When I first began the process of creating Steamcon, I had a lot of people come up and ask me what they should wear. Having been to hundreds of conventions where the general attendee wears t-shirts and jeans and the costumer is in the minority, I was bit confused. I, myself, LOVE to wear costumes, but I realize that I am not in the majority. So, I thought, I guess it might help to hold a class or two about steampunk costuming and while we’re at it, steampunk in general. It grew into Steampunk University, a one day series of talks about steampunk topics. Happily, the first Steamcon was the best dressed convention I have ever attended. I don’t begin to think that I had anything to do with that, although i do love to give people an excuse to dress up. It’s in the nature of steampunk fandom, but I like to think that we gave some of them a boost.
The first Steampunk U was held in Ballard in 2009. We had eight classes and about 100 students. The second was held in conjunction with a fund raising film festival for MOHAI. I had very little to do with that one except for giving a talk about steampunk. I got to do a real presentation in a real auditorium with a microphone and a powerpoint. That was a new experience, but very satisfying.
By now, we felt that there were so many online steampunk resources, and two other Steamcons to learn from, that maybe people didn’t need classes. Steamcon III is a huge undertaking and a great deal of work. Steampunk University, while fun is a drain on our limited resources. We thought that it just wasn’t going to happen this year.
Stubborn workaholics that we are, it looks like it will. August 28th at the University Heights Center there will be a third Steampunk University. Classes will include men’s steampunk costuming, and women’s, prop modding in both brass and plastic, corsetry, a basic introduction to steampunk and more. So if you have a friend who has no idea what steampunk is, this is the place. If you want some ideas on thrifting a wardrobe, making a prop or corset, this is the place.
Tickets are $10.00 for the whole day and are available here or at the door. Attendance is limited to capacity, so classes will be first come, first serve. Classes begin at noon and end at 5:00 PM.
The Steampunk University Store will be open from 11:00- 6:00 and admission is free, so please come and shop even if you don’t need the education.