Steampunk R&D Features

End of the Century: The Fin De Siecle's Role in Steampunk

With the new year right around the corner, it's time to talk about the end of the 19th century, a time which plays an enormous role in Steampunk. If you've done any reading of British books written from about 1890 to 1899, you may have come across the phrase 'fin de siecle' and wondered what it meant. You also may have come across this term in reading about the late Victorian era. No worries, I'll tell you all about it! Image by Giovanni Dicandia

How To: Steampunk Yourself for Halloween in 10 Minutes or Less

As you know, it's impossible to be a Steampunk without a pair of goggles. In fact, there are entire communities dedicated to judging other Steampunks based solely on their goggles. A Steampunk without goggles is like Samson without his hair, or a duck without a beak—totally powerless. As I'm sure you also know, the right pair of goggles can instantly render any outfit Steampunk, no matter what it looks like.

The Black Dandy: People of Color in Steampunk

I just returned from a trip overseas and I came across this great article over at The Chronicles of Harriet about the role of black men in the evolution of Dandyism. Dandyism rose to prominence at the end of the 19th century, so there's a clear connection to Steampunk. I hope that many black men embrace the fashion and find their way into steampunk!

News: Treat Yourself (Or Someone Else) to Some Steampunk Music This Holiday Season!

Steampunk music is an oft-debated genre, full of bands playing all sorts of different sounds. While this can make it difficult to generalize about the genre as a whole, it means that the average person is bound to like at least some Steampunk bands. That's why it's a great idea to support some independent Steampunk bands this holiday season by buying their music for yourself, or sharing it with someone else.

How To: Survive and Thrive in the Victorian Era

I don't know how many of you had this experience in your youth, but when I was a kid, I used to actively think about what would happen if I suddenly woke up in a fantasy land, or were to pass through a portal into another space and time. I knew it wouldn't really happen, but when you're a kid, these can be important issues to you. So I slept with my glasses on every night, just in case. Photo from George Pal's The Time Machine.

News: Steampunk Pin-Up (Not Porn!)

The lovely Kato of Steampunk Couture has gone hardcore. For those who prefer to exercise their imaginations a bit more, Voila! Veronique Chevalier in Gearhearts Steampunk Glamour Revue- click here should do... A recent kerfuffle unfolded on facebook's Steampunk Revolution group when a discussion was started by Steampunk R &D''s very own Austin Serkin on the subject of Kato's new foray into steampunk porn, which was, ahem, examined in detail. (Well, figuratively, not literally, since her websi...

News: Steampunk Fashion - Timetravelers and Warriors

There are many opportunities to make Steampunk clothing. Clothing can be elegant and relate to the aristocrats of the 19th century. But Steampunk also can be rough and dirty, inspired by the adventurer from stories like 2000 miles under the sea or even movies like "Mad Max" or Wild "Wild West".. There are no rules how Steampunk has to look...

News: The Top 10 Steampunk Music Videos

"Jef with one F" from the Houston Press compiled a list of the 10 best steampunk songs, but it's really a collection of the best steampunk music videos. There are some amazing videos in the collection, such as this one, "Brass Goggles" by Steam-Powered Giraffe. It's not the best-looking, but it's a great performance.

Steampunk's Rising Popularity: How to Take Advantage of the Hottest 'New' Trend

As practically the entire Steampunk world knows by now, IBM has predicted that Steampunk will be the big new trend from 2013 to 2015. They based this prediction on their computers, which sift through broad swathes of the internet in order to see patterns that may help commercial industries. According to them, Steampunk has been on the rise for the last few years, and they predict that it will explode into peak popularity within the next two years. But what does that mean and how will it impac...

Arthrobots: Steampunk Insects on the Loose!

A man named Tom Hardwidge has taken it upon himself to create an army of steampunk insects from a bunch of different found materials, including bullets and pocket watches. He's made a ton of them—and they're really awesome. They're modeled after real insects, too, and aren't just fantasy creations. His website has them all categorized by species, with clever, robot-inspired names. His arthrobots are for sale, too, so if you're interested in owning your very own horde of steampunk insects, you...

News: World War 1 Body Armor Was Steampunk?

I came across a really cool article about armor that the Americans wanted to use in World War I. Since it was before kevlar and modern body armor but still needed to stop bullets, they designed it to be similar to medieval armor. It looks terribly uncomfortable and ineffective. Just look at this helmet design: The flaps could be opened when not in combat.

News: Why LEGO's New Monster Fighters Screams Steampunk DIY

For those who don't know, LEGO recently came out with a new line called Monster Fighters. This set is about fighting monsters, sure, but it's about fighting classic monsters in a Steampunk universe. Just look at this promotional picture from the LEGO site: That LEGO dude (properly called a minifig) is wearing a vest, pocket watch, bowler hat, and a mean smirk. Not to mention that he has a robotic leg. You won't find the word "steampunk" anywhere in this marketing campaign, but I call Steampun...