King of Fools

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My husband, Jonathan Potter, and I designed this costume together, and he is the one wearing it. We love the movie “The Court Jester,” and while it is not designed to look like any of the costumes Danny Kaye wears in that movie, we did like the Renaissance design aesthetic. Only the doublet is pied because I chose to use a third color on the pants and hood. We chose Venetian-style pants instead of hose because my husband was more comfortable wearing them, but also because it gave more opportunity to add trim, points, and bells, and we wanted it to be fairly over-the-top. This costume is well-suited to his personality because he is very silly, and he loves to put on a show.

king of fools costume

I modified Simplicity pattern 4059 for the doublet and pants, and I used Simplicity pattern 4923 for the shirt, but I made the hood and crown from my own pattern. The fabrics are all home decor fabrics, and there are more than 30 yards of gold cord sewn to the edges of everything.

diy close up

There are 54 bells sewn to all of the points and two more at the ends of the cord that laces the pants closed. The closures on the front of the doublet are in the shape of playing card suits.

king costume

Most of the work was done with a sewing machine, but finishing work was done by hand. Jonathan made the leather shoes by hand based on his own pattern.

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