WAKEFIELD MORRIS DANCERS WOMENS KIT
WAKEFIELD MORRIS DANCERS
The Womens Outfit
The current womens outfit is a blue tailored dress, trimmed with ribbons in the blue and gold of Wakefield City. A third ribbon in black is included to pick up the black in the mens outfit, though this may be in memory of the now almost defunct men's team "The Shrogys"! The dress is worn over a white shirt and black tights. As with the mens kit the foot wear is black clogs.
This is actually the third version of the womens kit The mens kit on the other hand has seen almost no change since the team started. Only the lack of materials or replacements has forced subtle changes in colours over the years.
THE HISTORY BIT
The first womens kit was a fetching ensemble of white blouse and blue skirt with a blue bolero style waistcoat and old gold sash and matching socks and blue headscarf. Clogs were black strapped ladies from Trefor Owen and the 1980 photo shows garlands are in use. Mo Doonan reports that this outfit rapidly fell out of favour as skirts slipped, blouses came adrift from waistbands and headscarves fell off. Research in the archives, or glory hole at the back of the hall has turned up a picture of this kit.
So the next version was a blue seersucker dress with cream seersucker pinafore trimmed with gold braids and for the legs black tights and clogs. Topping this off was an alice band decked with flowers. This outfit lasted for about 18 years until supplies os blue seersucker dried up. There was a minor hiatus when at one AGM the subject of deleting the alice band was raised. Opinion on one side seemed to be that it was too "girlie" and did not sit well with some hairstyles. With some grumbling the item fell into disuse.
More exiting was the suggestion that for warm weather wear cream tights would be preferable to black. The problem was that in a pre-twitter/mobile phone/email age deciding when cream would replace black became awkward and it was just too much to ask the women to carry both and decide on the day. Mind you at one point Alan Lindsay did put forward a proposal that replacing tights with stockings would solve the overheating problem and be more "traditional". The womens views on this were to say the least forceful and mutterings about suspender back lash could be heard.
With seersuck impossible to source a new design was needed. Much effort went into trying to come up with a design that would be practical for dancing, suited to a variety of sizes and shapes of dancer and capable of being made by a reasonably competent dressmaker. I seem to recall robust exchanges coming from the discussion amongst the women, men being excluded from any comments. Finally Meg Bradshaw team leader and facilitator set a target that the kit would be ready for the millenium come what may. And duly it came to pass that the Boxing Day tour 1999 saw the "new" womens kit appear. Aside from a discreet badge or two to pin the ribbons this is a clean crisp kit that seems to be standing the test of time.
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