Saturday, October 1, 2011

Costume Fun!

Gosh, I feel like a terribly neglectful blog writer. I keep meaning to update it at least once a week but it feels like the speed of this rabbitty year has really gotten away from me now. I'm busy as anything, but not feeling run quite so ragged. I've just got a lot going on at the moment - which is why it's important for me to do something a bit fun.

Seeing at Hallowe'en is right around the corner and I've been invited to a 'costume-optional' party on the 14th, I figured it would make good sense to go about making a costume. I used to make a new costume every year without fail. Granted, this was significantly easier when I was still in school and living at home.  I had a vast array of supplies and a sewing machine available for me to whip up everything from Hobbes to a praying mantis.

To add to the lack of usual costume resources, I'm also unfamiliar with the shops in London which would be equivalent to where I might have gotten that just right scrap of cloth or that last minute bit of construction paper to finish off a zebra, bat or Spy Vs. Spy character.

I'm also running on a short time frame, which means that I have to take into account that most of my planning, plotting, sewing, tweaking and construction needs to be done after work. This weekend is the last afforded me before the weekend of the party as next weekend I'm going to be in my Life Coaching classes from Friday til Sunday.

I was further restricted by the theme of said costume party being 'Art'. Arguably, I could therefore wear any of my already completed costumes as they are my very own personal artwork - especially the ones with hand crafted plaster cast masks. But I'm stubborn and I dislike re-wearing my costumes. I much prefer to make a new one each year for the sake of tradition and generally just for the fun of it. Perhaps it's due to my love of Mr. Dress-Up or the fact that I have too many ideas to risk missing out on one by repeating a costume. Regardless of the reason, I knew I had to come up with an art themed costume that was simple to put together in a short period of time and with limited access to my usual costume construction resources.

I love a challenge and this was not one I felt was insurmountable. I did some Googling, pondered a few different ideas and finally settled quite happily on going with the wonderfully whimsical choice of building a SteamPunk outfit.

For those who don't know, SteamPunk is a form of art which combined Victorian style and technology with modern day or futuristic conveniences. Imagine, if you will, a steam powered Smart Phone, a clockwork laptop, or a wind-up ray gun. Combine with a Victorian waistcoat, shirt and trousers. Apply some goth make-up or brightly coloured hair, a mohawk or lots of piercings. Voila! SteamPunk couture!

I just so happened to have a new cap, which was purchased for me by my adoring sprout, as a starting place for said costume. I've also got a smashing pair of Garrisons - modern day army boots made in Canada, perfect for the 'punk' aspect of the outfit. I set out to finish the costume by purchasing a suitable mix of Victorian-esque articles of clothing, including a pair of brilliant rust coloured shooting breeks, a waistcoat and a jacket with leather patches on the elbows.

The clothing done, my next step is to accessorize. I intend to do so over the next week and I'm quite looking forward to revealing the end result.

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