Pinup Girl

OK, so I’m totally not claiming to be a pinup girl myself, but I do love shopping with Pinup Girl Clothing, and that’s what this is really about…their amazing, well-designed, well-made, made in the USA clothes, which are available in a large range of sizes, so every woman can dress with a cool, retro vibe!

My love affair with Pinup started last year, with the purchase of a petticoat, because I had a skirt that needed a little extra oomph. I was nervous about buying a petticoat, because it was my first real jump into retro fashion, but I love it, and I really love the way it makes my skirts look!

My favorite thing I’ve purchased from them is the gathered Jenny skirt…but, of course, one wouldn’t do…not when they have so many amazing prints! So, I have four Jenny skirts, in different patterns (including one highly-prized Mary Blair train print), that I wear with regularity, because they’re so amazing.

I have to admit, Pinup shirts and I don’t seem to get along. I’ve tried two different styles, in different sizes, and I’m just not comfortable in them. They were both beautiful shirts, however, and well made, so that’s more my issue than theirs. Because of the difficulty I had with Pinup shirts, I was reluctant to try one of their dresses…and then I saw the Amanda dress in red, white, and blue. Something that special was worth taking a chance on, and I’m glad I did! The fit is still not quite right, but I can get it taken in if I decide to.

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I’ve even branched out, and tried an awesome, space-themed skirt from the Oblong Box Shop! I’ll admit, the fact that it’s a polyester skirt scared me a little…one of the things I like best about Pinup Girl is that everything I’ve purchased from them so far has been made of cotton…but the print is so quirky and vibrant, I don’t even mind the material!

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I also have a pair of Crescent and Aurora SparkleLux lucite earrings from Pinup Girl, the Starlite necklace and earring set, which is available from Pinup in a gorgeous retro pink color, but I went straight to the source (MeteorJewelry), so I could get it in blue instead, an Eiffel Tower brooch from Tangerine Menagerie, and a cool flying saucer brooch from Luxulite. I’m really loving vintage-inspired jewelry done in modern ways!

I’m not going full-on pinup or anything, because I don’t have the talent to do retro hair and makeup, or the money to have a full pinup wardrobe. I would eventually love to add another dress or two, like the Mary Blair Nancy dress, or the Mary Blair Lydia dress, and some more jewelry like the SparkleLux Crescent Drop earrings, or the antique-inspired Enchantress Bow earrings. I love including the items I already have in my regular rotation that have a vintage look, but in a totally modern way!

The Great Skirt Experiment

As the week draws to a close, I have realized that I learned a lot from my skirt experiment!

  • It’s kind of embarrassing when your children see you in a skirt on Monday morning, and automatically assume that it’s already Sunday again.
  • Skirts of days gone by must have been made of much heavier material (wool? tweed? iron?), because I discovered that it doesn’t take much of a breeze to blow one’s skirt up.
  • One a breezy day, it is not only smart to wear a heavier weight skirt (in my case, denim or a really heavy cotton), but one with a straighter shape, because even a heavyweight flared skirt will blow up, making walking quite difficult!
  • When cooking or baking while wearing a dress, I realized that I paid more attention to how messy I was getting, and my apron, which has been on the shelf in my pantry since we moved in (and unworn for I don’t know how long before that!), actually got some use! And I have to say, the apron is a whole other charming piece of clothing that probably deserves it’s own experiment.
  • Even though I technically have more skirts than I do pairs of pants, I have less shirts that are skirt appropriate, making it very difficult to feel like I’m not wearing the same thing every day.
  • Wearing a skirt or dress made me feel kind of glamourous, and I think helped me look more put together.
  • My new black dress is one of my favorite pieces of clothing ever!
  • I missed wearing my casual, comfortable shoes (although, I’ll confess to cheating with my black Skechers when wearing my denim skirt–hey, they have some lace, so that makes them dressy, right?)

So, there are the results of my great skirt experiment. While I am looking forward to wearing my favorite grey pants again, I also intend to wear skirts and dresses more often. It made me feel more feminine, I got several compliments from strangers on my appearance (the sales clerk at Bed Bath and Beyond especially made me feel good with her blatant admiration of the aforementioned black dress!), and my children seemed to enjoy my attempt at dressing a little nicer, so good lesson for the girls! All said and done, I rather enjoyed being Donna Reed for the week (now where did I put my pearls?).

Playing Donna Reed

I’m trying out an experiment this week. I’m only going to wear skirts and dresses. No, I’m not going all crazy-Fundie, and I highly doubt that I’ll be giving up pants altogether. I do, however, think skirts and dresses are more feminine (and I’m assuming my husband agrees), and I would like to be more ladylike (if I can accomplish being ladylike at all!) so dresses and skirts it is!

I’d also like to model being more feminine to my daughters (no easy task–have you ever heard them belch!?!) and I figure that this is a good place as any to start. I think our society in general has become too casual–just watch some old TV, and you’ll quickly see how much more time and care people used to put into their appearance. I’m not saying I need a strand of pearls to vacuum or anything, but a little more effort can’t hurt, and perhaps it could have some kind of positive effect on my family.

I particularly find the way women used to dress in the forties and fifties to be endlessly charming. Dresses and skirts, both the full, needs a petticoat variety, and the ever sexy pencil kind, hats, gloves, heels and handbags to match. Man, did women used to know how to accessorize. Now, you go out to the store or the park (and I’m not judging, ’cause I do it, too!) and see an endless variety of track suits, yoga pants and t-shirts, complemented by running shoes of some variety. You can’t tell me that all of the women I see dressed that way are either on their way to or from working out!

There must be a happy medium somewhere. While I would love to wear a hat and gloves for some kind of special occasion, it’s not really practical for everyday wear. But I don’t think I need to schlep around in clothes better suited for the gym, either. I don’t really know how this will work out from a practical standpoint–it’s not easy to get on the floor and play in a skirt, but it must be possible, because I highly doubt that the past generations were neglected because mommy didn’t wear pants. I do know I was grateful not to be wearing a floaty skirt at the park yesterday (note to self: a breeze plus a lightweight, full skirt equals disaster!). Anyway, I’m going to find out what works and what doesn’t, and hope that I’ll start dressing a little nicer for things other than Sunday church. Besides, what girl doesn’t love to play dress-up? So, for a week at least, I’ll be pants free!