Bustles, Gears and Garters

ladies in bustles with LOL quotes

Ah for the days when clothing suggested instead of revealing

On a random day, it’s fun to don the ridiculous costume of the previous times, now far enough back into history to be intriguing, rather than embarrassing. This is the main appeal of the Renfaire phenomenon, and now, steampunk.

While people of the most recent century snickered at the values of their grandparents (mine were born just past 1900), generations before that are exotic and interesting.

Steampunk explores the technological side of the industrial revolution with the entrepreneurial spirit and the inventive imagination of the time mixed in with often rose-colored hindsight, to create a history that never was. It’s all very Romantic, as the era when the age of Reason gave way to the split of the mind between business and culture.

At AnachroCon last year, I listened to a panel of women who work in male-dominated fields of computer tech and engineering. They said how much fun it was to get dolled up, draping frippery and cinching into corsets with their leather and brass weaponry. Most of them would find this garb uncomfortable, even dangerous, in their daily lives, but where else does the average person have a chance to get dressed up and sashay?

Charlotte Babb with steampunk monocle and wire teacup with red ribbon.

Madame Charlotte, dressed for tea.

Steampunk is really not about gears, but about making a different world, a world of many possibilities and different perspectives, when it seemed that all the mysteries could be solved and that with only spunk and intelligence, one could win the day.

I’m not sure that we are not re-cycling to that mindset, that a persona with intelligence and spunk can come up with a new idea, a new business model, a different way to solve the day’s problems. I know that I’m all for a world that at least once in a while does not mind my having a substantial ass.

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6 Responses to Bustles, Gears and Garters

  1. Stella Scott says:

    I think we are moving into an understanding that we will never solve all the mysteries. One of them being that in certain cultures a substantial ass it to die for, and it is on the same planet! 😉

  2. cheryl says:

    Very cute blog! Love the photo! I just herd about steampunk yesterday and it is very interesting and I am sure many will engage in it just for the simple fact that it is different.

  3. Jan says:

    I love the steampunk fashion and attitude – it’s more than dressing up isn’t it. Yet, I don’t get involved and smile from the sidelines. Thank you for popping over to my blog and your comment – I have found you now and off to go and lose myself in some fantasy 🙂