Dapper Day – Orland, FL

What better way to guest blog on here but to cover Dapper Day here in Orlando! I know, about a month late but who doesn’t like remising on such a magical day? This year was truly a special one as well! Instead of being held at Disney’s Hollywood Studios it was held at Epcot due to Hollywood Studios being under so much construction leaving less than half the park available to people visiting. (But who can’t wait for Star Wars Land and Toy Story Land?! I know I can’t!!) Even better, we got to have our own mini Expo! This was something that I’ve been eager to see over here.

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About 90% of my outfit was vintage bought at various shops on Etsy and in Orlando. The dress was bought of Etsy but the hat, gloves and purse were bought at a vintage shop. The dress came with a sash to tie in the back for a bow but that didn’t work out for me so I decided to wear it as a kind of scarf, reminded me of Grace Kelly. The coolest part of my outfit, to me at least, was the purse because it came with a small mirror attached on the inside so you could check your lipstick whenever you needed! So cool, right?!?

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I was accompanied by Kasi (@pinupbarber), her husband Elliot and my boyfriend Jade. Kasi was sweet enough to buy my ticket to the Expo before it sold out. The park was very crowded that we ended up parking at Hollywood Studios then took the boat over. We went straight to the Living with the Seas lounge where the expo was taking place. What makes this even more amazing is the fact this is a place that rarely sees the public eye. It was beyond gorgeous. As soon as you walked in you were welcomed to a huge aquarium that took up the whole back wall of the lounge. There were drinks and hors d’oeuvres being served. Pinup Girl Clothing and Orlando Vintage were there selling goodies! In the back part of the lounge, there was a photo background set up that you could take photos with, which we gladly took advantage of. We met so many other lovely ladies there, some I knew and some Kasi knew. We ended up with a whole group of wonderful looking ladies at once. The whole event lasted only a few hours but it was beyond perfect and I truly hope they decide to host another one.

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When we got out from the expo, it was time to eat around the world for the Food & Wine festival. The Food & Wine is probably one of the best events that Disney puts on. They have so many different booths from around the world serving tapas style food and drinks, so you can be sure to try tons of different food. Once the sun started to set, Jade and I headed next door to take pictures at the Boardwalk Resort because it’s just drop dead gorgeous there. Towards the end of the evening we went to Beach Club resort to eat at their soda shop style restaurant, Beaches and Cream. It was truly a perfect way to end fall Dapper Day.

Thank you to the beautiful Holly Mae Woods for inviting me to guest blog for her. Be sure to check out her guest post on my own blog The Dapper Dames. If you want more Walt Disney World adventure be sure to follow me on Instagram @miss.cara.astaire

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Until next time!

-Cara Astaire

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The Woman Behind the Camera Part II

STOP! In the name of blogs! Before you read this post!

Please head over to The Pinup Professor for Part I of the post!

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I was so excited to have the opportunity to be a guest blogger for The Pinup Professor this week! It was an absolute honor, as her blog is one of my favorites. In this very special two part Tuesday Tribute, you’ll get to read about the woman behind the camera on Annie’s blog, and more information about the transformation process here.

Bunny Yeager, similar to Bettie Page and Millicent Patrick, is an inspirational woman who left her mark as a pinup model and photographer. Thus, Bunny embodies the glamorous, sexy, model and the comfortably cute artist. Why pick and choose one persona when you can be anything you want to be?

For this transformation tribute, I chose three Bunny looks to recreate with the help of my friend! For all of the looks, I used a vintage brownie camera I found off of Etsy for $10. The flash did not have the little lamp, but since it was merely used as a prop, I didn’t think of making it look realistic at that moment!

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The first look, also featured on the Pinup Professor, is one of my favorite photos of Bettie and Bunny working together.

I love this photo because of the dynamic between Bettie and Bunny. You see Bunny admiring Bettie, and Bettie looks absolutely liberated. Since the beach was such an important part of Bunny and Bettie’s work together, I knew I just had to include a beach scene. After all, Bunny lived in Miami and many of Bettie’s photos as well as her own self-portraits were on the beach. Being at the beach, feeling the [extreme] wind in your hair, and the sand in your toes is such a relaxing experience – it’s probably another factor why Bunny was so comfortable shooting at the beach!

For this look, I borrowed my friend’s vintage tiki shirt, which I actually found for him at Slone Vintage in Burbank, and the Laura Byrnes high waisted shorts in olive twill from Pinup Girl Clothing. Funny enough, my shoes are actually Bettie Page, but they no longer carry this style on their site!

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The second look was from a self-portrait of Bunny Yeager with Artistic lighting, taking in Miami in the 1950s. She is wearing casual leggings and a seemingly white, or a lightly colored cardigan. To be honest, I got rid of my basic leggings a long time ago. I definitely did not want to make an additional purchase for a photo recreation, so I opted for my Funny Face pants by Pinup Girl Clothing. Since the pants are actually much longer on me that leggings, I simply folded the pants in to look more like the length of Bunny’s leggings. I also paired it with a white H&M cardigan I got from their bargain rack. This was definitely one of my favorite looks to recreate because the items were so basic and can easily be found in most closets.

Luckily, I had my makeup and hair done professionally in the morning by Erika Reno and Missy Firestone for a different very special photoshoot, so it was great to have my hair and makeup done for this special tribute! Both ladies are absolutely amazing and super sweet!

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The third and final look I recreated was not necessarily trying to mimic the photo exactly as it is, but just to have some fun as well!

For this recreation, I used the Laura Byrnes California Sean top and high waisted shorts in olive twill from Pinup Girl Clothing. I opted for this blouse because it had the classic neckline in her photo and similar length sleeves. Once again, I already have this top in my closet so I didn’t spend any more on clothes to recreate this look. What I love about more of Bunny’s looks as a photographer is that she primarily wore basic pieces which can be mixed and matched easily. In an era of exquisite couture gowns, fabulous pinup outfits, and gorgeous tea length dresses and petticoats, these Bunny outfits definitely stand out!

I also wanted to include the following two photos, just because  I loved them so much!
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Thanks for reading Part I and II of this special Tuesday Tributes post! Until next time ❤

 

 

Bettie Page: Pinup Feminist?

I want to thank Ani for graciously inviting me to share my thoughts on her fabulous blog. Please check out my site, The Pinup Professor, for more articles about feminism and pinup fashion.  Thanks for reading!

Virgin or slut? Madonna or whore? For centuries, these reductive dichotomies have distinguished and characterized female sexual identity. We women are often forced to negotiate between tautological extremes, hoping to avoid allegations of promiscuity while maintaining our sexual autonomy. In a world full of Kardashians, we’re told, be an Audrey. We judge ourselves, and other women, based on binary systems of evaluation. But these dueling stereotypes can never fully capture our sexuality and our identity as women.

 

Throughout history, feminists have confronted oppressive constructions of female identity, including the Victorian “cult of true womanhood” and the feminine mystique of the mid-century. While many women, like Betty Friedan, articulated their objections through the written word, another Bettie chose quite a different medium to challenge patriarchal norms.

Now, it would be disingenuous to suggest that Bettie Page’s motivation for modeling was to “smash the patriarchy.” It wasn’t. Nevertheless, her ability to add complexity and nuance to the pinup genre, which, at the time, had been hijacked by the one-dimensional “Playmate,” was, in its own way, revolutionary, and dare I say…feminist?

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When Bettie Page first appeared in Bizarre magazine, pinup art had devolved from the empowered and subversive Vargas Girl to the submissive and childlike Playboy Playmate. Maria Buszek, in her book Pin-up Grrrls, attributes the regression to the postwar climate in America. Starting from the trauma of war, patriarchal America was anxious to return to a simpler time with clearly delineated gender roles. Men worked. Women stayed at home. Gone were the complicated, dangerous femme fatales; they were quickly replaced by images of subdued and compliant bombshells. As Hugh Hefner related, “Playboy is not interested in the mysterious, difficult woman…” His magazine, saturated with the male gaze, was unapologetically produced for the exclusive perusal and enjoyment of men.

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It was into this particular milieu that Bettie Page interjected her brazen good looks and lighthearted personality. Rather than being reduced to a sex object, Bettie Page turned herself into the subject of a particular brand of bondage-and-domination (B-D) photography. Instead of pigeon-holing herself as a “top” or a “bottom” (which was customary within the genre), Page performed both roles with her signature, over-the-top playfulness. Her sexuality was multidimensional, self-directed, and fun. She was also photographed by women (the indelible Bunny Yeager) for both male and female audiences. In effect, Bettie Page completely subverted the pinup standard of the day.

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I suppose that’s why I find it surprising that, just earlier this year, a house mural of Bettie Page was defaced with the note, “Stop exploiting women’s bodies” signed by “some feminists.” The argument, unfortunately, is one that has persisted within the women’s movement for quite some time. I have read too many many feminist blogs slut-shaming women for participating in burlesque or for wearing “revealing” clothing. While perhaps well-intentioned, these women are complicit in the same type of dichotomic thinking which reduces women to sluts or saints by conflating sexual expression with exploitation. The owner of the Washington house mural, Jessica Baxter, responded perfectly by obscuring the “feminist” message with one of her own: “Autonomous sexuality is empowerment. Telling a woman to cover up is oppression.”

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I think it’s about time that we abandon the archaic and rigid binaries that have defined us for so long. While I would personally never cover up for religious reasons or bare all as a pinup model, many women who do so are exercising personal agency, and that—in and of itself—is a feminist undertaking. And based on that criterion alone, Bettie Page may have very well have been a pinup feminist.

  

At Home with Monsters

Happy Labor Day, everyone! Aren’t Monday holidays just the absolute best?

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Last Sunday, I had the opportunity to view Guillermo Del Toro’s exhibition, At Home With Monsters at LACMA. The exhibition runs through November 27, so I’d recommend viewing the exhibit before it’s too late. Tickets sell out quickly, so we reserved a time slot online in order to ensure that we’ll get in. LACMA members get in for free, but those who aren’t members must pay $25 for the special exhibition, which also includes general admission.

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The exhibition was held in the Art of Americas building, which is one one of my favorite spaces in LACMA. Previously, Haunted Screens: German Cinema in the 1920s was also exhibited in the space, so I loved seeing the varying ways that LACMA utilizes that space. At Home with Monsters was organized in winding pathways and smaller sectioned off rooms, almost as if you are walking through a maze-like home. If you looked through certain openings in the walls, you’d be able to see sculptures glancing back at you.

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The exhibition featured pieces from Guillermo Del Toro’s personal collection, sketches, costumes, and clips from his films, as well as pieces from LACMA’s collection. The artworks on view were all great; I really appreciated that many etchings from LACMA’s collection were put on display right alongside del Toro’s collection, such as Disney concept art, life sized figures of writers and horror characters, and other items. Displaying older etchings next to contemporary works allows audiences to view them in a completely new, and rather untraditional context. Some of the items that were brought over from del Toro’s Bleak House included a life-sized statue of Edgar Allan Poe reading.a gothic inspired chair, and life sized sculptures of Frankenstein and his Bride.

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While I enjoyed the exhibition – as much as I was able to see from it – I do believe that there were too many pieces to completely appreciate the exhibition from one visit. When viewing any museum or exhibition, one shouldn’t try to see everything the museum has to offer. Often times, people can get overwhelmed and quickly forget most of the things they saw. Instead, if guests pay attention to a few key pieces, the experience would seem more fulfilling.

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At Home With Monsters looked aesthetically pleasing, almost like trying to recreate a wunderkammer, Cabinet of Curiositywhich I genuinely appreciated. However, there was an overwhelming amount of artworks, comics, sculptures, costumes, and film clips,  most of which I felt like I missed out on. Not only was there an overabundance of pieces in the show, but the exhibit was overcrowded. While LACMA’s efforts at crowd control are undeniable, it was impossible to get to see certain pieces that I really wanted to.

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Lately, I feel as if LACMA  has become the Disneyland of museums. Featuring blockbuster exhibitions such as this are great ways of bringing in new audiences to see museums, but the overwhelming amount of pieces, combined with the number of people there to view the exhibit means that exhibitions are no longer for single day visits. Guests must now visit the exhibition more than once to firstly see the whole exhibit, let alone understand anything from it.

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I know I’ll definitely have to visit the exhibition again, but luckily I get to see it for free, because I can’t imagine having to pay $25 admission plus $12 parking every time I want to see an exhibition. Paying for museum admission is a bit strange to me, as I firmly believe that museums should be free and always open to the public for entertainment and education, but charging $25 is absolutely preposterous! But alas, what can we do! LACMA knows how to cash in on things that people want to see, and they’re really good at it.

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For this museum trip, I wore my Glamour Ghoul dress in black and white stripes, minus the peplum. Since I got the dress from the yardsale, it didn’t come with the detachable peplum. However, since I’m a fan of wiggle dresses, I have no problem wearing it as is without the peplum! I paired it with my burgundy coffin purse from Tatyana boutique and simple black heels.

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Outfit Details:
Dress: Pinup Girl Clothing
Purse: Tatyana
Shoes: Sidecca

I’m a drawing now!

I have a bucket list. One of the things on my bucket list is to become a cartoon/illustration/painting. This is the true story of how I finally crossed that off my bucket list with the help of an amazingly talented friend.

I follow a bunch of talented individuals on Instagram because I love to stay updated with all the new work that they’re doing. Seeing creative people produce beautiful work always encourages me to try harder in my own creative ventures. As much as people like to view technology through a dystopian lens, it’s through the use of social media and technology that individuals from diverse geographic locations are able to connect and establish relationships.

Through the online pinup community, I had the opportunity to meet the lovely Miss Christine, who happens to be a talented illustrator as well. Her overall style and aura is simply amazing. She has one of my favorite vintage styles, a very kind heart, and some serious talent.

I’ve seen many of her works before and her illustrations of pinup girls are one of my personal favorites.  The girls she draws are delicate, sultry, curvy, and just plain perfect. She first posted that she’s accepting ideas and commissions and I thought I should just take a chance and ask her to do an illustration of me.

IMG_8765.JPGI wanted something that will reflect my personality. I love dressing pinup and being all cute and showing off curves, but I do also have a dark side. Immediately, I thought I drew inspiration from my first photoshoot with Keith at Angelus Rosedale Cemetery. When I brought this up to Christine, she also loved the idea of a spooky pinup illustration! Settling on the idea and theme was pretty easy because we immediately understood one another. I was so confident in this project! I really appreciated that she also shared with me each step of creative process, up to the final result. At each step, I thought, “okay, it can’t get any better than this.” But it did!

She also gave me the option of choosing what color background I’d like and if I’d like to add some glitter for just a touch of sparkle. I really liked the idea of doing a darker shade of red for the background, which worked really well with the overall spookiness of the drawing. The touch of glitter gave the drawing some more dimension and worked perfectly with the overall look.

Out of excitement, I already shared the illustration on Instagram, so you may or may not have seen it. However, every amazing artwork deserves an amazing frame. And now that I’ve found one, I’m so happy to share with you the final artwork on display in my room!

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I just love how she captured exactly what I wanted and who I was in a single portrait. Many can be great painters, but not all can be great artists who can capture exactly what their client wants. Christine is most definitely the latter!

Check out the piece it was inspired by, taken by the amazingly talented photographer, Keith:

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The dress and the shoes in the photo that inspired the portrait are from Pinup Girl Clothing, and my hair was done by Missy Firestone and makeup by Erika Reno.

Lavender Dreams

When purchasing a peasant top – or any top, actually – I ask the most important question, exemplified in the flowchart below.

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You’d think a flow chart is a bit redundant, but it’s not. I like flowcharts and any top I purchase must pass Ani’s Ultimate Spiderweb Jenny Test (patent pending).

Luckily, the new lavender peasant top from Pinup Girl Clothing perfectly matched the spiderweb jenny!

The lavender peasant top is the newly redesigned version of the fan-favorite top. My two lovely friends over at The Hepburn Movement wrote an amazing blogpost featuring the one and only peasant top. You’ll notice in their reviews and a few of my previous posts, the peasant tops were cut with a lower bust and a straight line underneath.

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The new peasant top features a very flattering curve below the bust and more room for bustier gals, resulting in a much more modest neckline. As much as I love my old peasant tops and will continue wearing them, I am extremely happy with this new look. It’s so flattering and I feel much more comfortable stepping out of the house. Also, it’s now work appropriate, which is always a plus!

 

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Once I paired it with the spiderweb Jenny, I immediately thought of Damien Hirst’s Butterfly paintings and prints.

Side note: This now makes me want the Pinup Girl Butterfly Dress in Moth Print even more than I’ve ever wanted.

Another side note: You’ll have to excuse my thought process lately –  for this blog I prefer to write my train of thoughts and now my mind’s running a mile a minute and I am pulling myself (and now you, fellow readers) in a million directions. Bear with me!

Damien Hirst is a British artist, whose fascination with life, death, and taxidermy is so relatable. He is considering one of the wealthiest living artists and is well known for his diamond-encrusted platinum skull, For the Love of God.

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Damien Hirst, For the Love of God, 2007.

 

He is also well known for his use of animal carcasses, butterfly paintings and prints. What more can a girl ask for?!

The lavender of the peasant top really reminded me of the lavender Hirst used in The Souls IV

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Damien Hirst, The Souls IV – Oriental Gold – Gunmetal – Silver Gloss, 2010.

While it took me a while to get used to butterflies (they were my least favorite insect), thanks to Insect Diva and cute yellow butterflies that always fly around my front porch, I started appreciating them.

In addition to the redesign, the thing that keeps me going back to peasant tops is the fact that it comes in such a great variety of colors. I probably have about 10 or more! I can easily say that the lavender is definitely in my top favorite colors I own. Whether it’s because it is so similar to the lavender used in Damien Hirst’s piece above, or I’m totally swayed by the new bust, I can’t tell. All I know is I can’t wait to see all the new beautiful peasant tops with this cut!

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To go with the spooky theme of the skirt, I also wore one of my favorite vintage brooches – a witch and a little ghost on a broomstick. I feel so lucky I came across this piece. I love vintage brooches so I’m so glad I was able to add it to my collection.

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I also wore my BAIT shoes and matched it with a Pinup Couture purse which I got for free at the previous yardsale (score!)

Also, since I had my hair done the day before by the amazing Missy Firestone, all I had to do was my makeup. Seriously, you guys – check her out! Her updos last for days and I am ALWAYS satisfied with my haircuts and colors!

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Outfit Details:
Peasant Top, Skirt, Purse: Pinup Girl Clothing
Shoes: BAIT Footwear
Brooch: Vintage

 

Emily: History of the World, Part I

[I’m really honored to feature Emily as my first guest writer. She first asked me to guest write for her blog, which prompted me to begin my own blog. Without her, the Museum Pinup wouldn’t exist.]

Hi everyone, I’m Emily from Thoroughly Modern Emily, and I’m over-the-moon excited to be here on Ani’s fabulous blog! Ani is one of my fave pinup pals – she’s as kind as she is smart and gorgeous! – and I was so delighted when she decided to start a style blog to showcase her amazing art-inspired outfits and share her incredible art-history knowledge with the world!

Like Ani, I’m also a museum pinup: I work at a natural history museum in Chicago. For this post, I decided to embrace the theme of this blog and take you inside the incredible world of life in a natural history museum.

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Ani could tell you what type of columns these are, but I can’t ;). I love where I work so much that I sometimes visit on the weekends!

Many people are surprised to learn that what they see in a museum is often only a small fraction of all the items in that museum’s collections. This is definitely true at the Field Museum: of the approximately 27 million specimens in our collections, less than 1% are on display at any given time! You might be wondering: what on earth do they do with the other 26,730,000 specimens?

The answer, folks, is research! The museum I work at is essentially a Cave of Wonders for scientists, many of whom travel from all over the world to do research there. The people who finally figured out what type of animal Illinois’ state fossil actually was? Museum scientists! The people who figured out that DDT was killing off peregrine falcons in the 1950s and 1960s? Collections of peregrine falcon eggs in natural-history museums helped them to unravel the mystery!

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These two signs are on either side of the door to the herbarium. Science humor is the best humor!

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I learn something new at work almost every single day, and it’s awesome. My other favorite perk of the job is being able to wear whatever I want to work. It’s basically the only workplace I’ve ever encountered where my Deadly Dames Venus flytrap dress is the most work-appropriate item in my wardrobe (owing to the massive botany collection, of course! Everyone on the bus made ‘Feed me, Seymour’ comments; my coworkers complimented my Dionaea muscipula print.)

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In putting together a natural history museum-themed outfit for this post, I decided to make reference to the four overarching scientific disciplines housed inside the museum: botany, anthropology, zoology, and geology. Botany was the easiest to represent, since hair flowers and pinup dresses go together like grilled and cheese. I chose my all-time favorite hair flower, the orange rose double from Daisy Jean Floral Designs.

The Nancy dress from Pinup Girl Clothing is one of my favorite silhouettes that they make; I have it in three difference colors! It was a challenge to choose between this peach Mary Blair butterfly print and my pink lemonade version, but in the end, I went with the butterfly print to represent zoology and pay homage to the enormous insects collection.

Fun fact: There are over 8 million specimens in the insects collection alone. The insects collection includes 19,000 of what’s called ‘bulk samples:’ jars that contain a variety of species collected in a single place at a single time. Bulk samples are incredibly valuable to scientists, who can learn a great deal about a particular ecosystem and the relations between species by studying them. I’ve been told that scientists frequently discover new species when they pop open a bulk sample to study something else, and it blows my mind to think about how many species we still know nothing about.

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Geology was a difficult choice, since the Museum has the largest collection of meteorites in a private institution and I have a soft spot in my heart for the many space-themed garments in my closet. I went back and forth on whether to swap the Nancy for one of my space skirts, but ultimately decided to honor the Museum’s most famous exhibit, Sue the Tyrannosaurus Rex, with my Atomic Lucite brooch.

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Dinosaur brooches are among my most work-appropriate accessories.

Finding an anthropology-related piece was the hardest of them all. I racked my brain for ages, wondering if it was cheating to say that my engagement ring was a reference to anthropology, since I’m fascinated in cultural practices around courtship, before remembering my stroll through the Hall of the Pacific a few weeks ago. Many of the garments and artifacts on display were made out of plants, so I chose this vintage wicker purse as a nod to the woven bags used by many women all over the world.

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The next time you visit a natural history museum, I hope you will think a little about all the hard work that scientists put in to gather and study those specimens so that all of us can learn a little more about the 4 billion year-long story of Planet Earth. Where else in the world can you see rocks from the Moon, 8-carat diamonds, actual dinosaurs, long-extinct birds, plants from all over the planet, and an entire room of ceremonial malaggans, all under one roof?

It’s been an honor to share two of my favorite things with all of you, and I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek into my world. Stop by on my Instagram (I’m @emily.hallock), Facebook, Twitter, or over on my blog and say hi!

Palm Springs Art Museum

Happy Monday, lovely readers!

I’m so excited to finally publish this post on the Palm Springs Art Museum and the most perfect outfit for it by Le Bomb Shop!

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For those of you who know me, you know that I love Palm Springs. If I could choose someplace to live in the US aside from Los Angeles and a ghost town (yes, ghost towns are options for me), it would be Palm Springs. Sure, the heat can be unbearable, but I love the atmosphere! No trip to Palm Springs can be complete without a trip to the Palm Springs Art Museum.

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They have a wonderful collection of contemporary and modern art, Mesoamerican, Native American, and Arts of the West. Alongside the permanent collection, they also feature temporary and rotating exhibitions. The space itself is absolutely wonderful and includes some great contrasting  walls of natural stone, similar to that outside of the museum. They provide a very interesting blend of contemporary architecture and raw materials, reminiscent of the rocky mountains behind the beautiful museum.

During our trip, they were displaying Contemporary Glass and A Passionate Eye: The Weiner Family Collection. I am not too familiar with contemporary glass art, so I was thankful I had the opportunity to experience and learn more about glassmaking techniques through the exhibition.

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I was also very thrilled to experience artworks by so many modern artists I adore, including Alexander Calder, Jean Arp, Amedeo Modigliani, and numerous others. If I ever had the money to purchase artworks by art legends, this would be the collection I’d want to own.

The truth is, I can see works by these artists at other museums as well. They may not be the same artworks, but I can experience their works elsewhere. But what makes each of these exhibitions so special, aside from experiencing other works by these artists, is the curatorial choices behind them. In the case of the Weiner Family Collection, we must also pay attention to their collection methods as well, and the way that the artworks coexist with one another within the collection.

Every experience at a museum is unique to the individual and how you choose to experience the artworks.

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Louise Bourgeois, Spider II, 1995Bronze, Wall Piece, Edition 4/6

For my trip to the Palm Springs Art Museum, I chose to wear my Marilyn Monroe Pop Art skirt and the Norma Jean top from Le Bomb Shop. I was very inspired to wear something honoring Marilyn Monroe because she is such an important figure in Palm Springs. For the longest time, Palm Springs was home to a larger-than-life statue of Marilyn Monroe, by artist Seward Johnson, in her infamous white dress from the 1955 film The Seven Year Itch.

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John Seward Johnson II, Forever Marilyn, 2011.

In addition, since we were going to an art museum, it was also perfect that the skirt was inspired by the famous Marilyn Monroe by Andy Warhol.

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Andy Warhol, Untited from Marilyn Monroe, 1967.

The skirt is super comfortable and includes a very thin lining underneath, which makes it perfect to wear in the Palm Springs heat. The material of the skirt is very lightweight and structured enough to wear without a petticoat. I knew I wouldn’t be able to wear layers of petticoats underneath my skirts at Palm Springs, so this was perfect to give me the fullness I desire in skirts without the layers of petticoats.

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The skirt is rather short. I’m 5’2″ with short legs but the skirt hits me at my knee. This is usually a little bit out of my comfort zone, but the style of the skirt gave the illusion of long legs. So, from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU LE BOMB SHOP! To be honest, I actually loved this skirt so much I even got the comic book print, which reminded me of Roy Lichtenstein’s works.

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Now, the Norma Jean top is seriously out of my comfort zone. I don’t feel fully comfortable exposing my back because of my birthmark. However, when I saw it on Miss Lark Bahar, I was tempted to try it out! I purchased the black and I was hesitant to put it on at first. However, after experimenting with the millions of ways to wear it, I fell in love. I used my bullet bra pads with the top in order to feel a little more comfortable going out without a bra. It worked out perfectly and the style of the top helped give the illusion of a narrower waist. It’s a wonderful piece and I’m so glad I took the risk and bought it! You can always change the way you wear it, which means you pretty much get 5 or so different tops for the price of one! I keep experimenting with it and always finding new ways of wearing it. I really need this in so many more colors!

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I also paired the outfit with my Bettie Page heels and the 1922 Blood Red lipstick by Besame Cosmetics. You can’t ever go wrong with these two brands!

Outfit Details:
Top and skirt: Le Bomb Shop
Shoes: Bettie Page
Lipstick: Besame Cosmetics

Poisonous Pinups

Happy Hump Day!

I’m so excited and honored to be published in Poisonous Pinups Issue #8. This is my second magazine publication, the first being Hell on Heels Issue #3.

Just a few months ago I wouldn’t have ever thought I’d be published in not just one, but two magazines.

This publication is very near and dear to my heart because it features an image from my cemetery photoshoot with Keith, who is an absolutely amazing photographer. I love the cemetery and when we first collaborated on this photoshoot, we both were just admiring our surroundings, trying to create art that would respectfully honor the deceased but still reveal the haunting beauty of the cemetery.

Working with Keith was such a pleasure. He was great at helping give direction, and he has a keen eye for which poses work and which don’t. He’s a great communicator which results in some amazing work.

Make sure to check out Poisonous Pinups. There’s even an interview with Tempest Storm, who is one of my favorite ladies ever.

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Stay tuned on my blog and Instagram for more images from this photoshoot, but in the mean time, make sure to follow Keith and purchase an issue of your own!

Photographer: kwf_photography
You can purchase Hell on Heels Issue #3 here.
Purchase Poisonous Pinups Issue #8 featuring an interview with Tempest Storm here.

The Beauty Who Created the Beast

A few months ago, a friend of mine came across a photo on the Universal Monsters Instagram page of Millicent Patrick in the process of creating the Creature for the Black Lagoon.

Immediately we thought of recreating a few of her imagine with the creature’s mask because she just looks so great posing with her beloved monster.

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I already had the Lolita top from Pinup Girl Clothing, which was basically identical to the one in Millicent’s photos. I also had black suede heels, a vintage pearl necklace passed down to me, and earrings from one of my favorite jewelry designers, Insect Diva. Although the earrings aren’t identical, the general shape and color of the earrings worked just fine.

Now, I just had to find the perfect black skirt to recreate it. When I first saw the skirt in the photo, I thought it was be impossible to come across something similar. After all, I search through Etsy like its my job. After a lot of searching, I finally came across a black tiered skirt with four velvet strips, made of an unusually thick (and horribly itchy) taffeta-like material. The waist was 2 inches too big but I was not going to pass on this skirt!
Once it arrived and I started carefully examining the skirt, I realized it’s nearly identical to the skirt that she was wearing in her photos. Both our skirts have 4 velvet tiers and a thin velvet waistband, the skirts seem to have the same circumference, and they both seem to be made of this unusual material.

Call me crazy, but after a while I truly started believing that this may be her skirt!

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The hardest part (yes, harder than finding the skirt) was purchasing the mask. We went back and forth with various different types of masks. Firstly, these things cost a fortune! So it was a serious investment. Second, some latex masks are poor quality.

Luckily, our beloved Halloween Town in Magnolia Park had the mask we were looking for – somewhat affordable yet not completely lackluster in quality. When I went to purchase, this was actually the last mask they had left. It was definitely meant to be!

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The day of the photoshoot I also had a hair cut by the amazing Missy Firestone so I didn’t even have to do my hair. While I usually don’t like updos, we decided to try out a poodle just to see how I’d like it. And to be honest, I absolutely loved it!! It worked with my outfit for Tiki Night and it worked for the photoshoot since Millicent’s hair wasn’t down. She didn’t have a poodle, but a slight variation in image reproductions never hurt anyone!

Of course, the photoshoot itself was all fun and games, however, when you take a step back and realize the history behind the photos, you can’t help but get a little serious.

Millicent Patrick was a talented woman who’s involvement spanned multiple areas of the industry, including music, acting, animation, modeling, and makeup. She was also one of Disney’s first female animators.

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Patrick created Dr. Hyde’s look for the 1953 film Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. In 1954, she worked on the Gill-Man and created the final approved version of the creature. In order to promote the film, she was sent on a nationwide tour, where she was presented as “The Beauty Who Created the Beast.” The Creature was rightfully her design, but George “Bud” Hamilton Westmore was irritated that he was not credited with the character’s creation. The PR heading was eventually changed to “The Beauty Who Lives with Beasts,” as a way to encompass all the other works she’s done, and to calm the hotheaded Westmore. He started spreading rumors that the creature was completely his own creation, not mentioning her and trying his hardest to discredit her. He went so far that she was essentially exiled from the makeup department at Universal.

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As a result of this mess, Patrick essentially disappeared from entirely from the Industry. Very little is known about what else she did afterwards, although people are certain she starred in 21 roles as an actress within two decades. She passed away in February of 1998, with little awareness of her true talent and contributions to the horror genre.

This photoshoot was very significant because I had the opportunity to honor a talented woman whose contributions were swept under the rug simply not to risk irritating a male counterpart. She is the creator, and truly deserves the title of “The Beauty Who Created the Beast.”

Outfit Details:
Top: Pinup Girl Clothing
Skirt: Vintage
Earrings: Insect Diva
Necklace: Vintage
Shoes: Steve Madden