I was cutting it close when I left for Vegas and spent a week there before New York Comicon. The day I got back was the day the convention started! However, I managed to make it and was so excited to bring my mom this time around! My mother is my best friend so I take her to a lot of events with me. She is very adventurous so it makes me happy when I see her having a great time at these events. We had a blast and enjoyed seeing all of the artwork, artists, people in costumes, and more. As a comic lover, I went a little crazy with my wallet but it was all worth it. I bought a bunch of vintage romance comics and movie posters from the 1950s and also bought some art for my future office in Vegas. My mom also loves purchasing art so she got herself a few things as well. I think I might have her cover the show next year as she has become a pro at taking photos. Without her I wouldn’t have any at all to post here on my blog! My friend Nubia was also covering Comicon so it was awesome to see her and hang out for a bit. She looked ADORBS dresses as a My Little Pony and I wore some stuff from the Forever 21 Bats & Cats collection. I have been waiting for Comicon just so I could sport my Forever 21 cat woman cropped sweater and leather cat ears so I paired it with my favorite vintage leather shorts, some back seamed stockings, and my Jeffrey Campbell Tardy boots. It wasn’t a costume but as jet lagged as I felt, it was comfortable and it worked. I was blown away by the people who dressed up and have to hand it to them for being so creative. It was very inspiring so of course I took photos of some of my favorites. Check it out inside! Continue reading
I’m moving! Yup, I will be leaving New York in just 8 days to embark on a new journey and I am going to miss all of my east coast family & friends so much <3. I am also going to miss all of my New York readers and that’s why I am having a farewell party next week at Nurse Bettie’s and you are ALL invited!
The party is next Friday, December 6th, at 8:00pm and will be held at:
106 Norfolk St, Manhattan, NY 10002
Hope you can make it!
I met a gentleman named John Fondrisi at the Long Island City Flea when I visited his booth 1926 that had incredible antiques and apparel and we have been good friends ever since. Inspired by his grandfathers fashion illustrations in the 1920s, Fondrisi decided he would carry on his grandfathers legacy by utilizing his great works of art onto his apparel. Anyone who purchases his T-shirts, scarves, and hoodies become works of art and share a moment in history. Some of Fondrisi’s apparel even showcase vintage photos from the roaring era that fit the aesthetic of his brand. I have never met someone who has combined their antique business with an apparel line so perfectly. John and I connected right away and within just a few weeks, I was out in Connecticut modeling his designs for his new website. It was such a fun shoot and I got to meet so many great people, model with some RAD classic cars, and shot at some pretty cool locations. The photographer, Christopher Quinn, did such an amazing job and made me feel so comfortable. John and Chris make a great team and I adore them beyond words. Here are some of my favorite shots wearing 1926 apparel from our shoot together! Continue reading
I recently modeled for my absolute FAVORITE Etsy vintage seller D&J Vintage and just had to show you all of the amazing vintage gems I got to wear for our shoot. Danny and Janell are pros at finding the most beautiful vintage treasures and they are so reasonable with their prices which is so hard to come by these days. They are not just my favorite vintage sellers but one of the sweetest couples I know. They have a wonderful family and dynamic so I always enjoy shooting with them. This is my second time shooting for their shop and all I have to say is OMG, they have some really great stuff at the shop right now. They had more but of some of their gems sold out already. However, there are some great gems left at the shop so I thought I’d share some of my favorites with you! This is my absolute favorite vintage outfit from the D&J Vintage collection. The cashmere top has baby blue tulle accents on the neckline that match the tulle full skirt. Absolutely breathtaking! Here is the link. Check out my other favorites below! This is one of my favorite dresses I got to model for D&J. The design is beautiful and brilliant. The full skirt is a beautiful sunflower print with bumble bees around it so from above you look like a flower! Here is the link. This gorgeous beaded vintage dress is incredible. It fit quite big and that was the only reason I didn’t buy it from them as soon as I tried it on haha! Here is the link. I am obsessed with this adorable patchwork vintage dress! How is this still on the website? Here is the link.This is an amazing 1940s dress and jacket set whose design is incredible and so ahead of its time. The tailoring and the creativity that went into this ensemble is so inspiring. Here is the link. I love this vintage floral circle skirt! Looks so good with a white top and a red scarf! Here is the link.I felt like a sexy little librarian in this vintage wiggle dress! Here is the link.This adorable checkered vintage cardigan/bolero is such a great little addition to any outfit! Here is the link. Love this awesome 2 piece vintage suit! You can wear the dress with the jacket so it looks like a jacket/skirt set or wear the dress without the jacket for a different look! Here is the link. This awesome vintage stripe dress has a Victorian look to it so I fell in love with it right away. It’s so hard to model such cute things! Here is the link. This ADORABLE vintage suit reminds me so much of Betsey Johnson! I love the rose print and how the material is quilted, perfect for this time of the year. Here is the link. This vintage gem was snagged right away from the D&J Vintage shop. Sorry folks! When you see it, you gotta grab it right away! I will forever remember this as one of the best vintage wiggle dresses I have ever put on my body lol.This vintage gem is gone too! This means you have to head on over to D&J Vintage now to grab yourself some vintage gems before they go out of stock!
My birthday was just a few days ago and I am now 27 years old. Naturally, I thought about my life and all I have been through and accomplished in my earlier years and became overwhelmed with emotions both good and bad. We all do it. We all question if we lived our lives to the fullest, made the best of the year that has passed, or did the best we could to achieve our goals. So many questions, so few answers, but one thing rings true, we do the best we can with what we know and with the resources we have at the time. This has been me my entire life, always resourceful, always working with what I’ve got even if I have close to nothing. These past few years have been a roller coaster and though they may seem glamorous through my images, I have worked very hard and have gone through hardships just like you so I decided to write this post to show you all what I have learned in my 27 years on earth. I don’t usually do personal posts like this so bare with me if my thoughts are all over the place.
SURROUND YOURSELF AROUND GOOD/LOYAL/LOVING PEOPLE
My birthday was incredible. I felt the love from all over the world and my friends & family made sure that I had the best day ever. I thank my lucky stars for everyone who has been nothing but supportive about everything I do. Unconditional love is such a gift because it is so hard to find people who will love you no matter what. I am an extremely loyal person so I always expect the same in return. You would think that loyalty and respect comes natural to everyone but trust me, it doesn’t. Sadly, those expectations have become “high expectations” in a world where people value all of the wrong things and devalue all of the right things. I am not perfect but I treat my friends like family and I would give the shirt off of my back and the food off of my plate at any given time….but I will also give them a rope to hang themselves. But that’s entirely up to them. Sounds harsh but when you get to a certain age, you get tired of investing your time into people who don’t value you. I know a lot of people but my circle is very small. My ride or die is my best friend Santiago who has been by my side and has been my light through break-ups, hardships, and every single one of my darkest moments. You don’t find friends like that. I am not in any way religious but I thank god every day that I have friends like him who value friendship like I do. Santiago always says that friends are like bases. Your first base friends are your acquaintances for “hi” and “bye” conversations, your second base friends are your occasional conversation friends, your third base friends are on your speed dial because you always speak to them, and your 4th base friends are your home run ride-or-die’s that you can talk to, tell your secrets to, and count on no matter what. Always aim for homeruns and learn to keep those you may not be sure of at a safe distance till they can earn your absolute trust. I have learned that you can love people from a distance. I also learned that you should seek to find the same type of 4th base friendships from the people you date. If he doesn’t treat you like his best friend, move forward. In time you will find someone who will offer you his love and friendship. I know it is hard in a world where people keep loving and leaving one another because they don’t share the same values, but giving up may mean that we miss out on an opportunity to find love with someone who could potentially make us very happy. I have had relationships, very few, but most full of turbulence. However, I have no regrets as I learned from the pain, learned a lot about myself, and have become so much stronger. With friends, more often than not, I constantly find myself befriending/defriending people who take advantage of me or become ego driven and engulfed in this plague called “fame” and it has made me distant to the idea of expanding my circle because in all reality, they exhaust me. I’m a giver and people just take take take from me and I’ve just become..TIRED. However, these are the types of people who make us grateful for those gems that we come across in life who give back and never let us down. Eventually, you learn to trust your intuition and you become better at filtering out the people who make you unhappy. With that said, I am thankful for my real friends and have learned to be just as thankful for my sham friends (& failed romances) though I appreciate them both for different reasons.
DON’T WAIT ON ANYONE
It feels good to have a team for moral support but it wasn’t my team who built me. Everything I have ever accomplished in life has been with my own two hands. For those of you who would love to walk in my shoes, understand that these shoes are not easy to walk in. I have had to work 10 times harder than many of the people who do what I do. For example: for years I wanted to be a pinup model trying to book anyone I could on Model Mayhem. However, there aren’t any real pinup photographers here in NY. Most of them are located on the west coast. Sure I have worked with some great photographers but I also worked with many bad photographers who didn’t understand my vision. So I decided to take matters into my own hands by taking my own photos. Now I’ve become so good at it that I don’t need to book another photographer for the rest of my life. Of course there are still photographers that I would love to work with but my point is when you really want to make something happen, sometimes you have to do it yourself. If you are in the same situation all you have to do is get a good camera, learn how to use it, get a tripod or a good friend to take your photo, and learn how to utilize photo shop. Everything from the layout of my website, the HTML, the photos, and the banners are all self-taught and self-made. I have learned to combine and build my talents so I could wear many hats and not depend on people. Educate yourself and don’t limit your dreams because you don’t have a team. Be the jack of all trades in your one woman show so you don’t have to count on people to do what you can do too.
KEEP IT REAL
When I first got into blogging light years ago, it wasn’t this big thing it is now. Blogging was a platform for REAL people to state their REAL opinions about whatever interested them. It was an organic way of listening to the people who weren’t published in magazines or modeling in them. My goal was to showcase my creativity with fashion, my views on life, love, and art, and my journey to becoming the woman I have always wanted to be. People often laughed at the idea and some told me that being a blogger sounded like a boring life and now everyone and their mother is a blogger. My blog wasn’t an act of being trendy, it was created because I felt I had something to say and share with the world. I am not the best writer in the world and I am sure many of you grammar nazi’s find flaws in my posts, but it doesn’t stop me from saying what I want to say and writing what I want to write. It is in my nature to always be honest with everyone and most importantly with myself. I find it to be extremely strong and admirable to be unapologetically yourself in a world that tells most of us creatives to conform to popular fads and standards. My life and my blog is living proof that you don’t have to CHANGE but me more of yourself as you grow. Just look through my archives, everything built up to this point and I am still GROWING. Being a blogger has changed my life for the better and has helped my introverted self speak to people from all walks of life from all over the world. Sure I have been published in a ton of magazines and have worked with a ton of brands but the real gift is the people I have met along the way who have helped me learn a thing or two about myself and how I affect and inspire them. When I have women message me about how I have helped them with their body image, I am overwhelmed with gratitude because I never knew that by just being “yourself”, you could inspire and breed courage to those who are afraid to do the same. Positivity is contagious. The more we spread the message that we are not perfect, but we are beautiful, creative, smart, courageous, and loved, the more people will be influenced and learn to love themselves.
STOP CARING ABOUT WHAT PEOPLE THINK
Growing up, I never really cared what people thought about me. I always did whatever I wanted to do no matter how many times I was bullied or told I’d never amount to anything in life. It was the bullying and discouragement that made me want so badly to prove them all wrong. I was vindictive in the best of ways. A tough cookie with a soft interior who had a lot of heart. I didn’t want to be like the other kids but I did want to be accepted for who I was and that didn’t happen until I got to high school and even then I faced adversity. This is probably why I am a humanist. I have been on both sides of the fence as the bullied and the popular and I can tell you right now, both are exactly the same. There are people who will dislike you no matter what you do and it is usually a reflection of themselves and their own lack of self-love. Once you realize that, you will never give a shit what anyone thinks about you. With that said, don’t exhaust yourself with caring about what people think of you. Stop over-thinking that outfit, stop over-thinking that personality, stop over-thinking about how people perceive you. Overdress, be yourself, allow your inner creativity to shine through and I promise people will appreciate and love you for who you are and those who have an issue with it can kick rocks.
NONE OF US ARE PERFECT
Self love is the best love. Though many of you think I have the perfect skin and body, trust that I have issues just like you. However, I just learned to love and accept my body because I knew exhausting myself with insecurities was not going to get me anywhere. We are ALL beautiful in our own way and none of us are perfect. Fat, skinny, tall, small, black, white, we are all queens. I’m a size 2/4 and my thighs still rub like a size 14. We have to accept our design and appreciate what we’ve got. I have struggled with insecurities in the past and still do now at times. I love my body, I just have always had skin issues and have struggled with severe acne my whole life. So much so that I have keyloids from the stress it has caused my skin. For those of you who don’t know, A keyloid is a growth of extra scar tissue where skin has healed after an injury. So basically, I over-heal like some friggin Wolverine super hero! WOOO….No. As cool as I make it sound, it sucks a million. I constantly have to monitor even the smallest of paper cuts and blemishes hoping they don’t turn into keyloids. And where one grows, another 30 of them appear. This is why I can’t get tattoos. They will just rise into one big giant keyloid. Many of you don’t see them in my photos because I photoshop them out but I have keyloid scars on my back, legs, and chest. I photoshop them out because I feel they take attention away from my photos. I see it all the time, people always look at me and ask me if they are burns and I don’t want to have to answer those types of questions every time I put up a post. However, now you know they are there and that I don’t have porcelain skin. Oh, and there is no cure so I will have them for the rest of my life. I struggled with it more as kid because it made me feel like I couldn’t relate to anyone being that I didn’t know any other kids that had keyloids. It wasn’t until I met an actual burn victim years ago that I finally learned to accept my own skin. She was beautiful and radiant and burned all the way up to her face and was still confident. Her beauty just shined through and she inspired me to let my smaller issues go. Sometimes, our flaws are only visible to us and invisible to the world. Allow your flaws to make you strong. Mine haven’t stopped me from doing photo shoots, getting dates, or wearing whatever I want to wear. Trust me, the grass is greener on your side of the fence, you just have to water it and watch the flowers grow.
I am still trying to master the art of working smart because I am more of a creative soul than a business woman. Many of you think I survive solely on my blog and make a ton of money doing what I love. WRONG. I work like ten different jobs and I have no life. I barely have any time to contribute to my own personal blog/business but I force myself even if my eyes are bloodshot, to publish posts on this website, update items at my online shop, and update all of my social media accounts to keep you updated on everything. This is a labor of LOVE before it is a labor of money and trust me, most brands don’t want to pay you at all because most bloggers are working for free doing half of the job I can do. Sure I get a ton of free clothes and get to choose what like but clothes don’t pay your bills. I have to spend hours editing and resizing images, uploading them to wordpress, and then I have to write the story behind the images including links. Many of my posts take as long as 6 HOURS and after a 9 hour day at work, it takes a lot out of me. But I do it because I LOVE IT. Aside from working hard on my blog to create engaging content, it takes even more work to fight being discouraged. Though I have reached a great level of success, what many of you don’t know is that most agencies that represent bloggers continue to turn me down because I am not “mainstream” enough. So basically, I have to manage myself and build as I go. So imagine working 5-6 jobs, managing my website, and answering hundreds of emails a day. I realized this is not me working smarter, its me working harder and if these agencies won’t manage me, I will just have to continue doing it myself until I am so good, they have no choice but to pay attention. This is why I am moving to Vegas…the cost of living is cheap and I have opportunities to work better jobs that are flexible with my schedule and will allow me to have the freedom to work on my own personal business till I can spread my wings and fly on my own. Many times we find ourselves working working working and not actually LIVING and as a workaholic, I love to work, but as an adventurer, I love to LIVE. Working smart is finding a healthy balance of both. So if you feel exhausted and aren’t seeing big results, move forward, find a new job, find a new home, find a new hobby, and never give up or settle. Work hard for your happiness, go where you are embraced, and trust your struggle; that’s working smarter.
ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR GROWTH & TRUST YOUR STRUGGLE
Look back on your life. Are you a lot better off than where you were 2-6 years ago? Taking a look at my past, I sure I have some things I wish I could have changed but everything happens for a reason and I have learned that everywhere we are right now is exactly where we are meant to be. No regrets.
“I love the woman I have become, because I fought to become her”.-Kaci Diane
As a kid, I never dreamed I would have come as far as I have. All I knew was that I wanted to be a positive influence on society and share my creativity with the world. I have conquered that dream already when I started this blog and sometimes I forget how much I have accomplished to get here. You have got to TRUST YOUR STRUGGLE. I struggled and have been through hell and back to be where I am now and am so glad I can look back on my life with a smile because I MADE IT. I may not be as big as many other bloggers in the world but the fact that I have thousands of readers who tell me I inspire them makes me the happiest person in the world. I truly believe that gratitude has a lot to do with success. Ever so often, we forget our achievements and the obstacles we have overcome because we are distracted by what we have yet to accomplish. If you have been working hard against all odds and have never given up on your dream like I have than you need to give yourself some credit. Create a realistic goal of success and when you reach it, be content. As frustrating as it may be, even for me, we must have patience. We are all a work in progress and though we all wish we could just know all of the answers to life, we have to allow our lessons to be learned and rewards to be given when the time is right. Enjoy the journey and take on any hardships like the king/queen that you are.
It was my last day in Vegas and I wasn’t ready to head back to NY away from my new home and my best friend Santiago. We woke up bright and early to do whatever we could before my 4pm flight so our first stop was the Hash House where we enjoyed two colossal breakfast plates. Santiago had snickers pancakes and I had chicken and waffles and we were in heaven as these plates were ginormous! After that we ran off to the beautiful Caesars Palace to visit the Bettie Page Clothing store and the Martin Lawrence gallery. This gallery was incredible and housed some of the best artwork from world-renowned artists like Basquiat, Takashi Murakami, Keith Haring, Andy Warhol, and more. We were blown away by the artwork and the curators were really friendly as well. After that we headed back downtown to visit a cool comic shop called Super Nova that’s located right across from a just-as-cool toy store like toy shack where I felt like a 5-year-old girl again swooning over comics and Barbie dolls. Supernova Comics was awesome and I found a bunch of cool Vampirella comics I was drooling over as well. It is good to know that I have so many options to find comics in Vegas as I will soon be leaving my beloved Forbidden Planet here in NY. We spent so much time at both shops that I almost missed my flight! But I may have done that on purpose haha ;). Continue reading
I am excited to share with you all that one of my FAVORITE documentaries, Bettie Page Reveals All, will be screening all over the US! After a few private screenings in New York, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles, this wonderful documentary directed by Mark Mori has become a worldwide phenomenon. Mark did an incredible job capturing the essence of Bettie’s life before she passed away in 2008. I have seen the documentary a few times and I never get tired of her inspiring story. So much of Bettie’s life was a mystery so it was amazing to see her emerge from decades of seclusion to give us an intimate look at her life as one of the world’s most recognized and controversial sex symbols. I learned so much about her that I didn’t even know and the more I watch the documentary the more I pick up on things I missed. She was incredible and much more than just a model or sex symbol, she was creative and practically created all of her outfits she used in her shoots. With her razor-sharp wit and Tennessee twang Bettie Page continues to reign supreme as a legend for rockabilly girls like myself and with this documentary, her life and legacy will live on.
On November 22nd, Bettie Page Reveals All will be screening at the Village East Theater here in NY. Director Mark Mori, pinup Bettina May, Secrets in Lace C.E.O Dan Whitsett, and I will judge a Retro Style Contest at 7:20 at The Village East Theater on opening night (11/22) with hundreds of dollars in gift certificates from Bettie Page Clothing, Bettie Page Shoes, and Bettie Page Lingerie. Plus Mark will do a Q&A after the screening. Are you excited? GOOD, because since my birthday and my blogs birthday was just a few days ago, I thought I would celebrate by doing an AWESOME giveaway for my fellow readers from my hometown, New York. One of my lucky readers will get to win a Bettie Page Reveals All T-shirt, a signed poster, and 2 free tickets to the world premiere screening at the Village East Theater where you will be able to meet all of us! To enter follow the directions below:
Participants must live in the New York area, have an instagram, and follow all of the rules. A winner will be announced on Wednesday November, 20th, 2013.
Don’t live in NY? Don’t fret…
Check out when Bettie Page Reveals All will be screening near you by referring to the dates below:
Nuart Theater – LA
Regal Westpark – Irvine
Chicago, San Francisco
Berkeley, San Jose
San Diego, Columbus
Palm Desert, Portland
Nashville, Las Vegas
Santa Barbara, Tucson
Phoenix, San Rafael
Hartford, Fort Lauderdale
Asbury Park, Richmond
Albuquerque, Salt Lake City
12/25 – Atlanta
1/3 – Seattle
1/17 – Ft. Worth
1/31 – Rochester
2/7 – Lafayette
BRING THE FILM TO YOUR TOWN USING TUGG.COM!
GOOD LUCK my New York dolls and fellas!