Steampunk

An entire Steampunk office (Three Rings Design) in San Francisco.

Ask twenty people what Steampunk is and you will probably get twenty various answers, none of them really incorrect.  But arguably one theme which is clear is that it is a rebirth or revamping of the Victorian age with a contemporary sci-fi flair.  Rather than repeating what many present as Steampunk and thus chase the endless rabbit-holes and rabbit-trails of definition, I will share what it means to me and what attracts me most.  And every so often I will blog and post pictures that capture my personal fondness of this romantic subculture.

Click Play for some Steampunk music while you read:

I cannot start any discussion on Steampunk without mentioning the fine gentleman and artisan at GrymmStudios.com — the marvelous builders of my goggles on my top hat seen above in my blog’s header.  In an interview by Veronica Mihhalopoulos she asks Joey Marsocci, aka Dr. Grymm, of Grymm Studios:  “What is Steampunk and when did it first come to fruition as part of one of the underground subcultures?”  He replies: 

Joey_GrymmStudios

Dr. Grymm

Steampunk offers a melding of late 1800’s aesthetic with scientific discovery and other-worldly technology.  The term “Steampunk” was first used in the late 1980’s to give a label to the literary works of K.W. Jeter, Tim Powers, and James Blaylock, although the aesthetic of Steampunk has been around much longer.

For me personally Steampunk is a fascinating possibility between contemporary art, fashion, and design revisiting an era of marvelous innovation mixed in with sophisticated etiquette and romance.  Two forms of expression hypnotically draw me the most:  the fashion and the intricate science.  It is for women a wide classy range of Lolita-Victorian-Tank Girlish dress and for the gentlemen the maddening inventions of either global dominance or defense.  Beyond this, the sky or middle-earth is literally your playground.

Steampunk Couture model, Kato

One of the well-known faces of the Steampunk movement is model, Kato.  Her photo shoots embody the rebel rise in social equality for women in the late 1800’s  without losing the feminine beauty and lines.  Borrowing and modifying Homer’s Helen of Troy description, Kato is a superb representation of “a face that launched a thousand airships“; or the correct vernacular would be “Zepplins“.  Go to Kato’s Steamgirl.com website to see the stunning spectacle.

Helena Bonham-Carter at the 2011 Oscars

Steampunk fashion has seen a growing interest outside the subculture’s underground, not only in custom designers for the wealthy (e.g. Bibian Blue in Barcelona, Spain), but for hobbiest and Ren-Faire goers alike.  Don’t despair if your budget doesn’t resemble Mrs. Bonham-Carter’s or Gaga’s.  Women seeking some attire for less opulent occasions may find Clockwork Couture or Iris Noir more modest in price.   And though men’s Steampunk fashions are nowhere near as varied or diverse as women’s, two of my favorite men’s retailers somewhat kind on the wallet are Retroscope Fashions and Shrine of Hollywood.  Shrine also has very delicious choices for women with more…. alluring tastes.

History of Science Museum, Oxford University

Company offices may not be alien to Steampunk for long.  After viewing these models and their outfits, newbies or dabblers might be asking where job professionalism fits in?  A legitimate question indeed.  How can the eccentricity of Steampunk be brought into the corporate workplace?  Yes, departing from the movement’s spirit of ingenuity and creativity is Steampunk blasphemy to the true fan, however a gradual taming-down is not a stretch, and would indeed show the era’s modesty while still remaining within your employer’s dress code, one example Steampunk Threads.  Afterall, demonstrating a sound inner compass is actually a practice in self-confidence, fearless to venture away from mainstream corporate attire, and a quality successful progressive business owners can appreciate; And that most definitely sums up the Steampunk spirit….at least as far as fashion goes!

Three Rings Design office designed & built by Because We Can

Oh but those gentlemen and their wacky contraptions.  If you are unable to muster the courage to dress Steampunk in public, then there are fascinating alternatives.  As pictured at the top, home and office Steampunk designs are found domestically.  Because We Can is a firm based in West Oakland, CA specializing in “creative build-outs, interior design, custom furniture, whole creative environments, and buildings.”  Think museums, homes, or offices are the limits of Steampunk’s appeal?  Not even close.  Computer monitors/televisions, desktops and laptops, telephones, cellphones, watches, guitars and other musical instruments, even automobiles and motorcycles and lest I forget….the skin of riders and drivers have not escaped the aesthetic.

By simply Google-ing Steampunk you will find an endless journey of images and information.  This fact makes it almost impossible to cover other Steampunk forms such as music, to name just one.  Yet, I will at least mention three popular bands:  Abney Park, Dr. Steel, and Vernian Process.

Steampunk Tattoos

I want to end this page with the “emotion” Steampunk brings to me.  Two Steamers put it this way:  “To me, [Steampunk is] essentially the intersection of technology and romance.” — Jake von Slatt.  And “It’s sort of Victorian-industrial, but with more whimsy and fewer orphans.— Caitlin Kittredge.  What I love most about my interpretation of Steampunk is the brains behind the amazing gadgets and machines, the witty sometimes borderline grandeur, but also the raw mix of characters daring to push the limits of human invention AND human passion.  And more honestly, I absolutely growl in admiration — from above the neck as well as below the waist — how respectfully exquisite women look in Steampunk fashion!  Case and point:  Kato above and below.  Therefore, I find my Steampunk to be wonders of Verne, Wells, Edison and Tesla courting the spunk of say, Kato-Victorian dazzle.

Steamgirl Kato

Kato

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Steampunk music by:
Electro Swingers – Retro Electric Hoochie Coochie
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16 thoughts on “Steampunk

  1. This book is filled with the clever inventions from all types of Steampunk characters and eras.
    I loved the pictures, the musings and the whimsical bits of advice each section covered about the Steampunk genre and the “hopeful” eveolution of it all.
    I am a Steampunk fanatic, but haven’t had the courage to go to a convention yet.
    Armed with the knowledge of this book, I will get myself to the very next convention I can, fully dressed and ready to interact with everyone I meet.
    I bought this book in hardback, as there is simply not a chance of it being anything less than a Collector’s edition.
    I am seriously thinking about buying another copy, as mine is less than 3 days old and it is getting dog-earred already.
    Absolute treasure!

    Like

  2. You take my breath away. You are brilliant and I feel exhilerated. i was frightened of you at first. But I don’t think you are taboo. I think you are incredible. Perhaps it might be taboo for the person to ever question you. I like you. You remind me of Sir.

    Like

    • M’sS, you are very kind. I am very honored that you’d include me with your Sir; that touches me. Thank you!

      As far as the reference to “taboo”, it actually is a reflection (if I may humbly explain) of my lack-of-fear toward taboo subjects. I do not push my knowledge in anyone’s face, however, I am quite capable of many, many subjects of conversation. I try to articulate myself, my thoughts, feelings, and knowledge if I am well-versed. But I will shut-up and listen astutely if I am ignorant of the subject. I’m sure this is the teacher side of me.

      Thank you again for your kind words! Please come back often.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s my pleasure I assure you. I am happy to share with you. Except that I am just a plain simple girl from the country. What do I have that I can offer you of any value. If I may ask please.

        Like

      • Well, to name one right off: from what I first browsed on your blog, there is a TON of delicious informative topics! You will always have much value to offer fellow subs, bottoms, switches…as well as insight for novice, newbie, or curious Doms and Tops. Please don’t think otherwise!

        If I may, allow me to continue this privately through email… 🙂

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    • LOL — TOTALLY know what your saying John! The subculture stimulates me to no end, ESPECIALLY the women’s fashion! OMFS! = Oh My F*cking Stars! Speaking of which, checkout my subpage: “Through the Monocles” for a few delicious female delights in Steampunk! 😈

      Liked by 1 person

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