Progressive. Hard-core. Uber. Elite. Authentic. Accurate.
Numerous labels are fly around the interwebs and out of people’s mouths as they encounter reenactors/living history practitioners/interpreters like and unlike them. In the right mind frame, I could argue that the ultra-authentic folks in their perfectly sewn clothes with perfect accouterments who cannot and do not interact meaningfully with the public are closer to historical costumers than historical reenactors and then watch the fur fly.
Without pasting on a label, I can say that what I like best is always learning more, and that I enjoy playing with other people who also enjoy doing research and evolving interpretation. Not, We’ve already done that, dismissively but, We did that once; how can we do it better?
But what about those folks who we know aren’t doing that? By their Nikes ye shall know them, and their riding habits worn without stays. How is it that some people are interested in change, and others reach a place from which they never move, clothing or research-wise?
What about you, gentle reader? I know you’re not all reenactors; some of you are more on the costume end of the spectrum, but from reading around, I know there are costumers motivated not just by new dresses or character ensembles but by better new dresses and character presentations. What motivates you to change and improve, and what keeps your hobby fresh for you?