Hugh Hefner planned parties at the ole Playboy Mansion, but nothing like Geneva Steam Convention’s Mid Winter Carnival on 6-8 March! The first year steampunk convention started off friday with panels, vendors and everything prim and proper – but ended up with a PJ party in memory of all the ‘pajama parties’ previously held at the Grand Geneva in 1960-1970’s… Victorian PJ’s sighted at Henry Osier’s pajama party were a just a ‘little’ different than the silk somethings Hugh had at his parties, but the hootenanny was still hoppin’!
Horse back riding, water parks, game room, talk of snake oil salesmen and flim flams padded both friday and saturday’s events. Daily panels consisted of 19th Century weapons, Victorian mourning traditions, Victorian Mysticism talks, belly dancing, corset lacing lessons, meet and greet with local steampunk society leaders, melodrama galore and a Golden Miracle Show rounded out the daytime events. Nighttime on Saturday was filled with DJ/music until the wee hours, a belly dancing show, Deadman’s carnival, hooch-koochy music and Victorian amusements that rallied the revelry, peaked the interest and bubbled the blood.
On site cosplay was tremendous and beautiful, quite a few women’s costumes and cosplays were created and sewn by The Duchess Collection – an extremely talented seamstress. All around costuming was phenomenal with remarkable creativity and attention to detail on gadgets and steamery, quite impressive. Happy to see a number of comic steampunk outfits, among them a great steampunk Wonder Woman, some Agents of Shield and Avengers to name a few.
Can’t talk about cosplay without mentioning photographers! Geneva Steam Convention official crowd candid shots were craftily taken by David Sherman Gregg, he also donated this articles fantastic cover shot of belly dancers – gracias! Scott Johnson at Realtime Portrait Studio did green screen shots all weekend – unique photo work and incredible steampunk themed backgrounds to choose from!
Reasonable vendors had great product directly related to steampunk/Victorian costuming and cosplay available. Katy J’s Jewelry was as beautiful as is it’s owner, she is a total sweetheart! Con favorite was a Victorian barber shop – selling vintage type shaving gear that was not only gorgeous but fully functional. Elysium Armory and Highwind Steamworks had some fantastic leather work that was affordable and looked great! Well crafted leather pouch construction, goggle work and gadgets to buy and use immediately!
Melinda Mitchell, what a stupendous success with your first convention – thank you for choosing steampunk! Classicly put together, attendees could totally tell the labor of love was a win from begin! Can’t wait ’til next year!
Note to Cosplayers: If you’re getting into steampunk or already into the niche genre, this is an opportunity to attend a reasonably priced convention in a great location not too far from Milwaukee or Chicago. Costumes are appreciated – with cosplay, role play and crossplay accepted and encouraged. Keep on radar for next year!