A novelty bustle made to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee celebrations was fitted with a musical box that played ‘God Save the Queen’ each time the wearer sat down.
Novelty bustles have been around a long time. But I think both writers and cosplayers would find it a boon to think inside the cage (of a bustle) to warped creative mind. You could hide just about anything in there: an arsenal, a bomb, a mini lab, or a drinks cabinet (like the Steampunk Gin Bustle pictured below).
Of course, this isn’t a new concept, just an underutilized one. Most of these novelty bustles were humorous, but it isn’t too hard to see a serious application for these secret compartments in bustles. What a safe place to hide documents or maps.
I’d like to see a few lady adventures with stealth bustles. I am most certainly writing a stealth bustle into my current Steampunk work-in-progress. And I would like to see more cosplayers with contraptions in their booties.