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Venus & Mars at Vancouver Pagan Pride

Guess what! We’re taking the show on the road (again). You’ll be able to find our extremely awesome pop up shop at Vancouver Pagan Pride Festival on September 9, 2017. Vancouver Pagan Pride is taking place at Trout Lake Park (3300 Victoria Drive, Vancouver, BC) from 10am – 6pm.  It is a free event to attend.  This is our first Pagan Pride Festival ever and we are pumped! Sanne has been busy making cloaks, pocket belts, holsters and other treats.

About Vancouver Pagan Pride

VPP is a non-profit organization held in participation with the global Pagan Pride Project. Pagan Pride Project is an international movement to promote community and understanding of the Pagan path. Vancouver Pagan Pride events increase community goodwill, public education and awareness towards Paganism. VPP is open to Pagans, non-Pagans, passersby, and onlookers.

Through education, activism, charity and community, the project promotes tolerance and understanding between people with different belief systems.

If you are a Pagan, the project can help you find pride and confidence in your path. If you are not a Pagan, the project can help you understand your Pagan friends, coworkers, and family members.

The first Pagan Pride Day was September 19, 1998; Vancouver Pagan Pride had its first event the following year. Vancouver Pagan Pride Day occurs during late summer/autumn, which symbolizes the responsibilities Pagans hold to their town/city/province in honor of the various Thanksgiving holidays.

Are you planning on coming out to Vancouver Pagan Pride?  Let us know all about it in the comments below.

Do you want the inside scoop on other events that we will be attending?  Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Want super secret deals and tricks and tips for building your wardrobe? Don’t forget to sign up for up the Steampunk Tempest.

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Where Do I Wear This?

where do i wear this?

One of our most frequently asked question is “where do you wear this?”. It’s a question that comes in many forms.  Some people ask “who wears this stuff” and others ask “how would you describe what you’re selling”. The bottom line is that we do not carry what H&M carries and it confuses people. I think what they are really trying to ask is “Is there a market for alternative clothing?”.  And the answer is hell yes.

Where Do I Wear This?

lace up crop shrugI wear Venus & Mars stuff everyday.  I know that I may seem like the exception because I work at the shop but it’s actually really easy to integrate pieces into your wardrobe without looking super goth. For example the sleeves crop, shrugs, lace-up hoodie or lace up crop shrug are all really well crafted, handmade, quality pieces of clothing that can be worn anywhere. Throw your crop sleeves over a tank top with some jeans and you’re ready to walk your dog at the park. Add a shrug to a tank top or a tube top and you can easily hide your bra straps for work or school. The lace-up hoodie with any top and jeans or a skirt is an awesome outfit to wear to coffee.  Add a lace-up crop shrug to a body con dress and you’ve taken your look from basic to a little be edgy (on a side note, I’m totally rocking that outfit at the time of writing this). So the short answer is that we have quality pieces that can be worn everyday in any situation.

We do also provide many pieces to the film industry. Supernatural, Van Helsing, Once Upon a Time and Arrow are just a few shows currently using some of our products.  We also have a great selection of pieces that you could mix and match for costumes. Vampires, Steampunk, and Victorian costumes are our speciality. Many cosplayers also find items to complete costumes here such as fangs, ears, horns and contacts. In the past few years, we have seen an increase in people shopping for festival wear or Burning Man attire.  Many of the products we make have function in mind so you can find all kinds of things with pockets like harness, holsters and belts.

Who Wears This Stuff

As I mentioned previous we get a lot of festival goers, cosplayers and people from the film industry but steampunk gentlemanwe also get brides, grooms and grads. Wait, what? Really?  You may be thinking, but it’s true! We have been in business for 24 years.  In the past our main focus was gowns for bridal, grad and formal events.  Although our collection has expanded to include a lot more separates, we are still one of Vancouver’s top choices for alternative formal wear. We still have a decent selection of gowns but we now offer other options such as corsets, skirts, Queen Anne Corsetlets and more as an alternative.  We also have one of Vancouver’s largest alternative clothing selection for men.  Which means, guys, that you do not have to get married or graduate in a tux if you don’t want to.  We have kilts, military frock coats, vests and poet shirts that you could rock instead.

How Would You Describe What You’re Selling

I would describe what we sell as beautiful, quality, handmade clothing. But I also think that we fit into the category of Goth, Steampunk, Victorian, Cosplay and Festival Fashion. The truth is that like many people, we’re not just one thing. We are many things and different people put us into different categories. Some of the items we carry are integratable into any wardrobe for any occasion.  Other items are more appropriate for formal events. And other items work best for costumes. At the end of the day, you get to decide what you want to wear, how you want to wear it and whether or not you’re comfortable.  So rock a cape at the library if it makes you happy or wear a gown to your Victorian Lit class. There are no rules. We have something for everyone for any event.

Where will you wear your Venus & Mars gear? Let us know in the comments below!

Do you know someone who would love our store? Share this with them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Want super secret deals and tricks and tips for building your wardrobe? Don’t forget to sign up for up the Steampunk Tempest.

 

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Gothic High Tea and Vicky Walks

Happy Victoria Day! I hope that you got the day off and that you’re relaxing on a patio in the sun somewhere. We will be open for our holidays hours (11am – 5pm) so if you’re in the area you should drop by and say hello.  If you’re not in the area then you should plan to come visit anyways! There’s lots of great patios in Gastown waiting for you to come enjoy a fruity beverage on after you’ve gone shopping for a new corset outfit. You could make a day of it.

Victoria Day always makes me think of the Gothic High Tea.  For years, we hosted a mini fashion show with tea and goodies. Unfortunately, the store started to get too busy to host the Gothic High Tea anymore. It can get a bit chaotic when you have models running around, people shop and snacks all in the same space.

We missed doing the fashion show though so a few years ago we decided to do a virtual fashion show with living mannequins, Jenna and Dan.  It was great. We also tried to stream it but it was long before the days of Periscope, Facebook Live and Instagram Live so we failed miserably. But if you look hard enough you can find our commentary while we were trying to stream. Guess what! I have the virtual fashion show available and ready for you to watch.  subscribe to our YouTube channel so you never miss a virtual fashion show again!

What are you up to this Victoria Day? Let us know in the comments below.

Do you know an alternative bride looking for a non traditional dress? Share this with them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Want super secret deals and tricks and tips for building your wardrobe? Don’t forget to sign up for up the Steampunk Tempest.

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Help! I’m an Alternative Bride who doesn’t want a Traditional Dress!

Alternative bride gown

Hey alternative, punk, steampunk, goth and indie brides I’m talking to you.

Wedding dress shopping is hard and dumb.  Trust me, I know. Last October, I got married.  I ended up with a very traditional dress and I hated it.  I still hate it. Other people’s opinions of what I should wear steered me away from what I wanted to wear.  I ended up having a lot of stress over the dress from the moment I spent too much on it to the moment I got married.

Guess what! That doesn’t have to happen to you!  I have some alternative options to the traditional dress as well as a couple of options if you do end up with a traditional dress.alternative bride - bethany

Think outside the Bridal Shop and inside the tickle trunk.  Hear me out, I’m not saying that you should go down to Party City and grab a bagged Harley Quinn costume, stick a veil on your head and call it a day. But you could consider a more romantic or medieval style gown. If you choose to go white you might even be able to appease the elders. You could try this Bethany Gown and still look bridal without wearing a layer cake

alternative bride - purpleSkip white completely.  I look ghostly pale and sickly in white and not in a cool goth way. But I look fantastic in wine (the colour not the beverage).  If I could redo my dress I might go for something like this Juliet Gown instead.

 

alternative bride - cincherTry separates.  Listen wedding dresses are stupid expensive at bridal shops and you probably won’t be able to wear it again (obviously Venus & Mars gowns are not included in that category). You could wear a white underblouse with a cincher and a princess skirt instead.  You would still have the bridal effect but you would have pieces that you could integrate into your everyday wardrobe.

If you have absolutely no choice in the matter and you end up with a traditional dress there are lots of things you can do to make it your own. I added a velvet cloak to my wedding dress.  I also got a half sleeve tattoo of an owl on my arm. Alternatively, you could add a cincher in your wedding colours over you gown to tone down the traditional look. But if you feel like the powers that be would take issue with cloaks, tattoos and cinchers, you can also wear crazy stompy boots as a compromise.

Listen, I know first hand that it’s hard to stand up to your parents, grandparents, partner, and in-laws when it comes to anything wedding related. It’s easy to say that it’s your day and you’re the only one who matters but it’s so much bigger than that.  You’re merging two families together and you want everyone to be happy.  At the end of the day though it’s about you and your partner coming together and that’s who people want to see. So stand up for what you want and let your dress reflect your personality.

In case you were wondering, I still had a super fun wedding.  In addition to my cloak and tattoo, I also got a second gown to change into after the ceremony. It was a black velvet Queen Anne so everything worked out in the end.

What did you wear to your wedding or what are you planning on wearing?  Let us know in the comments below.

Do you know an alternative bride looking for a non traditional dress? Share this with them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Want super secret deals and tricks and tips for building your wardrobe? Don’t forget to sign up for up the Steampunk Tempest.