Tuesday, 15 February 2011

A Fascination with a Fascinator?

In something of a flurry of Steampunk inspiration, I decided to branch out into the exotic world of the Steampunk fascinator, creating this tea-stained paper and feather fascinator in the process. 

I've never done tea-staining before (shocking I know, given how popular it is in schools), but I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. It gave the paper a nice aged colour, with some little concentrations of colour to give a bit of interest. The pages came out of an old ancient history journal, and though I would never normally deface a book, I was assured that the title in question was hopelessly out of date and therefore utterly useless to any serious scholar. (Fingers crossed they're right...) To make the rosette itself, I indulged in a little teabag folding. It may have a strange name, but it's a very versatile craft skill I'd thoroughly recommend acquiring.

I got the gold button and the feathers in the local craft shop, an occurence which was incredibly pleasing as we haven't had a craft shop for quite some time, and this one is relatively new. I wasn't entirely sure how to attach the feathers at first, but in the end I used some 34 gauge gold wire to tie them onto the comb on the back. It's worked well and they seem nice and secure.

Overall, I'm very pleased with how it turned out, and it's currently for sale in my Etsy shop.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Victorian Valentine...

Well ladies and gents, here is my latest creation...

What with the world gearing up for Valentine's Day on the 14th, I decided to enter into the lovey-dovey spirit and create a pair of decidedly Victorian love themed earrings. The heart charms themselves are just beautiful - they have that oh-so-Victorian intricacy that I've always loved, and a nice slightly burnished finished so they don't look too new. I also decided to echo the shape of the small gold charms at the top by adding little bicone crystal beads, choosing a nice taupe colour to bring out the rich, intense red of the main beads. At first I tried making these with gold wire, but they just didn't look right, so I switched to copper which I think looks much more 'antique' and suitable.

Hope you like them, and I hope you have a wonderful Valentine's Day, be it with the love of your life, your friends, or your family. They're all precious, so let them know how much you care about them. <3

These earrings are currently for sale in my Etsy shop.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Best Dressed 2010 - Update

In yet more of my random wanderings in the aether, I've discovered the identities of our exceedingly well-dressed mystery Steampunk couple...

They're called Orla and Jdeignan, and you can visit Orla's deviantART profile here. She has an awesome array of Steampunk costumes, so why not take a look and get some inspiration?

Friday, 28 January 2011

Best Dressed 2010?

 In my random wanderings in the aether, I happened to stumble upon this fabulously attired pair...

Aside from looking like they've stepped straight out of the Steampunkiverse or a Cherie Priest novel, the attention to detail on their costumes is phenomenal. From her double layered gloves, to the bullet-belt wrapped around his wrist, there is nothing about their outfits I don't absolutely adore. I particularly love the colour combination of her olive green corset and claret red skirt - so unusual but it works perfectly.

Could they be the best dressed Steampunk couple of 2010? Let me know your thoughts.

You can find the original posting on deviantART here. Be sure to go and leave a comment - they must have worked really hard on their outfits, so they sure do deserve it.

Alas, poor Blogger...

... I've neglected it so.

I'm terribly sorry I haven't posted the retrospectives I promised just before Christmas. Unfortunately, the same hectic schedule that had created the need for them in the first place continued to exert its wearisome influence, thus making my task nigh-on impossible. BUT! Huzzah, my schedule has finally lightened, albeit only temporarily.

So do not divert your attention ladies and gentlemen, for here (over the next few days) comes a veritable garden of Steampunk delights...

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Steampunk Season's Greetings...

Hello again one and all!

Forgive the recent dearth of posts - times have been hectic and as per usual, the mundane tasks of everyday life must take precedence. However, Christmas is on its way and in accordance with the festive spirit, I'd like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Given how long it's been since I last posted, and how much Steampunkery has occurred in the mean time, in the next few days I'll be posting a series of retrospectives covering the past couple of months. So look out for them and their Steamy goodness!

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, 7 October 2010

A Steampunk Chapeau

Forgive me dear friends, for having been away for so long. The whirlwind that is university has started once again, and my time has been spent running from desk to library, library to desk, and back again... But! I have found time to add a little more steam to my life.

You may remember from a previous post, that I purchased a lovely top hat a few weeks ago. Well, I finally got around to making a suitably Steampunk hatband for it. Here's the finished result:

Before I even began making the band, I had decided that I wanted it to be detachable in order to allow me to switch between bands in different colours, so as to be able to coordinate with whatever outfit I happen to be wearing. To do this I simply added two small press studs to either end of the green jute ribbon, allowing me to remove and reattach the band at will. This particular band is designed to go with a fabulous, emerald-coloured underbust corset I have. After rummaging through a local craft store in search of anything and everything green, I bought a couple of large peacock feathers to add a little drama. Their colours complement the jute ribbon and copper wire perfectly, and although they are rather ostentatious, they have absolutely nothing to do with the fact that I like to show off... *whistles innocently*

The wire wrapped metal washer was actually something I found lying around - literally. It was shining on the pavement one sunny May day, and having picked it up and brought it home, it's been lying in a drawer for months. In order to make it more Steampunk-esque, I wrapped thin copper jewellery wire around it; covering approximately one-third of the circle, with a small amount on the opposite side to add a little 'visual balance'. Using the washer to obscure the join in the hatband, I looped several strands of good, strong thread through the wires on the back and sewed it directly to the ribbon itself. To further hide the ends of the jute ribbon, I made a few loops of garden wire and wraped some strands of the leftover jute ribbon around them to create a kind of 'avant-garde accoutrement' which I placed poking out from behind the metal washer as a finishing touch.

I'm so pleased it turned out well, as it was an absolute nightmare to make. Having never done any kind of millinery work before, I approached it from completely the wrong angle in terms of construction. I attached the feathers last, despite their being behind the metalwork (an elementary mistake, my dear Watson). I had to significantly change my plans to wire-wrap the washer. Dust and fibres from the jute ribbon covered the hat in a light green film, which I then had to pick off by hand. Coupled with this, a staggering amount of university work, meant that I also ended up making it at 1am...

However, for all its faults, in retrospect, making it is probably the single most useful lesson in 'how not to do it' I've ever had. A lesson extremely well learned, believe you me.