How to Be a Steampunk Lady for Halloween

September 30, 2013 § Leave a comment

Obtain a gown.  Let us assume for the moment that you live in a cold clime, and will need to be modestly-clad.

    

Add an Asian influence.

You could also accessorize with a shawl, fan, etc.

 
You might be martially inclined, or even inclined to march:

Say what you will about corsets (such as, you can’t swing a dead cat on Halloween, or on Etsy, without hitting one), it’s tough to get a real steampunk look going without at least one corset, or more if circumstances require.  But that doesn’t mean you automatically have to gravitate to the slutty ones that are really just boob-accentuators.  Think of your corset as a protective apron.  Gird your loins against gamma rays and whatnot that you may encounter on your adventure.  The steampunkiest-looking corsets, ironically, are those originally intended to be underwear, but in reality look like something that got put through a time machine and then landed in outerspace.  Be that as it may, your classic girdle makes an industrial-strength corset, worn on the outside of the clothing, of course.

There’s no need to limit oneself to only one corset, and the base layer of the traditional girdle will need to be jazzed up with something more modern, or reinforced with something flame-retardant.  Think layering.  Your outfit will thank you.  Your hourglass figure will thank you.  Please be careful how much you eat for lunch, and don’t forget your smelling salts.

       

And now top that whole sandwich off with a belt.  The belt is important, and here’s why.  The belt might be where you store your magic amulet.  Or, it serves a productive purpose and allows you to hang gear, ammunition, or weapons off of it within easy reach.  Don’t underestimate the importance of the belt.

  

If you have a few extra leather belts laying around, we recommend randomly strapping them to your person in various places (arms, thighs, collar bones, etc.), hinting at purposes only you understand.

Some form of headgear is now in order.  You could go with the good old fashioned top hat or fascinator:

Or the military / marching band / majorette look:

Or indulge your whimsy and go for the fantastical:

If you’re of the more practical persuasion, you might want wear a helmet instead.  There’s aviator, fencing, motorcycle, Viking, pith, football, scuba, riding, and air raid, to name a few.

   

Now that we’ve got the basic outfit, accessorize accessorize accessorize. Let’s start with some protective eyewear.  You have a huge range to choose from.  Vintage motorcycle goggles are perfect, as are anything else that looks perfectly ridiculous and goes over your eyes.  Don’t be afraid to choose something absurd.  Absurd goggles are arguably the most important element of a good steampunk get-up.

A lady always wears gloves.  And/or gauntlets.

And carries a reticule.  Industrial strength, in case of accidents, or if it’s from the future.

Hands-free options can be particularly useful.

What about footgear, you ask?  Depending on where you’re treading, you could go pretty or practical.  Again, now is a good time to bring in that Asian influence.  Steel-toe ass-kickers or Japanese geta, your choice, but consider the elements, comfort, and your own particular fetish.

 

And now a word about safety.  We’ve already girded our loins, so now you might want to concentrate on covering some other vulnerable areas with body armour.  Supplement as needed.  You don’t want to go all medieval, but depending on your adventure, you could be getting into some dangerous territory, and worse case scenario you can always refer to it as the Cyberman look.  Not sure how butch you want to go, but the 19th-century-prostitute look is just lame and isn’t really steampunk per se, it’s just a prostitute from another era.  Real steampunk girls range from can-take-care-of-herself to total-badass.  But even the badest-ass needs to protect her tender bits.  So let’s be careful out there.

A gas mask is a creepy yet effective accessory.

Extremely important.  Do not venture forth un-armed.  Make sure your packin’ heat.  Your weapons choices are as varied as are aliens to shoot them with.  Do not, I repeat, do not underestimate the power of a cookie dough dispenser.

And finally, no steampunk rig is complete without a parasol.  No one’s sure why.  But it’s a requirement.

Last step, strap one of these to your back …

… and attach it to your person with one of these, and you’re good to go!

      

Don’t forget the requisite randomly-placed gauges, gears, clocks, tubes, guns, buckles, valves, and dials, that should protrude from your outfit in convenient spots, preferably connecting to different spots somewhere on down the line.

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How to be a Steampunk Cowboy for Halloween

September 28, 2013 § 1 Comment

Step 1: Do your research.  An infallible and encyclopedic resource is The Look of the Old West by William Foster-Harris.  You should also consult I See by Your Outfit: Historic Cowboy Gear of the Northern Plains by Tom Lindmier and of course Vintrowear’s own Get Your Old West On: Real Cowboys and the Shirts They Wore.

Step 2: Get in the mood.  I find that Cowboys & Longhorns: A Portrait of the Long Drive by Jerry Stanley will do the trick.  As will Hillbilly Hollywood by Debby Bull for the bling quotient.  Also anything on Wild Bill Hickok.

Step 3: Start building your costume.  Refer to your Foster-Harris frequenty.  To whit, the big picture:

Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro)  Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro) Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro) Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro) Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro)

And don’t forget the details:

Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro)  Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro)  Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro)   Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro) Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro) Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro) Vintrowear's Steampunk Cowboy Halloween Costume Guide (image credit: Foster-Harris / Curro)

Step 4: Get yourself a good shirt.

Mens MEDIUM LARGE bib front cowboy shirt, Panhandle Slim, vintage, gray and blue striped, pearl snaps (386)

Mens LARGE cowboy shirt, Rockmount Tru West, vintage, red with white top stitching, pearl snaps (457)

Mens MEDIUM cowboy shirt, Red Rider, vintage, black and white two toned, pearl snaps (437)

Mens XXL western shirt, Ely Diamond, vintage, black with red piping on bib front, red snaps (420)

Step 5: Party down like these people.

Happy almost Halloween month!

Vintrowear’s Halloween picks from Topshop

August 27, 2013 § Leave a comment

Claw Bodycon Dress

Claw Bodycon Dress

Embellished Cobweb Cami Top

Embellished Cobweb Cami Top

Vinyl Calf Skater Skirt

Vinyl Calf Skater Skirt

Zombie Tee By Tee And Cake

Zombie Tee By Tee And Cake

Lace Body Suit

Lace Body Suit

And of course the most awesome, but of course most no longer available:

Skeleton Bodycon Dress in Gray

Skeleton Bodycon Dress in Gray

Halloween Window Shopping

August 23, 2013 § Leave a comment

The governing fantasy is that Vintrowear will begin selling vintage costume apparel beginning Halloween 2014.  Since current resources are applied toward cowboy shirt acquisition and sales, our buyer made purchases from Vice Versa Vintage, only in her imagination.  Our imaginary 2013 Fall Collection would have included:

Orange taffeta maxi skirt, aka Pumpkin Lady - from Vintrowear

Orange taffeta maxi skirt, aka Pumpkin Lady

Orange taffeta maxi skirt, aka Pumpkin Lady - from Vintrowear Orange taffeta maxi skirt, aka Pumpkin Lady - from Vintrowear

Handmade acqua and gold gown with ruffled collar and empire waist, aka Mermaid - from Vintrowear

Handmade acqua and gold gown with ruffled collar and empire waist, aka Mermaid

Handmade acqua and gold gown with ruffled collar and empire waist, aka Mermaid - from Vintrowear Handmade acqua and gold gown with ruffled collar and empire waist, aka Mermaid - from Vintrowear

Handmade yellow chiffon maxi dress, aka Little Bo Peep - from Vintrowear

Handmade yellow chiffon maxi dress, aka Little Bo Peep

Handmade yellow chiffon maxi dress, aka Little Bo Peep - from Vintrowear

Turquoise sequined cocktail dress, aka ... ? something from the sea! - from Vintrowear

Turquoise sequined cocktail dress, aka … ? something from the sea!

Blue sequined plus size 1980s gown, aka Trans-Gender Mermaid - from Vintrowear

Blue sequined plus size 1980s gown, aka Trans-Gender Mermaid

Blue sequined plus size 1980s gown, aka Trans-Gender Mermaid - from Vintrowear

Multi-colored tasseled maxi skirt, aka Gypsy Rainbow Lady! - from Vintrowear

Multi-colored tasseled maxi skirt, aka Gypsy Rainbow Lady!

Multi-colored tasseled maxi skirt, aka Gypsy Rainbow Lady! - from Vintrowear

Beautiful handmade burgundy velvet maxi dress with silver braid, aka Medieval Lady - from Vintrowear

Beautiful handmade burgundy velvet maxi dress with silver braid, aka Medieval Lady

Beautiful handmade burgundy velvet maxi dress with silver braid, aka Medieval Lady - from Vintrowear Beautiful handmade burgundy velvet maxi dress with silver braid, aka Medieval Lady - from Vintrowear

Red ruched cocktail dress with puff skirt and sleeves that ate Manhatta, aka Fairy, Little Red Riding Hood, Santa's Elf, etc. etc. - from Vintrowear

Red ruched cocktail dress with puff skirt and sleeves that ate Manhatta, aka Fairy, Little Red Riding Hood, Santa’s Elf, etc. etc.

Red ruched cocktail dress with puff skirt and sleeves that ate Manhatta, aka Fairy, Little Red Riding Hood, Santa's Elf, etc. etc. - from Vintrowear

Cheongsam made of fuschia novelty fabric, aka... a fish called Wanda? something anime? - from Vintrowear

Cheongsam made of fuschia novelty fabric, aka… a fish called Wanda? something anime?

Cheongsam made of fuschia novelty fabric, aka... a fish called Wanda? something anime? - from Vintrowear Cheongsam made of fuschia novelty fabric, aka... a fish called Wanda? something anime? - from Vintrowear

Lime green ruffled tuxedo blouse, plus size, aka Sgt. Pepper, Leprechaun, Band Leader, Clown - from Vintrowear

Lime green ruffled tuxedo blouse, plus size, aka Sgt. Pepper, Leprechaun, Band Leader, Clown

Lime green ruffled tuxedo blouse, plus size, aka Sgt. Pepper, Leprechaun, Band Leader, Clown - from Vintrowear

Blue and black sequined flamenco skirt, aka Gypsy Queen, Carmen Miranda - from Vintrowear

Blue and black sequined flamenco skirt, aka Gypsy Queen, Carmen Miranda

Blue and black sequined flamenco skirt, aka Gypsy Queen, Carmen Miranda - from Vintrowear Blue and black sequined flamenco skirt, aka Gypsy Queen, Carmen Miranda - from Vintrowear

Yellow and green floral chiffon maxi gown, aka Forest Fairy, Wood Nymph - from Vintrowear

Yellow and green floral chiffon maxi gown, aka Forest Fairy, Wood Nymph

Yellow and green floral chiffon maxi gown, aka Forest Fairy, Wood Nymph - from Vintrowear Yellow and green floral chiffon maxi gown, aka Forest Fairy, Wood Nymph - from Vintrowear

Purple and silver sequined gown, aka Circus Performer - from Vintrowear

Purple and silver sequined gown, aka Circus Performer

Purple and silver sequined gown, aka Circus Performer - from Vintrowear

Rose satin party dress, aka Pin Up Girl - from Vintrowear

Rose satin party dress, aka Pin Up Girl

DIY Two-Toned Cowboy Shirt

August 21, 2013 § Leave a comment

DIY Two-Toned Cowboy Shirt

Presto, chango: fancy western.  Thank you to Emma B. on Cut Out + Keep craft tutorials.  Great idea for a cowboy costume at Halloween!  More cowboy shirts available from Vintrowear, both plain and fancy.

And you can be my cowgirl!

October 14, 2012 § Leave a comment

Live out your cowboy fantasies this Halloween.

I Wanna Be a Cowboy Treasury by Vintrowear

 

New Year’s Resolutions

December 30, 2010 § Leave a comment

1. Update blog more frequently.

2. Open an online vintage clothing store called Vintrowear, which specializes in, initially, cowboy shirts.

Let’s get started on #1!  The fiscal year doesn’t end until February, so I can’t guarantee I’ll keep updating on a timely basis, but since I’m currently enjoying the last 3.5 days of my much-needed vacation, I have a bit of time.  It’s been such a busy end-of-the-year!  It all started in October, with my birthday.  And then Halloween.  And thus the Season of the Von Behren began.  Take a look.

Also in there was Dan’s birthday blowout, not pictured because I was busy selling over $1000 worth of raffle tickets for Transportation Alternatives.  Yey, me!  Yey, no cars!  Yey, Dan, for turning 50!

And yey for Vintrowear!  Coming soon to an internet near you.  Everything old is new again!  Happy New Year!

All my best,

Meg

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