Captain Teague is a character from Pirates of the Caribbean: At world's end. He's, of course, a pirate; supposedly, he's Jack Sparrow's father (it's never explicitly said in the film) and he is the keeper of the pirate code. He's also coolness in person (which probably has got much to do with his being played by Keith Richards...).

I fell in love with this character at once after seeing At world's end. It was clear from the start that I wanted his uber-cool costume, especially the signature red coat. Unfortunately, there's not much material out there on Captain Teague, and although there's a costume featurette on the DVD and some really cool high-res stills, there's not nearly as much material as for Jack Sparrow or Will Turner.

High Res images (open in new windows)




There are three action figures, one 18'' version with coat, one 7'' also with coat and another 7'' without coat which was part of a limited At world's end DVD pack.

>>> More images from the DVD gallery and the action figures


Plus, this costume has been on display at San Diego Comic Con in 2007. Several people have taken pics (open in new windows):

The last two are ©Captain Annie.

So, what do I like about this outfit? Well - at first, it was the coat only. Then came the hat, then the shirt (lace ruffles! Yay!), then I discovered that he has a wonderful sword (I *do*mean sword. Really, I do...). In the meantime, I have decided to make the whole costume, although I'm going to make such a fool of myself, trying to bring across Keith's character performance...well, luckily you can't go more than wrong in this world, so who cares....

I believe the overall influence for Captain Teague's portrayal in the film might have been both Henry Morgan and/or Captain Kidd who are often depicted wearing red coats such as his, but I might of course be wrong.

Henry Morgan in a contemporary etching
Modern interpretation
Captain Kidd by Howard Pyle, 19th century interpretation
Captain Kidd in New York

I think that maybe by the red coat, Captain Teague should be characterised as the prototype pirate that everyone's familiar with from TV or otherwise. In the movie, he is sort of like the super-pirate - the oldest, wisest, coolest who has tricked them all and who's feared by everybody.

Maybe I'm just interpreting too much anyway, since the DVD featurette shows that originally, the coat was blue and was only (?) changed to red because Keith liked red better - or the costume designers liked red better on Keith. But maybe they also thought of Captain Kidd and Henry Morgan... :o)

Recently, I discovered what is possibly the influence for the main style of the coat. Here's Captain Red [sic!] from Roman Polanski's 1986 "Pirates"

Check out the shirt, especially the cut of the sleeves and the sleeve lace; the cut, color and style of the coat, the size of the hat, and also...does the embroidery on the baldric look familiar to you?

Captain Red
Captain Teague

Soooo, once it was clear I was going to make this costume, I set out to find a proper fabric for the coat. Not an easy task! According to Penny Rose, the original coat is made from damask curtains, and because there was not enough material, the back is made from a slightly different fabric than the front! However, since Penny tends to be a bit....overzealous in her descriptions, it might just as well be some fabric that they came across or ordered somewhere, like all the other fabrics (even the fabrics for Elizabeth's plum gown and Jack's coat were eventually found on the net).

To me, the coat looks like something lightweight, no heavy tweed like Jack and no nubby, sturdy fabric like Barbossa. Judging especially from the cuffs and the way the folds wrinkle up the arm, plus the sheen that it has to it, I'd say it's a light silk damask. For the lining, I'd also say silk, probably silk satin by the way the cuff lining shines.

The biggest problem is, again, the red. The proper red, in this case. The coat is a very bright red, and all you can possibly get in brocades is wine or burgundy. I found a lovely silk damask which is just a *tad* too dark (it'd work anyway), and I had another one that looked abosultely awful. At the moment, I have settled for a ribbed silk damask which is the right shade of red and has a lovely pattern to it (I have given up looking for the original pattern, it's impossible to find the identical one).



I'm still not too sure about the ribbed bit as it gives quite a structure to the fabric, but then, it's hardly visible from a distance (distance meaning in this case = not touching the fabric with your nose). However, I'll keep my eyes open for a proper match...

In the meantime, I have made and gathered several other components. Here are some of them:


+ The hat

My hat is made of brown faux suede, interfaced with cotton and stiffened with buckram. There's a millinery wire running through the edge so you can bend the hat to shape.

For the hatband, I carved this stamp and printed a piece of cotton muslin that I had dyed a pale sand color before:

You can see my hatband and kuchi dangle bead above and the original here:


The feathers are pheasant, magpie, guinea fowl, rooster and parrot, all collected by myself *proud*
Yes, also the parrot, though that's a bit of an extravaganza. I found one parrot feather at a place where a bird show had taken place and thought it would be a nice little sidenote for someone as eccentric as Teague to have a bright green parrot's feather amidst all the brown and black ones.

The pheasants were easy, they use to stroll the fields surrounding my house; and we have magpies in our garden...

The kuchi bead was purchased on ebay - I just kept checking thousands of them until one looked right.

This hat is enormous in proportions - but it's meant to be^^


+ The shirt

Captain Teague's shirt is of a finer, lighter fabric than Jack's - best visible in this pic:

Jack's is made of linen, Teague's appears to be cotton batiste as it's a little see-through. He does have more than one shirt with different sleeve ruffles....or maybe he has two different ruffles on one shirt, I'm not sure.

Here's the movie ruffle:


I believe that it's also the movie ruffle in these stills:


Whereas there's what I think is a different lace ruffle in the DVD featurette:

This might also be the one that we see in these stills:



Especially in the last pic I'm pretty sure it's not the rather thick lace we see in the other pics. It looks and falls softer. Of course, I might just be wrong - or maybe, Captain Teague does indeed have two different laces on his shirt. However, I'm also sure that in the above pics, the shirt has a plain neck and no neck ruffles whereas the shirt with the thicker lace does have a neck ruffle.

However in this case I decided that a mixture between the two or something that's clearly recognizable as Teague's shirt will do, instead of going all the way to an exact replica as with Jack. I found some lightweight cotton batiste and, since I like them most, I opted for ruffle version #1 as seen in the movie.

I found an old tablecloth on ebay that had a similar border (and enough of it, too), so I made my sleeve ruffles from that.

And here's my shirt - nothing special though, really just a pirate shirt.


I think I'm gonna make one more version though since Teague's sleeves appear to be much wider than mine...check the action figure:

+ The Sash

Original Teague sash



My sash

I found the fabric on Etsy. From what we can see from the action figure and the scarce glimpse we can catch on the stills, it's a 100% match. I sewed two lengths together, left the ends unfinished and voilà - here's the sash.It still needs some dirt and ageing, of course - I've done a greater part of that in the meantime.



+ The buttons

I came across the exact coat buttons which have a pattern of chasing dogs. I am quite happy to have found these in the original size. The proper size was determined using this picture and scaling it up until Penny's finger had normal proportions, then I measured the diameter of the button and ended up with 23 mm.

They will need a bit of ageing, but otherwise they're just perfect. There's a total of 24 buttons on Teague's coat: 7 on each front, 4 on each cuff and two at the back.





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