Tea & Automatons

Diana Vick's corner of the interweb

DNBS CD Release Party

On April 17th, my husband and I and several friends attended the Deadly Nightshade Botanical Society’s CD release party at the Vogue, a local night club.  It was to be a steampunk themed costume night and I am always up for those.  Attendance was good, but the number of folks in costume was small.  The band had a table and was selling their CDs.  The music was good so we danced and made a night of it.   My husband took photos of anyone dressed up, who was willing to be photographed.   A little after midnight, Dizzy, of DNBS came up to run the costume contest.  The best female costume category had about six or seven contestants, the largest turnout.  A couple of outfits were on the verge of not really being steampunk, but one was so definitely, beyond a doubt not steampunk.  I often try to think up what to use as an example of ludicrously NOT steampunk and now I have my poster child.   She was a tall Twiggy clone in an orange and purple mini dress complete with knee high black go-go boots.  I’m not sure what she thought was going on, but she was definitely in the wrong place.  When it came time to select winners, they did the one thing I absolutely hate about costume contests in bars.  Voting  by applause.  So the person with the most friends wins.  How is that a costume contest?  Half the time you can’t even tell which one gets the most applause.  My fabulously dressed

Winner for best female steampunk costume

friend Claire Hummel, won with her enormous bustle, causing Dizzy to say “I like big bustles and I cannot lie.”  Another friend Andrew Wilson wonfor best dressed male, and I think it was mainly for his pith helmet.  His outfit is from a large costuming group, who are the crew of the airship Andoria, if memory serves, so I have seen it before many times.  The best accoutrement or oddity category only had two participants, me and another girl.  She had a crystal pendant that she called “crystal machinery”.  I feel good back stories are at the heart of good steampunk costuming so I greatly approved.  I had a monocular in a holster and a brass compass.  Rather than ask for applause, Dizzy decided to call it a tie.  That was fine with us.  I got their latest CD, fittingly called Accoutrements and Oddities as a prize.  It was a good night if not as well represented as I might have hoped.  Any excuse to dress up works for me.

You can go and view the rest of the photos here.

Gage Masquerade Ball

I was reading my email recently and I found an events newsletter listing a discussion about the internet and the arts. I went to the Gage Academy website to check it out and found a notice about their Masquerade Ball and Charity Auction coming up on Friday, less than a week away. I found a spot where they might need volunteers and checked in with my husband. Sure enough he was game, so I emailed the event coordinator and said we’d love to help. The fact that it was being held at St Marks Cathedral which is two blocks from our condo, was a bonus. They said they could use help and since we were willing to dress up, we could be greeters. The theme was Commedia dell’arte, and I didn’t have anything really appropriate so I asked around. No luck. Well, some but no time. So I went to my closet and found a lovely red top I hadn’t worn yet and debated the rest. I decided against the tutu or tulle skirts for warmth and being stationed at the door, I’m very glad I did. I did find that I had a red mid calf length skirt that was almost exactly the same shade of red. I already had a plethora of masks to choose from so I was set. It wasn’t very commedia dell’arte or period but it looked very coordinated. I got a ton of compliments on the ensemble. No one believed that I just threw it together out of things from my closet. We got to greet the party goers as they entered. There were some lovely costumes and masks, but less than half the folks participated. Still it was fun to see the ones who did. A lovely evening and it looked like they raised quite a bit of money. We were glad to be a part of it.

About The Author

Diana Vick

I am an illustrator, writer, costumer and steampunk enthusiast.
I have done illustration for comic books, animation and collectible card games such as Magic the Gathering and Legend of the Five Rings. Currently, I do art for my own line of cards and gifts in my Zazzle shop.