Waking Up

Wake from sleep, oh babe. Breathe life anew and live in truth, where feelings are real and the senses may reign. Celebrate a new life, a new start. The pill has been swallowed, now embrace truth. Embrace life. Not always is this path pretty, but it is real and felt to the bones. Swim in the new reality, allow vulnerability and enjoy its fruits.

Years living in murky waters, incubating and learning whilst hiding and seeking from a place of “safety”. I didn’t exist. That is, until I spoke up to find a place where I could. Seeking, searching at every meeting to make sense of the mess. At least I was no longer in the years of oblivion ignorant and abusing my true nature for the sake of “rightness”. I sought answers any and everywhere, yet none could tell me what I should nor could do. Speechless I left them without answers. Nor within could answers conjure, not even after reading stacks of books and articles, hours of professional counseling plus hours of prayer to the point where all utterances boiled down to a desperate cry of heart, “Do something!”

Ten months I was awake to my pain which followed years of numb. Ten months I was living in thick fog much like this milk bath, unable to see through the density. Bleeding eyes thankful for sight enough to know I could not return to a previous existence. I was drowning, suffocating, reaching out whilst dredging forward in an emotional swampland.

One conversation. One night. One story told, then another equaling truth standing before me. One connection to the right energy at the right time. One suggestion to consider in it all the simplest concept of lifestyles. The next morning I awoke with emerging clarity knowing exactly what to do.

Speakeasy Photos

MUAH: none, I am raw and we do not digitally touch up

Bad Bones Bellas

Bad Bones Photography is a heavy hitter with Pinup in the Sacramento area and beyond. The magazine is gearing up for an exciting year of images. Collaborative artists are coming together to support this venture, known as the Bad Bones Bellas. We’ve got loads of ideas to create and enjoy many styles from cheesecake to alternative. When I began writing this blog a year and a half ago I talked about seeking a community of folks who enjoy art with a vintage flare. I am delighted to find myself in such company and look forward to enjoying the process as well as the results. Visual projects are in the works!

Bad Bones Photpgraphy
MUAH: Self
Vintage reproduction outfit made with vintage fabric by Alexandra of California
Metal basket weave and lucite lid purse authentic vintage procured at the Sacramento Antique Faire.
Vintage bicycle owned by Tony of Bad Bones Photography, purchased as the Sacramento Antique Faire

Viva Las Vegas 18

Guest post by Shane.

After a year of anticipation we headed off to Las Vegas to attend Viva Las Vegas. Last year we learned about Viva about a week before the event. Prior commitments prevented us from making a last minute trip to Vegas, so we planned on attending this year instead.

After a short flight on Thursday, we landed in Las Vegas and headed to The Orleans Hotel. We were immediately greeted by the sight of a large number of guests in pinup and rockabilly styled clothes. Vintage inspired and true vintage in every direction that we looked.

Three lovely ladies shopping in the vendor area

Friday we enjoyed the fashions of a number of vintage inspired designers at the annual fashion show. Later we migrated out to the pool to watch the men’s swimwear competition. A wide variety of men’s swim fashions were modeled, but the finalists all had matching shirt and trunk sets. Friday evening greeted us with a sick baby and mommy, so it was decided that they would fly home early on Saturday.

Three finalists in the Men’s Swimwear Contest

Rachel looking fabulous by the pool

Evening wear for a dinner out

A car show on Saturday provided a well-needed break from being inside a building for hours on end. A huge number of vendor booth were available to satisfy any vintage fashion desire. Hundreds of well appointed cars greeted visitors with personalities as flashy and unique as each owner.

With the pool beckoning once again, I headed back to watch the couple’s swimwear competition. Three couples consisted of a man and a woman, but one couple was two women with the same bathing suit. Funny story for that one: one lady found the suit in a vintage store, the other found the identical suit at Goodwill for $5! With only four couples competing, the judges decided to offer a prize to the 4th place couple in addition to the top three. Upon completion of the contest, those of us in the audience were graced by a hula performance by CocoTiki.

Couple’s Swimsuit Competitors

CocoTiki Performance

Returning from the pool I noticed a familiar face near the elevators. It turned out that it was Bernie Dexter! I patiently waited for a few minutes to have an opportunity to chat with her, and let me tell you, she is a gem of a lady! Very kind and gracious and genuinely interested in sharing a conversation.

Shane with Bernie Dexter

At 2 AM Saturday night / Sunday morning, Levi and the Rockats took the stage in the ballroom. I enjoyed watching the band play. After snapping a number of pictures from the front edge of the stage, I ventured to the back of the dance floor, scoping out if anyone knew East Coast or Lindy Hop Swing Dancing. A few partners were found and I ended up dancing until 7 AM!

Levi Dexter singing

The hard-core crowd that danced until 7 AM!

A sleepy Sunday morning gave way to the big event of the day: Tiki Pool Party, with a women’s swimsuit competition. Fifteen competitors all wearing a wonderful variety of swimwear from yesteryear. The judges had a hard time deciding on who they wanted for 3rd place, so in the end a 4th place contestant was also named. Upon conclusion of the competition, I was in a pinup photographers paradise: a pool filled to the brim with beautiful women wearing vintage swimsuits of all designs! In all, over one thousand pictures to sort from my time in the pool area.

Women’s Swimsuit Competitors

Four Finalists (sadly this is the best picture captured)

Candi La Donna, Angie Cuen, Miss MozzyDee, Maritza Reyes Munguia, Cindy Valadez.

Eleanor Paige

Crystal Dawn and Chantel Hilton

Chantel Hilton

Shelly Ruiz

Bonnie Valentine and Chantel Hilton

The evening lead to catching the tail end of burlesque bingo, which I wasn’t planning on attending but ended up being quite a fun event. After, a trip to the ballroom was in order to conclude the evening with more dancing and spending time with new found friends.

Burlesque Bingo

Monday morning rolled around and it was time to say goodbye to Las Vegas for this trip and start planning for next year!

More pictures to come as the backlog of images from the weekend is sorted through. Watch Viva Las Vegas 18 gallery for more images in the next few days.