It has been proposed that I might attend an upcoming convention (erm, upcoming being next summer, thankfully!) and while I still don’t know if I’ll go or not, it has me thinking about costumes/attire.
First up, the convention each year chooses a different theme, and has events centered around that theme. This upcoming year the theme will be musical, and one of the sub-themes is Steampunk. Of course, this would mean a costume for the Steampunk element of the convention, but also costumes/outfits for all of the others as well…. Looking at photos from some of the public parts of the convention, it looks like while some people don’t really do much for the theme at all, some do just one or two little things, and there is a fairly nice-sized group that really does go all-out in the theme. (Which, is a lot like a lot of the dress-up events I’ve gone to… where some people go under-board, some go overboard and some float in the middle….)
So… the Steampunk element of the convention is an activity (no, I’m not going to get too specific…), which dictates that the outfit must be something I can move around in a fair amount. Real corsetry wouldn’t work too well, but corset-like garments that I can still bend and move around in would be fine.
The other themes include:
- Poodle skirts and saddle shoes. The musical theme is 1950s, though it looks like it’s a short portion of the event, so probably not really important to dress up for.
- Music of the 1960s and the age of Aquarius. This will be a standing-around event, so pretty much anything will go…
- Disco and the 1970s… this is a more social part of the event, and looks like in the past one of the events that a number of people do dress up for quite a bit.
- 1980s – the event actually doesn’t sound like my cup of tea for this one, but it’s very public… very active, and very high energy. Whatever I do for this would need to be very planned.
- 1990s – it appears that this is the “Cher” event – or rather, Cher’s come-back… LOL (Me thinks that the host perhaps is a friend of Dorothy?) This is another social part of the event that it seems like a lot of people dress up for – more so than they do at some of the other events, so this would be an important one to have a showstopper costume for…
- Finally they’re doing a general rock-star theme for the 2000s, which seems a bit vague to me, but it’s another social part with a lot of dressing up – so perhaps they wanted to keep it really open to encourage people to participate.
My first thought when it comes to the 1950s is something with the whole poodle skirt look… then going into the whole big-skirted apron-wearing slightly classier idea… something like this:
I certainly would love a dress like that – full skirted with crinoline petticoat, and wouldn’t the matching purse be adorable? Hahaha… Although knowing me, I’d want to do it in a skull and crossbone print or something like that…
Then I got thinking of movies set in the 50s. Kind of like Grease, but my first thought was the (terrible! funny!) Cry Baby with Johnny Depp.
Which brings me to this photo of Traci Lords from the Horribly Confused blog:
I’m thinking that the neckline on this, with the skirt of the top photo would be awesome… but a lot to pack. That will be the hard part – and the other problem is that this is only a minor event – so perhaps just a top like this with a pair of jeans (rolled up? White socks?) I think this outfit will be LOW on the to-sew list really, since it’s not a big deal. If worst comes to worse, I could wear a long pencil skirt like in the Cry Baby group photo above, with a t-shirt and neck scarf….
For this event, pretty much anything will work, but since I don’t think that it’s a significant dress-up event, it too will be low on my list of outfits. I am not even sure if this one is a stand-alone event from the previous, or if they’re blending into one another.. I haven’t really thought too much about this, but I’m thinking of just something with a lot of fringe perhaps, or tie dye… neither really appeal to me though. *sigh*
Ok, this I’m a bit more excited about – there’s ample room in the late-70’s punk movement… but, I’m thinking awesome costume-fodder in the mid-70’s KISS era… Silver, black. Silly cut-outs and ridiculous shoulder accessories. HUGE platforms (not going to happen – since I won’t want to travel with 40lbs of footwear), bat-wings, silver studs, leather/pleather/vinyl…
For inspiration – something from the one-sixth warriors’ message board. Obviously feminized, obviously something that would be a little bit more packing-friendly than huge spikes (hello TSA! nice to meet you!) and 20lb belt buckles… but still something over-the-top and cool…
I found this inspirational photo on a facebook page.
The iconography of the KISS members might also be interesting – the Star for Paul Stanley, the Demon for Gene Simmons, the Cat for Peter Criss, and the Spaceman for Ace Frehley…. (According to Wikipedia (cus I wouldn’t know!) other members also did the Fox and an Egyptian Ankh – but I don’t think I’d do those two because it wouldn’t be as recognizable as KISS… ) I’m not about to dye my hair or anything, but I could bring one of my black wigs for this one too – though likely not…
Although the event for the 80s theme doesn’t really appeal to me that much, it’s still a good dress-up occasion, but not something I would want or need to spend a lot of energy on. Lucky for me, enough things in my existing costume wardrobe could probably go together to create something inspired by either Cindi Lauper or Madonna…
For Madonna – lots of beaded jewelry, lots of lace, lots of underwear-as-outerwear, full short skirts, beaded bracelets.. Although this look is all-white, lots of BRIGHT colours would also work.
For a more Cindi-inspired look – not that different, just MORE colour – and more wacky-colour combinations. Again, no hair-dying here, but one of those sideways ponytails would work with whatever hair colour I’m wearing, and perhaps for more of a Cindi-look, some of those bright clip-in extensions?
So if this is basically the era of Cher, then Cher it should be, right? Cher is so well known for her costumes, which makes finding costume ideas easy. The problem – Cher is also known for not exactly wearing a LOT of costume… she tends to be pretty exposed (or at least there is the illusion of being exposed) – which I just don’t have the body for! So, whatever I do either needs to be a re-interpretation or something where I can cheat on the whole ‘exposed’ part of it. Either way, there seems to be a LOT of glitz to Cher’s costumes.. lots of rhinestones, sequins, etc.
The matching wig on this one is awesome – and a long/short fringe-hem dress in red glittery fabric would be doable. I could make the neckline more wearable, or totally cheat with some flesh-toned fabric in there as well. (Perhaps with some glittery mesh illusion over top?) The other Cher signature is those huge headpieces she used to wear – all showgirl-style with a bit of an edge, and lots of glitz. That isn’t going to work so well – since transportation would be an issue.
For this one the theme is so vague that I just don’t know where to start. For easy costume-fodder, Brittney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Shakira, Byonce or Lady Gaga would make sence I suppose, but I think the theme is too vague to really help point me in a good direction. I suppose for this one it will more be a matter of what kind of item would I like to make, and then which female pop star/rock star has worn something similar in a video or photo spread during the general time span?
I looked around a bit, and had really hoped to find some inspiring Christina costumes (I like Shakira better, but don’t have the belly for her costumes, since they’re almost always belly-baring!) but had very little luck. I liked the Moulin Rouge (Lady Marmelade – 2001) costumes, but eh… I don’t know that I want to do something like that. I like the 1940’s Candyman video costumes, but since they have their own era, that might not work so much. So.. it’s on to Gaga. Who I really don’t actually like that much, but.. whatever..
Of the set I saw, I think this would be the most interesting to replicate, and still be very transportable.
Of course, this is the area that I’m the most excited about, which is kind of crazy since it’s just one element of the whole – BUT… be that as it may, it’s still the part that I’m the most interested in doing. That being said, I don’t see any reason why I nessessarily need to make something specific for this event – it could just be generic steampunk too. But… why not Steampunk +music?
For inspiration, how about Abney Park, Dr. Steel, Emilie Autumn, or Raspuntia? Emilie Autumn and Dr. Steel would probably the most costume-y (vs. just Steampunk attire’d).
From the PETA website (with an interview with Emilie):
and then from the last.fm site:
I love both of these looks – but unfortunately neither of them (directly as they are at least) would really work for the event – the huge skirt would make it difficult to move around much, and the corset in the first image would be even more restrictive. Still, the bright pink/red hair (although these two photos show a more subdued burgundy, I always think of her with bright pink hair) would be great – and possibly involve some hot pink corkscrew hair falls… or even some dreadfalls perhaps?
Ah.. just too many ideas! I wanted to create a category for this though so that I can come back to refer – and once I know if I’m going or not – start sewing!