An easy way to up your historical accuracy cool factor ( but like a millionth) is by having a period belt. It’s also one of the cheapest and potentially easiest posts in our Historically Accurate Equivalent series .
Step 1- THROW OUT THE RING BELT!
Ring belts are not precisely historically accurate, but are a pseudo SCA and Renaissance Faire hybrid from somewhere in the 70’s. Do a google search on SCA ring belt not period, and you will have a whole day of reading in front of you. The funny thing is, your going to spend more money getting a ring belt then you would getting a leather belt blank and a buckle.
Step 2- Figure out what kind of belt is correct for your persona.
A Viking is not going to wear the same type of belt as a crusader of an Elizabethan noble. If you don’t have a persona yet, then normally a generic leather belt with a plain buckle is find. However is you do have a persona or a type of clothing you wear more often, then your going to want to spend just a little bit of time doing some research.
Step 3 ( optional) Research: Check out some of these links for help/guidance on trying to figure out what belt would be right for you.
- Stefan’s Florilegium belts-msg – A good collection on general belt wear.
- Atlantian A&S Links for Belts– Don’t forget to check out the section on your persona’s culture as well.
- Larsdatter – A great image search to see belts in artwork and existing pieces. They have Belts & girdles, Plaque belts, Wide belts (“Brode harnysed girdilles”)
Step 3: Make or Buy your belt
Now you know what you are looking for, you should either create or buy a belt. Of course SCA events are going to be a great place to start, but also check out Etsy, and Thrift Stores. I have found more “plaque” or “chain” belts at the thrift stores that have a striking resemblance to period belts. Luckily I did my research ( Step 2 above), so I can easily tell which styles are historic-esque.
If you want a really historically accurate belt, than you should consider making it yourself. You can weave them, make them out of leather, or even sew belts that resemble period examples. If your not up to making one yourself, try commissioning one from a blacksmith or weaver.