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Happy New Year Fashionable Darlings! Drinking and Celebrating with Fashion from Gail Carriger


Happy New Year! Here's hoping it's a good one. Here are some fashionable shots of yours truly with bubbly (my second favorite beverage)...


Black 1930s style maxi dress (probubly 1970s) more on this outfit here




Pink 1930s style modern maxi dress, more about this dress here.

Happy New Year Fashionable Darlings! Drinking and Celebrating with Fashion from Gail Carriger

Turquoise eShakti with the agents at RWA, more about this dress here.


Happy New Year Fashionable Darlings! Drinking and Celebrating with Fashion from Gail Carriger

Gold eShakti  at Bay Area Book Festival, more about this outfit here.

Happy New Year Fashionable Darlings! Drinking and Celebrating with Fashion from Gail Carriger

Steampunk turquoise Changeless cover match, more about this outfit here

HAPPY NEW YEAR! 


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 & the Airship Ambassador discuss the Parasol Protectorate ...




So I'm wearing a mushroom blouse that I can't remember where I got. I t has a built in cravat and it buttons but it has stretch so it goes over the rack without a gap. It's kinda a magic shirt, to be honest. Over it is a Dark Garden off the rack cupid style underbust corset. I got it in the last of this stripe fabric I love, basically I wanted something that looked like Victorian wallpaper. And I have a long white lace skirt on. Sorry I didn't get a better full shot of the outfit, but here are some images with the component parts...

The shirt with a different corset:


The corset over a now long gone dress.

The skirt.

 
I'm not wild about the bra I'm wearing with this top in this video.

It's a pointed 1950s style and doesn't go with a steampunk look. So I guess I'll return to the t-shirt bra or similar.


The issue is, I find a bra that doesn't have underwire works better with a corset. And being larger racked that's difficult to find.


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 Steampunk Pinup Red & Black Corset at Teslacon


I broke out the big guns for Teslacon this year, Fashionable Reader. Which is to say the red and black leather and brocade flasy corset. AKA the Class 5. You can read more about how it came to be in this blog post.

Gail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Red & Black Corset at TeslaconGail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Red & Black Corset at Teslacon

 Outfit breakdown...
  • Fascinator with knit ladybug addition (similar $15)
  • Ornate pendant necklace, gift from family friend (similar $9)
  • Leaf earrings, gift from an ex (similar $10)
  • Pen necklace, no longer available (eeek!) 
  • Black chiffon wrap shirt (similar $20)
  • Class 5 corset, bespoke from Dark Garden, style no longer exists, I'd say the Alexandra is most similar, with wide, tie cross back straps.
  • RubyBlackbird corset buttons, no longer avaiable 
  • Long bias cut maxi-skirt, thrifted (similar $15)

Gail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Red & Black Corset at Teslacon

With a lovely reader who is portraying Queen Victorian as drawn in the Soulless Manga.

I really do love this corset, very eye catching and I always get a ton of complements.
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 Steampunk Pinup Raspberry Pencil and Corset at Teslacon


I've been wearing more and more what I call steampunk pinup lately. It's easier to travel without the copious skirts.

Gail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Raspberry Pencil and Corset at Teslacon

I'm wearing...

Gail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Raspberry Pencil and Corset at Teslacon


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.

The Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail Carriger


Over on the Retro Rack Facebook Group a little while ago someone posted a photo of this booth selling teapot bags...

I might have gone  a little crazy, fashionable reader, looking for these bags. They were rumored to be "at conventions."

The Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail Carriger

So my darling friend R was with me at Phoenix Comic Fest and she's walking around and sends me a photo of this booth. I text her back.

WHERE IS IT.

...

WHERE ARE THE TEAPOTS?

GOOD GOD WOMAN ANSWER MY TEXTS!!!!

Well she finally told me. And I went and this little charmer came home with me:

The Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail CarrigerThe Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail Carriger

This is the name of the shop that was selling them at the con...


However, they don't have a website, they seem to be mostly on FB, and their shop on etsy was pretty empty.

I did find, I think, the primary maker here. It's also on Amazon here.
The Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail Carriger


I should note all of this took place despite the fact that I ALREADY own a black version. (This one is quite a bit bigger.) And because it has a top handle I call this one my kettle purse.

The Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail Carriger



Anyhoo, now I own two! And I'm really tempted by the silver... (Although what I want is a RED one.)

Of course I want a red one. Maybe a silver and a gold.

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

The Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail Carriger

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.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection


I realized recently that I don't have a place on the interwebs where I chronicle my parasol collection.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

How could I be so remiss?

My parasol collection has been the work of years, people have gifted me with vintage ones, and I have purchased quite a few for myself.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection


Here for you enlightenment is my parasol collection! 

Modern

These ones are modern, in other words I bought them for myself from a vendor.

Black & Grey Lace


Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

Technically an umbrella, this one folds so it packs well and it's pretty enough to also be a parasol. It came from Amazon for $15. It's probably the most versatile piece in my collection.

Tenticular Paper Parasol 


Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection
Strictly a parasol as this is made of waxed paper, I bought mine from Donna (the Alexia books' cover model) when she owned Clockwork Couture. It's now available other places online. You can find it online for about $20. 
Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection
I find I use it a lot because it goes with everything. It's got both brown and black in it, and it works for both a retro look and a steampunk look.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection


It doesn't, however, pack well. Although, for paper, it has been surprisingly resilient.

Blue Pattern Parasol 


Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection
This is the parasol that appears in my standard headshot (see the top of this post). I love it for its uniqueness. This is not a parasol I've ever seen anyone else own, also it feels really vintage to me. I bought it from Lace Parasols online shop years ago, it's still offered for $37.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

This one is cream lace and I modified it with royal blue ribbon threaded through. However, I am more likely to use the other blue one above, so I will be giving this beauty away in a forthcoming Chirrup.

This parasol style is pretty common these days. So I like suggesting if you get one, adding ribbon, or painting sections or some other DIY. If you are looking for a particular color of parasol this particular style has you covered for round about $20.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

I, however, when I was looking for something cream really wanted something more embroidered and solid then lace, and really big and vintage looking.

Big Lace Parasol


I ended up with this one, again from lace Parasols online, which I have been really happy with over the years. It now is priced at $45, I can't remember what I paid for it.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

While quite beautiful, it is REALLY massive so I never travel with it.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection


Gold Lace Parasol


So I invested in this...

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection
It's a cream and gold sunshade umbrella that folds very small and has it's own cute little container. I get a lot of compliments on it. It's one flaw is the inside is LINED in solid black, so it doesn't photo well when carried over the shoulder. I found it on Amazon for $33

Baby Parasols

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

I also bought this set of three tiny parasols for $40. The smallest two I mostly use for decoration around the office, and for pretty photos with books.
Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

The largest one, however, I would really love to find a way to add an extending folding handle. At various times, but particularly in the late 1880s, ladies carried very small parasols with very long handles. I'd love to make this into a cream version of that. (See the last parasol in my collection below.)

Vintage

1920s Double Brolly


For a girl who loves vintage and parasols, I only own two vintage parasols. They are so delicate it's hard to find nice ones that have survived in tact and are still reasonably priced.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

This is, technically, and umbrella not a parasol. It has double lining and a beautiful interior decoration with scalloped flutter edge. The outside is plain black. It has a beautiful metal handle with an ostentatious crystal. It's bent a little and somewhat sun bleached but otherwise in pretty good condition.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

This was a gift to me from one of my mother's dear friends. I'm not sure on the age but my best guess is 1920s.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

Folding Parasol 


Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

My black tilt parasol. This is probubly late Edwardian and it isn't in great shape. It's black silk with ruffles an the silk is torn in multiple places. I basically just stopped it from tearing further with clear nail polish, the old nylon trick.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

Not only does it tilt, it folds, which makes is the perfect travel companion. I love this parasol and you will see me with it at steampunk events all the time.I even made it a special holster out of a pair of cargo shorts. You can find a step-by-step guide on how to DIY your own here.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection
I see tilt parasols turn up on Etsy or at vintage fairs regularly, but because they are mostly silk from this time period, and silk is easily damaged by sun, they are almost always in disrepair. So be careful if you are looking to buy one.

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection



Finally I also have this lovely mother of pearl pin, which was a gift from a reader. It means I can allude to the parasol, even if I am not actually carrying it!

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection

Parasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection


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.

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger



"And yet here he was, if one could credit one's senses, about to take part in a fancy-dress ball, a form of entertainment notoriously a testing experience for the toughest. And he was attending that fancy-dress ball, mark you—not, like every other well-bred Englishman, as a Pierrot, but as Mephistopheles—this involving, as I need scarcely stress, not only scarlet tights but a pretty frightful false beard."
~ Right Ho, Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
via gravesandghouls tumblr, Victorian costumes c. 1880s (Source: vintagegal)
Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
Fancy Dress, 1874

Fancy dress costumes were very popular in the Victorian era, Fashionable Reader. There were follies, masquerades, fancy dress balls, not to mention a variety of other events that might call for a costume of some kind or another. I feature a fancy dress ball in the Finishing School books and I'm contemplating what might happen if Lord Akeldama decided to throw one. However the Victorian approach to fancy dress was quirky to say the least. Here are a few examples...

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
folly  costume via realhistoricalpatterns tumblr

Classic jester costume, also the domino were both, extremely popular in the Victorian era.


Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
  antique-royals-TUMBLR 1860s 

via Bizarre Victorian fact of the day…

A traditional Halloween custom which was practised across Britain (particularly in rural areas) in the Victorian period was for groups of people (of all ages) to don strange costumes and go door-to-door in the hopes of receiving food or gifts, or of causing a bit of mischief. This custom had a huge number of regional variations. On the Shetland Islands the ‘skeklers’ wore tall pointy hats and voluminous costumes made of straw. In Montgomeryshire in Wales men dressed themselves as ‘gwrachod’ (an ancient Welsh hag-like monster) by putting on ragged clothes, sheepskins and masks. They went through their neighbourhood frightening children and being rude to adults. Young people in Glamorgan cross-dressed and went from house to house singing riddles, while ‘guisers’ in Scotland with masked, blackened, or painted faces chanted rhymes like:

    Tramp, tramp, the boys are marching
    We are the guisers at the door,
    If you dinna let us in, we will bash yer windows in,
    And you’ll never see the guisers any more.


Source: victorianfanguide


Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
gardener costume via realhistoricalpatterns tumblr

Aristocratic Victorians loved to play the poor, particularly the romanticized country poor. In addition to gardeners, milk maids, peasant girls, shepherds and shepherdesses were quite popular.

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
page costume via realhistoricalpatterns tumblr

There was also and interesting take on cross dressing that occasionally appeared. There's a certain romantic notion and of the beautiful page boy, almost gender neutral and certainly gender bending that made this archetypal character open season for men or women. Maxfield Parrish capitalized on this with some of his work using a female model for many of his pages and princes etc...

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
rose costume via realhistoricalpatterns tumblr

Objects were also open season. And an idea I kind of love. Above we see a young lady dressed as a rose garden, or rose bouquet. Bellow is one dressed as a... waste basket. I may have to put that into one of my stories.

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
waste basket costume via realhistoricalpatterns tumblr
Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
via eccentric victorian on tumblr
Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
“Scrap Book” 1890 National Gallery Victoria
Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
“The Dirigible” via OMG That Dress tumblr

Other cultures were also popular, as were historical figures. Always keeping in mind the Victorian silhouette. You'll not that while masks were popular grotesque make up was not. Victorians might theme a masquerade to a particular place or time period or even a famous author, Shakespeare characters, for example, might be a theme.

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
Fancy Dress Costume Charles Fredrick Worth, 1870 The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
via weirdvintage-tumblr Bird girls of Szegeden, Hungary, 1880s (via Vintage Photo)


Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
via Old Photos & Bacon☣ @photosandbacon


I have a lot of fun imagining how a costume party in my steampunk Victorian era might look. Can you imagine people coming dressed as trains, or dirigibles? Or werewolves or vampires for that matter. I may have to write a short story about this at some point.
Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
White Witch Costume 1885 Kerry Taylor Auctions

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
“Folly” fancy dress costume 1890 The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

And something a little more to my personal taste...


Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
Halloween Bombshell Veronica Lake

Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail Carriger
Halloween Bombshell, Myrna Loy
Myrna was best known for her role as Nora Charles
in the 1930's The Thin Man movies
Bollywood Steampunk


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.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy


In honor of Romancing the Werewolf, Fashionable Reader, I invited Modern Biffy to the blog today to bring you some VERY strong opinions on menswear.

Take it away... Biffy!

In my humble experience, men can be very difficult to dress. The ones who have an interest in fashion can often be the worst to deal with. For they know that there is a code to be hacked in manipulating others through image, so they are extra paranoid about it.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

My approach it to show them images and ask for input.

Which one do you like?

How do you want to dress?

What kind of impression do you want to give?

I've got some tips inherent in my Dressing for Conventions rant as well.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

I advise trying to focus attention in on the clothing itself, rather than the man who wears it.

Ask a man who he wants to look like and he'll say "Brad Pitt" or "George Clooney" or "James Bond."

That's hopeless.

Better to ask what he wants to look like. What kind of impression does he want to give?

Start directing his attention to the clothing rather than the man underneath it.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

 For example, very few body types can carry of this look:

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

 But a great many out there can do this one, and look marvelous.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

Suits 101

 I think that every man should own at least two suits ~ one grey and one black. These will hit pretty much every necessary event from weddings to funerals, and you can mix and match for casual occasions, like so:

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

This is a very modern look with the skinny trousers and mix of brown & black elements, but you get the idea. He's taken the black trousers from one suit and put them with the grey blazer of the other. How come he gets away with mixing chocolate brown, tobacco brown, grey, black, and a patterned tie? He kept all his lines clean and stuck with neutral colors.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
 A brown vintage version.

To experiment with color, the base components should be more matched, like so:

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

He's done all black with grey trousers and then two pops of matched red. The color will draw attention instantly, so if you want to rock the yellow socks, make certain your shoes are polished to a mirror shine because people will be looking at them!

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

But I am getting a little advanced here, shall we go back to the basics?

Those two suits?

Here's a break down of the necessary elements.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

1. Choose an English or an Italian cut.

2. In both black and grey.
Because of intended use, I always suggest the grey be of a lighter fabric than the black. Also, while cool, I am against linen, it wrinkles too easily.

A black suit is for:
Weddings that are formal, evening, autumn and winter, and/or inside that don't specify white tie, evening dinners and events, funerals, first time meetings with executives from foreign countries, any afternoon event that might lead into evening. Because this will serve your black tie needs, the trousers should not be cuffed. Tuxes, for the modern man, are usually so infrequently worn that it's OK to rent. So long as when you rent you make certain to get the right size.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

A grey suit is for:
Weddings that are informal, morning or afternoon, spring and summer, and/or outside that don't specify black tie, outdoor formal events that do not specify mourning jackets, christenings, lunchtime appointments, morning occasions. Try to go for slightly lighter greys rather than charcoal. Silvers, steels, blue tinged, or even dove tones. Think about eye color and complexion when selecting the tone of grey.

What about brown?
Serves the same as grey but for formal occasions will require all new accessories, so I'd opt for grey if you can.

Blue?
Has a nice vintage feel and I actually like a blue suit a lot. In lighter hues it could serve instead of the grey but is a daring choice. Navy has similar problems to brown.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy


3. Single breasted jacket. 
Looks best on most body types. Double breasted adds width and bulk.

Yes. It. Does.

I know, honey, you love it. It makes you feel a tough and all mafia-ish. Well, it also makes you look fat. Nash. If you're rail thin and you want to rock the vintage look, than why are you reading this blog? We are talking basics here, not advanced costuming.

I also suggest a notched narrower collar, but do experimented with various different style jackets. Remember the jacket MUST fit you in the shoulder, and around the back and middle, hems and cuffs can be taken up.

Jacket button rule?

From the top down . . .

Always
Sometimes
Never

Only two buttons?

From the top down . . .
Always
Sometimes but mostly never

Remember, however, to unbutton all of them when sitting.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
1964  The Victoria & Albert Museum

4. Flat front trousers.
For the effing love gentlemen! FLAT FRONT. Never ever pleated. Do you like the crotch poof? No one likes the crotch poof.

No one.

I don't know why they even manufacture pleated anymore. Always bring the shoes you intend to wear with with you to try on suits, so you can check the length of the trouser. Easier to shorten than to lengthen.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

5. Crisp white skirt.
With standard cuffs and collars. Leave the fancy ones for costumes. Again, this should fit the shoulder and neck and I suggest trying a "slim" or "modern" cut even if you are on the larger side. These terms actually mean that the shirts are made to fit closer to the body and can be more flattering as a result, adding less volume with less fabric. They often wear better under a jacket because they have less bulk. They also look better tucked in and don't poof as much.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

6. A relatively skinny black tie.
Black will serve for both suits and most needs so if you only want to buy one tie this would be it. If there are formal occasions in your future you might need a black bow tie as well. Yes, ready-tied is fine. (Hush don't tell Lord Akeldama.)

7. Trouser (or Dress) Socks.
"When wearing dress pants or casual pants, apart from jeans, the color of your socks should be dictated by the color of your pants and not by the shade of your shoes."
~ From Ask Men

8. Black formal shoes.
I leave the style up to you. I dislike a square toe, and kind of like a pointy modern look, but if you're struggling I'd opt for something simple. Oxfords are a great choice, wingtips if you want a little flash, spectators if you want a lot.

That is really all you need. Amazing.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
 1960s  The Victoria & Albert Museum

Packing for a trip?

Mix up your suits for other events. Use the grey trousers where you might wear jeans for a more formal daytime look. Invest in some nice colored fitted t-shirts (blue, green, graphic black & white) for less formal occasions for under the jacket. Add a great pair of dark wash boot-cut non-distressed jeans, and one or two fancy patterned shirts, a good trench or warm overcoat or a black leather blazer (depending on the weather) and you have the perfect wardrobe suited to almost any occasion.

Suit Samples

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
 Modern grey suit & a Lounge Suit 1911 The Los Angeles County Museum of Art
How little has changed.

Modern and vintage takes on the grey suit. Note that the modern one is generally a slimmer cut and has been paired with a faint check shirt and brown accessorizes for a very contemporary twist? The vintage look paired grey with blue, a classic combination that never gets old (joke intended).

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
 Right is 1961  The Victoria & Albert Museum

Black formal suits modern and vintage. Again, note the looser cut in the vintage look? But otherwise little has changed. Although both vintage examples are three piece suits, which brings us to . . .

Addendum . . . Going Retro

So you have your two classic suits, what next?

The 3 Piece Suit.
I always suggest if a matched vest is offered for your suit that you spring for it. Why? Because it adds an instant vintage component to your look.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
 James Bond in a grey 3 piece, the vest has a small shawl collar.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
 Modern takes on the vest are both collarless. In the first we see a casual grey version without a tie and with brown shoes, and the second is a formal take with all the trimmings.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
Jean Patou in that late 1920s wearing with a double breasted cross over vest with a shawl collar under a single buttoned jacket.

Shawl collars are difficult to find now, but very vintage looking, so if you think you are only going to use the vest for steampunk, costume, and retro events than go for it.

As with jackets I strongly suggest single breasted vests (as opposed to double breasted waistcoats).

Also, its a good idea to pay close attention to where the top button of the vest sits (the neckline's stance). Not only does this dictate how much of the tie is seen but it should be dependent on the stance of the jacket. If the jacked buttons higher, the vest should go higher up, as seen in the very first look. When jacket is buttoned you should see the top button of the vest, sometimes the second to the top.

There are some fun ways to pars out a 3 piece. For example:

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
Jean Patou 1924

The check suit.
Madmen has much to answer for, this is one of them. I suggest making certain you have the bases covered. Then, if you are ready, go vintage shopping and find some kind of outrageous check suit or sport coat. Why not? Break all the rules, rock a wide tie too!

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

Sweaters
A pull-over v-neck sweater is a good addition to a man's wardrobe. It adds that vintage feel when worn with the white shirt, suit trousers, and a tie. Good for sporting events, added warmth, or the very casual meet-up. I'd go for a nice neutral soft blue, grey, or taupe/mushroom.


Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

The turtleneck.
The turtleneck with a suit is an . . . option. Be careful though. It can look quite pretentious.

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy

"Happily, Woman is much more susceptible to external polish than Man is."
~ Etiquette for Ladies, c. 1850

Menswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf Dandy
Romancing the Werewolf has the cutest cover ever & is up for preorder. 
Releases Nov 5th! 
Amazon | B&N | Apple | Kobo

Lyall is wearing a Dark Garden Beau Brummel custom corset.

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

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger


Here, Fashionable Reader, I put together a bit of a design board for masculine steampunk garb. In honor of Romancing the Werewolf, my first gay romance set in my steampunk Parasolverse.

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger

I thought I'd provide you all with some fun images to inspire either for yourself or another. Because, my dears, these men are certainly inspiring!

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger
My dear friends. The gentleman at the front inspired Tunstell!

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger


Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger
My Darling friend portraying Lyall!

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger

Men of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail Carriger
Romancing the Werewolf has the cutest cover ever & is up for preorder. 
Releases Nov 5th! 
Amazon | B&N | Apple | Kobo

Lyall is wearing a Dark Garden Beau Brummel custom corset.

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.

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger

Today, Fashionable Reader, I'm do a retrospective on one of my all time favorite pieces, a 1970's polyester black maxi dress. I picked this up in Haight Street in San Francisco, and it's not normally the kind of thing I would go for. Except, of course, that it has a pussycat bow at the neck.

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger

But the fit on the stress is just amazing, it makes me look tall and elegant. Which, with my curvy figure, is a really challenging. It's this crazy polyester fabric, and I imagine it will last forever. However if it does ever die, I have plans to take it to a seamstress and have it remade in other fabrics.

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail CarrigerVintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail CarrigerVintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger

Here I am wearing it three ways. The first image is the most common way I wear this dress, with gold accessories. The second is a steampunk variation that I use when I'm traveling and need both a evening gown and a steampunk costume on the go. The final is the dress with a 1940s style velvet jacket over-the-top.

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger

 Well my address is clearly from the 1970sseventies, there is no doubt about that. This style of dress was common in the 1930s. Here I have a retrospective of this dress style for your entertainment. Enjoy.

Teared Black Maxi-Dresses of the 1930s

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger
Charles James, 1930s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger
Evening Dress  Lucien Lelong, early 1930s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger
Coco Chanel, 1933  Augusta Auctions

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger
Evening Dress  Madeleine Vionnet, 1936  The Museum at FIT

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger
Evening Dress  Coco Chanel  1937-1938  MET

And here is a modern variant...

Vintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger


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.
Happy New Year Fashionable Darlings! Drinking and Celebrating with Fashion from Gail Carriger Gail Carriger & the Airship Ambassador discuss the Parasol Protectorate ...Gail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Red & Black Corset at TeslaconGail Carriger in Steampunk Pinup Raspberry Pencil and Corset at TeslaconThe Discovery of the Teapot Purse Bag, Steampunk Goodness with Gail CarrigerParasols for Every Occasion with Gail Carriger! A Glimpse at Her Collection Fancy Dress Costumes ~ The Victorian Halloween with Gail CarrigerMenswear Basics ~ Hacking Style for Dudes from a Werewolf DandyMen of Steampunk Style ~ From Biffy to Lyall with Everything In Between from Gail CarrigerVintage 1970s Black Teared Maxi-Dress with Pussy Cat Bow and Gold A Retrospective with Gail Carriger

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