Monday, November 11, 2013

The Traveling Yellow Skirt Freakshow - Steampunk at the Castle

FINALLY! The Traveling Yellow Skirt Freakshow has not only landed in Victoria, BC, Canada, but it has continued its magical job of making every woman look like a work of art! 

Please check out the Master Post and List here, at Bag and a Beret, and a huge yellow thank you and hug to my lovely chick Melanie for creating this wonderful blog-bonding opportunity. 

Kudos, thanks and much gratitude also to Shelley of Forest City Fashionista for handling the administrative work of wrangling bloggers and reminding certain slow people *cough*me*cough* to get a move on and wear the danged thing. I can hear Shelley's sigh of relief from here, ha ha. Sue, this is coming to you via post this week.

And let us move on to the fun stuff: pictures! I took a lot, and even roped L into helping out on an expedition for a fun shooting location.
I felt that steampunk would be a natural fit for me for styling this massive skirt. In addition to my 3-outfit marathon at the 2012 Victoria Steamcon, I've also done steampunk for Hallowe'en as a steampunk vampire killer, a "soft steampunk" look for New Year's Eve 2013, and I even did a bit of a steampunk Mad Hatter this year for Hallowe'en.

Starting from the top, that's my vintage 80s Le Chateau top hat with a silk scarf tied around it (vintage and thrifted), plus a little brown hat fascinator pinned to the side of it for the feathers (yes, I'm wearing a hat...on a hat!).
I am wearing a long red wig (I have a big costume/dress up collection), that's been rolled and pinned up twice to give it less of the Hollywood starlet look and more of the Victoria steampunk-era look. The earrings are clock hands by Foxy and were purchased at She She Shoes several years ago.
The leather/crystal black leather choker is by local company Bauxo, and the white blouse is one I'll be wearing later on this week in an outfit for work - it's by Uno Due and was last seen here in June. It was thrifted for $7.50 and this is its fourth wear, bringing my cost-per-wear down to less than $2.00.

The leather bustier is by Northbound Leather (made in Canada) and was purchased for $36.00 on consignment. I last wore it for the above-linked New Year's Eve outfit - it's not an everyday type of garment!
There is a mink brooch pinned to my chestal region, along with a little gold crystal cross brooch that I got from L's late Grandma W. I rediscovered this fabulous mid-90s wood, silver and cording belt in the costume box and was like, "Boo yah!" I also have my two new-to-me silver shoe clips attached at the corners of the bustier.
My leather and brass bracer (on my lower arm) is by local dude Ian of SkinZnHydez (linking 'cause he's awesome), as is the smaller leather cogs and wheels cuff on the other arm. The larger cuff is by Catalyst Leather.

The lace piece hanging at the back was brought back from Spain as a gift from Mom and Dad many, many years ago (20?). I'm wearing just one black leather driving glove (from Heart's Content in Fan Tan Alley), a key ring from Oscar & Libby's and my Twang & Pearl Spinner ring.
The cape is part of the Traveling Yellow Skirt Freakshow package, added by Tamera of The Menopausal Supermodel. It's the perfect match! I didn't wear it on the photo-shoot, since it was a sunny, crisp afternoon (and it messed with my wig).

The yellow skirt itself is by Joe Fresh. I've added my usual curtain hooks (thrifted) and ribbon (bought new locally) to hoist up the front part of the skirt. This created nice loose pockets in the front, where I stashed my glasses while L and I went for a wander up to Craigdarroch Castle. The shoes are my very first pair of Fluevogs, the Listen Up Harlows, last seen in the June 2012 capsule (recap here), in this whackadoo outfit.

I took along a leather-covered brass telescope for a prop.
The walk up to the Castle is in a residential neighbourhood. There's a little natural plant garden at the bottom of the hill. As tour buses are not allowed up here, there are at least 2 rest stations/benches along the way for the tourists. It's a steep hill.
My floofy Noa Noa underskirt gets another airing, and those lacy tights have been in my drawer for at least 2-3 years.
The skirt was marvelously billowy.
At rest stop number two. Look, it's a castle!
It's my "Titanic" pose.
I couldn't seen anything with the telescope without my glasses on.
"I love post."
Some bemused tourists gave us very wide berths.
Looking out over the rear field.
 Care to join me for a sit?
The wind picked up the skirt and pouffed it quite nicely.
It was wonderful to wear the yellow skirt, knowing that so many other awesome women had worn it as well. We are the sisterhood!
I loved this experience. Thank you, Melanie, for creating this.

Thank you also to my patient husband and trusty photographer, L. Once we got into it, he was totally game for me swanning around on the Castle's grounds.
He's rather dapper himself. Also, he took some amazing pictures!

I added my pieces:
Two plastic keys and a metal stamped gear (I think they were gifts from Tamera and Megan Mae) have been sewn on as my addition to the skirt, and I drew a little face for Vizzini.

I hope you enjoyed my little excursion!


  1. OMG!!!!! This is just freaking fantastic!! How you styled it is just amazing and the backdrop of the castle is wonderful!!!!!

    O, Sheila, you've done that skirt PROUD!!
    I bloody LOVE this, Steampunk RULES! XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  3. OMG, you are the freekin Reigning Queen of Steampunk!! Wowza! Standing Ovation!

  4. Best picture, the skirt, the spyglass and Craigdarroch Castle! I'm just in complete admiration ... you look wonderful... I want a complete story about that adventure ala Agatha Heterodyne!
    I've been to the Castle, but I didn't look anywhere near so cool. Great , great stop for the skirt.

  5. LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT!!!! Taking the skirt to the castle was inspired, and I just love the little lace train on the back. This is so classic Sheila, and so romantic.


  6. You did an amazing job of styling up the TYS in a completely different and uniquely Sheila-fied way! Love all the details, the steampunk vibe, and the setting is perfect. I bet the tourists thought you were a celebrity/supermodel - which of course, you ARE! Wonderful photos, well done to you and L. xxxx

  7. Such a fun outfit, and wonderful way to wear that skirt, what a lovely tradition, so nice you even drew a little Vizzini face on it too! :)

  8. The castle! Wonderful inspiration. You are so creative, with the lace train and steampunk leathers. And Vizzini is on the skirt too, how fab is that!

  9. Wow! Gorgeous costume, amazing photos, terrific backdrops. Really nice post. But who's the woman in them?! You look so different without your glasses on.

  10. You look amazing. Seriously. And I love your addition to the skirt! Yay Vizzini face!

  11. I love everything about this post. I've been wanting and wanting to try the hiking of a skirt up, Steampunk-style for a while, but I'm not sure how to go about it. What is this curtain hook technique you speak of?

    Those shots of you with the spyglass and up at the castle need to go up somewhere. And you never told us how gorgeously babyfaced you are without your glasses!

    1. Aya, I bought a bag of brass curtain hooks, like these: Then I bought two meters/yards of a nice ribbon. You sort of have to experiment with it, getting the clips at the right heights, then loop the ribbon through (I tied it to each clip). I now leave the ribbon attached to the clips, and just pick where I want the clips to go on my skirts/clothing.

  12. You look transformed....seriously! I would hardly recognize you with the wig and make up.
    Looks like you had fun.

  13. HA HA! I love how you've hoisted the sails of the skirt with your inimitable steampunk style. You look so powerful in this. The spyglass and wig complete the scene perfectly. The castle is a fitting home for you and L in this alternate universe. I also love the additions you've made to the skirt, and Vizzini's too. Ha! Thanks, Sheila, and L. Awesome! Pulleys and gears on clothes are the best.

  14. I absolutely loved this post Sheila!!!
    Oh wow, you look like a fairy tale character, loved the castle, loved your Titanic picture too. I hope you print these and place them in your home... I also think you look amazing in long hair. I really cannot say more just that i think this post might me my favorite.

  15. How wonderful! Kudos to your dapper hubby for taking such great pictures of you and the yellow skirt- I love your costume and your big Titian hair! Ohlalala! And the shoes- yes- what a treasure- still freaking fashionable and amazing a decade after first purchase. You are a super star.

  16. How fabulous! You look amazing and the photos are GREAT!

    And at Craigdarroch Castle! We often visited when we lived in Victoria. What a blast!


  17. Victoria will never be the same!!! You've styled the famed yellow skirt so brilliantly, that YOU are the star! All the elements of this look go together so seamlessly! GAK! Love the story told as well.

  18. Aaaaaaaiiieee!! YOU LOOK AMAZING!!! I'm so stoked every time I see the skirt has made a new stop somewhere and I always look forward to seeing the additions. I have to say I'm pumped to have a little bit of something I passed on make it onto the skirt too!! The skirt is definitely one of my favorite blog community things.

  19. YES!!! The skirt and steampunk are a match made in heaven (or hell?). A fabulous styling idea - love all the details and the addition of the wig. The photo of you with your spyglass by the castle is truly inspired. Brilliant job Sheila, and definitely worth the wait ;)

  20. Wearing a hat on a hat! A woman after my own heart. How dramatic and gorgeous you are in your creative version of the yellow skirt. Steampunk is perfect for you, and the pieces that you selected are perfection.

  21. so fabulously steampunk!!, you're gorgeous! and love your style sporting The Yellow Skirt, so bright and funny!!

  22. Sheila-aaaaaaahhh!!!!!!! It's so fabulous, this yellow-skirt energy!!! Look at you, totally transformed. I think we should all dress up yellow-skirt style everyday, don't you? You look absolutely adorable and sexy in your corset, fab shoes and hosiery, and long red hair. :-) I noticed your dimples too!!! So cute. Steam punk does suit you perfectly. Your photographer compliments your look beautifully, too.

  23. I just typed a long comment, but since I'm not sure it went through, I'm gonna try again. YOU LOOK AMAZING!!! Love that yellow-skirt energy. Steampunk suits you perfectly, and I love the corset, shoes and hose, and fabulous wig. Made me notice your cute dimples, too. Your photographer compliments your look beautifully. XXOO

  24. Steampunk at the castle keep - love, love, love it!

  25. I had to leave a comment on just how absolutely kick ass your steampunk yellow skirt outfit is! I think your sweetie captured stunning shots of you in that beautiful outfit in that perfect setting! Love it all!

  26. Amazing! It looks fantastic. I enjoyed reading your inventory of each piece you wore with it, and it reminded me that I haven't been doing that --- telling people where I got my outfits from. Well, that's gotta stop! It is so interesting!

    Never saw the castle when I lived in BC. I see that was an oversight. Whatta beauty!

    Much love from England,
    Ex-Vancouverite, Rosemary from

  27. You are my heroine! My favourite picture (although hard to choose!) is the one with you by the castle with your telescope. Very inspiring. And I know i's a dress-up wig, but you look great with long hair, as good as you look with short. I first read this on the train coming back from a very looong meeting and it cheered me up immensely. You have done the yellow skirt proud! Xx

  28. ... and lace from Spain!!! Oh Sheila, I was sorry to miss your TYSFS adventure when it happened, but had to come back and say WOW!!! The skirt indeed has a fabulous castle-scale energy which you have celebrated to utter perfection. Beautifully done!

  29. I was going through some posts at Fool 4 Fabric when I came across the yellow skirt and remembered you mentioned it on Saturday. So I came over here to see what you'd done with it. Fabulously fun! Craigdarroch is the perfect setting for your Steampunk look.

  30. I love how you wore this skirt and made it into a steampunk one. You're so creative. I've seen a few other bloggers wear it, such a great idea!!!! Wonderful location and photos as well.

    1. I'm glad you found this old post, Ivana - thank you!

  31. This is absolutely marvelous! What a neat, neat idea, and such a fun photo shoot!

  32. How did I miss this????? You did the yellow skirt as well!! Didn't I recognise you? I cannot remember these fabulous photos. You really took the skirt to another, higher level. I love what you did with it. SOOO bloody good. And the shoes... should be sent to Europe if the right size (haha).

    1. We didn't know each other then, Greetje! I'm so glad you enjoyed this - L and I had a blast taking these pictures. I'm a size 40, so good luck! I don't recall us having the same size feet.

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