Forum Thread: Suggestions for Blacksmith Outfit?

Suggestions for Blacksmith Outfit?

So I'm 15 and just got into steampunk about 3 years ago. I'm one of those people who has those fantasies about having another profession in a different type of world, and my profession would be 'blacksmithing'. So any suggestions for clothing anf gadgets. And how to make gadgets?

11 Responses

I'm probably the last person to give advice on that! I love steampunk, but I don't do any costume stuff. Maybe like, a giant hammer and goggles or something?

I bet Austin has better suggestions. :)

I do, actually! Unsurprisingly, I have a friend who does a Steampunk blacksmith, and maybe a picture of him would be inspiring for you. Let me see if I can find one.

Here we go. This is a picture of Tony Ballard-Smoot and Mark Curtis, from left to right, and this picture actually appears in The Steampunk Bible.

As you can see, Mark has a big hammer, some goggles, a work apron, Steampunk-y gloves, and then a backpack of some variety. I forget what it does, but if it were me, I'd have a flamethrower or something, so that I can heat metal at will. Then I'd also have a nozzle for liquid, for quenching the metal. So maybe a two-sided back piece for both heating and cooling.

Then notice that underneath his apron and props, he's wearing a nice vest, slacks, and a collared shirt. Obviously that's a men's outfit, but the idea might still be the same for women. =)

Hope that helps!

First question is do you wish to do a costume inspired by history or something completely based in alternate timeline of sci/fi Fantasy? There are examples of female blacksmiths in both the 18th and 19th century, but sadly the clothing and outfits are rather uninspired and look more like something a woman would where on the farm than anything Steampunk.

Personally I would start with the tools and accessory's of the trade and build out from there.

Image via bgcmonline.org

I have also always found, when working with my wife and female friends on there outfits, that the imagery of WWI and WWII female factory worker to read as a stronger female archetype if building a tradeswoman character. When mixed with the styles of the 1800's and the color pallets associated with Steampunk it works well despite being from a later time frame.

Image via saturdayeveningpost.com

(both of these images are of Female factory workers in the 1940's)

Image via edupics.com

The WWII tends to have imagery that for many will invoke a physically stronger more "masculine" character that often works well for steampunk. While the WWI imagery would probably be more period. In the end it is up to personal preference and your own imagination to guess what your character would look like.

Image via firstworldwar.com

A couple of last thoughts.

  1. Even though canvas and cloth aprons were used nothing screams blacksmith like a burnt and oil stained leather apron and hammer.
  2. In the end make sure that the outfit you design makes you feel good. If you like the character and image of the outfit you are likely to get into it and it will show through. In the end it is as much the costumer as the costume that makes the fiction work.

Best of luck.

Wow, James. That was a fantastic post! Well done!

Thanks guys. What do you think of a giant hammear,white coll ered shirt, those shorts attached to suspenders, goggles, and a tool belt?

Sounds like a good plan! My only word of caution is that certain styles of shorts and shirts don't really come across as Steampunk because they're too modern.

I don't know that I can describe them for you in enough detail to be helpful to you, but just try to keep an eye out for that! =)

Thank you Austin for the kind words.
Autumn,

What Austin says about them being modern is spot on though I have seen shorts done well in steampunk as part of a post Victorian dystopian look. Kato of Steampunk Couture and others come to mind.

It would however be highly impractical as a blacksmith to leave your legs unprotected. That being said if you really want to go with shorts (Or just live somewhere unbearably hot) finding a way to make it make sense and go for it. Steampunks celebrate creativity and you will be celebrated for your ingenuity.

I actually do live somewhere really hot hahaha. But I was thinking of some type of stocking for underneath. And heavy duty gloves.

Oh wow thanks a bunch! You guys are super helpful. I really appreciate it.

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