This past week one of my dear sisterfriends and I had a rare day away, and went up to Santana Row and Valley Fair Mall in San Jose to shop. I was looking forward to looking for some excellent Real World Steampunk finds--and came up with NADA. Zip, zilch, zero. This was really surprising, since it was only one year ago that she and I made the same trip with excellent results. Well, by excellent I mean finding at least one lovely neo-Victorian piece in Ann Taylor LOFT, Free People, and The Limited:
My favorite jacket, with distressing along the neck, front and cuffs, and a subtle peplum in the back. Ann Taylor LOFT.
So much more beautiful in person--this black Free People coat had a black-on-black romantic pattern, and those little buttons up the front and on the sleeves! The skirt is totally adorable and steamy too! Both were so overpriced I would not consider buying them in the store, but I have been keeping my eyes open for them on eBay ever since. And have found them there--but still not in my price range. So, the hunt continues.
This blouse also came in the most lovely eggplant--I bought the blouse in both colors because I could not choose my favorite, and then later returned the eggplant, chiding myself for wanting two when I only needed one. After this year's shopping disappointments, I wish I had kept both.
But I guess that was last year, and this year's "hot" looks are completely ugly and not at all Steampunk-compatible.
So, I decided eBay will continue to be my shopping site of choice in my continual search for Real World Steampunk clothes. After all, last year's clothes are this year's eBay!
While we were out shopping, I also kept my eye out for some of the boots I have been featuring on this blog, and did find several. Alas, Black Friday sales had decimated the size offerings, so I could only actually try on a few. So, again, the Real World shopping disappointed, and I guess Zappos will continue to be my go-to site for footwear as well. Until Minnie Zephie opens her own Steampunk boutique, that is. ; )
Zappos wins out over other places with great steampunky boots, like 6pm and ShoeMetro and ShoeMall, because of the free shipping and returns. Of course, you still have to make sure you can't get the same boot elsewhere for a lot less--but if you are not sure if a boot will work for you, but can't find a pair to try locally, Zappos is really amazing. But it is also a good idea to keep an eye on eBay for steampunk-compatible boots--if I thought a boot would likely fit my foot, and it was a great price, I might take the risk and bid. Look at these real-leather lovelies I found in my size this morning:
This last pair is so adorable, and reminds me of my favorite Vintage Shoe Company. I think I may have blogged it before--doesn't matter, it is worth seeing again!
Any favorite real-world retail stores I should know about, or favorite finds on eBay? Share them in the comments!