Skirting the Issue: A Steampunk Feminist Perspective

Woman's Dinner Dress, Bodice and Skirt Made in Paris, France c. 1868 Designed by Emile Pingat, French, active 1860 - 1896. Worn by Mrs. William Carver, American, 1836 - 1912.

Dinner Dress made in Paris, France, circa 1868. Designed by Emile Pingat.

I can generally count on one hand the number of times I will wear a skirt in a month. I feel safer and more comfortable in jeans or trousers, or shorts, than I do in a skirt. I tend to trip on a skirt when walking up or down stairs. It may be due to the fact I suffer from Duck’s Disease (short legs) or my own innate clumsiness, but I often feel skirts are out to kill me.

The Scottish Engineer's Work-kilt

The Scottish Engineer’s Work-kilt

Which makes my adoration of men in kilts rather ironic.

David Tennant in a Kilt!

Wait … what was I talking about again? Oh yes … skirts. The woman who didn’t where skirts in the Victorian era was considered scandalous. However, there were bloomers and culottes and all sorts of bifurcated skirts for women who rode bikes, went bathing, or partook of other forms of vigorous exercise. So a woman wearing pants is allowable in the Steampunk Aesthetic.

As you can see from the pictures above, the female bloomer was still a voluminous item of apparel. The excess cloth would have still have had a tendency to get caught in bicycle chains. The Steampunk version need not be so bulky.

Stiped bloomers from Etsy

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Filed under Cosplay, Fashion, Steampunk, writing

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