Saturday, October 15, 2011

In Which We Go To Steamcon

Today was Steamcon Day!

Okay, so Steamcon is technically a three day convention, but Jer and I only had the energy and/or babysitting for one day.  So we chose today, as it not only had the greatest concentration of interesting events but was also the day we could get respite care.  Joanna came to the house at ten this morning to watch Connor, and after a little costume preparation (on my part-- Jer is naturally awesome without a costume) off my darling husband and I went!

Steamcon, for those of you who have not followed my obsessing over my costume for the last four months or so, is a steampunk convention.  This year's theme was 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and since I have a Jules Verne-inspired roller derby name I decided that for my first ever convention I just had to make a steampunk roller derby costume to attend in style. 

I'm pretty proud of how the costume turned out, though of course I ended up doing that frantic oh-my-gosh-this-thing-is-tomorrow-and-my-costume-is-only-half-finished song and dance, which I am told is tradition for conventions like these.  I made my bustle, bloomers and spats from scratch, and modified my pads, helmet, gloves, shirt, vest, goggles, hair tentacles (what the heck else would you call them?) and skates.  I bought the corset and the tights.  The ensemble was surprisingly comfortable, though I wouldn't want to actually play roller derby in it or anything.  Also it took a long time to get into; I had to divide my hair up into eight braids and I am terrible at braiding hair, so that part was not particularly fun.  Luckily I had a helmet on over it so you couldn't see how badly parted the mess on top of my head was. 

We were a little worried there weren't going to be a whole lot of people at this thing, but that turned out to really, really not be a problem-- I'm not sure what the actual numbers were but I would guess we saw well over 600 people during the course of the day.  Jeremy was actually in the minority; at least 400 of those were wearing some form of costume, which made for perhaps the best people watching ever.  I've never seen such a concentration of creative people in one space before, and it was a delight to see how everyone had interpreted the theme.  Some of the notable standouts included a giant fish in a suit (he had an upper crust British accent, wore diving flippers and carried a cane), a woman with mechanized crutches, a stilt walker, a man with a working mechanical arm and a gal sporting a neon green Mohawk and wearing a glorious lime green, cherry red and grey ensemble.

Oh and also there were octopi everywhere; in people's hair, draped over shoulders, worked into jewelry-- there was even a giant octopus balloon sculpture in the lobby, complete with angry eyebrows.  It was awesome.  You can see just a few of the amazing costumes over here.

So with all of these crazy costumes, somehow I wasn't quite expecting the reception mine received.  Basically I was mobbed by photographers.  I couldn't walk more than fifteen feet in any direction without someone stopping me and asking if they could take my picture.  I'm not entirely sure how many photos I posed for by the end of the day, but it was probably a pretty substantial number.  

I guess the novelty of the skates made the costume unique enough that it stood out, because it seemed to meet pretty universal approval.  At one point I actually had a random woman run up to me as I was headed into the bathroom, yell "You are a badass!!" and give me a high-five.  

I would kind of like for that to happen more often, actually-- like maybe in the grocery store or after I fill Connor's prescriptions at the pharmacy or something.  I think we could all definitely use more random high-fives and acknowledgement of badassery in our lives.  Someone should start a service or something.

Meanwhile back at home,Connor had a couple of seizures and was apparently pretty morose today.  Maybe this was because he didn't get to see the giant fish in a suit-- I know I would have been disappointed too.  All kidding aside, I hope he has a much better day tomorrow and stays seizure free.

So in addition to the people watching, we spent some time wandering around with a group of friends, checked out the vendors' booths (where I had an amazing freehand silhouette portrait done and conceived plans to deck the rest of the family out in costume at a later date and have theirs done too) and sat in on a panel or two.  And then I changed out of my costume, we took off and spent the remainder of the evening at a bookstore and a coffee shop.

Overall it was just a whole bunch of fun!



Julia O'C said...

Your costume is so cute!!! I can't stand it!!

Very, very well done, my friend!

Old Fashion Halloween said...

You were adorable and I think the final count was 2200 up from 1800 last year.

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