It has been traditional for the Fremont Solstice Parade in Seattle to be led by a cadre of bicyclists. It is also custom for the bicyclists to be naked and body painted, a situation that causes annual delight and anxiety for parade organizers and authorities alike. Nudity is not officially sanctioned, however, no one is about to stop the cyclists. So, the festive and colorful start to the parade continues each year, as dozens of body paintings ride out to begin the event.

painted flamesThe body seems to fall into two schools of thought in body painting. In the first, small designs are painted all over, leaving an effect like the old time stickers on a traveling suitcase, much like the same way designs are applied in Western tattooing. The second school of thought involves the body as a flexible canvas, a surface that just happens to be shaped like a human being. In either case, a large bold design or effect has the best visual aesthetics.

painted purpleWater-based stage makeup has evolved to the point where it works well, is reasonably affordable and available more readily. It can be applied with sponges or brushes when doing larger areas, and some brands can be thinned and airbrushed onto the skin. Friction and surface sweating are the two biggest factors when considering how long your designs will hold up. By using water-based makeup, a wide range of colors should be readily available, most people should be able to tolerate it without adverse skin reaction, and it showers off at the end of the day.

elaborate patternFancier and more complex makeup is available if you are willing to invest in the product and learn to apply it well. A second person to paint your back and anywhere else you can’t reach is very important. Having a practice session or two can be invaluable when trying something for the very first time, or when you want to do something more elaborate very well. Have a comfortably warm and private location for doing the actual body painting. You will need appropriate clothing, as part of your outfit or, as a cover-up to go to the party or event location once everyone is painted.

You can catch this event for yourself at Fremont Solstice Parade
wedding party

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.


Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.


Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

Specializing in Medieval, Goth , Stage Film, BDFSM and Practitioner.

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

Traveling Within The World is meant to be such a place. A place for all of these artists to keep in touch and directly interact with their fellow geeks and re-enactment hobbyists, their clientele.

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