Thursday, November 10

Real-World Steampunk Style: Winter Boots

I have been meaning to post about Steampunk Fashion IRL ever since starting this blog--and while the perfectionist in me wants to start with a more general overview of how steampunk looks can be achieved with comfortable and practical everyday clothing, I just can't wait to share what I found this morning while combing through

Just the right heel!  Just the right height!  Full-grain leather and organic canvas!  Totally Steampunk!  $340. 

Also a wee bit steampunk and yet still practical.  And a much more reasonable $175.

Oooooh, reliable brand, original design, full-grain leather, waterproof, and would dress up nicely.  Much more modern in feel because of being so streamlined, and that heel, but the military-feel detail allows them stylistic versatility. $160.

Another good brand and interesting design.  $190.

These boots get the award for the most creative design I've come across today--and which I can't decide if I like or loathe.  Even the person who wrote the description for these boots on Zappos was not sure: "This undeniably feminine Betsey Johnson™ boot is a sight to behold."  Why, yes.  And I think a creative Steampunk gal could work these into her ensemble really well.  In fact, I'm not quite sure who else could. . . a modern-day saloon showgirl on her day off?   $180.


These boots are well-named, but are still a wee bit steampunk simply because of the leather tones and the buckles.  Oh, yes, steampunks love buckles.  $240. 

These are a little more modern in feel, and less rough/distressed, but I could see these really working with a steampunk outfit.  Buckles and straps, yes please!  $200.

Not that I think these boots will be as well-made as some of the others, but they get kudos for original design--and if there is anything steampunks like more than buckles and straps, it's grommets.  $170.

On the other hand, a simple and lovely pair of neo-Victorian boots is always steampunk.  These are beautiful--probably my favorite of all of these.  And, of course, $398. 

Another attractive, similarly Victorianesque boots.  Unfortunately, still $238. 

The vintage airman look to these would perfectly complement a ladies' steampunk airship ensemble.  $398.

These is just something about these I really like, even though they are so stylistically ecclectic they are not quite one particular genre.  I think with these it's the distressed and neo-punk and color scheme and almost cobbled-together look about them that I could see working really well with steampunk.  But any prospective buyer had better have as much money as flair, because these boots will set her back $428. 

I like how simple these are, and the detail along the side that has a vintage/military feel.  $336.

More brass and buckles, with a cool vintage toe design.  $170.

Interesting mix of black straps and brass buckles on the brown boot.  $180.

Another really creative style, and pretty easily adapted to a variety of looks, including steampunk. $240.

Also really nice vintage toe and lace detail on this one.  $389. 

This morning's search was for mid-calf or knee-high leather Steampunk-esque boots on Zappos.  (I'll make posts on other Steampunk style footwear as time goes on.) As you can see, the things that made a boot particularly good for steampunk are material (leather, canvas), metal detail (brass is most steampunk), color (a rich brown with brass detail is quintessential steampunk), and embellishments like front laces, buckles, straps, and grommets.  I would say the toe should be slightly pointed too.  The type of heel is not as important--although it should not be too modern.  Most important is how the elements of the boot all work together. 

Any readers, please feel free to share links to other Steampunky winter boots in the comments!

Thursday, August 18

Torturously alluring

I have been meaning to continue my "Steampunk Style" series for a long time now--focusing posts on steampunk delights for the hair, for the guys, for kids and babies, and even for dining rooms and boudoirs--but as I comb through etsy looking for the best bits to share, I can't help but be diverted by my favorite feminine Steampunk fashion accessory: the corset.

Which, at least on etsy, are typically gorgeous.

Which instantly make a woman--any woman--look more elegant, sexy, interesting and playful.

Which explains why any woman would buy and/or wear one, considering how completely impractical and, let's face it, distinctly uncomfortable they are as articles of clothing.

I mean, c'mon--can you see a mom like me lifting her toddler in any of these, or bending over to help a child tie her shoelaces. . . ?  

Which makes me wonder if Kate Beckinsale had two corsets, which she alternated wearing during the filming of Van Helsing; one to strut in. . .

. . . and one with more "give" to wear during her swashbuckling action scenes.  Because if she really was doing all that running and dodging and sword-swinging in the steel-boned real deal, she is either a wee bit masochistic or demonstrates a dedication to her art that leaves me in awe.

Typically, the steampunk women who put on a corset have nothing more strenuous planned than lifting their parasols or adjusting their goggles--their full intention is simply to stroll around and be marveled at in all their full feminine fabulousness.

Or maybe to roll around and be marveled at. . .

Gothic black corset by labellefairy

But beyond cosplay and foreplay, it seems as if corsets have also become popular for wedding ensembles--a PERFECT use for them, since all a bride wants to do on her wedding day is stand around looking unique and ravishing.  (I wonder if any of them consider the symbolism of taking on such a restricting, self-crushing manifestation of femininity during the ceremony ushering them into matrimony. . . mmmm, probably not.)

Oh, those dresses are fantastic.  Maybe someday when Dear Husband and I celebrate some major wedding anniversary we can have some kind of renewing of the vows ceremony. . . Steampunk style (you better believe DH would be all for it--he's waiting for an excuse to gear-up as much as I).

Especially for a wedding, a corset can be steampunk or not, depending upon the fabric, the colors, and what else the bride is wearing; in fact, neither of these two examples are steampunk to me, just beautiful corsets that would naturally translate to steampunk if they were worn with the right accessories.

Look at the copper shimmer on this corset--so, so pretty, and would be lovely for a formal event, and subtly steampunk all on its own:

On the other hand, some corsets scream Steampunk:

I don't usually go for the macabre Steampunk, but this one manages to be elegant and shows a sense of humor (although I say those ribs look way more comfortable than they would really be in a corset).

Ooooh, I like the pinstriped version of that one even more!

Adorable juxtaposition of straight-laced (ha!) and playful.

Corsets--the painfully playful side of Steampunk.  If I ever have the need for jaw-dropping fantasy clothing--you know, like when I am nominated for an Oscar for that screenplay I am writing,* or when Minnie Zephie's latest line of haute couture children's clothing takes the runway in Milan**--you better believe I'm building my ensemble around a corset. 

*no, really, I am. Or I was before kiddos took over my life ; )

**I have excellent taste and am brimming with ideas.  Now I just need to learn to sew

Wednesday, June 22

Accessories for the (Steampunk) Lady: for the Shoulders

I posted last about beautiful and creative ways a woman could get some Neo-Victorian/Steampunkish style to her neck.  The neck is such a great place to add a little style.  Depending upon the item you choose for your neck, it can help you stay warm in the winter while lending you some texture and beauty;  it can instantly and easily give your outfit a touch of class, drama, or whimsy;  it can help you allow you to accessorize while keeping your arms and hands clutter free; it can be easily worn with shirts and jackets you already own.  If I decide to ask for a piece of Steampunk beauty for my wardrobe for a birthday or Christmas gift this year, it will most likely be something for the neck.

But I also love the less practical but just as beautiful shrugs and capelets and little jackets that can give an outfit subtle Steampunk style:

She looks gorgeous. A damsel in a story of love and adventure.  I'll bet she's just about to load up the kids in the Dodge Caravan to drive across town, and drop off the older kids at martial arts while she runs to Costco with the little ones for milk and pizza so there's something to throw on the table for dinner.  Or maybe that's just what love and adventure look like around here most days.

Here are more by the same etsy seller:

I think this is the cutest jacket.  I would so wear it--it would dress up a t-shirt wonderfully.

And it comes in black too, which is a little more child-friendly (although I prefer the rough cut of the edging on the bone jacket, for its nice texture).

This one is dressier, and less practical, and is a little more goth, but still cute--and I like that tank underneath too.

More from other etsy sellers:

I have lost the info for this seller--but so fancy! and steampunky!

cute crop top by hhfashions

That one is a similar jacket, but not photographed as well.  But I really, really like the textured look of the black mesh around the neck and bottom.

short sleeve shrug by decadentdesignz

shrug 003 by pookaqueen

poison black raw sink bolero by maryandangelika

armor bolero by ButterflyOfTelepathy

I am really attracted to that last one--looks so comfortable, and is unusual--and could be so fun to wear. . . but I have a feeling it would terrible on me, hiding my now miniscule bosom but showing off my belly.  Yeah, probably as attractive as it sounds.

That adorable shrug I would totally wear--so cute. But this appears to be by one of the etsy haute couture designers, and laughably expensive ($140).

If I was ever going to spend that much $ on a steampunkish jacket, it had better make me look like this:

madness shrug hoodie by aNGrYGiRLGear

And by that I mean ravishingly strong and sexy.  Except in a slightly more wholesome way.   Like a sexy but righteous-hearted superhero.

Re-imagining yourself.  The heart of Steampunk.

Accessories for the (Steampunk) Lady: for the Neck Pt 2.--the Delicate

As I made that last Steampunk fashion post, I realized there were just too many fun bits I have gathered over the past 6 months for one post.  

So here is Part 2!  Steampunk jewelry for the neck--the usual necklaces and chokers, but with Steampunk icons, or ideas, or materials:

Skeleton key necklace by GwenDelicious

oval keyhole pendant by GwenDelicious

fly away pendant by MisfitGirl

upcycled necktie maria necklace by lilian asterfield

For some reason I absolutely love that last one.  I would wear that necklace with that exact top and shrug in a heartbeat.  If I could afford it, which I can't.  So I'll just enjoy looking, and mentally stick the idea away for sometime when I have the urge to get creative with old men's ties!