> I'm thinking of going to a feast, and I know I need "feast gear.". .
> .I'm not sure what's acceptable and what's not in terms of being
There are two general statements that apply to most questions about
"what's acceptable in terms of being 'period'", including this one.
1: You are ultimately the sole judge of what is or is not "period
enough" for you.
Others may have opinions about what you're doing, and you may face some
social censure if you don't at least try to contribute to "the
atmosphere of the pre-17th century European Middle Ages and
Renaissance" that Society events are meant to evoke, but as long as
you're wearing "an attempt at pre-17th century clothing", you've met
the minimal requirements for attendance at an event
>. The only person whose standards for
"periodness" you're required to meet is you.
2: What the people around you will expect depends on where in the
Knowne World you are located.
Each group has its own history and customs, and its own predominant
ideas about what's most important. What might be seen as an acceptable
concession to comfort by one could be considered joltingly
obtrusive--and thus inappropriate--by another. If you'd like to know
what the standards are in your area, it's a good idea to consult people
there. (If you don't yet have local friends to whom you can turn for
advice, consult your branch hospitaler or chatelaine, or, if you have
neither, your seneschal.) When you post questions here, you should
always include your locale, so that those who answer can give you the
most relevant answers possible. (I recommend you get into the habit of
following your name with those of your branch and your kingdom in your
signature. That way, you don't have to remember to put the info in
every time you send a query.)
> Tips, including where to get these items, would be appreciated.
What people ate from and with varied a lot over the core SCA millennium
and from place to place. If you're going to invest a lot of money in
feast gear, think about who your persona is going to be and how much
you care about having feast gear that "matches" that persona before you
If you just want something inexpensive and plausibly-medieval to use
now, wood is tough to beat. For some periods (mine, for instance),
it's the most authentic choice, regardless of social status. For most
others, it was used at least sometimes, by the members of at least some
classes. As others have commented, second-hand bowls and plates are
often available for pennies a piece at thrift stores, and you can
sometimes find perfectly-sized wooden spoons at dollar stores. If
you're ready to spend a little more, lovely, affordable pieces are
carried by online vendors like Ragnar's Ragweed Forge
I'd recommend at minimum you bring a bowl, a plate (or a second bowl),
a knife, a spoon, and something to drink from for each member of your
party. A cloth napkin or three each and a basket to stack it all in
will come in handy, too, as will a candleholder and candles on some
occasions. "The Well-Tempered Feast Basket"
gives a good overview.
Karen Larsdatter's site includes annotated links to photos of surviving
medieval and Renaissance tableware and period paintings showing table
>. It's a good place
to start your research, if you want persona-specific gear. She also
has links to over three dozen merchants selling replicas of various
kinds, some of which include on their websites a good deal of
information on the periods to which their pieces are appropriate.
Barony of Bryn Gwlad
Kingdom of Ansteorra