Arm Guards of the Immortals: Elven Bracers
Any elven warrior worth their salt is going to want decent armor. If you’re cosplaying as an elf, or attending a fantasy LARP event, you need to look the part. The great thing with these Elven bracers is that they work with all kinds of characters, such as soldiers or scouts alike.
They can be worn on their own to offset an outfit with Elven flair, or they can work fantastically when paired up with other Elven armor. If you do choose to wear a full suit of armor, it’s generally best to wear a complementary set that is designed to be worn together.
Onto the bracers themselves. They are made up of three overlapping plates of mild steel, which have a brass finish to fit the Elven aesthetic. These plates curve around the forearm and are riveted to two leather straps. These straps can be fastened to the arm with buckles.
The top plate of each bracer sits on the outside of the forearm and runs from the wrist to the elbow. This plate features three slightly raised ridges in the centre, which forms points that are aimed towards the wrist. This design is replicated with a matching border at the elbow edge. At the elbow, each bracer features a pointed edge, and they have a straight edge at the wrist.
The brass finish and the ridged design both work to really sell the Elven aesthetic. The steel construction means that, despite their elegant design, these are sturdy pieces of armor which can be polished to a shine. Again, they’re perfect for a LARPer, Cosplayer, or even a collector of fantasy armors.
The Design of Fantasy Elven Armor: From Tolkien to Modern-day
When someone talks about “fantasy elven armor”, we all get a certain picture in our heads. From Peter Jackson’s adaptation of the Lord of the Rings trilogy to Skyrim, famous depictions of Elven armor all share some similarities.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that many modern fantasy Elves draw inspiration from the same source, the monolith known as Tolkien’s collected works set in Middle Earth. Tolkien, in turn, was largely inspired by the Anglo-Saxon fairies and elves of folklore, as well as ancient Norse epics.
If we look back at our “fantasy elven armor” and compare it with Tolkien’s original writings, we might come across something interesting. Tolkien didn’t describe Elven armor in great detail, but from what he did say, it seems that his elves wore chainmail.
However, our image of Elven armor doesn’t include a lot of chainmail. Most of the time, we see either scale or plate armor. These plates are often bronze in colour and may well consist of multiple plate strips overlapping one another, often in a leaf-like pattern to match up with our nature loving elves.
So, why aren’t modern elves all wearing chainmail? Well, it seems that Elven armor has another source of inspiration. Peter Jackson’s adaptation likely plays a part in this, but there were earlier fantasy works that also featured this more complex nature-inspired armor.
It’s usually nothing like the traditional Western Medieval armor that we’re used to, so no full-plated knights here. There is, however, potentially some similarities to be found in Ancient Greek and Medieval Middle-Eastern armor. It’s obvious that wherever these creators looked for inspiration, Elven armor played an important part in characterising their culture.
Generally, this armor is supposed to be beautiful and elegant, much like the elves who designed it. It draws heavily from nature, while having a definite nobility about it and a sense of the unfamiliar. Elven armor is an excellent example of how important an iconic design can be when creating a character.
We can all learn something from that, historians, cosplayers, and creatives alike.
Want a true elven look? We recommend checking out the Elven Cloak.
The technical specifications of the elven bracers are as follows:
- Material: 19 gauge mild steel with leather fittings.
- Colour: Brass finish.
- Care Instructions: Keep away from water. Clean using a metal polish and occasionally treat with oil. Use leather-care products for the fittings.
This product is available in three sizes. The following measurements are approximate:
- Small/Medium: Full length – 9.1 inches or 23.1 cm. Top plate width – 7.1 inches or 18 cm. Bottom plate width – 5.1 inches or 13 cm. Weight – 24.1 ounces or 683.2 grams.
- Large/X-Large: Full length – 10 inches or 25.4 cm. Top plate width – 7.9 inches or 20.1 cm. Bottom plate width – 6.7 inches or 17 cm. Weight – 30.5 ounces or 864.7 grams.
- XX-Large/XXX-Large: Full length – 10.6 inches or 26.9 cm. Top plate width – 8.7 inches or 22.1 cm. Bottom plate width – 7.5 inches or 19.1 cm. Weight – 33.4 ounces or 946.9 grams.