So I am falling a bit hard for Steampunk costumes. I suppose I’ve been destined to like them considering my overall predilection for historical costumes. It is only aided by the fact that I might be on the production team for the Spring production at my alma mater. The show is historically based and the costumes will range from 1700-1800 with a few touches of modern costuming.
For myself I have two outfits, which I am plotting [for Steampunk]. If I had ever mastered creating costume sketches I would post scans here in my blog. As it is, I have some photos of generic Steampunk wear and my own imagination.
One of the outfits is pure geek, while the other is a conglomeration that includes geek. The former is a reproduction of Helena Bonham-Carter’s “Down by the Sea” outfit. I’ve always been tickled by old style swimwear for women. Of course I would also have to put my hair up in curlers and learn how to apply some very haggard and Burtonesque makeup. And I must admit, I am also in love with Johnny’s ‘prison’ alluding outfit. Okay, I have to keep on track here. There are loads and loads of costumes I would love to recreate but this post is for Steampunk clothing.
The second outfit, the conglomeration, and my ‘main’ Steampunk wear would be Jillian Annabel Lee. She is a pirate, of course, and a general traveller. This outfit should look rather travel worn. A pinstripe corset in black and white left in the sun to fade the black to grey, and tea-dyed for off-white. I dislike my clothing looking too new [more on this soon]. My bowler hat, unless I could find another headpiece I liked more, perhaps some goggles made by Leviathan Steamworks, fingerless gloves, my new ‘hooker’ boots, a fitted tailcoat, and a bustle . The bustle skirt seems to be a tad overused in Steampunk clothing but I believe that is because it looks nice and works well. Also, tack on all of my tools to a nifty belt: lock pick set, brass telescope, blackpowder pistol, compass, and mapholder complete with maps of Terre d’Ange, Middle Earth, Tortall, and the Old Kingdom. That’s some major dorkage right there. That’s how I roll, yo!
I also have plotted a ‘third’ outfit, which can steal pieces from Jillian’s outfit. Originally I had wanted to do a mime Steampunk outfit but dismissed it as too much when combined with pirate. However, I am going to revisit that original concept, either as a full pirate/mime or a slightly different character and costume. I would love to have a windup crank on my back, with cranking sound included! The mime outfit would have slightly different pieces from the pirate outfit, and be extra sexy and doll like.
Enough costume plotting for now, and on to a mini rant. What is up with everyone’s costumes looking brand spanking new?! Honestly, if you are going to be an adventurer, pirate, wench, or anything other than royalty [for any historical, fantasy, or Steampunk costume] then make it work! Be authentic, please. Do you think that adventurers and pirates had six different outfits to their name, which they were able to keep pressed and clean every day? Think again. He or she would have been lucky to own two complete outfits. I, personally, find authentic and beat all to hell outfits fascinating and far more creative. I just see too many costumes hot off of the ironing board or a hanger. I am sick and tired of it; it drives me up the wall sometimes.
And now, since I originally scribed my above post by hand almost a week ago I will insert an addendum. I was going to begin work hand stitching a medieval gown, however, commercial patterns only allow for a B cup and I am better endowed than that. Therefore my medieval dress pattern will be altered to fit me properly and will most likely be a December project. In the meantime I am formulating a faerie outfit. A friend of mine makes wings at the festivals and I would love to create a faerie outfit for fantastical events. The fabric for a shirt, skirt, and bloomers has been purchased. I will need one of my new bodices to finish the outfit, and a lace underskirt I already own. I have skirt and bloomers patterns of my own making and I need to create one for the shirt. Once that is done I can begin to sew them and look at the wings my friend has for sale, or commission a pair. I will try and post photos as things progress, including photos of fabrics and trims.