Goggles and gears and pulleys, oh my! Steampunk: this week on The Green Room

Apr 28, 2016

Jema Hewitt says if you see someone wearing a pair of goggles with a top hat, you've spotted a steampunk.
"It's kind of like a secret sign," says Hewitt. "If you spot someone, and they're wearing a pair goggles like you would an Alice band, you kind of go, 'Ahah, you're a steampunk!'"


Credit Jema Hewitt

Hewitt (aka Emilly Ladybird) is a steampunk enthusiast from the UK, who's authored several books, and also designs costumes and accessories.

But what exactly is steampunk?

"Basically, steampunk started out as a literary genre and its idea is Victorian science fiction," says Hewitt.

Think airships, adventurers, and fantastical journeys. Jules Verne and H.G. Wells are commonly referred to as originators of the genre, even though it wasn't known as steampunk back then. Hewitt says since then, steampunk has morphed into a whole creative movement that encompasses art, music, fashion, literature, and films.  

"The whole idea of 'punk' was rebellion," says Hewitt. "It was turning things upside down, looking at things with new eyes."

Enthusiasts today take certain aspects of Victorian lifestyle and incorporate them into their day to day lives. Hewitt says she always dresses with a nod to steampunk flair, but full Victorian regalia is a bit impractical for regular wear. She saves her most elaborate looks for special occasions, like, "convivials," (the steampunk term for conventions).  

"The main thing about steampunk is, it is all about having fun," says Hewitt.

One of the books Jema Hewitt has authored (as Emilly Ladybird) is entitled Steampunk Tea Party. For the full mad scientist effect, the recipe below is best served in a glass beaker or test tube. 

Listen to the clip below to hear her describe the drink she calls the "Creamy Green Fairy."

See more of Jema's cool creations on her Etsy site, or learn more about her work from her Facebook page.