Textiles and the Steampunk

In my final post on this week’s feature on Steampunk and summer fashion, I’m bring you all a crash course on textiles.

In the summer, light weights of fabrics can make quite a difference. Even wool can be worn comfortably in the summer if it is of a light enough weight. Fabrics come in a variety of weights: lightweight, medium-weight, or heavyweight fabric, or top-weight, bottom-weight, coating-weight, or suiting-weights. I know you all probably know this, but just as a reminder: light colors will deflect the sun’s rays while darker colors will absorb them. Dress in lighter colors to keep things cool in summer, and darker colors in winter to lock in that warmth.

Natural fibers tend to breathe better than man-made ones, so look for garments made from wool, cotton, linen, silk, and cashmere. The natural aspect of these fibers also ensures that your clothing gives a proper nod to the Victorian period – for me, things like polyester, nylon, and spandex are usually not proper materials for the Steampunk.

I’ve also never been a fan of wearing certain textiles only at particular periods of the year. My mother was aghast at the thought that I would wear suede shoes at this time of year, but in the professional (and often cold) setting where I work, they are completely appropriate. Given the proper weight and context, any fabric a Steampunk fancies can be worn with stunning results.