If your character wanted to wear a disguise, how would they dress?
This is a bit of a tricky question for my characters as many of them are historical and would not have had the opportunity to change their style of dress.
In A Ghost and His Gold, Pieter the Boer (farmer) and Estelle the Boer Meisie (farm girl) would have dressed in the traditional clothing of the time which would have been made by Marta, Pieter’s wife, and his daughters, including Estelle.
Typical everyday dress for Boer men consisted of flaptrousers of skin or moleskin with a waistband or a pair of braces, a cotton or woolen shirt, a waistcoat of cotton or wool, a neckcloth, a jacket of moleskin, velskoens (skin shoes) without socks and a broad rimmed hat.
Men’s Sunday church outfits comprised of velvet flap-trousers, a shirt of fine white linen, a waistcoat of velvet, brocade, silk or satin, a cloth frock-coat or velvet jacket, bow-tie, socks and velskoens as well as a top hat.
This was the attire everyone wore so the disguise would have been in looking just the same as all the other Boers and fitting in if you were an infiltrator. Of course, a British soldier would have also needed to speak Afrikaans without an English accent…
Women and girls wore dresses with a narrow bodice and wide skirt of flowered, striped or checked chintz, an apron, a neckcloth of silk or silk tafetta, mittens and a linen bonnet. Their shoes, usually worn without socks, were made of goat or sheep skin.
Girls dresses were a little shorter than their mothers.
Women’s Sunday church outfits consisted of a dress of silk, satin or velvet with a cashmir shawl. Older women wore mantlets (a woman’s short, loose sleeveless cloak or shawl). White cotton socks were worn with their shoes and a bonnet or hat of silk, velvet or straw.
Girls often went barefoot.
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