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World Costume for Theatrical Productions

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Fashion changes from region to region in the Empire, often following the whims or tastes of the current nobility. For the sake of simplicity, it is possible to speak generally of fashions in Tamzyrr and the other southwestern cities as opposed to styles of dress seen in the north and east. In actuality, many styles may coexist in the same county or barony.

The noble women of Tamzyrr dress in long gowns with full skirts and a tightly boned bodice. The neck of the bodice is cut low and straight across the chest, with pieces of what is usually a sheer fabric cut to cover the shoulders while leaving the center of the neck and chest bare. A high collar likewise encircles all but the front of the neck, topped with a goffered ruff. The sleeves, cut in curved triangles long enough to brush the ground, are bordered at the top with puffs of fabric and finished at the hem with scallops or trim. Hats are not usually worn, with much attention instead being paid to the coiffure. For those who desire some form of head covering, a sheer veil tucked into the shoulders suffices. Pearls are used as jewelry and as embellishment by both sexes.

The men show a similar amount of restriction in the torso, in the form of a fitted doublet with a padded belly and short skirts. Though most commonly made of leather, the garment can also be cut from wool or heavy silk. Long, bound slashes in the chest show off either the white shirt underneath, or a contrasting color of applied silk. The sleeves of the doublet may also be slashed, though in a much smaller pattern. As with the women, puffs of fabric delineate the shoulders. The breeches are cut full at the hips and taper towards the knee, where they are buttoned and bound in a narrow band. Goffered ruffs finish off the neck and wrists, adding further formality to the silhouette. Short capes are worn at a diagonal across the chest. The gathered fabric hats have high crowns and small brims.

By way of contrast, the men of the north present a much softer picture. Their doublets stop short of the waist, revealing a section of the shirt just above the closely-cut breeches. The paned sleeves are extremely full above the elbow, then fitted to the wrist. Slashing is also common, but rather than being found on the chest and sleeves, it is featured predominantly on the breeches and at the tops of the stockings, which tie under the knee with large bows. Long, sleeveless overrobes with wide collars are worn in place of capes, and heavy chains of office are sometimes worn across the shoulders. The shoes have broad, squared-off toes and are split down the vamp.

The northern women are less restricted as well. They wear an unboned corset underneath their high-waisted gowns. Cartridge pleats in the center front add fullness, which must be held out of the way when walking. The neckline of the bodice is cut squarely to fall under the bust, revealing a gathered chemise. Pendant sleeves hang open from the elbow and can feature fur on the inside or out. The undersleeve fits closely to the wrist. Padded rolls curve in a crescent over the back of the head, and hair is usually braided or twisted close to the ears. Precious metal jewelry is the most common.

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