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Where Do We Come Up With Ideas?

Hi Friends,

We need to start off with a mandatory update. We are still not fully open yet. We’re taking our time because we want to keep our customers and staff safe. Our Express Window is open Tuesday – Saturday from 1pm -4pm for face mask sales, pre-arranged purchases and curbside pickup. We are still offering free shipping within Canada and free shipping for the states for orders over $200. We’re having a SALE on our imported items for up to 50% off. AND there’s a bunch of affiliate codes floating around that you can use for an additional 15% off online purchases. Check out our Instagram for more information.

New Things are Coming!

So the bright side of the Pandemic and being closed is that we’ve had some time to catch up on things that needed to be restocked. Now that’s done, we can make all new awesome things. Sanné started by going through her old patterns and made some super cute slip dresses and baby doll dresses. But now she’s going beyond that and there’s some most excellent items that will be popping up online soon. You might be wondering, where does Sanné come up with her ideas. Let me draw back the curtain and tell you about it.

First, there’s the dreaded list. Every 1- 2 weeks, I make Sanné a list with everything we’re sold out of or that we’re running low on. She then goes through it and decides what we’re going forward with, what needs to be modified, and what we can make based on availability of fabric. 

Second, there’s feedback from customers. Have you ever seen our ladies tails vest? That came about because someone mused that it would be really cool to have a vest with tuxedo tails and we agreed. And thus the tails vest was born.

Third, there’s me. I subtly tell Sanné about things that I wish we made a version of. For example, I was searching for face masks at the start of the pandemic so I may have indicated that I wanted a cool one made out of fabric that would match some of my VM outfits. And now we have over 20 colour options and we’re donating one to health care workers for every mask we sell.

Fourth, there’s Sanné. Sometimes, Sanné sees something that looks cool or has potential but that could be made in a better way. The vegan holster vest came from holster inspiration on Etsy and Pinterest.

Finally, Sanné just dreams up with cool ideas out of nowhere. The underbust holster vest with detachable hood was just something Sanné created out of her head. It’s one of our most unique pieces and versatile pieces.

Hopefully, that gives you a better idea of how some VM came to be. We have a ton of new fabric so keep your eyes peeled on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for new designs! 



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Hi friends,

How was your weekend? Did you get to go out and get a haircut or go out for dinner? It’s so nice to see businesses opening up again. We’re still holding off a little bit longer. We just want to make sure that we’re prepared to keep everyone safe. We may not be fully open but our Express Window is open for curbside pick up and sales Tuesday – Saturday from 1pm – 4pm. If you’re going out and socializing again, it might be a good idea to pick up a face mask even if you just wear it on transit. No one wants to go back to a full quarantine.

Enough of that, now for some exciting news! We have added some of our most popular imported items to our 50% off sale! Have you ever tried on one of our Brocade Gothic Jackets but it just wasn’t in your budget at the time? Bam! 50% off. What about our zip up uniform dresses? Pow! 50% off. Need an emergency fancy dress? Our beaded 1920s dresses are 50% off! All your favorites, half the price. Grab them while you can. They’re going to go quickly.

We have also added some brand new handmade things. We’re still making new stuff for you all the time. We have some super cute Wine Crinkle Dresses that are perfect for summer. We also made some Furry Festival Hoods that are all one of a kind, super cute, and great for your festival tickle trunk. You may have missed it but we also have some extremely dapper black stripe waistcoats that are essential for a gentleman’s wardrobe.

We hope you’re doing well and staying safe. We’ll keep you updated on when and how we’re going to reopen but for now you can come say hi at the Express Window or chat with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

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New Hours

Hi friends,

We’ve made the decision to not be fully open yet. It was a hard decision to make but we want to err on the side of caution. We want to hold off to see if there is a second wave after the reopening of restaurants and bars. Don’t worry, you can still shop online 24/7. We’re offering free shipping within Canada and curbside pick up. As an added bonus, we’re having a 50% sale so be sure to check that out!

We may not be fully open yet but we are extending our Express Window hours. Starting Tuesday, May 26, our new hours will be Tuesday – Saturday from 1 -4. You won’t be able to try things on but if you know what you want, you can pick up anything from the shop. We’ll be featuring our face masks, 3 in 1 tube scarves, veils, and goggles. You can also pick up online orders if you don’t feel like waiting for Canada Post, just add a note in your order saying you would like to pick up your order.

If you really want to browse the shop and try things on, we are taking one on one shopping appointments. We will ask that you wear a mask, sanitizer your hands and limit the amount of stuff that you touch and try on. You can call, email, or DM us to book an appointment.  Do not book an appointment if you are feeling COVID symptoms or you think you have been exposed to someone with COVID in the past 14 days. 

We really appreciate all your continued support right now and we hope that you and your loved ones stay happy and healthy. 



PS. Lookout on Tuesday, we’re adding more awesome things to the 50% off sale!

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Steampunk Inspiration: Movies

As we’ve mentioned in previous blogs, one of our most frequently asked questions is “What is Steampunk?”. Sometimes the best way to explain it is through movies. If you want to familiarize yourself with the Steampunk genre or you’re looking for some visual inspiration for your steampunk costume then these are some movies I would check out. A caveat, these aren’t great movies but they do have some really excellent costumes and sets.

Wild Wild West

I think the 1999 Will Smith and Kevin Kline film is one of the most frequently referenced when people are trying to explain the steampunk aesthetic to muggles. Waistcoats, corsets, gadgets, giant robotic spiders and googles are just some of the steampunk elements that this movie highlights. Wild Wild West gives us cowboy steampunk. What’s not to love about that? A warning though, it has a terrible script so maybe watch it on mute. If you want to make a Wild Wild West inspired costume I would start with a double breasted waistcoat and build your outfit from that.

Sucker Punch

Sucker Punch is probably the next most referenced film when people are looking for steampunk examples. It offers a more militaristic version of steampunk. Most of the colours are muted compared to Wild Wild West. This movie is highly stylized and visually stunning. But the story is weird and the ending is unsatisfying. The costumes and character designed are super cool though and it’s worth watching in the background if you’re trying to come of with a steampunk character. For a Sucker Punch inspired costume, I would start with a holster harness.

Sweeney Todd

So I had to include at least one movie set in Victorian England and while Sherlock Holmes and The Prestige are great choices I choose Sweeney Todd. Tim Burton’s twisted dark fairy tale style gives Sweeney Todd a little bit more personality. Everything Mrs. Lovett wears is amazing. It might not be strictly steampunk but it’s close enough. I especially love her swim wear (pictured above). Unlikely the other movies on my list, Sweeney Todd is actually an enjoyable film especially if you like murder musicals and Alan Rickman. For a Mrs. Lovett inspired outfit, I would start with a rail pull skirt.

Did I miss anything? What steampunk movies would you include on your list? What do you watch to get inspired? Let us on know on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. We’re always looking for good references to steer people towards!

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The Epic Tale of Our Floor

floor blog

The Epic Tale of Our Floor

(TL:DR We have to be closed for the first 2 weeks of January for renovations. CLICK HERE to get an email to notify you when we’re open again.)

If you’ve been the shop recently, you may have felt a little off centered. Maybe if felt as if the world was tilted. Or you may have even possibly felt a little spring in your step like you were walking on a trampoline. There is a very good reason for that. Our floor is slowly failing and we have no choice but to fix it before someone falls into the center of the earth.

What is Happening

One morning I was sweeping behind the trunk where we keep our extra corsets and I noticed that some of the tiles on the floor were cracked. I showed Sanné and we decided to keep an eye on it. It wasn’t clear whether they were cracked from the floor failing or whether something had fallen on the floor. We made sure that nothing heavy was resting there and let the landlords know. Cut to a week later and cracks were starting to show up all over the place. We reinforced things as best as we could but in the end we had no choice but to temporarily close so that we can guarantee that no one will end up in Wonderland if they step in the wrong spot.

How long will we be closed? 

Here’s the thing with renovations, it’s hard to know exactly how long it will take to repair. The contractor has estimated that it will take a week or two but, as anyone who has ever redone their kitchen knows, it’s only an estimate. We’re hoping that it will be closer to a week and as soon as we can be open again we will be. We will be keeping you updated on our progress via email, the website and social media so keep your eyes peeled.

Where can you get your VM fix?

If you are stressing out and wondering how you could possibly survive without Venus & Mars in your life, don’t worry. The website will still be up and running. You can shop online 24/7 while we’re closed. In fact, we’ll even give you 15% off if you use the discount code RENO. We will also be updating our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter daily with awesome outfit ideas.

It can be really stressful closing for two weeks and for some small businesses it can be the kiss of death. That’s why we are so grateful to have the most AWESOME customers in the world. Having your support for the past 25 years alleviates a lot of that stress and let’s us know that everything will be okay. Thank you so much for being you. We can’t wait to see you in 2019! Have a safe and happy holiday.