Embrace the unique you ~ a speech on body positivity at the Hug Me Harry brooch lovers day out!

Hello darlings!

Today’s post is a bit different. I was recently approved to give a talk on body positivity at the Hug Me Harry Brooch Lovers day out. Now I’ve never given a speech before (unless you count being part of the debate team in year 7) but being such a a believer in body positivity I jumped at the opportunity. My shop Daisy Jean had a small stall as well but the highlight for me was chatting to people I’ve only ever seen online and getting to speak about something I’m super passionate about as well as meet fellow brooch designers Martini & Slippers, Kirbee Lawler & Story Book Rabbit.

While sadly it looks like no one on the day videoed the speech in full, I’ve decided to share the speech I gave here for those who expressed that would have loved to have read it!

I’ve put the slides from my powerpoint into the points where they showed during my speech and in the section with audience participation have noted the response for you all.

For those in Brisbane, QLD Australia Kate is bringing her brooch lovers event to you all February!

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The Crowd on the day
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Me Mid Speech

Embrace the unique you

Hello everyone! My name is Missi or Curve Creation and I’m here today to talk about body positivity. Now before I get started, I wanted to do a simple show of hands just to help us get familiar with each other, as it’s the later part of the day now and we should be starting to get over all out jitters and nerves. First up, I’m going to assume everyone is hopefully going to raise their hand on this one. Who loves brooches? (everyone put their hand up)

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Ok that’s good. Who here has say more than 10 brooches? 20? 30? 50? More than 100? 200? (I was surprised by how many people kept their hands up at 200) And who doesn’t count because if they don’t know how many they have they don’t have to acknowledge that they’re an addict? *Raises hand*. If anyone knows of a good Brooch Addicts Anonymous group I can attend that would be fab as I’m sure we’d end up enabling each other to buy more brooches instead of acting like brooch collecting is an issue we need to address. Am I right?

So today I have been asked to talk to you all about Body Positivity

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and what that means to me. Body Positivity for me is really just letting yourself just be you. Body positivity and building up your own confidence is something I believe in fiercely because it’s something that for me changed my life. It’s something I really hope all women and men can come to have in their own lives. Especially in a society where being different can be frowned upon and standing out can be daunting. While brooch wearing is definitely on the rise, as we’ve all clearly seen with some crazy fast sell outs of brands we love, it’s still not really happening in mainstream fashion. I mean the only person I recall wearing brooches in the public eye when I was a kid was the Queen.

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It’s still viewed as quirky and different and its crazy how something so small can make you more visible in a crowd or open a conversation with a stranger which can definitely be daunting for some of us. Brooches really are more than just pieces of material we pin to our clothes. As a maker myself I know there’s an idea, a process and a story and love that goes along with it and seeing all the different creations available at the moment is truly amazing.

But how does this tie into body positivity? I mean, it’s just a brooch right?

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Body positivity like all things is an attitude and a mindset. It’s not something that just happens one day, it’s something that’s worked on over time and nurtured to grow as we grow. We live in a world of labelled boxes and people have an expectation that we should fit into these neat labels but in reality, we, as people, are much more diverse. We exist in a world where others are constantly trying to define us based on how we look as the first point of reference. People project their own opinions and beliefs onto us and the more ‘visible’ you are in the world, the more this happens.

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I used to desperately want to fit these labels. I desperately wanted to feel accepted. Prior to becoming a regular wearing pinup and retro blogger, I was actually a fitness and weight loss blogger in my early 20s and at my blogs height it had quite a following. I initially started the space as a way to keep accountable to lose weight because my then partner indicated I was too fat. Over a span of 5 years I ran my little tumblr blog, dropping 20kg and keeping it off for a number of years. I overcame some serious binge disorder behaviours. I got quite fit and trim.

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But looking back the experience really showed me that the labels don’t matter because there will always be people trying to bring you down. At my smallest I was still relentlessly trolled for being overweight/fat/plus sized. I had massive issues with body acceptance and the comments I use to get cut me like a blade. I was also living with a partner who hated my transition into something I loved so much (retro fashion) and was also trying to bring me down around that. I retaliated to the negative trolls and comments I got … and strangely the more I reacted the more it fed the negative behaviour, which in turn fed my self-loathing and it became a vicious cycle. Despite trying so hard to fit a label and be what I felt would be socially acceptable, it was never enough and in reality, I wasn’t being true to myself either.

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A massive shift in this mindset for me came when I started dressing in retro styled clothing at around 23 and for me, this included that much loved item of the day: brooches. I got into retro fashion because it just felt right. I’ve always been a creative person and the prints, styles and accessories that encompass the retro look just fit me. I was actually interested in retro from the age of 17 but accessibility (lack of debit cards for a 17-year-old was an issue in 2007) and the belief I needed to be slim to be a good retro girl kept me from taking the steps I needed to move forward.

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One day I decided jump and trust that I would grow my wings on the way down.  Taking that step was one of the best things that I’ve ever done for me, not just for body positivity but my life quality and mindset. It gave me a sense of pride in my appearance. It gave me a creative outlet. It made me feel good about myself which in turn empowered me. I began to reject trolls and refused to become involved with any interaction that including judgement. I questioned my ex on things that didn’t sit right with me (which was part of the reason for our break up). I began to nurture myself instead of loath myself. I shifted away from a mentality that I “have to” be thin or look a certain way to be successful. That I don’t have to prescribe to a certain way of existing just because other people thought I should. I did things my way.

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I used to hit the gym with my rollers in my hair.  Apparently not something everyone was used to seeing that in the Sydney CBD. I’ve lifted weights with a beehive and red lippy. Worn petticoats and brooches to work as well as theme dressed for certain seasons. I learnt to let my own creativity and positivity flow through my wardrobe which empowered me to rise about the negativity of others.

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Oddly enough as I’ve embraced this mindset more I’ve been more game to try some gothic looks that I’ve always loved, even though this doesn’t fit the prescribed “pinup girl” image. I stopped trying to adhere to the labels of society and just started to embrace what I enjoyed. The flow on affect has been incredible. This new self-acceptance that had begun to set in for me opened some pretty awesome doors in the pinup world.

For example, ironically, I never intended to be a “pinup/fashion” blogger. It actually spawned from people forever asking me about the things I wore. So, one January day 3 years ago I sat down and started my blog. Now I must admit I had no idea what I was doing when I started and a lot of people who’d followed me over from my fitness blog didn’t appreciate my shifted focus, a lot followed. But I found it became something I really enjoy. It gave me a platform to connect with people. It gave me a platform to share something I was fast becoming passionate about.

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Before pinup I was pretty much a fashion victim. I never felt overly comfortable in modern clothing which meant my ability to put together outfits was pretty limited. I look back and cringe a little at some things I used to wear. But as I embraced pinup more, my own personal style grew. I have a massive wardrobe now. Over 200 brooches at last count (I’m not a brooch addict … OK… I’m an art collector) and pretty much dress how I like every day. Having the platform of my blog has allowed me to connect with some amazing brands and people and share some things I’m truly passionate about.

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For example I love vintage foundations and corsets, being able to work with lingerie brand What Katie Did and Sherbet Birdie last year was a dream come true.

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Being a brooch lover, I’ve had the privilege of working with Erstwilder  at one of their trade shows.

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I even entered Miss Pinup Australia this year and despite my health limiting my ability to be in the grand finale, I’ve made some amazing friends and done something I wasn’t sure I could ever have the courage to do.

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Perhaps one of the most telling signs of my shift of mentality is that despite a weight gain the past few years, I’m still rocking my retro, I’m achieving some awesome things and being presented with so many opportunities.  I’m still being true to myself and I haven’t let that stop me. Being true to yourself, in your own way is one of the most empowering things you can do.

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I came to realise that what other people think of me isn’t any of my business. That I can’t control how others feel, only my own reactions and what baggage I choose to carry. As I stopped putting importance on these negative sentiments from strangers I stopped receiving them. The negativity has mostly stopped, and it shows how negative people seek out and feed off others negativity. You don’t need to justify your existence to others, the only opinion that is important about yourself is your own. You choose from there what other opinions you want to take on and I really cannot stress this enough. You don’t have to carry the baggage others project on you. You’re allowed to be and feel happy about who you are.

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But on the flip side, it’s also important to remember Body positivity, self-belief, self-confidence like all things in life aren’t linear (21). We all have bad days when it comes to how we feel about ourselves, what we’re capable of and what we’ve achieved.  And ladies this goes for me as well!!! I still have days where I have huge mental issues with my body, especially my tummy, but I know that if we try and embrace it we get better at managing it.  Let’s face it, in a world that tries to commercialise happiness, buy our self-love and puts importance on always being productive it can be hard! Really hard.

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We’re taught to look at failure as a negative when in reality failure is simply proof of trying. We’ve been taught being unproductive is laziness when really its essential for recharging. The media tells us constantly what we should aspire to in all parts of our lives when really, it’s important we discover this for ourselves, in our own way and in our own time. Let yourself move through the motions of the bad days and come out the other side. Life is an experience of positives and negatives but that’s not important. What’s important is how you decide to approach the days you are given.

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Around the time I started my blog, I founded my own small business Daisy Jean . Daisy Jean originally only made hair flowers but in the past few years has expanded to other accessories. My amazing little business has helped also give me a platform to meet, interact and boost with so many amazing women, especially through my Face of Daisy Jean program, which is aimed at helping connect my brand with women to give them a platform to give back some of the skills I’ve gained over the years from having my own social media accounts. Being able to try and give back has been such a fulfilling experience and is one of my favorite aspects of my little business.

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Now being a brooch lover and creative soul, I naturally wanted to make brooches of my own and found pretty quick its definitely a process. There’s a lot that goes into the process of design, creation and final product. My first brooches where, mediocre at best and its taken me 2 and a half years to reach a point where I’m feeling amazingly confident in my brooch creation, to the point I recently bought my own laser cutter. Business is probably one of the most intimidating things I’ve ever done because I’m putting my creativity out there to the masses, so to speak. But business has also taught me a lot about myself and what I’m capable of.

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I run my small business alongside my blog and I work full time. It’s a juggling act I never thought I could manage. Small business is a lot of hard work, a lot of time and a lot of sacrifice but if your heart is in it, its worth it. The juggling act can be hard but here I am, still at it almost 4 years on. Its another way to nurture my creativity and share things I enjoy, which is an amazing journey I hope to continue.

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So back to those brooches. At the start of this speech I mentioned that brooches can make you stand out in a crowd and they really can. We buy brooches we enjoy and if we choose to wear them, they make a bit of a visual statement about us, whether that’s something as simple as animals we like or things we enjoy or just show a bit of a quirky personality. When I first started wearing brooches I used to get approached by people wo would comment on them and I wouldn’t know how to react. I was still finding my feet and learning to embrace who I am. Now days I welcome these sorts of conversations, though my favorite ones are definitely seeing fellow “broochies” when you’re out and about. Brooches can bring such job to our days. They can lift us when we’re sad. They make our day when they arrive. Even bidding pieces farewell to go to new loving homes can be an amazing feeling and they can connect us with other likeminded people when sometimes we feel like the loner. This entire day was made possible simply but us all loving brooches and I do truly believe that’s an absolutely amazing thing.

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My point is that Body Positivity steams from the attitude we choose to engage it with … just like wearing brooches, or creating a blog, or starting a business… our attitude sets our direction. We choose whether to accept the messages that we receive from the media and society or embrace our unique selves. Body Positivity is all about understanding who we are and accepting that it is a good thing. Embracing the fact that we are enough just the way we are and working at loving ourselves as best we can. Sure, it takes courage to go against all the negative messages we have received. Sure, it takes work, Sure it is a journey of growth just like most things in life. Sure, it can be scary, but like any major investment in ourselves the payoff is well worth the investment.

I hope my ramblings have helped in some way to help you realise its ok to be you… and the biggest step to body positivity is to be your own unique you. Thank you for listening and please try to embrace the unique you – She’s actually quite beautiful and way more capable than you can imagine. Thank you

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Top tips for beginner pinups

Having been a full time retro girl for a number of years now, it can be easy for me to forget what it was like as a beginner, especially when my routine is so ingrained in my lifestyle now days. But recently, as I recovered from surgery it highlighted just how much effort I put into my overall look (there was a period of a few days there my hair didn’t even see a brush to be honest) and reiterated to me why this can be so daunting to ladies who are new to retro or wanting to start working towards a vintage wardrobe whether that be sometimes, part time or full time. So I wanted to break down my top 10 tips for beginner pinups that I wish I’d been told when I started, as it can be daunting at first!

  1. Allow yourself to be a beginner.
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    Me as a baby pinup in 2012 and me now in 2017

     

    The first one is probably the hardest.

    Especially now days in the world of social media where we are often only greeted with images of ladies who have been doing retro for years!

    We were all beginners once. We’ve all had the cycle of working out what works for us, what aspects of vintage styling we enjoy and having been afforded the time to nail our look. Social media is also a bit of a ‘highlight reel’ of people’s lives so you don’t necessarily see the things that don’t go so well. Being a beginner is tricky, especially with vintage when there is so much to learn and understand: hair, makeup, styling, underpinnings, accessories, etc. Please let yourself be a beginner and take things slow! Don’t overload yourself and let yourself have your failures as well as your triumphs because we’ve all had them. All retro girls have been through that cycle!

  2. Try and tackle one thing at a time! 

    When I first wanted to get into dressing pinup, I found it really overwhelming. There was so much to learn. When I first started I focused on just the clothes, namely dresses as I couldn’t even begin to face skirts and tops and the coordinating of the two.

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    An outfit photo from 2013

    So I’d wear just a retro dress with maybe matching shoes. No petticoat. Nothing else accessory wise. In my early days of pinup my hair was never curled as I was still figuring out what worked for my hair and I rarely wore red lipstick (I found the idea of a bold lip SO scary!). Just getting up the confidence for this first step was a big deal. The second thing I focused on was eyeliner.  A pinup holy grail. Initially taking me upto an hour to do on its own, now days I can do it in 1-3 minutes. Practice really does make perfect and while something may feel impossibly hard when we start. Its ok to work retro into your wardrobe a bit at a time. Whether that’s through simply doing something small like adding a brooch to your outfit or starting with something simple like a dress, one step at a time can help reduce the pressure that we can sometimes feel to jump in as well as not overload ourselves to try and get everything right first go!

  3. Understand your aesthetic will grow and change
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Baby Pinup Styling  in 2012 to my styling now in 2017

One thing I didn’t expect when I got into pinup, was how much my style out evolve over time. Really coming into my stride as a redheaded pinup with bright red hair wearing very rockabilly prints and big faux bangs, I would have laughed if you told me a few years down the track I’d be rocking some Marilyn vibes and some more feminine looks. But for me, one thing I love about the fashion is the evolution one’s look changes. My primary style revolves around pinup, but even so its grown as I’ve learnt more which has lead to a more polished overall look. As I’ve learn all the different elements such as working out how to set my hair for a nice curl set, getting my makeup right, my growing love of foundation garments and of course having grown my wardrobe, I’ve gotten better at putting styles together. And its ok to have your style evolve. It shows how much you’re learning and growing, even it evolves outside of pinup! Enjoy fashion, it’s a creative means of self expression and play with what interests you and what you enjoy! Don’t do something simply because others are doing it. Make your style your own!

4. Practice really does make Perfect!

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Baby Pinup Makeup to shoot makeup done in 2017.

We hear this one all the time and as a beginner it can be infuriating, especially if you’re struggling to learn a new technique or get something right. But practice really does make perfect. My own pinup journey reflects this. I’ve gone from spending literally hours on my hair and make up to have my attempted heat set flop and my makeup being mmmm ok to being able to do shoot level hair and make up in an hour.  My morning routine I’ve got down to a 1 hour art (thats shower, dressing, makeup and hair. I also select my outfit in the morning) but its taken me 3+ years to get to that point. No one gets as good at their hair as Dita overnight and no one nails every outfit all the time. My best advice is to practice when its not important (I used to trial hairstyles on a chill day so if it messed up I wasn’t left in the lurch) and to not be afraid to try different products and techniques. Now days there was so many options product wise and there are different techniques. If one doesn’t work, try a different one!

5. It doesn’t have to be new or expensive to get into!

One thing a lot of girls freak out about with pinup when they first get into it is the cost. I know, it looks expensive! But in a lot of ways, pinup is different to fast fashion and I view my clothes as an investment. For one thing, unless you’ve evolved outside of wearing that style I can keep wearing things again. Things don’t really ‘trend out’ in retro fashion as its all centred around the same era so you’re not chasing trends like in fast fashion fads. Also when something does phase out, I normally sell it on and reinvest in something new, as most retro clothes hold their value. Secondly, if you don’t have the money to spend on new stuff second hand repro retro clothing is just as good. Ebay and with the wealth of Buy Swap Sell pages on facebook, you can often find gems in these places when searching by brand names or just keeping a good eye. My first 2 years of building my wardrobe was done completely with second hand ebay purchases and it was amazing for building my confidence to take the step to buy new from some of the more expensive brands. I’ve got things in my wardrobe I bought 5 years ago I still wear which is wonderful. I also suggest signing upto the newsletters and following brands you love on social media, as you can often pick up some absolute bargains in sales too!

6. There is no size limit or prescribed ethnicity to being a pinup

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As a girl who entered the pinup scene as a size S/M at the age of 21, I still thought I was too fat to be a ‘proper pinup girl’. Now at the age of 27, having gone through a period of health issues with endometriosis and putting on 25kg I call that complete and utter crap. I Style definitely is not a size and the most important thing is that you feel confident and fabulous in what you’re wearing. With more brands now days in the retro scene catering upto a size 4XL (and some higher) and others down to an XXS, its opening the door more for larger and ladies much much smaller than the norm to be embraced by this style. I’ve also seen a growing number of models from varying ethnic backgrounds than when I first started following retro girls online which is awesome to see. I’m also seeing more and more brands using varied sized and backgrounds of models too which is wonderful. Pinup is for any lady who wants to be a part of it, irrespective of anything about her physical appearance.

7. Dabbling outside of pinup doesn’t make you less of a pinup

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Now while I consider myself a full time retro girl, I do occasionally like to dabble in my first love of alternative fashion. And this is perfectly OK. You don’t have to be dressed retro all the time to be considered a retro girl. We live in a world where its not always practical for the roles we play in our lives or what we feel like enjoying. As I said earlier, fashion should be enjoyable and fun! Don’t ever let anyone try and talk down to you for not fulfilling their ideals about how you look. Make your fashion your own and embrace your unique you!

8. Make Youtube/tutorial books and bloggers your friends

With the amazing thing that is the internet, we have so many resources now given to us on varying ways to style things, products that work for us and helpful hints and tips. If you’re a newbie I encourage you to find books on retro styling, subscribe to youtube channels that post tutorials. Attend workshops in your local area if they’re available to you! Follow accounts of gals you admire and ask questions if you can’t find the answers. I’ve personally learnt so much through YouTube and through the books I’ve purchased as well as having attended a few workshops myself! The information you can learn from these is invaluable! I cannot stress that enough.

Also despite being a blogger myself I still follow a slew of other bloggers. Why? Well one to support other smashing ladies (blogging is hard work!) but because I like to read reviews before I make purchases too. Bloggers are a great source of information on the fit and quality of brands to help you find what works for you as well as tutorials, tips and styling advice.

9. Another woman’s beauty/success doesn’t detract from your own

As women its all too easy to drag ourselves through the metaphoric mud of comparison when we see another babe smashing goals or nailing looks. Please try and remember that being a retro girl doesn’t mean your in competition with every other retro girl who has an Instagram. Its not about who gets more likes or comments or followers. Pinup should above all else be fun, uplifting and enjoyable. Please don’t be afraid to step back from people or accounts that make you feel bad about yourself and take care of your mindset when you’re using social media. You are allowed to be your unique self, there is no prescribed mould you must fit. Let yourself bloom in your own right without comparison. Harder said than done but important. I’ve made so many amazing friends through the online pinup community and had some not very nice encounters too. Make your space yours, do your thing and let yourself shine like the star you are, while remembering its ok for other stars to shine brightly too.

10. Just have fun!

I said this before and I meant it with all my heart! I dress pinup because it makes me happy. It lets me express my creative soul in a way that makes me feel compete and its always felt like coming home to me. It doesn’t have to be serious. It doesn’t have to be perfect. As long as its making you happy and you’re enjoying the experience, that’s all that should be important. Remember there is nothing negative about failure: its proof you’re trying and if you enjoy it and work at it, you will get better at the things you want to achieve and learn.

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I hope you’ve all enjoyed this post. Its something a bit different outside my usual ‘review’ style post but I want to start bringing more of this kind of content to my blog!

Let me know in the comments if you found this helpful and what other kinds of things like this you’d like to see!

Til next time darlings!

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Being the best pinup you ~ Thoughts on the pinup scene and being true to you

I’ve been brewing on this post for a while, especially after talking to Laila Shalimar after she released her article in the last Adore Pinup Magazine, discussing the impacts on body image from pinup online social media. I guess, I just wanted to share my own thoughts and insights into this, as well as a bit of my own journey because one thing that is important to me is keeping it real.
I’ve noticed a lot of the comments I get now are from ladies online, especially those new to the scene imply perfection….something I very much am not and something that makes me a little squeamish to receive.
Pre-Pinup Me
Believe it or not, I wasn’t always a pinup. I actually started my online journey as a weight loss blog! Despite liking the style since my mid teens I didn’t really work up the courage to actually try it until I was in my early 20s, when I bought a second hand hell bunny dress off ebay at 21. I used to be a bit of a fashion victim (I really have no head for mainstream fashion) and after experimenting for 12 months with pinup on weekends, I finally took the plunge and went my dream hair colour of red and worked on becoming a scarlet haired pinup. Now, it took a lot longer and was filled with a lot more struggle than I anticipated.
My early years were filled with a lot of cringe worthy moments. My first wetset came out like an afro that as so knotted I had to soak it in the bath before I could wash it. My eyeliner took 3 years to get to something relativity ‘on fleck’ and to not resemble a single curved texta line up the side of my eye. I didn’t even know what eyeshadow was til year 3 of dressing retro (its actually something I’m STILL learning now!). Some of my outfits also were a major miss and I look back and have to laugh. As a beginner I had no idea about the varying types of stockings and thought shapewear was a torture device (how times have changed there!).  Why so many bungles? Simple, because I was a beginner. I think this is something a lot of ladies that come to the “pinup scene”, whether online or real world overlook. A lot of retro girls have been doing the style for a number of years and they have it down to an art. One of my favourite quotes is to not compare your start to someone else’s middle. Remember literally everyone starts as a beginner. Everyone.
One of my first pinup looks
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Pinup year 3

 

First wetset

 

Casual day year 2
Now at 26, I am I guess what I’d call a more ‘seasoned’ pinup. I’m fortunate enough to work in a job that affords me the ability to dress how I want (within reason, there are certain things I can’t wear to work for obvious ‘not being work appropriate’ reasons) and that allows me to continue my freedom of expression via clothing, I also know this is a luxury not every woman who likes the style is afforded. Years of working out what works best for my hair means I have mostly good hair days and I wear retro makeup daily. I started a blog based around sharing my knowledge of pinup at the start of last year and it’s taken off more than I ever expected. I do a fair amount of photo shooting, blogging and collaborating which means my Instagram is generally  full of pretty ootd photos, mostly good hair days and exciting mail deliveries. Comments from many women imply they feel I’m living the dream ‘instagram pinup’ life. I have a growing following, I get to wear great outfits and I do photoshoots.

 

 

I do however try and keep it real online. My life is far from “perfect”.  I do live in a nice apartment with my partner with our small amount of second hand furniture:  we began rebuilding our own lives as solo livers mid this year so we don’t have a lot. Being 26 and living as an adult means I have to plan and budget my purchases, I can’t just splurge because I want to. I work my full time job in administration Monday-Friday which involves an hour a day train commute as well as a half hour round trip walk to and from the station. I’m very grateful to have my job but it does take up a fair chunk of my time and as a creative mind I can find it a bit brain numbing at times. Ontop of this I also have my own small business, Daisy Jean. Small businesses are a lot of work, more than I think people online really understand. While I dress pretty during the day for my job, it generally comes off the moment I walk in the door at home (I don’t want to get craft supplies on my nice things) and my evenings are mostly spent huddled over my work desk creating new store stock, filling/prepping orders and working on balancing the websites. With my blogging also being busier than ever it means nights allocated to creating content (I’m working on some AWESOME stuff right now!), building my new platform for a change in the new year and a lot of emails and coordination. My weekends are normally crammed with not just fitting in photo shoots, stock making, stock runs, spending time with my man, general domestic duties I didn’t fit during the week and the never ending list of Adhoc that is the forgotten tasks of my busy life. I often joke I need a day between Saturday and Sunday just to get everything done!
As those who follow my Instagram know, I talk quite openly about my anxiety. I developed social anxiety while I was with my ex and it’s something I still something I battle with. As a result I don’t have much to do with my local “pinup” scene. I saw its dark underbelly earlier this year when I became the target of bullying from other small business owners and basically withdrew. I don’t really have much available time to deal with that sort of behaviour or tolerance for such childish antics. So I just keep it a bit distant now days and I’m more selective of the events I attend. In regards to the online pinup scene, having been in it for quite a while I’ve found a number of amazing women that I love following. But I know in my own experience I can often feel left out/not good enough/etc. While ‘pinup’ is viewed as an amazing body positive movement, it’s not always all body inclusive and as a girl with a pear shaped figure I often feel I don’t ‘fit’ the image that the scene idolises. I do work really hard to not let these negative voices get to me, as I know it’s all crap (my body is fab, weight regardless) but I wanted ladies to know that even I don’t feel ‘enough’ in pinup at times. That is something I think all women go through to some degree and that it’s not something you experience alone. I’ve also found as my ‘popularity’ has increased online as has the negativity I receive. I don’t post about it but the more visible you are online, the more of a target you become for people. I’ve seen some pretty mean stuff happen to women in the scene (both online and local) as well as been on the receiving end of some myself, some so nit picky I literally couldn’t believe it. Tall poppy syndrome is very much a thing in the retro scene and this is something I find really disheartening. I also find it a bit bizarre to be referred to as perfect. For the most part I feel like a pretty regular girl, just like everyone else.
I wanted to wrap up this post with some advice I have for ladies about pinup. Whether they are in it, new to it, thinking about it or on their way out of it: just do you! I use this mantra a lot and I apply it to pinup in my own life. Pinup really is a way of dressing, with a lifestyle attached that is not necessarily a requirement. All our lives are different, so make it work for you. If you only do it occasionally, it doesn’t make you any less of a retro girl. If you dress it all the time it doesn’t make you superior to anyone else. If you don’t want to do it anymore as it doesn’t fit, that’s not an issue either. Your goal should always be about working on your own happiness and your own life rhythm, something unique to you.
Pinup doesn’t fix body image either, which is a notion I’m seeing in increasing amounts which worries me. It’s not a magic wand waving transformation that cures all your body woes. But it is what you make it and it can be a great tool for helping you learn to embrace your body. You are ‘good enough’ from the start because pinup is all part of the journey. It’s one reason I love it so much, it’s not stagnant. My style evolves and grows with new things. We all keep learning new things and that’s one reason it’s so awesome. Please try and focus on the things you achieve (nailing that eyeliner, getting through a day without your stockings unclipping, a great wetset, an awesome etsy find) and not the comparisons that will steal your glory. Remember, another woman’s beauty doesn’t make you ugly by default. Rejoice in your own unique you.
Sadly, like all ‘scenes’ pinup can be clicky. It’s just a fact. But you don’t have to be part of a scene just because you dress pinup. I only had ‘online’ pinup friends for ages before I developed real life ones. Again, there are no set rules or guidelines for how to pinup socially. Socialise with who makes you feel good, embrace what works for you and just keep rocking it. In regards to Tall poppy syndrome change starts with you, so try and lift others up and in turn you will be lifted. That’s my motto in life anyway.
I hope you’ve all enjoyed this post and as always I am more than happy to answer any comments or questions in the comments.
Please ladies know you aren’t alone in this. But also know you aren’t inferior either. You are all such amazing women, no matter how you dress or how you look.

 

Why are you so Pinup Perfect?!

Hello all,
 
So this is something I get all the time and thought I’d do a blog post about it, because I’m sure it’s something other pinup’s get. If you are just starting this is something you’ll encounter regularly as your style develops!
 
 
Generally no matter where I go, I’m rocking retro hair, red lips with a catseye liner click and a cinched waist. Looking retro is generally all about looking polished, which is an art that is not really held as importantly as it once was by society. My pinup style has very much become an integral part of who I am and I don’t care whether I’m doing the groceries or going out, I always like to look my best! I’ve even been known to lift weights in a beehive and red lips, or with a pincurl set under a scarf. Pinup styling for me has become a part an integrated part of my lifestyle and I couldn’t imagine life without it now.
 
 
I do however, get one continual comment no matter what I am that I find quite amusing: 
 
Where am I going, all dressed up like that?
 
It honestly doesn’t matter where I am. I can be in the grocery store, clearly doing my shopping, just at the local shopping centre, on my way to the gym, on the train to run errands, etc. People seem to NEED to have a REASON for me to dress the way I dress and they are more than willing to offer reasons to me to see if their assumptions are correct. The most common ones that I get are:
  • A wedding
  • The races (even when its NOT race season)
  • A party
  • A COSTUME party
  • A date
  • You all get the picture.

 

99% of the time, I am going to NONE of the above and politely decline their suggestions, simply stating that this is how I dress with my favorite comment: life is a big enough occasion.
 
 
If you are new to wearing pinup, these comments will definitely come your way and as a beginner they can be discouraging! But don’t be disheartened, it’s just because people aren’t used to seeing someone looking so lovely who does it for themselves! 99% of comments I get about my pinup style are positive and yours will be too!
 
I hope you’ve all enjoyed this post!
 
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Til tomorrow