Harvestmath Guises

October is here and Harvestmath is upon us early this year! As the name suggests, the harvest celebration is the impetus for this in-game festival but many of our activities relate to the Primary World tradition of Hallowe’en, the evening before the Feast of All Hallows. While the Feast of All Hallows is from the Western Christian tradition, All Hallow’s Eve is thought to incorporate pagan Celtic elements that would be more at home in pre-Christian Middle-earth. The Celtic festival of Samhain, in particular, seems to lend many concepts to Hallowe’en. Leading into the “darker half” of the year (that is, winter), it was thought to be a night when otherworlds (the perilous realm of Faërie, to use a Tolkienian term) were closer and magical things could happen. To the Celtic peoples, fairy-hosts and phantoms might fly through the air on this night, and the night was a feast of fairies. Bonfires were lit to ward against these fey hosts, and turnips were carved into lanterns to honour the dead. A more recent tradition, recorded as early as 1895 in Scotland, is that of guising — going from house to house in disguise to collect coins, apples, and nuts — and this sounds like something that might be right at home among the Hobbits of the Shire!

So, if you are going to be attending a Harvestmath event on your server this year, why not go “in guise”? Maybe you even plan to attend a costume or fancy dress party. I’ve planned a number of posts throughout October that show some possible guises you could wear — including couples costumes — some more lore-appropriate than others, but it’s all in good fun! Hopefully you’ll see something you like, or be inspired to put together your own creation!

I’ll have the first of the costumes up later this week, but first, here are some outfits I’ve already presented over the past year that I think would make great Harvestmath guises.

Little Red

the Grey

Goblin Firebomber

Little Red Riding-hood seems perfect to use as part of a couples or group costume. Your partner(s) could go with a woodsman theme, a wolf theme, or a granny theme (the spring festival Simbelmynë dress and hat would be great for the latter).

Tips: Some great resources for making a quick and easy guise are the various Harvestmath festival masks and cloaks, the Farmer’s Faire livestock masks, and some of the cosmetic armour sets such as the three Lossoth sets (Ajokoira, Leijona, and Mammutti; crafted Lossoth reputation vendor rewards) and the Volume 3 Book 5 Ranger cosmetic sets (Fine Grey Company and Worn Ranger’s sets). The various Rohan-themed pre-order cosmetics from both the Rise of Isengard and Riders of Rohan expansions are also great, and would be especially funny if you did a couples costume with your partner wearing the Cloak of the Equine (Horsing Around deed reward) to dress up as your steed!

This entry was posted in Collections, Harvestmath Guises, Messages. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Harvestmath Guises

  1. Devonna says:

    Looking forward to your guises this month 🙂

  2. Lasswen says:

    I had thought there was an older Celtic tradition of ‘dressing up’ on the night that the veil between worlds was thinnest, but remember when I tried hunting it down a couple of years ago I couldn’t find where I’d come across mention of it! I have a feeling it had something to do with the spirits not being able to recognise people, but could be totally wrong about that!

    Your Goblin Firebomber is quite inspired, will be great to see what others you come up with 🙂

    • You could very well be right, I just did some quick research into the tradition of “guising” when I wrote this post. I wouldn’t be surprised at all to find that it has its roots in something more ancient! Thanks so much for your comment Lasswen! 😀

  3. I love the quick history lesson and the connections you’ve made to Middle Earth for us! I’m really looking forward to the other guises you give us this month. 🙂

    • Yay, I’m always so relieved to hear the little history and lore tidbits are interesting and not just pompous-sounding! 😛 Thanks for your kind comment, Katharine Ann — I’ve been having a good time puting the guises together and I hope you’ll enjoy them!

  4. Yay for costume week! And yay too many outfit blogs for me to track and keep up with! I’m behind on my comments.
    By the way, I love your little lore and history write ups a lot. It’s what makes your blog stand out and unique. It has nothing to do with being pompous! You share what you are good at freely and that is awesome! Keep it coming! 🙂

    • We are definitely spoiled with a wonderful abundance of cosmetics blogs these days, it’s great! My RSS reader saves my life!

      Thanks so much for your kind words Hymne. I’m happy to have such awesome readers and fellow bloggers. 🙂

  5. Daerundros says:

    Ooooh can’t wait to see what costumes appear here! I love reading through your blog Starry, like Hymne said, it really stands out by elaborating on real-life inspirations Tolkien used for his Middle-earth!

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