SAILOR'S KIT
or What is it you be wearing mate
The Starter Kit: A description of the very basics of the Napoleonic seaman's attire
Linen in a standard late 18C/ early 19C pattern. Colors: White, White w/blue checks (checks should be small). White with thin vertical Blue Stripes. These were the most popular colors.
Shirt:
Instead of neck stocks and other tight fitting finery, sailors wore loosely knotted cloths around their neck. Called "sweat rags" they were commonly silk and commonly black, that being the color available through the "slop system". Should be 36x36 or 38x38. Other colors of the time period were red, yellow, and red with white dots.
Neck Cloth:
Woolen stockings are appropriate and comfortable if well made. Gray was the color offered through the slop system. Other dull colors are also appropriate. Striped stocking existed, but don't do it...makes you look like a Pyrate.
Stockings:
Shoes:
Sailors generally did not go barefoot. Indeed they had there own style of shoes. They looked like basic 18C shoes, but were very flexible with very thin, low heels (boat shoes if you will). Shoes with ties instead of buckles are prominent in this period.
Contrary to popular opinion, sailors mostly wore trowsers (long pants). The trowsers would be natural/off-white/white linen material or blue wool cloth.. The trowsers have  a high "rise" and come to above the belly button. They are broadfall and the buttons should be covered by your waistcoat or jacket.
Trowsers:
Tars wore jackets, mostly of  blue wool. These jackets were much shorter than the popular jackets of the period and were, as such, identifying marks of a seaman. Single and Double breasted jackets both existed. Slop system jackets were lined white with flat brass buttons and had 2-3" collars common to the period (it can be up or down).
Jacket:
Three styles of hat were prominant, though others were worn.. The first was the coachman style round hat: short brim, high crown, wool felt. They were often "waterproofed". Second style was straw hats that often looked similar to the coachman's style hat. The third prominent style was the wool cap in the Dutch (Monmouth) Style in plain dull colors. No silly little balls on top and they should fit close to the head...no "liberty" caps of the long red tuque style...might get you arrested.
Hat:
A personal item that Jack Tar would often preserve for a "run ashore". Optional for a work party, landing party. Could be quite fancy.
Waistcoat:
These are the very basics of the British seaman's kit. Remember we are not talking about uniformed regulars here, but individuals who thought of themselves as "civilians". The other items that would make up an individuals kit are varied and come in a vast array of styles. Dig in, do some research, this is a fascinating impression that can be very rewarding.
Anchors Up!
Navigate