Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Getting Into The "Pin-up" Lifestyle: Christina's Story

Poorly edited photo from my phone. 
I apologize in advance for the weird formatting on the photos as they are all jumbled up everywhere. I unfortunately cannot fix that.

This may come as a shock to you, but the vintage lifestyle has not always been my 'thing'. Growing up I was very much a tomboy. I am the youngest of 3 and the only girl so being one of the boys was easier, because then I had someone to play with. I have always had a love for the 50's don't get me wrong. I love the clothing, the furniture, the cars, all of it; and my family has always been in the antique business too, so I pretty much grew up around all things old. It wasn't until I got older that I decided to really embrace that love. I started to dabble in the style a little bit around 2014, when I was pregnant with my second, but as you can see here I really had no idea what I was doing, aside from my bangs. 

When I first started to really get into the vintage community, I was excited to find that there were others in the local community that did it too. Trying to reach out to them was a total bust for most though, I must say it was rather discouraging. When I got myself all done up and I was feeling pretty good about my outfit I would get the cold shoulder from them and nothing but rude comments and rumors started about me behind my back about how I was an impostor, and I didn't know what I was doing, it was just a fad, etc. I was hurt and confused by this at first because here I thought we were all in this for the same goal, to bring back the 50's? Perhaps I was wrong.

 I backed off a little more in late 2014, until after I had my second in February of 2015. I was struggling with my depression, and my anxiety was getting the better of me because here I was looking like crap, feeling like crap, and beating myself up about it. But you know what? I was raised to not care what anyone thinks about me, if I'm happy without bringing anyone else down, that's what is important. So I decided I was going to go for it, because there is just something about wearing big fluffy dresses, or bodycon wiggle dresses that made me feel amazing. 

One of my first "OOTD" pictures. 

Wearing extensions here. 

Photo by: Jeff Porter. My first modeling gig.
Photo by: RedBrie Photography

As you can see, my style evolved a little in 2015, but you can tell I still had no idea what I was doing, but you know what? I loved it. I didn't care what anyone else thought. Looking back now I wish I had made some changes, like those eyebrows (OMG), but I was having fun so I kept on going. In 2016 I pushed a little more into some 60's looks, but still stayed mostly in the 50's. With my hair growing out more it made it easier to work on styling my hair, and working on my victory rolls. I feel like having short hair and trying to do these vintage styles helped me to where I am now because as my hair grew it became easier for me to roll, versus having long hair and getting frustrated when it all gets tangled together and doesn't do what I want. Having short hair still had it's downsides, don't get me wrong, but lots of bobby pins and hairspray will save any hairstyle. 

I discovered I have a tall forehead and bangs are best for my face shape.
First successful bouffant with a side roll.
Heading to a car show.

Rocking 60's beehive for work.

Off to work again.
Ready for another car show.

Photo by: Jason O'Durgy.

Wearing Extensions here again. Late 2016
By this time (late 2016) it wasn't so much that I was an impostor, so much as the fact that I am too passionate, some people find that intimidating. I have heard it more than once, from different people. And you know what I did? I laughed. I honestly had myself a good laugh. Those of you that know me in person, know that I am indeed a very passionate person, and I'm sure those of you that don't know me well, can tell just from the way I write my blog posts. But since when is being passionate a bad thing? Am I hurting anyone or putting anyone down? No. Am I offending anyone? No. So what is the problem here? Are they just jealous? I'm not sure. I want to encourage other women who love the 50's, or anything really, if it is something you are passionate about, don't let others hold you back. Unless it harms you or someone else, don't let them hold you back. I have spent the last 6 years of my life as a stay at home mom, and those of you with depression and anxiety know what a nightmare that can be. Since I started modeling in 2015, I have seen a huge improvement in my overall mental health. 

When my husband did one of my first photo shoots and I got to see the raw photos from the camera, I was completely awe-struck. I couldn't believe how beautiful I looked in his photo he had taken, because I certainly didn't see that when I looked in the mirror, and do you know what he said? He said that is how he sees me everyday. That statement, that one simple statement was everything for me. That is what I needed to keep going when I had people telling me I couldn't do it. I wanted to look at myself in the mirror and see me the way he does.

Though I have mostly retired from modeling in early 2017 so I could explore photography instead, I still stand by that statement and hold it dear to my heart. I tell my models all the time, I KNOW what it is like. They tell me all the time, oh I wish I could dress like that, or oh I wish I had the confidence to dress like that. Let me tell you something honey. YOU DO. I didn't think I had it either, until I tried. When I get my photos back from a photographer, there is just something about seeing these gorgeous images and going "wow" is that really me? It can't be, I'm not THAT pretty, but let me tell you a secret.. YOU ARE! I didn't think I could do it and yet here I am. Retro/vintage attire is my everyday. On the days I don't do my hair and makeup, and do nothing for myself but shower, I feel like garbage. At some point you just need to stand up and say "no more!" Don't do it for them, do it for you because you are 100% worth it. You are beautiful, you are strong, you can totally pull it off if you just try. It's not a recreation, it's an interpretation, your inspiration and your passion is what will drive you. You don't have to do it just right to be "legit", you do it however you feel. Everyone will add their own twist and flair to it, and that's what makes it special. We were all inspired by the same time period, different things all from the same era. Why can't we work together on this and lift each other up instead of tearing each other down because they're not doing it to "your standards". Who made you Queen Bee?

Photo by: HB1 Photography

So listen up ladies, put on your garter, and your favorite stocking and go get 'em! You don't need to be a size 00 to model, if you feel beautiful, others will see that in you and gravitate towards you. You have the confidence, you just may not know it yet. It's buried in there somewhere, you just need to let it out.

I hope this was helpful to some of you. I feel like I may have gone off track a little bit, but for me it was always there. The passion, the love for it, it was always there, I just needed to find it. And once I did, I didn't let anyone stop me. I love it, my husband loves it, my kids love it. I'm happy, they're happy, everyone wins. If you need someone to reach out to, feel free to drop a comment below or find me on Facebook or Instagram and send me a message. Together we can help you find that confidence you have been missing.

And have a drink on me, you deserve it!

Until next time!
Photo by: CC Photography & Design


  1. You have a very good message for people who are shy or uncertain or have been told no. Good job! You are very pretty. I love your look.

  2. I love this! I love vintage styles so much which is why I carry them in my store. I dress vintage when I feel like it and I don't fit into some of those vintage crowds either. But I think you're beautiful and it makes me happy to see gals embracing themselves and what they love! ❤️