A dozen bare-faced women armed with loads of makeup, hair rollers, and outfits ranging from subtly sexy to racy began meandering into Boudoir Louisville's gorgeous space down on Baxter Avenue early Saturday afternoon. Boudoir Louisville was hosting Go-Go Amy of NYC's Pretty Things Peepshow in a "How to be a Pin-Up Girl" class. If you're envisioning ample bosoms, red lips, and fabulously long lashes you're on the right track!
Amy got her start in burlesque as a cigarette girl in New York City and quickly realized it was a great way to work the bar scene as a minor. Booze flowed plentifully, no one asked for her ID, and she walked away with cash in her pocket at the end of the night. Winning! She then transitioned to go-go dancing and tried her hand at modeling in LA. As she battled with her weight and suffered the depression that comes along with being turned down for being "too short" and "not quite a size 0" she suddenly realized that she was paying her rent by taking jobs modeling in Pin-Up costumes. It was as if the Santa Ana's had blown into LA and provided her with a new sense of purpose. As she tells me,
"Beauty has no single definition," I'm amazed she came to this realization while living in as shallow of a town as LA.
She decided she would do what she loved with the body she was meant to have and inspire those around her to love themselves, which ultimately brought us to Saturday's class.
As the girls got settled Amy proved to be a whirlwind of all things pretty. I watched as she fluttered around the room makeup-free with her Rihanna-red hair twisted around pink foam rollers I recognized from my youth in the 80's. Her sense of humor could shock your grandma, but her love for 40's style has been known to inspire a quiet exchange of a "time back when" Memaw wasn't quite the "grandma" you know her to be.
The class included step-by-step hair-setting instructions starting with how to get bouncy curls that last all night. She transitioned into makeup tips starting with applying foundation the proper way, how to line a cat-eye, applying false eyelashes, and how to make bright red lipstick outlast dinner, drinks, and necking. She displayed 40's style hair styles, the tricks behind pin-up poses, and helped everyone pick out outfits for the photo shoot.
It was a magical afternoon of makeup and girly talk, and by the end of the session I felt that I was finally able to release some of my body issues and embrace the features that make me beautiful and different. I have Amy to thank for that!
Ryan Armbrust of Boudoir Louisville did a phenomenal job with the photo shoot as you can see by the gorgeous Libby Eilers displayed below. Libby will be the first to tell you she was born into the wrong decade, and after attending a class like this I can see why she feels that way! There's something powerful about putting on your face and pinning up your hair to be the most intriguing woman in the room.
Big thanks to Go-Go Amy and Ryan Armbrust for letting me tag along. If you'd like to do your own Boudoir photo shoot (which I HIGHLY recommend) please get a hold of Ryan and check out his work. Amy is currently in Australia on a 10 day Peepshow tour but she'll be back in the area in August. I plan on perfecting my cat-eye to impress her when she returns.