Pin me up! (A retro makeover in the making)

Since I posted a discussion in the forum ( about my recent transition into the vintage/pin-up realm of fashion (and lifestyle), and have received tons of great advice from PUGsters, I decided to add some accountability to this makeover journey via this PUG blog.

Not only do I want to measure my accomplishments publicly, but I also think that doing so would make sure I give 100% (kind of like working out at home vs. working out at the gym -- you tend to put in 100% effort when others are around you giving the same effort, vs. at home, where you'll give maybe 80% effort because who's looking? So this blog post will be my "gym membership," if you will!) and not slip back into the "Active Wear hell" hole which I am clammoring to escape. (@Ceci Punch Designs, I nearly died laughing when I read that term on your reply!)

Since my last (paying) job was in journalism, I'll give you the 5-W's and the H on this lil' makeover project of mine:

Who -- (See my bio profile.)

Some additional info that might be relevant to this project: we plan to add another baby to our family this year, so I'm looking for pieces that will accommodate a growing belly and breast feeding.

Also, I'm a white-trash rocker on the inside, but I have to have a presentable, approachable outer shell since my husband is military (not only do I need to be presentable for his career, but we also move every 1-3 years and I meet new friends each time -- I don't want to scare away these lovely ladies I meet by sporting a costumey, harsh look). I secretly envy the psychobilly look, but I couldn't pull it off in my lifestyle unfortunately. So, in order to avoid looking costumey and mentally unstable to the straight-laced military folk, I think I should aim for a "vintage-inspired" look with modern undertones, if that makes sense?

However, as a teenager I loved dressing grunge-skater-hippy-ska-mod-etc. I could only afford to shop at thrift stores, with some cash left over for piercings and hair dye. I think that my obsession with vintage/pin-up is a subconscious yearning to express myself visually again, like I did when I was a teen. But now I'd like to enhance my image, rather than deter my image, as I remember my dad asking me after I had dyed my hair bright blue and pierced my nose: "Why are you trying so hard to look ugly to other people?" I just thought I looked exotic, but I can see in hindsight that I was putting on visual barbwire to keep the "normal" (i.e., preppy, suburban) people away from me. I don't want to wear visual barbwire now, but I'd still like to be creative and enhance some natural features through my wardrobe.

What -- A new wardrobe (and overall image: hair, makeup, everything!) that embraces my age (mid-thirties), my womanly figure (34.5-27-37), classiness-with-sexy-undertones, and my new job (stay-at-home-mom)!

When -- This is going to take a while. I have a monthly personal budget of $200 or less (this is to include not only clothes, but also hair cuts/color, makeup, beauty tools, books, etc.), so I can't splurge on new, online items all at once. I will have to search the thrift stores and ebay for deals and slowly build my wardrobe over the year(s?).

Why -- In my original forum post, I laid out the basic reasons why I am transitioning my wardrobe into the vintage/pinup style, which echoes the reasons that many of you have for dressing this way, also. (Classy, sexy, flatters the curves rather than berates them like modern designs tend to do, uplifts the female soul, gives women their confidence and power back, timeless/simple designs, etc.)

Where -- Hmmm. Not sure how this "W" fits in, but I guess it is relevant in the fact that I am living in Texas, so I have to factor in humidity, extreme heat, extreme cold (it snowed about 3 times this winter), wind (LOTS of wind!), and the fact that my daily vehicle is a Texas-sized diesel truck (so heels are tricky with the side-rail step, and getting my toddler in-and-out of his car seat and guiding him down the 3-foot rise of the truck cab is tricky in a skirt).


How -- How, indeed? Thanks to the great advice from the PUG gals on the forum, and thanks to the advice on the many vintage blogs I've scoured, I have a general game plan:
1) Purge my closet of modern-blah clothes. (I will try to insert a picture of that purge here...still trying to figure out this blogging format...but the photo is on my profile page.) I can't slip back into my Active Wear Hell Hole if it ain't there anymore. ;)
2) Identify the clothes in my closet that can be incorporated in my "new" vintage look. (I'll take a photo of those clothes soon!)
3) My goal is to have at least 6 Separates outfits (2 pants, 4 skirts, 4 shirts, 4 cardigan twin sets) and 8 daytime dresses for most of the year. For winter time, I'm thinking tight cardigan sweaters and wool pencil skirts with knee-high boots? (Thankfully I will have a few months to save up for that endeavor.) Currently I have about 2 separates outfits and 3 daily dresses.
4) Splurge on one nice piece of clothing every other month. (I'll try to post pictures of my PUG wishlist here if possible.)

Well, here's to embracing change! Time to hit "publish" and make it official! *Addendum: I can't figure out how to insert photos into the blog post...can anyone give tips? I'm working from an iPad if that makes a difference?

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Comment by Shy Anne on March 19, 2013 at 12:03pm

what a lovely goal!! Be proud of yourself! and if you hit the little square that looks sort of like a photo next to ; Link' and the 'Video Real' it's the second icon. Photos take a while to upload!  But I actually don't dress pinup every day, I think it's nice to have some blah clothes for those days when you just don't feel like being stared at or the 'I feel bloated' days. Would love to see your results! 

Comment by Lee Anne on March 19, 2013 at 1:46pm
Thanks for the tip, Brandy! I looked for the icons and "Link" when logged on w/ my iPad and it wasn't there, but when I logged on with my husband's laptop, it was all there! So I guess it isn't mobile-format friendly. :/ Guess I'll have to commandeer my husband's laptop for my future posts! Ha! Well, yesterday I had a "relapse" and wore that damn hoodie and sweats all day, but my dryer was broken so it was the only thing clean. The dryer is now fixed, so back on the PUG saddle for me! ;)
Comment by Shy Anne on March 19, 2013 at 2:07pm

I know a lot of people do a daily photo blog, it's a nice way to make sure you stay on track (photo of your outfit for the day) plus it gives you something to look back on so you can really see how much your dress style changed, and your attitude/appearance because of it :) 

Comment by Jennifer McKeever on April 14, 2013 at 7:56pm

You sound like me when I was a teenager too! And hey, I still love Marilyn Manson and Nine Inch Nails, I just rock out to them in my mom wagon with my kids wearing PUG clothes!! And I love love my sweat pants and "wife beaters" too, I just refuse to wear them in public. Sometimes I change my clothes like three times a day, depending on the Colorado weather. I like have a multiple personality disorder when it comes to getting dressed. One outfit for lounging around the house, one for picking up my kids from school, and another if we go out to dinner to something like that :)


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