This week the challenge is Japan and since I've been trying to work on a Meiji era Steampunk costume, I decided to submit an entry.
This drawing is the first thing I've drawn to be displayed in public in about fifteen years. It's rather embarrassing, I'm choosing to regard it as more of a diagram.
Someone gave me the Folkwear pattern for Japanese Field Clothing so I started working with that. During the Meiji restoration, the ease of travel restrictions resulted in western tourists. Interest in natural sciences was popular in the Victorian and Edwardian eras, so I combined the two and became a westerner traveling in Japan, researching the flora and fauna.
The top is called a Hippari, it's loose-fitting, crosses in the front and ties on the sides. Over that is a jacket called a Hanten, made from linen and lined in a floral cotton with a collar made from traditional Japanese fabric. Instead of the loose pants commonly worn with the outfit, I have a linen walking skirt with a petticoat, and western lace up boots. Around the waist is a men's obi--not as wide as a woman's obi, it seemed less restricting for the outfit. Tucked into the obi is a fan, and a fabric pouch with a long cord, the cord is looped over the top of the obi and held in place by a carved bead called a netsuke. For this outfit, the netsuke is a small brass magnifying glass. Around my neck is a pocket watch on a chain.
There is also a leather belt with tools hanging from it--a small lantern, a flask, glass vials and a larger magnifying glass. A canvas satchel with a long strap holds other equipment.
Here is a picture of me wearing the costume at a local convention. The picture was more to feature my daughter so you can't see my clothing as well. I like the way everything turned out, I'm just not sure it really conveyed Steampunk.