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Steampunk Guide

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  1. Steampunk Guide

  2. What this guide is: • A Quick history of steampunk • A list of some places you can get inspiration from • Advice for choosing outfits and character creation • Advice for where to get things! • Q&A

  3. What this guide isn’t: • Me telling you how to be steampunk. This is a guide- I’m here to show you the options available and inspire you, not tell you how to do it.

  4. What Steampunk is • A fashion trend • A music genre • A novel genre • A cool thing you see at cons • A WAY OF LIFE • Fun!

  5. What Steampunk isn’t: • Only for cool people. That you aren’t. • Only for skinny white folk. • Expensive • Serious Business.

  6. Where did Steampunk begin? VICTORIAN ENGLAND.

  7. Well, not really… • The term “Steampunk” was coined in the 1980’s as a part of Cyberpunk • Steampunk genre novels already existed before then, but they were grouped under Sci-fi • Steampunk has taken over since then as it appeals to many subcultures including goths, punks, industrials, geeks and gamers • More and more movies are being made as it’s such a popular thing which is bringing it to mainstream attention.

  8. Inspiration! • The easiest way to start with steampunk is to find out what other people have done • And there’s lots of inspiration out there!

  9. Inspiration in Books • The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling. • His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman • Soulless (The Parasol Protectorate, #1) by Gail Carriger • Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve

  10. Inspiration in Movies • Steamboy • Wild Wild West • Repo the Genetic Opera • The Prestige • Sweeney Todd • Treasure Planet • Anything Victorian- Sherlock Holmes, My Fair Lady, Oliver, Chitty chitty bang bang • I’ve also used Cabaret and Chicago

  11. Inspiration in Comics • The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen • Girl Genius (an online comic) • Full Metal Alchemist

  12. Inspiration in Fashion • Livejournal group Steamfashion is absolutely great for images and inspiration • Look at actual Victorian fashion! • Steampunk is pretty in with high fashion at the moment too

  13. Dr Steel! Abney Park Inspiration in Music

  14. Making an outfit • Pick your favourite colour as a starting point! Colours that suit you or make you feel great when you wear them. • Choose clothing that suits you and you feel comfortable in • Accessorise!

  15. Clothing that suits you- Women • If you have a small chest things with high collars look good • If you have a larger chest you’re better with V-necked shirts/coats • Corsets are awesome for everyone! • If you have a curvy shape fitted skirts look great • If you have small hips adding belts will give you more shape • Puffy sleeves make large arms look bigger • If you’re short pointed toes make you look taller

  16. Clothing that suits you- Men • Full length coats look best on tall men • If you’re shorter go for ¾ length or jacket length • Rolling up your sleeves will make your arms look bigger • Very tall hats look better on tall men, go for a smaller hat if you’re short. • Waistcoats are great for everyone

  17. Then Accessorise! Just find things that you like and keep adding. Some ideas are: • Pocket watch • Goggles • Necklaces/Chokers • Cuff links • Wrist cuffs • Belts and chains

  18. But what if I want to make a Character? • Personally I start with a colour again! • You may already have an idea and you just want to expand it • If you want to draw the character but you’re not confident with drawing print out a picture of a person then draw the clothing over the top • Remember a steampunk character is like cosplay- you can change your hair colour/eye colour/ nationality too! • Remember steampunk is not like cosplay- you can base the character off parts of yourself!

  19. Where do they come from? What job do they have? How did they get that job? What’s the best thing about them? What’s the worst thing about them? Is there anything special about them? What’s their favourite colour? How would they talk? Would you have fun being that character? Would the costume be comfortable? Can you make that costume? Now give them a name! Things to think about when making a Character

  20. For example, this is Cogsworth: Where do they come from? Russia! What job do they have? Captain of the ship How did they get that job? He stole the ship What’s the best thing about them? They’re fun! What’s the worst thing about them? They’re stupid. So, so stupid. Is there anything special about them? They’re a clock work cyborg with a human soul What’s their favourite colour? Red for Russia! How would they talk? With a high voice and a Russian accent

  21. Comfort is a must in costumes! These look cool, but they’re not fun to wear!

  22. Where to get things from!Clothing, Shoes and Accessories • Charity shops • Carboot sales • Buy online • Ebay! • Regular fashion stores (if you’re lucky!) • Make them yourself! • Commission them

  23. Where to get things from!Hats Types of hats: Top hats, Bowler hats (aka Derby), Mini top hats, Large sun hats, Military hats • Online (best place, but also most expensive) • Car boot sales • Charity shops • Military surplus stores

  24. Where to get things from!Cogs and Gears These are actually really hard to find! Here are some places you can get them: • Mixed bags from Ebay and Etsy • Break apart old things which have gears (clocks, watches) • Maplins sell plastic cogs you can paint Also remember you can accessorise with buttons, keys, springs and anything in your character!

  25. Where to get things from!Weapons and Guns You can buy bases you can alter and paint here: • Toy shops! • Ebay • Poundland • The nerf website • Charity shops • Car boot sales

  26. Wood painted Magpie from Props Supplier Welders goggles painted Buttons and Pendants from Ebay Clock from charity shop Maplins cogs painted Gun from toy store Medical Tubing

  27. Painting plastic things • Remove things like “made in china” using sand paper • Gently sand the entire surface • Prime with black primer paint • Dry brush with metal acrylic or use rub and buff • Age with acrylic or shoe polish • Seal with clear acrylic spray

  28. And one last bit of advice… Have fun!

  29. Now it’s Q&A time! • If you want a copy of this slide I’ll post it up on the Alcon Forums • If you email me at I can also send it to you