This is another post about Steampunk accessories! The techniques I used to make my own accessories are the same paint and hot glue techniques as my used on my Steampunk ray gun. Don’t know Steampunk? Read my post on Steampunk for beginners.
1. Steampunk Goggles
Goggles are another “must” for Steampunk costuming. It evokes a feeling of exploration through machinery, typical of this era.
I purchased $1 used swimming goggles from a thrift store. I applied a French’s mustard lid, paint, craft wire, glue, rivets and gears. I wanted to change the rubber bands into leather, but ran out of time. I used wire instead. To make them look super-sexy with a telescopic lens, I added the lid of a mustard container. Applying eyelets gave the impression of additional lenses.
You can’t wear too many belts in Steampunk costuming, especially if they serve unusual functions like holstering a weapon, acting as a garter belt, or dangling stuff from your waist. Using cheap belts from a thrift shop, I used one belt to decorate my over-blouse lacy corset and to hike up a corner of my skirt (showing both my under layer and my character’s sense of adventure). Another belt was much wider and helped give that extra layer of leather my outfit needed. I dangled my pocket watch and other bits from the third belt, worn as a standard belt.
3. Weird Bits
It’s a mechanical age, a strange mechanical age, in the world of Steampunk. I punked up my the feathers for my lady’s hairpiece with a painted kazoo (at first I thought the kazoo could be a bullet for my gun but it didn’t look secure tucked into the belt loop). I wanted to put glow in the dark sticks into the kazoo for a lighting effect similar to my gun, but the ones I had were too big.
4. Character Bits
Adding a cross and a tiny mirror on a dangling leather string to my belt gave my character an extra layer of story. She’s a time travelling vampire hunter. Bram Stoker brought vampires to Victorian culture with his story Dracula.
5. Clocks and Gears
This is the era before digital watches. Use pocket watches or lapel watches to evoke an earlier time. Wear more than one (to keep track of the timelines in which you travel). Apply gears everywhere. Make them appear functional by layering them.
6. Military Accessories
Steampunk is the time of further expansion of the English Empire into Eastern continents. Jazz up your wardrobe with pretend medals, metal buttons with royal Heraldry or shoulder epaulets. In my costume, I used one leather epaulet with dangling chains. The chains are silver bracelet costume jewelry already from my collection. The strip of leather comes from a sheet of leather I have. You can recycle leather from clothes and furniture.
7. Walking cane or tall slim umbrellas
Canes and long umbrellas add an air of elegance to your Victorian or Edwardian Steampunk character. They’re also great for putting out the eye of nere-do-well attackers.
8. Vintage jewelry and gloves
If you’re going to wear embellishments, make them look old. Plastic anything shouldn’t look like modern plastic. Whether you’re a man or a woman, wear multiple rings of different thickness. A cravat around the neck should be secured with a dashing pin. Choose metallics for your ears, neck and wrists. Wear leather or lace gloves (plain or decorated).
I always welcome more Steampunk, Victorian and Edwardian costuming suggestions!
There’s one link in this article which might make me a tiny bit of money – but the story is probably online for free in digital format.