Torchbearers have traditionally worn a dark colour in fairly heavy fabric. This makes us look stern and forbidding and keeps us from distracting attention from the more colourful costumes of the other performers as well as protecting us from our own torches. Also unlike some of the other performers we get to wear our own clothes under the costume element of our clothes and don't have to strip off to little but paint...
These should be as black as possible and made of natural fibre. The outer layer will need to be fireproofed 24 to 48 hours before the procession, so you need to decide what you're wearing and make sure it's clean in time:
We won't be able to carry bags around with us on the procession, so it's worth choosing clothes with pockets for essentials like money and keys, and keeping what you carry to a minimum.
which means torch. There's no sewing involved in making these except to attach the tapes, but painting will take a little time and needs to allow time for drying before the tabard is fireproofed.
Facepaint - in 2005 our faces were painted black with a yellow design on.
In 2004 our design was the Ogham rune Duir, which means "oak tree" and represents solidity and dependability
Beltane should be providing facepaint, but we will need to spend money on fabric, tape, paint, makeup brushes and sponges, earplugs etc.
© Steve Glover for torchbearers.org.uk, 2006