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Merimask's Ball Of Wax
(Or, "how I've found yet another way to spend more quality time with myself"
Industry, science and technology! 
14th-Dec-2011 02:42 pm
Whew...I haven't updated in quite a while.  I've been so busy finishing holiday orders for customers and getting ready to start making some new designs.  Here's my first installment, as far as really NEW stuff goes:

...well, new and old at the same time.  I'm doing mixed media; incorporating vintage goggles with my steampunk masks.

These first few are an experiment really.  I've figured out the best way to do the fittings and straps and attachments, and I played around with that aspect using my old FullSteam, HalfSteam and HalfGear designs.

Here's FullSteam with a pair of really old driving/aviation goggles.

I'm using stuff not necessarily meant as fasteners, but they're really sturdy and I just like the way they look; sort of industrial and old-fashioned at the same time.

These goggles are very old, circa 1920s or earlier...driving glasses.  Hardened rubber frames (pre-plastic, though I have some equally old Bakelite goggles too), original glass, and my favorite detail is the lovely steel mesh on the sides. 

They're sort of nerdy and intimidating at the same time.  :)  I'm in love with the look.  This is my old FullSteam mask design so it has classic mask eye holes, but next time I'll be doing rounded openings to mirror the shape of the goggles.

I have acquired several pairs of old goggles...some in worse states of wear than others.  An old set of "Willson" driving/aviation goggles from the '30s were in a terrible state so after taking them apart to clean, I left them separate and used them on my HalfSteam and HalfGear masks.

It's a different effect with just one eye cup; almost like a techie monocle.

Or maybe like a Star Trek "Borg" thing...I don't know.
Because I don't want to damage or alter the vintage goggles (except of course the Willson pair is split up...but it was pretty roached when I got it already), I'm just fastening the goggles with straps and screws and loops and stuff.  Not altering them in any way, if it can be helped.

I'm also using actual straps and buckles now.  Ribbons are all wrong on a Steampunk mask anyway, and besides, the old goggles are pretty heavy and need to be firmly fastened to your face.  I have straps in several shades (as well as buckles and fittings in a few different metals/finishes) and I'll probably offer them as a customized listing on Etsy.  I can fit them onto any of my existing masks.  I'm getting pretty good at setting rivets.  :)

I only have a few other pairs of old goggles so I'm saving them for something really special (details in a couple months!), but the nice thing is that there are lightweight reproduction goggles that have the right retro look but cost a fraction of the vintage price and they're easy to find.  They also come with lenses in different colors, so I have some designs I'm working on right now that will have red lens eyes (maybe amber too if I can get my supplier to shape up and order the darn things soon).  Spooky and also very neat! 

So!  That's my newest idea.  :)  Halfgear is my sister's Christmas present (she loves steampunk so she's going to totally flip when she sees them).
Fullsteam and Halfsteam are available in my shop right now (just click the pics for links).
Fullsteam Vintage Goggle Edition.

HalfSteam Half-Goggle Edition.


14th-Dec-2011 08:39 pm (UTC)
Those are pretty funky - and cool!

The first thing that I thought of when you said that you're going to open up the eyeholes was "maybe someone who wears glasses could wear them. Not sure if that would work, but it would be something to think about.

Very nifty.
14th-Dec-2011 09:03 pm (UTC)
Someone with glasses could easily wear these, actually, with just a little ingenuity. :) The bezel caps unscrew and the lenses can be removed. All a person would have to do is take those lenses to an optician and ask for their prescription ground in that shape (very simple 'cause they're just flat 30 mm discs). It'd cost a little bit, but wow...instant prescription mask. You could request a tinted glass, too, for total inscrutable anonymity.
15th-Dec-2011 01:55 am (UTC)
Tinted could make for a very interesting look. I like where you're going with this.

Make sure that future one can be easily worn with a top hat. :-)
14th-Dec-2011 09:28 pm (UTC)
For some reason, I don't like the one with full goggles. But the half steam is really cool. Though what is that orange/red rim around the inside of the goggle piece where it meets the mask? I'm finding myself a bit distracted by it whenever I look at the photos. It doesn't look quite like part of either...is it padding on the goggles or something?
14th-Dec-2011 11:25 pm (UTC)
Very very cool. I amn with golden_meliades in that the singkle goggle look is more appealing to my eye.
But they both look great! I will need to share the links with SASI.
15th-Dec-2011 12:39 am (UTC)
The full goggles overwhelm the mask a bit, possibly. Also they are really black so they might work better on a black/silver mask instead of a brown/gold one. But it's all a learning thing so I'm still playing. :)

There's some very very old Bakelite padding on the base of the Willson goggles. It's orange-brown and ugly but I don't want to remove it because it looks messy and I don't want to damage the goggles any more than they already were.
14th-Dec-2011 09:35 pm (UTC)
Very awesome :D
15th-Dec-2011 12:40 am (UTC)
Thank you! :)
14th-Dec-2011 10:35 pm (UTC)
Ok, those are utterly brilliant- you should definitely crosspost these over to the steamfashion LJ community as well!
15th-Dec-2011 12:40 am (UTC)
Thanks! :) There's a Steamfashion LJ community?
15th-Dec-2011 12:50 am (UTC)
15th-Dec-2011 12:27 am (UTC)
These are awesome! I definitely prefer the single-eyepiece version--the other is nice, but it really feels more integrated into the mask with one eye. I could almost imagine a half mask (half like phantom of the opera, one side of the face) one one side and an eyepiece on the other looking really neat. I think widening the eyeholes will look really good, it'll complement the glasses better. But these look really great--I made my steampunk goggles out of mason jar lids, lol. :)
15th-Dec-2011 12:43 am (UTC)
The nice part about the single eyepiece; two masks embellished with one pair of goggles. Very cost effective. :) But I would feel bad about chopping apart a lovely vintage set of goggles just for fashion, so I'm waiting for my plastic repros to get here before I make any more "monocles".
15th-Dec-2011 04:03 am (UTC)

I'm with the chorus favoring the monocle and half-decorated mask -- the goggles aren't fighting with or covering up the carving, that way.

Picking the mask colors to go with the goggle colors could be cool, too.
15th-Dec-2011 04:57 am (UTC)
I might actually be in the minority in liking the full-goggle version. ^___^ I'm trying to imagine it being worn by someone and it just has a lot of substance there that is really... just... stunning. :)

But that's just me.

I literally jumped up and was like, "OMG, those are awesome!!" when I was browsing around on Etsy this morning.

Hehe, well, you know I'm a big admirer of your work anyway, but these are really fantastic! ^_^
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