Sunday, December 12, 2010

Embrace Your Inner Pinup Girl!

Currently Listening to:
"A Pretty Girl Is Like A Melody" by Artie Shaw

As many of you know, along with plus modeling I also dabble in pinup and I'm a firm believer in that every girl should embrace her inner vintage vixen from time to time!

(Photo taken by my sister.)

I've been blessed with the chance to have had such great experiences in my career ranging from signing with Click Models to working for companies like Mervyn's and to having even been published in Retro Lovely Magazine back in October. I love being a plus model and a pinup model, because both have room to positively promote full figures. In fact, one of the things I love most about the classic 40s and 50s pinups is the fact they had curves and were praised for it. Back then, before the 60s saw the rise of uber skinny supermodel Twiggy, what we consider plus sizes now were embraced, loved, and even celebrated! In a world where negative self-image and body issues are on the rise among women young and old everywhere, we should try to remember the words of the great Sophia Loren: "Sex appeal is fifty percent what you've got and fifty percent what people think you've got." You don't have to have an hourglass figure in order to be a pinup wonder - a little red lipstick, a smile, and confidence go a long, long way! But in case you're curious, here are some great resources and inspiration to help you release the time-traveling temptress within!

(Left: Burlesque & the Art of the Teese cover feat. Dita by photographer Danielle Bedics.
Right: author Dita looking sweet and sophisticated for the camera, photographer unknown.)

Written by Dita Von Teese, perhaps my biggest inspiration and personal style icon. Dita is a powerhouse of beauty, brains, and business savvy. She has built an empire as a face for MAC cosmetics and as a voice for PETA, she is the current spokeswoman for Perrier, Wonderbra, and a noted muse for designers such as Jean Paul Gualtier and even my own favorites, Elie Saab and John Galliano! She is hailed as the modern pinup girl and is hugely responsible for bringing classic Burlesque back into the mainstream. She also puts Cher, Christina, and notorious faux-lesqueteers The Pussycat Dolls to shame! The thing I admire most about Dita Von Teese though is what she stands for and her message for women of all ages: love yourself, above all else.

Dita's book, Burlesque & the Art of the Teese is not only a warm look into the history of early and modern burlesque, but is also an autobiographical memoir and a guide to vintage glamour for any girl looking to embrace her inner vintage vixen. It is available for purchase at your local bookstore or online at her official website. (Signed copies are also available!) Expect to see a beauty book from Dita soon, as well, you can catch her performing live at The Roxy theatre in Los Angeles this Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Tickets available at the Roxy Box Office or Ticketmaster.

(Left: Johanna modeling a fancy bow by Vinny & Vernelle. Center: Pinup Postcards
featuring Johanna, available for purchase on her Etsy store. Right: artwork by Johanna.)

27 year-old Johanna Ost is an artist, blogger, and fellow girl anachronism from Vallentuna, Sweden. In addition to writing and making things, she studies history and is also an 18th Century re-enactor! (You can check out her 18th Century Blog here!) This Blonde Bombshell has talent and style. She is the complete girl power package with Marilyn Monroe's hair, Marie Antoinette's bedroom, and an amazing wardrobe straight from a 1950s McCall's catalog. (And did I mention she had quite possibly the best costume this past Halloween? She was Debbie Jellinsky from Addams Family Values! Check out her hand-made costume here.) I adore her fanciful artwork and every time I look at it, I just want to get everything tattooed onto my body! Then I remember I'm deathly afraid of needles and how horrible it was just to get my nose done... Anyway! Her long-time beau Henrik takes all of her photos, he also designed and developed her adorable little website and blog. Johanna is another of my biggest inspirations and I'm sure she'll inspire you too!

(Left: Pin Up Girl Clothing "Violet" Dress in Pink and Black,
Right: Pin Up Girl Clothing "Violet" Dress in Pink and Black for Plus.)

A great place to find Vintage and Retro-inspired wear is Pin Up Girl Clothing! They carry a wide variety of dresses, seperates, swimwear, shoes and accessories (for women and men) in figure-flattering, curve-hugging styles from brands such as Pinup Couture, Deadly Dames, and Dixiefried. Perfect for every pinup girl! Whether you're a cheesecake cutie, a vivacious vamp, or a mad woman, Pin Up Girl Clothing has something for you! They are the premiere place to purchase pinup and also one of the few companies to proudly use plus models to promote their products and stock full figured sizes. Shop their online store or visit their blog.

Lucy B. Lingerie

(Left: Bernie Dexter for Lucy B. Lingerie "Sweet Tart" Matching Bra, Panties and Garter set.
Right: Lucy B. Lingerie "Gold Digger" Vintage-inspired Two-Piece swimsuit.)

Every pinup girl needs the proper under-pinnings and I can't think of a better place to get them than Lucy B. Lingerie! This woman-owned and woman-run company specializes in vintage-inspired 40s and 50s style lingerie that is affordable, durable, comfortable and cute all wrapped up in one. These aren't your grandma's bras and panties! (Or are they? ;D) Lucy B. Lingerie's retro reproductions are fit for any Pinup Glamour Girl or Burly-Q queen who is looking for fun, fabulous, and foxy underwear! Also, be sure to check out their Pinup of the Month section where they feature a pretty new pinup girl every month!

Aaaaand here are some of my favorite simple, easy-to-do hair and makeup tutorials to help you polish off your pinup look. (Perfect for vintage virgins and pinup style first-timers!)

Vintage Pinup Girl Makeup
by Amy B. of Ask Me Makeup


Pink Vintage Pinup Makeup
by Amy B. of Ask Me Makeup

Pin Up Rolled Bang (Faux "Bettie" Bang)
by ThePinUpSweetShoppe

Side-part Victory Rolls
by ThePinUpSweetShoppe

Barbie Ponytail
by ThePinUpSweetShoppe

No matter if you're a long-time fan of the style or a newbie taking your first peek, these are some great places to get a taste of pinuppery! If you're looking for something new and fun to try, I definitely suggest taking some inspiration from these fantastic femme fatales. You can't go wrong with classic vintage-inspired looks like these and they're a great way to feel glamtastically girly for just a special occasion or even every day!


xoxo coco

P.S. Only 5 more days until I'm 21!!!


  1. You make such a perfect pin-up girl!

    I'm also a fan of pin-up and burlesque, '50 style and Dita Von Teese. This is a great post. Can't wait to try the make-up and hairstyles :D.


  2. I have such a love/hate relationship with my hips, but every time I see pinup girl photos, it gets just a little easier to embrace them. So, thank you for posting such inspirational photos. :) You look absolutely stunning in your photo, but it's crazy to me that this is considered "plus-size" in the modeling world. Your figure is to die for.

  3. Fantastic post! And full of so many things that I have to come back and re-read and view. Girl, you should submit this post to IFB's links ala mode. It's really good, and so many peeps could get a lot out of it! Good luck!

  4. @S/The Hearabouts: Thank you!!! I definitely wish more people would dress like they did back in the early 20th century. The styles were so flattering and sexy on everyone!

    @Marissa: I feel your pain, girl! I have a love-hate relationship with my hips too. But you're right... Any time I see a pinup, I remember just how beautiful I am the way I am. And you should remember that too! I'm so excited to hear that my post inspired you :} And hey, if they want to call me "plus size" then I'm proud to bare the title :D (I'm a 12/14 btw and I love it!)

    @the Citizen Rosebud: You think so, Bella? I was working on a piece that I was thinking about submitting to the weekly link round up, but I think I just might send in this one instead! Thank you for the wonderful support! :D

  5. Fun post! Youtube videos have walked me through many-a-hairstyles, including my first victory rolls!

  6. This is such a great post!! I love everything you posted! I have always wanted to know how to do those hairstyles, and the videos you posted are awesome. Thank you!! New follower :)

    Kirstin Marie

  7. Great post and photos! Thanks for the hairstyle tutorials too! :)


  8. Love you, and your blog. I am keeping you in my blogroll this instant.
    Un abrazo from Spain.

  9. I love your blog! I just had to say that. I've always had huge hips, and it kills me when I see these tiny girls who put on a long shirt and it just hangs off them, but when I put it on it gets caught up in my hips, butt, and legs!

    But seeing how gorgeous you are makes me feel better about my body :D I wish companies would have more models like you, so people could see that you don't have to be a size 0 to be beautiful.

  10. Oh, I'm glad you posted the link to Johanna Ost's site. I have always felt insecure about my body and felt like I can't be feminine or sexy because I'm so small-chested, but perhaps there is hope after all!

  11. A HUGE thank you to everyone! Seriously, ladies, the fact that you stopped by, read and commented, and that some of you even followed means so much to me! I'm glad you enjoyed it so much :}

  12. great post! you are gorgeous, amazing and beautiful! i used to be a pinup model and maybe i will post some photos from those times...


  13. LOVE it all! I can't get over that picture of you! You look beautiful! I would love to do some pinup sometime..that would be interesting.

    I love that you embrace your body! So inspiring!

  14. Dita Von Teese is perfection! I looove her style. <3


  15. Swimwear's gone retro. 50s style one-piece swimsuits are hot on the runways.
    Sexy Lingerie

  16. The pinup girl style is making its comeback. To have that sexy yet playful look, choose a dress that accentuates your curves. Form fitting jeans are also classic to this style.

    wholesale clothing


Thank you so much for stopping by MTB and for all the kind words, everyone. I love reading what each and every one of you have to say! Seriously, it means a lot to me <3

Be sure to leave your blog link so I can check your's out/follow back :}