Thursday, May 30, 2019

SCA garb and the "10 foot rule"

Greetings readers from your long absent author!

I have a teeny tiny favor to ask you all, especially when speaking/writing anywhere someone new to the SCA is in the audience:

Please stop using the phrase "the 10 foot rule" when talking about general SCA garb/clothing requirements.


Why? Well, there are two main reasons:

  1. The SCA Governing Docs section II.B. layout our actual rule: "Anyone may attend Society events provided he or she wears an attempt at pre-17th century clothing".
  2. When new people hear the phrase "the 10 foot rule", they often believe it's an actual rule. I've heard from a few people who were nervous they'd get in trouble for not meeting this particular rule.

In addition, I worry that some established members actually believe it's a rule, and are using that misconception as a reason to call people out for not meeting it! 

To be clear, there are some SCA Kingdoms (Atlantia for one) that do have a "10 foot rule" for participating in certain martial activities. But it's not a general requirement for attending an event.

Looking period correct from 10 feet away is an excellent personal goal to have. I wholeheartedly & enthusiastically encourage it. But if we can, let's call that usage the "10 foot goal" so it's clear to all that it's an optional goal to strive for.

So to reiterate, if you want to come to an SCA event, all that's required is "an attempt at pre-17th century clothing." Not "a good attempt". Not "an accurate attempt". Just "an attempt". You are certainly encouraged to go above and beyond, but it's not required.


P.S. The content of my blog is going to be expanding to general SCA related content, personal projects, opinion pieces, and more. I do plan to get some more calligraphy content up as well, but I'm giving myself some slack and focusing on a few things that are inspiring me at the moment.


  1. I highly encourage newbies to go to Goodwill and grab any sheet that they find twitches their respective fancy...even if it has dinosaurs all over it, and I will happily help them drape it as a chiton/'toga' for their first event.

  2. Excellent. I shall strive to amend my choice of words. Thank you for posting this.