The retro fashion for Steampunk has been well covered by other bloggers. Steampunk extends to more than clothes, and includes novels, films, music, and accessories. A tribute to the age of steam which culminated in sleeker industrial designs by the 1890s, I think of Steampunk as a mix of Sherlock Holmes, narrow-gauge railways, the Wild, Wild West television series, and the lovely lady pictured here. Her mutton leg sleeves remind me irresistibly of the pneumatic tubes we see in the Main Reading Room at the 42nd Street Library.
Women’s clothing in this decade reveal the final vestiges of Victorian costume shading into Edwardian dress. I think there’s something symbolic about the flaring lines and angles in feminine garments now. My second illustration depicts a woman who looks like a teapot that’s ready to be poured. Comfort isn’t the attribute that leaps to my mind when looking at these ensembles. Don’t worry, though, all this will change. Speaking of wild, wild Wests, I’m heading out there again. After a hiatus, I will return— but on a new timetable. I’ll be posting once a week during July and August. There’s much to be done in the Education department this summer. And I mean to wrap up this foray into the nineteenth century before September. Change is good.