We spent the months of September and October designing and developing our steampunk cosplay costumes in preparation for Winnipeg’s Comic Con, C4. We decided to focus our Victorian Steampunk on a World-War Era team of war specialists.
Here’s all seven of us on the floor posing for pictures!
Here’s our Blacksmith. I custom made his leather apron from several leather jackets I picked up at the Goodwill Dollar Daze. I built the plaid pants for Much Ado about Nothing at the Winnipeg Fringe this summer. The shirt was a Goodwill find used for a previous Han Solo costume. The hat was also bought from a second hand store. The goggles were purchased from Princess Auto and the wrench was stolen from the workshop!
The Aircraft Mechanic was inspired from Rosie the Riverter. The leather corset was custom built from old leather jackets. As our mechanic has minor scoliosis, I built a duck tape corset, created a canvas pattern from that and then fashioned the leather one. The pants and hip bag were Goodwill finds, and the sweater and boots were sourced from her own wardrobe. The giant wrench was made out of wood from our prop expert and my partner, Kirby Gehman
Our Winged Scout built most of her costume herself, with a little bit of mentoring from me and her dad. She designed it all herself and then merely asked for help when she felt stumped and couldn’t find the information she was looking for. I did custom build her corset in the same manner as above – duct tape, muslin pattern, final leather version from old leather coats. She had a definite idea of what she wanted her blouse to look like and the day before comic con we found the perfect one, although we had to pay more than usual, as we purchased it at Value Village!
Our Hired Gun was most intent on creating his guns and holsters. He did the work for those on his own, with some help from his father. It required purchasing a leather riveting gun, probably our most expensive purcahse for this round of costumes. The linen pants were a lovely find at Dollar Daze and only required some slight modifcation at the waist. The rest of the costume was sourced from his existing wardrobe.
Our Fairy Photographer wanted an old fashioned camera, which was built using her grand-pop’s 1960’s filming camera and her dad’s creative endeavours. The pants are a set of 1812 broad-falls that the boys used to wear. The vest was actually the remains of a jacket that was used for building corsets. I added in a hot pink lining. The aviator hat was built from scraps lying around the workroom. The goggles were purchased from Princess Auto. You can just see the bit of her of gear fairy wings, built by my amazing Propman.
I served as the team Cartographer and Surveyor. As an older woman participating in cosplay, I work really hard to ensure my costumes are classy and, shall we say, “age-appropriate.” I want to look as stunning on the floor as the hundreds of other woman, who are often half my age. The steampunk Victorian genre is perfect for this! I built a lobster tail set of hoops and then built the skirt by draping it over the hoops on my sewing dressform. Unfortunatley I was trying to do the hemming late into the night right before the event, and actually cut the bottom too short. As the material was from an old shower curtain, there wasn’t any extra, and at two in the morning I put my creative brain to work and ended up adding a ruffle to the bottom. I am not in love with the final product but I did feel good in the costume! The linen blouse was from the Goodwill and the necktie was from an old sari scrap I found in the discount fabric bin at Value Village. (There were two partial and two full saris!) My amazing props were all built by my Propman.
The Soldier was modelled after Boer War soldiers. The jacket was an old one I picked up for another play. The buttons, uniform braid and medal were all added in the same fashion as the uniforms I built for Much Ado About Nothing at the 2014 Fringe. It is a cheap way to turn an inexpensive suit jacket into a traditional uniform. He is wearing his 1812 historical broadfall pants and shirt underneath. Kirby build the pith helmet out of paper and resin and then I sewed a custom fit canvas covering. His gun is completely customed built from scratch!