Several years ago, I was browsing through a book on pirates (I know you are all shocked) and I see a plate in the book that has a pirate in really big pants. I soon learned that these pants were called slops and I was sold. I knew I could find them or at least have a pair made.
Slops – or petticoat trousers – first came into fashion in the mid-16th century. The first versions of slops were a form of loose-fitting hose that were made with panes of fabric that ran from the waist to below the knee. As time went on, the slops became a mainstay onboard ships and sailors became very fond of slops. The basic design is simple: fitted at the waist with a set of drawstrings at the back, the legs really do not touch you anywhere and they fall to mid shin, about four inches or so below the knee. Very comfortable, and very breezy, they were great for sailors, due to the fact that they could wear just the slops and not get overwhelmed by the heat of the day as they went about running a ship.
So, in my quest for slops, I went the hard way first, I decided I could make them. I found a pattern, my mother, being a seamstress looked at it and said: “We can make them but… you ought to see if somebody is selling a pair first.” When she said that it might be easier to buy something then make it – I listened!
Started searching on the web and guess what? Jas Townsend carries slops. I was blown away,. Made from canvas grade fabric, they are durable, breathable and so comfortable. If they were covered under the company dress code (at my day job), I would wear them everyday. During the summer, they are part of my stripped down pirate garb. One more good thing, they have fall-front pants. Buttons mean easier trips to the privy.
If you are looking for something different to spice up your pirate outfit, try some slops. Go for comfort in the summer and experience the wonder of wearing pants that don’t touch you anywhere but your waist. And if you are looking to go kilt at some point, this might be a good way to see if you like the feeling, the feeling of freedom. Try a pair of slops and you might find one of your gabr choices has an entirely different feel to it.