Back to the future: IBM predicts Steampunk fashion trend for 2013

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An example of Steampunk fashion from the

Here’s a word you may not have heard before.  Steampunk.  Seriously questce que c’est steampunk? Well, according to new research from IBM,  Steampunk maybe the hottest fashion trend for 2013.  Paging Anna Wintour and Tim Gunn, are you buying this? IBM says ‘steampunk,’ is a “sub-genre inspired by the clothing, technology and social mores of Victorian society.”  So is this really a back to the future vintage revolution?  I was thinking we would see more vintage fashion inspired by the 1920s ala Downton Abbey.

So why does IBM think steampunk will be so big? Apparently, they’ve been doing some social listening on Internet Message boards, Twitter, and blogs.  That lead them to find that “from 2009 to 2012, the amount of steampunk chatter has increased eleven-fold.”  A routine check off Twitter does show increased conversations around steampunk using the hashtag by the same name.  There are also a good number of Etsy and eBay listings with the keyword steampunk in the description.  On eBay alone there are over 54,000 items listed for steampunk clothing including steampunk goggles, steampunk jewelry and steampunk hats.  Several Facebook groups and websites are now exclusively dedicated to the topic of steampunk fashion.

What do you think readers? If you love vintage fashion are you ready to get your #Steampunk on? I’ll be looking to see in there are any steampunk inspired fashion from major fashion labels at the upcoming New York Fashion Week shows in February.  I’m just praying no one brings back the corset!


Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.