Saturday, October 17, 2009

Original Star Trek Conventions

I don't know about you, but I was brought up a geek, by a family of Trekkies. My aunt used to go to Star Trek conventions all the way in California, sometimes on a moment's notice. My mom once called all the Shatners in the phonebook (you did know he is from Montréal, right?) to find William Shatner's family and she struck a conversation with his mom (she was a teen, we all do crazy things when we're that age). I learned to speak English by watching Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987)(well yes, because as you may have guessed by now, my mother tongue is french).

Now imagine how exciting it was for this vintage loving Trekkie Costumeholic to find this Newsweek article: Where Trekkies Were Born. It features pictures from early Star Trek conventions (we're talking the 70's) from Jeff Maynard's collection and is narrated by costume designer Angelique Trouvere.

At right, Angelique Trouvere in her Deela costume, 1976

I have never claimed to be The original Costumeholic, nor will I ever: clearly, this proves there were costumeholics years before I was born!

Monica Miller doing a Vulcan Fire Dance for the cast, September 1976

Conventioneers did not yet have the Leia Slave Bikini to go for, which apparently did not stop them from donning skimpy outfits.

Kris Lundy (second from left) as Lieutenant M'Ress from Star Trek - The Animated Series (1973) and Angelique Trouvere (center) as a Lady from Wrigley's Pleasure Planet, February 1975

Seriously, if it wasn't for the intense eye makeup so typical of the era, this picture could have been taken last year! This is fascinating stuff.

Jeff Maynard and Kris Lundy as an Orion Slave Girl, January 1975

I have considered making an Orion Slave Girl costume. The full body makeup is a hassle though, but I still might, eventually.

William Shatner and a Fan on a mock-up Enterprise bridge, Chicago, August 1975

Oh... My... Gods! A tie-dyed orange suit! I feel dizzy. It's OK for a skirt or a top, but for a whole suit?

Sorry, I meant, nice costume, unidentified fan!

Helen Wood as Bridge Officer from an Alternate Universe and Marc Billgray as Spock's Ear, 1975

Well... Dressing up as a single ear is, undenyingly, one original costume!

Nichelle Nichols and a young fan

Aw! This is how parents train the next generation of geeks: they take them to conventions and make them wear costume. (I plead guilty in advance: I will do that to my kid).

Masquerade participants, February 1974

All good conventions have their masquerade, and if you have ever participated in one, you know there is a lot of waiting in line involved.

I really must show this to my Aunt. Here is how seriously she has influenced me to love Star Trek: she brought me a Tribble from one of the conventions she went to (don't worry, I haven't fed it).

I bet she'll be thrilled. Maybe. Well at least she'll think it's neat.


  1. Great find!!!! I'm a Trekkie from way back, and I attended the Star Trek Bi-Centennial-10 Convention in 1976. In fact, this week on my Trek blog, I've been featuring scanned copies of the program from the event.
    Here's the link:

    As I was looking up some of the artists whose work appears in the program, I came across your article here and it filled me with joy! I'm a costume-holic too, and I remember seeing that Vulcan fire dancer at the '76 convention. Unfortunately, most of my pictures came out badly or not at all because it was a crappy pocket camera! Thanks for this great look back and great blog! You might like this article I wrote for my blog about the use and re-use of Star Trek costumes during the original series run:

    I'll definitely check out more of your blog, I've bookmarked it. Thanks! -Therese Bohn, TrekkerScrapbook.

    1. I wasn't born in '76, but I do love history in all its forms.