- Corset liners by Amy Crowder (Wasp Creations)
Like many other corset liners, hers are custom-made with your measurements, but my favorite thing about them is that they are long. Some corset liners are cut to cover just the section of skin under your corset, but this isn't enough. Over the course of a day, corset liners have a tendency to move around a little, inching their way up to your waistline, and that sucks. Amy's don't do that because there is length to spare, but also because of the ribbing she puts around the top and bottom of her liners which help them stay put. She also adds some red stitching to the side of the corset that is meant to be worn on the inside touching your skin. Really, it doesn't get easier than that. (For the record, her corsets are pretty incredible too, and among my favorites.)
2. Pin curls
I won't claim to have mastered them yet, but I've certainly improved with the help of my pin curl book and duckbill clips. One of the secrets is to have the patience to wind hair in appropriately small sections; it's tempting to take too much hair for one curl. The other secret is the aforementioned duckbill clip. Bobby pins make unsightly creases in the curls, but duckbills lie flat across your hair. Plus, they're easier to remove than bobby pins, since they're bigger. The look that comes out with proper pin curling is one that looks natural and holds better than any set of rollers I've ever used, be they foam, plastic or velcro hot rollers. Yes, it's a bit of extra work, but trust me--it's worth it!
3. Aretha Franklin's hat
I may be going out on a limb with this one, but I have to say I liked it. She's gotten some teasing about it, but on the flip side there has been a rush of orders to the milliner who made it. I think it was at once both bold yet appropriate for the occassion. Opting for a blue-grey color was subdued enough for the inauguration, and I love that the hat was not much more than a pillbox with an oversized bow, and a border of rhinestones to catch the afternoon sun. Being Aretha Franklin, she could have shown up wearing a giant-brimmed rainbow job teeming with feathers and pulled it off, because after all, the inauguration was a joyful event well worth celebrating. She toned it down from what she might usually wear onstage, but stayed true to herself and kept some of her bravado in style, all while evoking the big-hat style found in many black congregations--for this was a holy occassion in many ways. And may I say that standing on the Mall listening to her sing, I felt there could be no compromising of her style regardless of her clothing.
4. Puppy Bowl
Okay, I know it's not at all related to pin-ups, and technically it takes place in February this year, but Puppy Bowl has to be added to this list. Watching puppies roll around and play in a playpen tricked out like a football stadium is so much more enjoyable to me than football. And then they have the kitty half-time show, and the parrot singing the National Anthem to open the whole thing, and I'm gone. As in, I'm trying to convince my man that we need to adopt more puppies and kittens immediately. Watching it makes me happy, which is more than I can say for most things on TV.