I see that it’s that time of year again. Bring out the tinsel! String up the lights! Hang your…high heeled boot stockings? Let’s just say that Steampunk enthusiasts, as many people already know, have a rather unusual way of showing their Christmas spirit. Some like the Victorian way of decorating (Victorian Era Christmas Traditions ) with a few added flares. Not just gears mind you. Of course not! Steampunkists can be far more creative than that. Instead of regular round ornaments, you have clockwork soldiers and windup toys. Forget that star on top of the tree, get a top hat to make your fir that much more gentlemanly. It is a time get your best bustle ready for the Winter Solstice Steampunk Tea Party (Boston, by the by) because it’s time for the holidays!
In order to successfully have a Steampunk Christmas you must have a few things acquired. Of course you must have the usual ornament making tools but include gears (lots and lots of gears), gems, lace, silk pieces, and a soldering iron to help bind things together. Note…yes, silk and lace burn. I have found this out rather quickly. If you wish to make a plane bulb stand out, dress it up with color and bedazzle it with gears. If you prefer to make you own ornaments than print your favorite design on a card and attach a woven cord in place of the hook. Simple! I’m sure there are hundreds of objects used for Steampunkists to be placed on the tree.
1. Antique model planes – the WW1 biplanes
3. Hand made dolls – these were very popular in Victorian times.
4. Top hats – a must for any gentleman or lady.
6. Squid of Octopus – Enough said!
As I said…a high heeled boot stocking? But that is exactly what it is! To place your plain undecorated socks on the wall is so uncivilized. Even if they were not boots, they would be decorated with ribbons and bows in a sumptuous red velvet. But, you wouldn’t put just anything in a stocking this spectacular. For the hard core Steampunk enthusiast one would have electrical diode nightlights, clockwork toys resembling mice or even dolls, maybe even a punked out pin drive for the new typewriter keyed computer you just got under the tree. Anything that you get in a stocking is always a precursor to what is under the tree.
The tree is the focal point so make sure it stands out..which is very easy with Steampunk. I know the traditional Victorian method for lighting a tree is with candles but you’re Steampunk…use electricity cause it will never go out of style! Place all those lovely ornaments that you probably burned, scarred, and disfigured yourself making on the tree and stare at it with pride. But oh my!…something is missing. The topper! And what is the most eligible candidate for this? A top hat, of course! This can be decorated in whatever taste you wish. White, black, purple, green, red…it will look fabulous!
Getting ready for a Christmas party is almost always an enjoyable event. Start out by designing your invitations for the event accordingly. Most Steampunk designers place gears and mistletoe on a card and place the date and time. Go beyond this! Designing can be so much fun! Experiment with font, color, scroll work, and make sure you stay in your theme. Also, try to carry some elements of the design over to the place settings (if you have any) and gift tags. To make it even more fun, add “Victorian costume dinner” and have lots of space on your camera.
Your home should be fun to look around by eager neighbors and nosy family members. Give them something to look at! Place empty mason jars with lights around bookshelves and tables and place candles (this is a good time to use candles…secured) in open jars or maybe hang a discarded decoration from the lid with string. Garland! You can never have enough. Drape it on the mantel piece and shelving for that traditional look. Leave scented oils and perfumes about…they can be great conversation starters if the overall theme of your party doesn’t do that already.
And if you’re really adventurous and you live in a good neighborhood, go out caroling. If you and your guests do decide to dress in costume than the experience would be that much more memorable. Then come back and exchange a present or two. Jewelry is always a ladies favorite and men…well, men are a little harder sometimes. For me anyway. What does one give a Steampunk gentleman? I would think tricked out electronics or maybe even a clockwork sculpture. I would just get them The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing’s new Christmas-themed album A Very Steampunk Christmas. If you learn the lyrics earlier you can carol some.
I hope you have enjoyed this and have as much fun reading it as I had writing it. It has really put me in the Christmas spirit and if I didn’t live in a wooden house and wasn’t so very accident prone I would do some of those ornaments. Have a very lovely holiday and a happy Christmas!
And yes…I have unfortunately have seen the new Justin Bieber video…I can’t say the imagery is bad though. I just don’t think it was put into the right context..at all.