Pirate Inspo from Rivals of Ixalan

Each Friday, for four consecutive weeks, I’m taking a look at each tribe in Rivals of Ixalan, the latest set from Magic the Gathering, and putting together a casual cosplay based on that tribe. We’re already more than halfway finished; the first week we looked at Dinosaurs, last week we looked at Merfolk, and this week we’re looking at Pirates.

Pirates can be a fun tribe to play with. When it comes to the pirates on Ixalan, they’re your pretty standard (hah!) stereotypical pop culture pirate. They’re not quite as over the top as Jack Sparrow, but that’s only because we can’t watch them swagger in person. Pirate cards come in three colors: red, blue, and black. Because they’re red, they are aggressive, but because they’re blue, they also have some control in how they use that aggression. And finally, because they’re black, they won’t be playing fair when they attack others (think exiling your opponent’s cards and then stealing them to play them for yourself).

In general, pirates aren’t afraid to take risks so long as those risks pay off; if getting what you want means being so aggressive you damage yourself in the process, well, so be it. At least you got the treasure. And let’s be honest, the power of the sun and a giant golden city are some pretty serious motivating factors. Even if you do have to fight through dinosaurs and vampires to get them.

Now that we have our color palette, what are the elements we’re looking for in the clothes? Well, accessories are an absolute must, and bandanas should be worn whenever possible. Sashes or loose belts can both literally and figuratively tie your outfit together. And of course, what pirate would be we be without some cute boots? We’re still playing with the loose and drapey bohemian style from merfolk, but going a little darker; possibly a little edgier.

Outfit 1: Cute and loose boho nautical pirate ($99)

The red stripes in this t-shirt give us a nautical base to work with, especially when paired with this blue bandana. Putting these two together gives you a seaworthy vibe, and helps bookend your red t-shirt with two similar shades of blue. If you prefer to keep things red (which gives you more of an edgier vibe), go with this red bandana instead. For boots, I’ve included three options of similar styles (this one is a Chelsea boot with a higher ankle, if you don’t want to wear heels). My personal pick is the third option. These booties are cute enough to be worn out to your local game store, but still give off the vibe of a sexy pirate. The jeans I went with are a lighter blue, both to match the shade of the bandana, but also because I wanted something lighter to contrast this jacket in black. The jacket (wrap? cardigan?) is the finishing touch. It helps tie the outfit together by pairing with the black boots, and helps us accomplish an elegant bohemian vibe for the outfit.

Outfit 2: Sashes with some sass for the more professional pirate ($90)

This outfit features pants and a top that look slightly more professional than jeans and a t-shirt. The pants are definitely nicer than your regular blue jeans, and paired with one of the heeled booties from above, look like something that could definitely be worn to work (and not just on casual Friday). I also love the long tie belt (which, yes, I am calling a sash!) because it reminds me of the long belts that you normally see pirates wearing. However, if you decide you don’t like it, it’s also removable. This shirt continues to play with the same idea by incorporating a similarly styled tying sash. Combined with the large cuffs and nautical stripes, I definitely get a pirate theme from this shirt; but again, the style of the shirt makes it appropriate as office wear. Finally, yes, I would continue to incorporate the bandanas linked above (viewer’s choice as to whether you prefer the red or the blue). Added bonus: the shirt also comes in a blue style as well, leaving you to min/max your style as desired.

Outfit 3: For the very casual pirate who wants to look comfy and fierce ($108)

If you felt like the previous two options were too over the top, then I would recommend swapping out either of the pants above for some joggers. Joggers are a great option because they give you a lot of freedom to dress them up or dress them down; paired with a blazer they can be chic, but paired with a leather jacket they can be equally badass. I think these would work with either Chelsea boots or heeled booties. Other than the boots, we’re keeping it casual with a plain burgundy jersey t-shirt. For a jacket, I chose a lightly weathered denim jacket. I like the denim jacket because it gives you two extra pockets to store your secret pirate treasures, but also because it’s a very classic wardrobe item – kind of like pirates themselves are a classic pop culture icon.

Which outfit was your favorite? What’s your favorite type of pirate deck to run – are you leaning more towards mono red aggro or blue black control? Let me know in the comments below!

Check back next Friday for our final casual cosplay, featuring another pop culture staple – vampires!

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