Even if you are fairly new to the world of retro dresses, you will presumably have heard of “Pin-Up Girls”. Pin-Up Girls have been around for a long time, but the popularity of these women sky-rocketed in the early 1950s after the severity of the war period in the 1940s. During the war, the majority of men were out of the country fighting, so ladies had no choice but to take over the traditionally masculine roles such as: fixing cars and DIY jobs around the house. So, their feminine side was slightly suppressed. Once the war was over however, and the men returned, women realised that they could let their guard down and be feminine again and so the “pin-up girl” became incredibly popular.
The term “Pin-up” comes from the idea that these ladies are so gorgeous that they were made into posters that were pinned on the wall. You would often find posters on lockers and the bedroom walls of soldiers who were far from home and needed a bit of uplifting. Pin-up ladies then became popular in the world of advertising, as marketers quickly realised that beautiful ladies made anything more appealing – from toothpaste to cooking utensils! Pin-up ladies shouldn’t be confused with Page 3 girls though – the pin-up girl is a more family-friendly wholesome look showcasing their womanly curves and presenting themselves to the world in a glamorous and polished way – never naked!
“Pin-up Girls” have recently seen a resurge in popularity, with the rise in interest in the styles of the 1940s and 1950s. Women of today are taking the opportunity to pamper themselves, and taking the time to style their hair and make-up to give a sexy retro look. Some of the biggest names in the Pin-up Industry that we can take some style advice from are:
This Belgian Beauty was born in 1987 and is a veteran of the pin-up scene having been in the industry since 2002. She counts among her inspirations: famous showgirls, Hollywood technicolour musicals, and old Hollywood movie stars. Her keywords are elegance and refinement, and she not only models but also plays the piano and sings.
Bernie was born in California in 1970 to the Burlesque Dancer Bernadette Belle – so you could say being a pin-up runs in her blood. She counts among her influences – her mum (of course!), Immodesty Blaise, Jean Harlow, Lana Turner and Jayne Mansfield. Bernie is such a huge fan of pin-up girls and vintage style that she now designs and sells her line of vintage style dresses and accessories.
Dita Von Teese
Probably the most well-known Pin-Up Girl of today, Dita (real name Heather Sweet) was born in Michigan USA in 1972. Dita is famous for having a tiny waist – usual measurement is 22 inches, but she can make it go down to a teeny tiny 16 inches with the right corset. Dita is also famous for her Burlesque performances which she says “put the tease back into striptease”!
Heidi Van Horne
This American Actress, who has been seen in ER and The Gilmore Girls, is also a writer and pin-up girls – and has been described as THE top modern Pin-Up Queen. Heidi writes a weekly column for the Houston Chronicle, Garage Magazine, Orato.com and Primer Magazine. She also writes a lot of pin-up advice articles.
If you want to get your pin-up look, then why not take a look at the Vintage Clothes online website Little Wings Factory? With a wide selection of vintage style dresses, petticoats and accessories you will surely find something to suit.