If you're interested in that retro-futurist aesthetic of Victorian style, but you're not very clear about it yet, we explain everything you have to consider to understand steampunk, a subgenre of science fiction. If you are one of those fascinated by retro-futurist contexts and aesthetics, steampunk stands out for showing us an alternative to those landscapes that are perhaps more traditional within the current of science fiction.
Steampunk as a literary genre is relatively new. Its roots go back to the 70s and it acquired a name only in 1987. But the seeds of steampunk date back to the 19th century, when Jules Verne, HG Wells, Mary Shelley and others wrote about steampunk-ish themes, paving the way for a variety of modern incarnations.
What era is steampunk?
If Cyberpunk, the brother genre more than the father of steampunk, tried to show a dystopian, dark, pessimistic future of what could happen or derive from society if we continue on a path of consumerism and capitalism giving more power to mega-corporations. Steampunk was also presented as a critical genre, but more optimistic.
To this end, instead of looking to the future, it looked to the past, and placed itself at the turning point where society took the most capitalist, industrial and consumerist course, and took scientific positivism, positivism deposited in pursuit of science and technology, where these would grant us a comfortable and exciting life but without occupying or controlling it, and showing it in a romantic way as unveiling of mysteries and unlimited.
The addition -punk does not initially refer to a particular aesthetic, but to the feeling of active criticism of society, in the same way as Cyberpunk. Thus, Steampunks represents a critique of society by wanting to change a past and creating a new one by means of imagination and creativity.
It is thus difficult to date the steampunk, it is there, always. It is a parallel universe to ours. It began in the 19th century and lasts and will last until the end of the human imagination.
What’s Steampunk style?
Gradually gaining prominence from the 1990s, it had very humble beginnings as a sub-genre of science fiction. Today steampunk has become a cultural phenomenon that combines "a Victorian aesthetic and a punk-rock attitude," influencing more than just the field of literature.
1. The Steampunk Style in the fashion industry
The Steampunk style is quite large from changing rooms, glasses, hats, corsets, binoculars to shoes. This fashion style is a mixture between the past and the future. Who was the forerunner of this movement? The creation of the term "steampunk" is generally attributed to science fiction author K.W. Jeter, who used it in a letter to Locus Magazine.
The influence of steampunk in the 21st century has invaded movies, television, art, music and fashion. Even Prada designers and Versace have incorporated steampunk style into their garments and accessories. The Steampunk style is defined by gentlemen in suits and top hats, ladies in corset and boots, not forgetting the Gousset Watch!
There are, throughout the world, a multitude of conventions and festivals devoted to this theme from an older, but more aesthetic era.
2. Steampunk's Jewelry and Accessories
On the one hand there are the accessories that serve to complete the suit. For example, the hats, which help give you a touch of "nobility and chivalry". On the other hand, we have the watches, which can be wrist or pocket watches. These have to be very eye-catching and have a lot of things in them, even though they don't really do anything. A leather watch of Steampunk aesthetics is a futuristic and eye-catching watch.
But, the cream of the crop of Steampunk style accessories are the glasses and retro masks. The more bizarre the design, with a lot of details. The more machine man look, with a Victorian suit, you have, the more complete your clothes will be. Then we have the Steampunk accessories that help you get more personality to the character you are representing with your suit.
If you bet on the noble type of Steampunk, simpler and more elegant, you manage to give character to the suit by carrying a cane. A golden cane that when pressed a button can be a retro gun or when wielded like a sword. This way your enemies will be hunted by surprise.
What’s steampunk art?
Steampunk is also the liberation of creativity, the art of making your own works to create new objects: the ancestor of DIY! In decoration we find it materialized in the form of raw materials (leather, brass, copper, bricks ...), decorative pieces that fit into an industrial style that makes old objects and modern interiors coexist together.
This art feels like a loft atmosphere and wide open spaces where large metal clocks and elbow lamps restore the soul of the factories. Steampunk is above all an art of living that borrows the aesthetics of the past to transpose it to our contemporary era.
Top 5 of the best Steampunk items that you must get
We have made a selection of the best steampunk items for your home or your style. This is only a small selection in the immensity of the possibilities. But, it's the products that catch our eyes.
1. Steampunk Pipes
Earlier, we spoke about the Art steampunk, it is for us like a work so much we love. If you are looking for an original interior decoration with an industrial spirit, these pipes are the perfect choice.
2. Steampunk Goggles
We hesitated to include the watch or the glasses in this classification, but the steampunk glasses really give a very particular and authentic look. In vintage gold colors, they will go perfectly with a suit set and a top hat.
3. Steampunk Bicycle
A little more difficult to access, but what a style! If you're a bit of a DIY enthusiast, go for it! The whole world of steampunks relies on totally crazy means of locomotion. Transport uses steam with a whole bunch of gears. If you want to shine in society and in your city, we strongly recommend this bike.
4. Steampunk Pocket Watch
After proposing a product that is difficult to access, here is an accessory that everyone can buy. There are many models in all possible colors. The advantage of this watch is that they are totally wearable with all your outfits, at work or on your free time.
5. Steampunk Pet
For this last product, you ask yourself, but what is it? Indeed, it is the craziest example and perhaps the most complicated to take with either. As you can imagine in the steampunk universe, there are also pets, but in different forms. Let's say more mechanical and scientific, we have chosen a steampunk spider that could land on your shoulder like the pirate's parrot. So what do you think about it?
In conclusion, each of us exists in a parallel universe, where human beings have focused on science and research, rather than wars and consumption. Tell us in the comments, what would be your other self in such a universe? An adventurer? A scientist?
Don't hesitate to find us on the social networks where we are very active. Finally, if you wish to have a steampunk accessory on a small scale, we propose rings in this spirit.