Gorilla meets Transformer in this cyber-based creation. Just add some appropriately decorated cardboard boxes to the basic gorilla suit and you’re all set to dominate.

The Aped Crusader: A variation close to our hearts as we spent time one year giving out promotional capes to the runners for the benefit of a TV series. In a more obvious costume-related incarnation, you use a Gorilla mask with a Superman costume or Batman suit. You could try getting the superhero outfit over the full gorilla suit but aside from sizing issues (most come in one size fits all, but not ‘over costumes’) you’ll be super-hot, and not in a good way. Gorilla hands (available as separate accessories may also be useful, although there may be ‘sweat issues’ with the hands.

Gorilla Carrying a Hunter in a Cage: A great illusion costume, but because of its cost, size and complexity not all outlets may stock it. If you can get hold of one, you’ll certainly attract attention, if only whilst people figure out how it works!

King Kong: Possibly the best known gorilla of all time thanks to several films. Portraying Kong, especially for a run, may pose complications: Carrying a representation or model of the Empire State Building certainly gives a clue, but can be cumbersome. One way we have seen is for Kong to have a mobile-like headpiece with various planes ‘buzzing’ around his head (as in the film), but others  have just used lightweight chains to represent the captured King of Apes.

Talking of Kong, there is a related female costume on the market which involves a dress seemingly in the grip of a large gorilla hand (channelling the scene where the heroine -Fay Wray or Naomi Watts according to your version – is carried by Kong to the top of the Empire State Building). An interesting novelty costume undoubtedly, but we are not sure how well it works out of context.

Star Wars Costumes

If you are a Star Wars fan then it is time to dust off your Darth Vader costumes & join like minded souls at the Star Wars Celebration July 26 – 28th July 2013 in Essen Germany. With many of the original actors making appearances it really is THE place to go!

Props & Frocks stock a great range of Star Wars Costumes including:

  • Darth Maul for adults and children
  • Darth Vader for adults and children
  • Princess Leia
  • Jedi Knights – hire only
  • Yoda – hire only
  • Stormtroppers

If you want to join in this intergalactic ‘spactacular’ then checkout the Star Wars Celebration website where you can also purchase your tickets.

Superhero T-Shirts

Okay, so you are looking for a Superhero costume, but do not want to dress up that much! what about wearing one of our fantastic superhero T-Shirts?

Mens available in medium, large and extra large
Ladies available in small, medium, large and extra large

Wonder Woman T-Shirt

Wonder Woman T-Shirt

Supergirl T-Shirt  Back View

Supergirl T-Shirt Back View

Supergirl T-Shirt

Supergirl T-Shirt

Batman T-shirt

Batman T-shirt

Superman Back View

Superman Back View

Superhero T-shirt

Superhero T-shirt

Shrek Fancy Dress Ideas

When it comes to costumes, Shrek is rapidly becoming one of our main fancy dress themes, given that it has links with so many fairy tale characters (many of which are Disney costume characters). It is quite unusual that just one film (although it is also now a Musical and shown enough on the television to be classed as as a TV character) has enough characters to make it a fancy dress theme in itself.

Here are just some of the popular choices of characters for this particular costume theme.

  • Shrek – hire costume only
  • Princess Fiona
  • Donkey
  • Puss in Boots
  • Gingerbread Man
  • Snow White
  • Three Little Pigs
  • Pinocchio
  • Three Blind Mice
  • Peter Pan
  • Monsieur Hood (AKA Robin Hood)
  • Big Bad Wolf
  • Doris The Ugly Step Sister
  • Cinderella
  • Sleeping Beauty
  • Merlin – look at our wizard costumes & accessories
  • Fairy Godmother
  • Rumplestiltskin
  • Prince Charming
  • Jack & Jill
  • Rapunzel
  • Captain Hook – hire costume only
  • Humpty Dumpty
  • Evil Queen
  • Witches – we have a huge range of witch costumes & accessories
  • Sir Lancelot – wear a Knight Costume
  • The Black Knight
  • The Pied Piper

Couples Fancy Dress Ideas

Every day, we are asked for costume ideas for couples and if you follow the link you will be taken to our costume themes and ideas section of this website where you will find all the

couple costumes you could ever need.

Here are a few couples fancy dress ideas to get you going…

  • Scarlett O’Hara & Rhett Butler – Gone With The Wind
  • Batman & Robin (or The Joker, or any other Villain)
  • Morticia & Gomez Addams (or Uncle Fester or Wednesday)
  • Freddy Krueger & Miss Krueger
  • Hansel & Gretel
  • Bill & Ben
  • Noddy & Big Ears
  • Doctors & Nurses
  • Nun & Vicar (or other religious costumes)
  • Cleopatra & Mark Antony, or Caesar
  • Cowboy & Indian squaw, or saloon girl
  • Gangster & Charleston (Moll)
  • Robin Hood & Maid Marion
  • Henry VII & one of his wives
  • Santa & Mrs Christmas, or Miss Xmas or Elf
  • Superman & Supergirl
  • American GI Man & Lady
  • Captain & Sailor Girl
  • Alice & the Mad Hatter
  • Andy Pandy & Loopy Loo
  • Neo & Trinity
  • Angel & Devil