Saturday, February 8, 2014

Happy Birthday James Dean

James Byron Dean
February 8, 1931- September 30, 1955

Today American actor and screen legend, James  Dean would've been 83 years old. 
Poor thing and such a tragic death he had at 24 in a horrible car crash.
He is one of my all time favorite actors and loves and truly one of my inspirations and idols.
May you have a Happy Birthday Jimmy, Rest In Peace.

I've lived in Los Angles my whole entire life and I've been the Griffith Park Observatory before, but I had never visited the James Dean monument there. So late last year on a class field trip I visited, I paid my respects and wore my Dean shirt.

One of my very favorite favorite singers and idols Morrissey, is also a huge Dean fan. In his music video for his debut solo single he pays tribute to Dean by filming Dean's his hometown of Fairmount, Indiana and his artifacts. He even gets a chance to "play" Jimmy's bongos and straddle his motorcycle.
Often Morrissey used Dean as inspiration during his time with the band The Smiths.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Pachuco Boogie

 (Photos By Rafa LA for Pachuco Boogie)

*Excuse the late post it was meant for October 2013*
Orale! I love me some Pachuco Boogie! If you're unfamiliar with all that is the Pachucado it is like a subculture within itself , a Latino movement, fashion, culture and music that stemmed in the 1940's with it's roots in Mexico, El Paso Texas and Los Angeles California. Of course more widely known and recognized from the Jazz culture and the always flashy and dandy Zoot Suit!
My interests going into the Pachuco culture goes to my forever love of the 40's but it's also more of a homage to my culture, history and family. It all started when I was 17 years old and tried out for the my High School/ College musical "Zoot Suit" which documents the historical LA Zoot Suits of 1942.

 Back in 2008 in the East LA College production of Zoot Suit 
pictured with actors Mike Aceves (left) and Victor Rodriguez (right)

For me I grew up listening to all my grandpa's stories of his crazy teenage antics and his involvement with the Pachucos in LA, which though he never called himself one he "affiliated" with them and has those homemade tattoos to prove it! In fact he witnessed those riots and had plenty of stories to tell about al the neighborhood events, gang wars, and the fashion. Plus on both sides of my family are from El Paso Texas! I could go on and on and on talking about the history and my family ties, but more importantly I'll talk about the new nights my friends are hosting, "Pachuco Boogie Sunday's at Eastside Luv"!
 My friend Nick whom I'm pictured with at the top and my friend John Carlos De Luna are always pleased to host and help put on these great events. They were even featured along with friends and well known musician Pachuco Jose for  a special Telemundo segment. These fellas know their history and are some of the best dancers and dressers out there! In fact be sure to check out Nick's blog Eastside Jitterbug, he not only teaches, he djays and he's one hell of a swing dancer! Also if you're wondering just how you can look the part especially if you're a guy be sure to check out my friend, artist John Carlos De Luna's site and label Barrio Dandy. He has his own designs, artwork and sells vintage too! So check that out for tons of inspiration. I'm proud I got a chance to participate in these series of photos and I even made it onto the Telemundo segment! But most of all I'm proud to see my friends, artists, creators and so many others embrace the culture.
 Be sure to check out Pachuco Boogie Sunday's the 3rd sunday night of the month at Eastside Luv, they always have a record hop going,  movies screening, poetry readings and sometimes even a live band or show! It hopes to continue on into 2014!

The first Pachuco Boogie flyer

With Friends at Pachuco Boogie

With my friend artist Jake Prendez and our friend Lorena

My ensemble for the night, wearing an authentic vintage knit and some reallly big 40's hair!
Gotta have that Pachuca Pompadour!

Some screen shots my my national television vintage debut! haha

"Estilo Pachuco"
A special segment for tv network Telemundo featuring well known vintage/rockabilly scene musician Pachuco Jose and my friends artist John Carlos De Luna and dancer Nick.

Monday, November 18, 2013

I'm a Beauty Queen! Miss Uptown Whittier 2013-2014

Me! Miss Uptown Whittier 2013-2014

Well I'd never thought I'd see the day! I guess I now can add Beauty Queen to my list of titles, say hello to the 2013- 2014 Miss Uptown Whittier!! Remember my most recent post I did where I talked about The Miss Uptown Whittier Contest and how I previously entered and was planning to enter again? Well what do you know, third times the charm and I won! I was so extremely thrilled and surprised and I can't believe I get to go on this new exciting venture. I'm so very proud of representing Uptown and it's a neighborhood I dearly love and one that holds sentimental value for me too. Even though it's been two weeks since I was crowned and I already attended my first event as Miss Uptown it all seems so surreal. So let me share with you all the fabulous fashion and style details and how about that tiara!!

Before the contest
(Photo by. The Uptown Association)

Here I am posing for the camera! I decided to do a late 1940's look this year (you know how I love my 40's) and again wearing a deep blue, which is probably one of the most flattering shades I could wear. The dress is a vintage rayon 1940's faux wrap draped dress in a midnight blue, I bought it from a friend of mine at a yard sale  a few months back and it was my first time wearing it out. I designed and made my shoe clips, hair accessory and dress brooch all matching miniature midnight blue rosettes covered with rhinestones.

Presenting myself for the crowd

Answering a few questions 

Gotta wear those Backseam stockings, my favorite!

 I won! Getting my sash and tiara put on by Miss Uptown Crystal
(Photo by. The Uptown Association)

(Photo by. The Uptown Association)

 I'm a happy camper!

 I look silly here, making my acceptance speech

 Pictured here with the lovely Crystal, Miss Uptown 2012- 2013

 Here are all us Miss Uptown contest contenders

Here I am with the 2nd place runner up at my left and 3rd place winner to my right along with Uptown Association members and Miss Uptown
(Photo by. The Uptown Association)

Here I am with 2nd place winner Marily and 3rd place winner Emely. Both Ladies were very sweet & lovely and each go their own little tiara.
(Photo by. The Uptown Association)
(all other photos by. Angel Rivera)

Fun Fact! The Miss Uptown tiara is actually a replica of the tiara actress Audrey Hepburn wore in the classic 1953 movie "Roman Holiday" as Princess Ann! How lovely, cute and perfectly retro is that! Wow! It's like I get to emulate one of my childhood idols, Audrey Hepburn!

First day on the job! Here I am pictured at my first event as Miss Uptown. I opted for a late 1950's early 1960's look.
(Photo by. The Uptown Association)

Such a cute giant pair of scissors! Here I am pictured with Uptown officials and folks from the Whittier Daily News celebrating the new office opening and headquarters.
(Photo by. The Uptown Association)

Two big Uptown events are on the calendar and the surely aren't to be missed!
So Mark your calenders come out and support the community, have some fun and see little 'ol me!
Oh and I'll be in the 60th Annual Christmas Parade!!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Miss Uptown Whittier Vintage Pageant

Well this is a long overdue post, but It's also one that will inform you of an upcoming venture!
Back in Fall 2011 I was notified by my friend and first ever crowned Miss Uptown Whittier, Ariana that they would be crowning again and she would really love to pass that crown onto me!
Well just who or what is Miss Uptown? Miss Uptown represents the historic little town-like district in the city of Whittier, California. She encompasses what Uptowns friendliness, charm, history and everything Uptown has to offer. Plus it's a Vintage Pageant, held like a fashion show of sorts where you show off your 1950's ensemble and trivia and it's held during the Uptown Antique Fair! A retro pageant that's all about preserving history and fun events? Sign me up! I love Uptown, I shop there, hangout there and I have family that lives there so I thought, why not?

The 2nd Annual Miss Uptown Whittier Contest 2011

Voila! This is what I looked like for my first ever pageant! I decided to go for an early 1950's, late 1940's look. I'm wearing a royal blue taffeta vintage dress that I bought from the shop Valerie's Boulevard, which was located in Whittier near Uptown until about a year ago. My hat that is one of my most favorites that I own came from the shop The Basement, located in Uptown. However I now think it's closed. I paired it with black gloves, backseam stockings and bumper bangs with a snood.

Here I am before the pageant at the pre shoot with my friend Ruby, she also participated in the pageant and she wears a lovely royal blue chiffon dress from Valerie's Boulevard.

Here I am with my very lovely, amazing and talented friend Ariana Rodriguez the first Miss Uptown Whittier. Isn't she just stunning! She designed and made her gown for the event. We actually met earlier that year, when we worked together at ReVamp and hit it off!

Here I am answering some questions

Pageant ladies strutting around

Posing for the crowd

 A group shot of us with Miss Whittier, Miss Teen Whittier, Miss Uptown Whittier & Martha (owner of King Richards Antique Mall in Whittier and organizer of the pageant)

And there they are the winners of the 2nd Annaul Miss Uptown! Miss Uptown Robin Rodriguez, 2nd place Crystal Salene and 3rd place Dottie Deville.

Miss Uptown 2011! Isn't she a doll! Such a pretty little lady and she's very sweet too. She's also a burlesque dancer and pinup model  better known as Sirena Siren.

Here they are Miss Uptown 2010 & 2011

I didn't win, but it was a fun and cool experience and I made new friends, plus that didn't stop me from doing it again!

(all photos by. Angel Rivera)

The 3rd Annual Miss Uptown Whittier Contest 2012

Yup last year I decided to give a go again, what the hell! Why not? Here I am at the 2012 contest pictured with my lovely friends and amazing ladies Robin, Miss Uptown 2011 & Ariana, Miss Uptown 2010.

 I wore my own 1940's novelty print rayon vintage dress that I bought at the Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekender that year. I paired it with one of my favorite pair of shoes, my platform peep toe teal patent leather heels! The fascinator I'm wearing I made myself and I used vintage birdcage netting that was 70 yrs old!

Here is the 2012 lineup and I'm not the only one who decided to do it again, last years runner up decided to participate too!

I love this shot! It looks like something straight out of something like Life magazine!

And what do you know I placed in 2nd! Yay!

Here we are! And look last year's runner up Crystal, is the 2012 Miss Uptown!

Cool photo by Fashion Industry and Miss Uptown photographer Roberto Chavez

A group shot of all us ladies

Check it out we made the paper!

(all photos by. Angel Rivera, unless stated)

It was a great event and I couldn't believe I placed in 2nd! Well that time of year is here again and I've had a lot on my plate recently and I hesitated at the thought of participating again...but you know what they say "3rd times a charm"! So catch me at the 2013 Miss Uptown Contest and Fall Antique Faire!

See you there & Wish me luck!!