Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The parasol - an underused steampunk accessory

Steampunk Train at Night I was fortunate enough to head along to an "Olde Hallows Eve" event at MOTAT, which transformed the Museum of Transport and Technology into a creepy, Victorian styled Halloween. Appropriately scary for all ages, it was great fun, but what I found the most interesting was the costumes. The Victorian era is what has inspired steampunk, and while this event wasn't focussed on the steampunk genre, there was plenty of steam, and the costuming (and makeup) was incredible, combining the most beautiful Victorian elements with the gothic and ghoulish.

There was a beautiful, black lace parasol that I absolutely fell in love with, and managed to steal temporarily for this photo. I have vowed to get one for myself as soon as I can!

Steampunk Parasol

It got me thinking though, are parasols an underused steampunk accessory? Sure, we all think of goggles and gadgets, but the parasol seems like something that could add great value. Of course, Gail Carriger has already seen the merit in the parasol, with her Parasol Protectorate series. It is such a beautiful accessory, and they have so many possibilities as a steampunk gadget that also looks amazing.

The obvious choice would be to have a parasol that doubles as some sort of weapon. Add a sharp tip that is steam propelled to fly out at an enemy (only in theory of course) at the push of a button or the turn of a cog...

For costuming purposes though, making a parasol more steampunk doesn't seem ridiculously hard (although, admittedly, I have yet to do so myself). I suggest sticking with neutral colors - black, white or ivory, and thinking about how you can integrate steampunk elements into the pattern in the lace (if you have a lace one like I plan to). I think a clockwork design would look great, if you can get enough cogs, and having them follow the ribbing up to the middle of the canopy is one of my ideas. For the handle, I'd want to spraypaint it black, and then dry brush it with copper and/or silver paint. You could get more intricate here of course, using cogs and/or string (to look like wiring) as a design.

It doesn't seem so difficult, but despite extensive googling, I can't find anyone who has done this (and bragged about it online). So, am I missing something, or has no one really bothered to go above and beyond with the parasol?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Steampunk Princess loves comments! Show her some love...