Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sartorial Sundays

When I set out to create my first Steampunk outfit there where a few things that had to be taken into consideration. Firstly, this was going to be my first foray into Steampunk in a convention setting, and what if I didn't like it? What if I outlaid a huge amount of money to get this fabulous costume and then had a cruddy time (this was proven totally false, best convention ever in fact.) Secondly, what do you do at a convention mostly? Sit. Or stand. Uncomfortably. I was not about to compound the lack of comfort by having an already uncomfortable costume. I've been to my share of cons, and they can try your patience in the most comfortable of clothes, add a corset and it's time for the torture. Lastly, budget. I didn't have much money at that time last year having spent it on things I needed more, ie, a new digital camera and a wacom tablet... so, there's $1000 outlay on things I needed... trust me, I needed a new digital camera, the wacom, well, not so much, but I adore it and used it on almost every assignment last fall. So back to the whole budget. The outfit had to be affordable, but also versatile, meaning, I could wear these clothes for other non-Steampunk related events. Multitasking with clothes, if you will.

At this time I hadn't really read up on all the subsets: Street Urchin, Tinker, Explorer or Aesthete, thank you Steampunk Bible! What I noticed clearly was two trends, more functional work-a-day clothes (Street Urchin, Tinker and Explorer) and more tradiational Victorian (Aesthete). Within the functional clothes there where a lot of explorer costumes. Instantly I felt drawn to that! I have always dreamed of being an explorer like Amelia Peabody Emerson, yes, I know she's fictional! I wanted to climb pyramids and dig up artifacts, I wanted to be an explorer! Yet an explorer with pants. I'm not much of a girly girl and don't own a number of skirts, so I wanted to wear pants.

I started by searching all over the internet, also, a big thanks to Pinterest, which I'm addicted to and which is so handy for keeping my visuals in one place. I stumbled on this image.

The golden age of aviation, which in style has much to recommend itself and has some crossovers with explorers, they are kind of the explorers of the skys. I really was drawn to the light pants, the short bomber jacket, the adorable gloves and the goggles. It also reminded me of Diane Holmes of Torchwood, and if that doesn't scream Steampunk, I don't know what show does.

I found this more recent bomber jacket, and it was totally the style I was hoping to find. Initially I was in favor of the lighter color, but as you'll see soon enough, I was won over by the darker hue. Also, this is just a very nice functional jacket.

Here was really the whole look that inspired me. If you look at it in a deconstructed manner, it's boots, gloves, pants, jackets, t-shirt, all the rest is just fun accessories. The accessories are the only thing that couldn't be worn everyday. That is, unless you felt like it.

Here was the same basic idea but leaning even further towards Steampunk. I liked it, but mainly the belt, gloves and goggles. The front is a little too fluffy for me.

This "inspiration board" I found perfectly captures the feel I was going  for. Now lets see if I could source all the requisite materials and items to make the costume I wanted... you'll just have to stop by next Sunday to see!


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