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Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018


Hello my dear Fashionable Reader,

Here I am at my recent RWA chapter presentation dressed in a black cotton day dress with brown accessories.


This 1950s dress came from a vintage shop and it was in pretty poor condition when I got it. Half the buttons were missing and as you can see there are NO BUTTONS over the dreaded boob button gap area


Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018

So I had to add invisible snaps to that zone, and replace all the buttons (I used some vintage shell ones I picked up years ago) and added some to the collar for cuteness. It was petty darn time consuming.

Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018

I paired it with a vintage brown felt draped style hat (probubly 1950s), a brown belt (that serves double duty for steampunk events) similar $14, and vintage brown leather short gloves (similar for $33). I'm wearing steampunk earrings (similar $14) and my pen necklace (similar $28).

Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018

I'm wearing these cute brown wedge booties on my tootsies. Now they aren't exactly vintage looking but they are comfy and they have full tread (it was raining that day) so they don't slip at all. 


Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018

The brand is Kork-Ease and I recommend them highly. They are called the Gwenda and also come in grey. I'm thinking of buying them in grey (if I can find them in my size), because they are so comfy. 

Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018

I love that particular sleeve length and skirt length, and the box pleating is great. This is, in the end, an awesome dress. It's also cotton, so it's quite cool. I am wearing it with a crinoline under it, but I'm not sure it needs it.

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

You can shop my recommendations via the following lists:
Steampunk, Retro Jewelry, Makeup, Retro Clothes, Lifestyle


Product links on this blog are usually to Amazon using my associate code. At no additional cost to you this means I get a slight kick back if you make a purchase. Thank you! This allows me to continue to produce this blog without sponsors.

Gail Carriger in a Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Accessories at BayCon 2017


BayCon used to be my con, you know way back in the day when I was first bouncing about in fandom (lots of comic book marvel cosplay). It was the first SF/F con I ever attended (not counting Star Trek). I haven't been back in years since it always takes place over the three day weekend in spring and that's a popular weekend for events. I am usually trundling about elsewhere. However, this year my local RWA chapter was invited down, and I happened to be in town, so I figured: why not?

Gail Carriger in a Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Accessories at BayCon 2017

The dress is a black 1950s coat dress with big pockets, lined in red, as are the cuffs of the sleeves. Because it's satin it doesn't travel well so you'll usually only see me in it at local events. I do love it, though. I'm wearing two crinolines under it to give it volume, but it could take more.

Gail Carriger in a Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Accessories at BayCon 2017
Me and my BFF RWA girls! Lea Kirk & Tess Rider

I've accessorized it with the following:

1. Vintage 1950s beret style felt hat.
2. Double strand of red beads with matching earrings, similar set for $25
3. Obligatory pen necklace, $20
4. Wide red vinyl belt, similar $30 (also comes in dark red)
5. Shoes of Prey pumps, wing tips, leather and patent designed by me, $200 (for my concerns working with Shoes of Prey please read this blog post)
Gail Carriger in a Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Accessories at BayCon 2017

There it is. This is certainly a favorite outfit of mine. I'm hoping to get to wear it again soon.

Gail Carriger in a Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Accessories at BayCon 2017
Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

You can visit the following shopping lists: Travel Dork, My Steampunk, My Wardrobe.
Product links on this blog are usually to Amazon using my associate code. At no additional cost to you this means I gets a slight kick back if you make a purchase. Thank you! This allows me to continue to produce this blog without sponsors.

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

<-------- Vote for your favorite.

Looking back on 2012, Fashionable Reader, I feel like I ought to be a rainbow of colors, like the Queen.


I found, however, that I tend to lean towards neutrals and reds, particularly when traveling. One of my goals for next year, thus, is to broaden my scope into a wider range of color. Wish me luck?

And now, a look back at the many shades of Gail in 2012.

1. Passion & Prose in LA

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

This red and black flowered outfit is fun, but the over jacket keeps ripping ~ the fabric is very fragile so I find myself reluctant to wear it regularly as a result. The under dress, on the other hand is a great cotton sheath and very useful. I wore it again later in 2012 in Barcelona.

2. Goodbye Parasol Protectorate Tea


 Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

I love the 1930s but it isn't the best time period for my figure. This dress doesn't quite fit the Rack and isn't all that flattering. I kind of adore it anyway. It also doesn't travel well, so you're unlikely to see me in it outside of the Bay Area. All that said, it does match the cover of Etiquette & Espionage so you may see me in it again soon at a launch party or whatnot this February.

3. Timeless Book Tour


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Portland, San Diego

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Houston

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
Austin

It was on this trip I decided I'd finally figured out how to pack. I still need a few more items to make my travel skillz complete (the illusive light weight jersey short robe, better hat transport mechanisms, etc.) The green dress I wore in Portland got trotted out for two other events later this year (Comic Con & NCIBA), although it met a sad end (more later). The forset green dress I wore in San Diego is too warm to don often, but it travels great and shows no sign of damage which makes it one of my most reliable vintage pieces. The cream and grey stripe I had on in Houston is a relatively new acquisition but a pain. It's back in the repair pile for the 3rd time! I just can't make the front stay closed over the Rack, I might have to put ties in, or relegate it to consignment. The navy and white polka dot is another great workhorse, like the forest green it's warm but travels beautifully never requires ironing and shows no sign of needing repairs.

4. European Tour


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Check suit at Easter Con, London; just the dress part at blogger meet up, Budapest

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Improvised steampunk with red Jessica Wiggle dress, London and Nottingham.

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 The same dress work with black cardy for bookseller meet up, London.

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
Red and white print suit with cardy over in Stockholm, top then worn over the black dress with flowered top in Budapest, and that same dress with a steampunk jacket in Barcelona.

Since I was traveling to multiple countries in a short space of time I planned multiple use outfits. In order: London, Nottingham, Stockholm, Budapest, and Barcelona. Just FYI I'll never be doing this kind of tour again. I had a great time but that many countries in that space of time is too much crazy, and too much organizing with publishers.

5. Vintage Fair


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review





For a local vintage fair I wore a new flowered day dress, purchased with Comic Con in mind. My experience touring successfully with the forest green and the navy dot dresses showed me I needed some cute day dresses that were cooler, traveled well, and would go with flats. I love this dress and still consider it a great purchase even though the colors don't really go with anything else in my wardrobe, I just wear it with neutrals.

6. World Steam Expo


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 In the Autumn outfit with cover of the omnibus.

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 In the Fancy outfit with lovely ladies!

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
Signing near end of event.

I trotted out the usual stream of Steampunk outfits. I'm pretty much settled on these now. I have essentially 4 that rotate through steampunk events: the Spoons (burgundy & black), the Autumn (cream & rust), the Fancy (raspberry & silver), and Changeless Cover (teal & black). I'd like to finish one more, a black & grey number, but it's not vital. I also have a highly valued brown velvet & cream brocade natural form gown that only makes appearances at local events because it really doesn't travel well (look out for it at Nova Albion next year). They all have parasols to go with! I'm learning different ways to wear my four standards, depending on the weather. For example I did a modified Spoons for Comic Con because of the heat.

7. Sunnyvale Library


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

For Sunnyvale I did a quick look in at the Library wearing the black and white skirt my mum made for me for my original BEA trip for Soulless in 2009. There I met up with a young lady who cosplays the cover of the manga, looking fabulous!

8. Comic Con


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Comic Con day one & night one

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Comic Con day two & night two

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
 Comic Con day three & night three

Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review
Comic Con day four

Comic Con was mainly a battle with heat and shoes. I feel as if I won for I emerged with neither blisters nor heat stroke. The tilt parasol made it's first public appearance along side the modified Spoons steampunk look. The two day dresses worked out well. The green and black cocktail had it's second showing of 2012  and my royal blue JC Penny workhorse put in an appearance. However, I think my favorite outfit of the con might be the red check. So easy to wear. Such a silly hat.

9. Tea in Hayward


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

This is a nice light-weight dress I actually intended to wear to Comic Con but since it's a pencil and looks better with heals I ended up rejecting it in favor of a day dress with a full skirt. I was glad to have it to wear to an impromptu tea party instead.

10. NCIBA


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

Book events are, as a rule, a little stuffy. I decided to spruce this one up by going all out glam, also with the intent of hijacking Ken Scholes from his SF in SF event for drinks later. Always don a cocktail dress for hijackings. Sadly, the dress did not survive me trying to get out of it at the end of the evening. The zipper got stuck on the slip underneath and broke. It's with my mum for repairs (she's better at zippers) and the slip is in my mending pile with the head of the zipper still attached to the lace. Sigh.

11. Nimrod


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

For Nimrod in Tulsa I wore my black flippy dress three ways. (Two shown.) I love the dress although it is very basic and a little delicate for travel. My new cashmere beaded cardy made it's debut and knocked the cream blazer out of the water. Despite the fact that if fills a niche, I decided I hate that blazer. It's not vintage, the fabric is stiff and it isn't flattering. So it's going the way of the dodo and any outfit that can't take the cashmere cardy will have to cope with the cream cape instead. Blazer be gone!

12. Sword & Laser


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

For Sword & Laser I began, what I suspect will be, a life long love affair with leopard accessories. I wore the red dress that first appeared at BEA in 2009 when Soulless launched (after all this interview was right around Soulless's third birthday). This dress is a little on the orange side of red but it fits so beautifully and I love the way the back collar sits so high. It's unlikely to ever go away despite being made of that bridesmaid's taffeta that is a constant worry so far as wrinkles are concerned. After this event I went out and got a leopard belt to complete the outfit.

13. Las Vegas


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In ReviewGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

What better place to get my leopard on than Las Vegas? And to answer your question, yes I am on the look out for leopard flats. They are everywhere but so far none I really like that are comfortable enough and light enough to fit my needs.

14. Borderlands


Gail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

I ended the year surrounded by books in on of my favorite places on earth, Borderlands in San Francisco. It was raining and I wore purple and black with cream accents. (The closer the holidays get, the less likely I am to wear read or green, mostly because everyone else is and I'm contrary like that.)

And there you have it, Fashionable Reader, event outfits in review!

I've put a poll up for you to vote on your favorites. I'm always interested in what you thought of the choices, which ones you liked, whether you felt they worked or not.

Also, I want to know what you wore this last year. Anything new you particularly loved? An outfit you remember fondly? Let me know. And I hope you all have a very fashionable New Year!


Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.
Gail Carriger in Black Cotton Day Dress with Brown Accessories 2018 Gail Carriger in a Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Accessories at BayCon 2017Then & Now ~ Black Evening GownGail Carriger's Black Dress with Red Trim: A RetrospectiveGail Carriger in Vintage 1950s Black Coat Dress with Red Trim (Manners & Mutiny Tour)Then & Now ~ Black Evening Dress with Lace DetailsGail Carriger Visits The Alameda Vintage Fashion FairGail Carriger 2012 Outfits In Review

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