So Etiquette & Espionage (my new YA book and the first in a four book series) launched into the world on Tuesday night. The organizers of the event said they woudl love it if I would wear something steampunk. I was left with a bit of a quandary. With Nova Albion around the corner, a local steampunk event thus allowing me to pack and wear ALL my favorite steampunk outfits and ALL their companion parasols (YES!!), I didn't want to wear one of those to this event. Too much repeat in too story a time. Plus I needed something I could drive in that was a little more casual. I'm rather chuffed with myself for concocting this outfit:

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
Outfit front & back

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
 Outfit side shots

I started with my Fashioned By Flobért gold robe carriage dress (which might, more properly, be called a coach dress) with buttons all the way up the front.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
 The dress hanging, and at World Con in Reno in 2011

The dress is stained and slightly faded, in a heavy satin. This makes it only suitable for low-light late evening events, and warm, and in ever great need of ironing. I bought it on sale for $10, it needed repairs and new buttons all up the front. I have a great source for vintage buttons in Petaluma and I sourced 32 abalone shell replacements for $10 plus narrowing every single button hole. It was quite the task. I do like the architectural details in the bodice. I'm now in possession of a nice wide belt, which I'll be wearing with it in future when it's not all steampunked. It did steampunk nicely though, didn't it?



Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco

It actually has a bit of a train, so the front hem is shorter than the back, which shows off the shoes and looks ever so slightly bustle-like with the waist cinch. It's very robe like, not surprising as it turns out Fashioned By Flobért was mainly a boudoir designer.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco

Similar styles:
Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
 1930s Elsa Schiaparelli  Kerry Taylor Auctions; 1970s Halston  1stdibs.com

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
 1940s Dress  Charles James for Elizabeth Arden  The Frock

I paired my Flobert with patchwork boots and long dark red vintage gloves inherited from my Grandmother.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
The boots, Kenneth Cole, from Buffalo Exchange, Berkeley some 20 years ago, $20. 
I was so poor at the time my best friend bought them for me.

I also wore this little octopus necklace. I like to have octopus on my person somewhere.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
Adorable octopus necklace, gift from a reader

The hat from my Autumn steampunk outfit, and when I'm not facing a windy San Francisco night I susually perch it far forward on my head.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
Signing with the hat and a perched spinner from VivianWestwood SS runway

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
Christian Dior Haute Couture 2010 and a very cool hat on one of the guest!

I was reminded of this recent photo shoot in Restoration Hardware.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco

Along with the accessories I wore my custom stripped Dark Garden pointed waist cinch as a Swiss Waist with Ruby Blackbird Corset buttons to make it look more belt like. I was drawing on this kind of thing for inspiration.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
 1910-1915 Motoring Ensemble, The FIDM Museum; 1896-1899  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San FranciscoGail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
 1900 Ball Gown  The Metropolitan Museum of Art; screen cap from the Pallisers

So there you have it! Another event, another outfit.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco

Before you ask, the waist cinch is 22" but I don't have it laced fully down.

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco

Something in this vein for the characters?


For Professor Briathwope in Etiquette & Espionage:

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
1850s Men’s Dressing Gown  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

For Ivy:
Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
1885  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

For Prudence:

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
1895 Dress  Museo del Traje

Gail Carriger Gold Steampunk in San Francisco
By Cake Central member CakeDiva11

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