A Look Back in Time.

Several things have tugged on my mind this week- anniversaries of the passing of friends and people I admired, finding old scraps of writing and a birthday looming. So I started to look back this week, and ponder things that were.

My first blog post on this webpage was on 1st July, 2013. I'd done costume blogs and re-enactment blogs before but this time I planned to share by writing, other passions, and share my journey as a writer. My purview was (and is still) encapsulated in my tagline:

Imagineer. Writer. Artist. Gardener. Chocoholic and tea lover

Way back then, I would regularly share updates on my various passions  (starting in November, 2013):

  • Art/Photography: pictures I've taken or drawn.
  • Costume: things I'd made or planned to make (though I don't get as much time to make any significant dent in my costume wishlist these days.
  • Writing/Reading: This is a main focus of my blog these days. Since having to quit my job in 2014, I now write full time. I've posted updates on current works in progress, about my forays into NaNoWriMo, flash fiction, research articles and the occasional poem.
  • Other little Green Men: - This quote was from the final episode of one of a favourite TV series, Star Cops (UK): Little Green Men and Other Martians. Here I listed things like D&D games, gardening adventures and updates, and insights into my personal battle with anxiety (which resulted in quitting my previous job).

Today I thought I'd revisit that format:

Art/Photography: For the past few years I've been sharing daily pictures of my growing collection of tea cup (and mugs) and teapots during September. These are posted on Twitter and Facebook at either 10.00am or 6.00 pm (Adelaide time). You can see them in my twitter feed (to the right of this blog post). Here's today photo:

Costume: I've just finished up my steampunk Wicked Witch of the West (here's the post if you missed it last week). I've been going over my unfinished costume projects. There are a few. I really need to finish some of them - like Queen Victoria (from Pirates Misfits) or Missy's purple outfit (from Doctor Who). Maybe for Supanova in November?

Writing/Reading: I have a massive pile of books to read. It keeps getting larger. I've promised myself: I will start reading them after The Illusioneer & Other Tales is published (late this month, early October). In the meantime, I write. And write. And rewrite.

Other little Green Men: My garden is getting some attention finally (after recovering from major surgery, extreme summer heat and three months of recurring bronchitis) I have started the long road back to a weed-free (is there ever?) edible garden.  I'm spending ten to fifteen minutes weeding each day and enjoying the winter flowering. The fresh air, sun and endorphins are also good at keeping the black dog at bay.

Photos ©2017 Karen Carlisle. All rights reserved.

Photo Friday: Costume Diary: From Oz

It's August, and time for the annual Australian Costumers' Guild Costume Ball.  on the weekend. This year's costume had a convoluted evolution. I wanted to try my hand at making a foam 'metal plated' top for some time now; when I was invited to do a talk on steampunk at the recent Terry Pratchett convention, I decided to feed on that desire and twist it. Hence my steampunk witches hat was made. I love this hat. And so do others, it seems. I received dozens of positive comments and even had offers to purchase it. The Ball weekend was looming and I didn't have an abundance of sewing time (I'm in the middle of a writing marathon). I decided to make use of my new hat - and the idea for a steampunk Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz. I had an idea: I'd steampunk up a vacuum cleaner in place of a broom. I scoured opshops - but there's never an item when you really want it. Would Ms West make it to the ball? Finally, only a few weeks before the ball, a friend (thank you Veronica) found a steam cleaner (it was meant to be!) It was pulled apart and gutted, then sanded and spray painted (we just had enough of the gold left. phew). I used rub and buff to add some wear and tear, glued on some bits and piping and added a compass (to face West of course). A 'tesla tube' light was made using a cheap plastic test tube, LED and wires. MINI-COSTUME PICTURE DIARY:

  

    

And how could I go without a flying monkey? I made some mini goggles, a matching metal-plated fezz and steampunk wings.

 

And meet Hamish: With all the accessories finished, I decided on an all black outfit to highlight them. I wore a black top, skirt (made for previous costume) and new under bust corset - and some green and black striped socks to add a hint of green in lieu of green makeup.  Vintage motorcycle gloves doubled as flying gloves. And here is my final outfit: my steampunk Wicked Witch of the West (and found out the day before was the 78th anniversary of the movie - woah! Perfect timing.) Thanks to Steamkittens this photo from the Ball.

Photos ©2017 Karen Carlisle. All rights reserved. Portrait ©2017 Steamkittens.

Photo Friday: Books, Tophats and Steampunk Festival

Tomorrow is the book launch for From the Depths and Tomorrow, When I Die at the Steampunk Festival at National Railway Museum, Port Adelaide - scheduled for after lunch on Saturday. Those attending will be able to buy copies of both ebooks at the special launch price of US$0.99 - just for the weekend of the Festival. If you're attending, come up to the table and mention this post to get the voucher code.

 

The third eBook is scheduled for September publication. I'll also be taking pre-orders for the third journal (paperback) The Illusioneer  & Other Tales - the compilation of all three eBooks. This should be arriving late September/early October.

PRE-ORDER your own copy of JOURNAL #3 at Steampunk Festival $20 - includes postage within Australia.

Come and see me at the table. The first 50 pre-orders get a signed postcard of the paperback cover (to be revealed over the weekend).

You can also purchase some of my newest craft projects - crocheted tophats (Green:$15/ octopuses:$20)

  

Here's my own tophat!

And if you are entering the costume competition, then don't forget to say hello. I've been asked to help judge the costume competitions on both days. Prizes will be awarded 2.00-2.30pm on both Saturday and Sunday. (Ask at the entry door for more details on how to enter).

Here's some costumes from previous events to inspire you:

Photos (c)2017 Karen Carlisle/ Catherine Curl. All rights resereved.