I love the 1992 Dracula adaptation with Winona Ryder and Gary Oldman. While watching the film in a Carson City theater auditorium last year (Fathom Events hosted a set of 30th anniversary showings back in October), I was struck by the idea of doing a pinup shoot featuring the count’s three hot vampire brides. Fast-forward to the end of April, and my dream was not only reality, it’s on the cover of Retro Lovely‘s “Halloween in April” special edition, Volume 1!
My friends Miss Melody Noir and Lena Von Noir kindly agreed to be my sister brides for the shoot, and Marilee Caruso – my favorite photographer! – signed on to do makeup, hair, and (of course) take the pictures.
I love pinup, I like cosplay, and Disney theme parks have been my jam since I was a lazy-eyed baby in an eye patch singing “A Pirates Life for Me” like a drunken sailor. So it isn’t a stretch (haha, just wait for this pun payoff!) to assume I’d want to submit something to Retro Lovely‘s Disney-themed Mousequerade special edition.
Marilee Caruso did the pretty hair and makeup and took the photos for our six-page feature. I didn’t think I’d be able to pull off an early-1970s look, but Marilee made it work and I ended up loving the results. She also shot Missy Maybe’s lovely cover set for the same issue!
I love Blade Runner. It’s my favorite neo-noir film, and one of the rare novel adaptations that’s at least as good as the original source material. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I recently cosplayed my favorite replicant character from the movie, Rachael, for a photoshoot with Marilee Caruso.
Marilee did the 1940s-inspired “Rachael” hair (yes, there are rolls present) and makeup, and we used her classic “film noir” set, brand-new lamps, and some neon-red lighting to get a 1980s-does-1940s-gritty-mystery look. I’m wearing the Mariette Jacket by Pinup Girl Clothing with the Bad Girl Pencil Skirt in faux leather from the Vixen by Micheline Pitt line and Re-Mix reproduction Babydoll pumps.
Marilee also did the beautiful makeup and hair, which works well with the fashion aesthetic even though we intended it to be fantasy. The dress is by Kay Gnagey of Originals by Kay and is based on an original ensemble in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s fashion collection. The Chantilly lace shawl is an antique, and the fan is from Amazon with a vintage silk ribbon from Etsy.
I was basically channeling one of my old Vampire: the Masquerade LARP characters, a dancer from Clan Toreador whom I named Lily after Lily Bart in Edith Wharton’s House of Mirth. Marilee did some very romantic Rachael-from-Blade-Runner-ish hair and makeup, and I wore one of my “Elisabeth” dressing gowns from Catherine D’Lish, a black lace bodysuit from Torrid, garter belt and stockings by What Katie Did, and a pair of signed Manolo Blahnik Campari pumps I got third-hand for like $35. Oh, and the fangs are one of two great custom pairs I got from Kaos Kustom Fangs.