Interview and Feature with Debra Shirley

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FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY, I got to interview and write a feature on the extremely talented hat and fascinator designer, Debra Shirley. You all know who she is from my Victorian photoshoot I did last year, my Burlesque shoot I did last year, my recent article on her with my latest hat from her in the, “BLACK VEILED BEAUTY” article, and more. If you haven’t seen all those posts, click on her tag here or type her name into SEARCH here to see all the posts I’ve done on her. 

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Here is my interview that I did with her. I absolutely am in love with Debra and her talent!!

1. How did you get into making these gorgeous hats, fascinators, and head pieces?
1).  Princess Diana inspired my love of hats at the age of 10, when I borrowed a book on her from the library. She was so stunningly beautiful in all of the hats that she wore that I’m certain she seared my 10 year old brain into linking beauty with hat wearing.  It did not occur to me that I could design hats until I was studying fashion design in my 20’s. Whatever class that I wanted to take during the summer was full and I did not want to remain idle so I ended up taking a Millinery class to keep busy.  I quickly became enamored with the art, and the skills involved in creating came oddly natural to me.
2. How long have you been designing your art?
2).  I first studied millinery in the 1990’s, and soon after was able to start a full time job as a Milliner in a high-end Bridal Salon in Chicago, designing wedding veils and headpieces. As can sometimes happen with trying to earn a living, I lost focus on my true passion for hats and playful headwear. It wasn’t until 2014 that I decided to devote time and energy into creating hats and fascinators and getting them out into the world.
3. Did you teach yourself or take a class when you were starting out?
3).  Veronica Chin, a very talented Milliner at Burning Bush Millinery was my millinery teacher when I first started out.  I took millinery 1, and 2 which is all that the school offered. The school ended up adding a 3rd level class to its curriculum, because of the interest of myself and a few other students at the time.  I learned classic techniques such as blocking, pattern making, wiring and embellishing.  I took what I learned and expanded as much as I could. Each time you make a new piece you can learn from it.
4. What are your favorite events to create your fascinators and hats for?
4).  I love to create hats and fascinators for any event that a woman wants to dress up for and feel fabulous. That could be a day at the horse races, a polo match, a ladies luncheon or even a special photo shoot!
5. What’s your main source of inspiration?
5).  Inspiration can strike in various ways. One of my favorite ways to be inspired is to work off of the colors or details in a dress or favorite outfit. I like to pull the concepts out of the print of a garment and bring them to “life” in headwear, as if the hat is an extension of the outfit.  Sometimes I am inspired by a separate component or embellishment such as a flower or feather.  One piece can get me excited and I start looking for other pieces to go along with it, until the next thing you know, its a finished hat!
6. What’s the best compliment that you have received from a client?
6).  The best compliment that I have ever received from a hat client?  It doesn’t get any better than  “I felt so beautiful wearing your creation” the key word is “felt”. I love when women “feel” beautiful  in addition to looking beautiful.
Debra and I have developed a great relationship and I’ve probably said this before but I’m so extremely happy that I met her and have become friends with her. I hope to see her soon. I hope you enjoy her beautiful photos to give you an idea of what she can create and make sure to check out all her sites.
P.S: Thank you Debra, my talented fellow artist friend!
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December Hits/Misses, and Holiday Faves

I hadn’t done a Product Hit or Miss video in awhile so I thought since it is the end of the year I thought it would be great to do one. Also since it’s the holiday season, I included some of my wonderful Holiday Faves. Hope you enjoy the video and make sure to always subscribe to my youtube channel if you haven’t already and click like on this video as well please. Thank you everyone! Happy Holidays!

Gothic Halloween Beauty Photoshoot

I’ve been enjoying doing my spooky October posts and when my gal Sarah Mushenheim (lifewithlilred) asked to do a Halloween collaboration post, I was all too happy. Anything that has to do with Halloween makes me happy. Stay tuned for Sarah’s Halloween post coming soon as well.

   The second photoshoot I did after my “Mrs. Freddy Krueger” was more of a “Spooky Sex Kitten” shoot with my custom-made vinyl cork screw boots, a black criss cross mini dress, and my sexy “bedroom wave” wig, (which by the way, I loved how I looked and wished my hair actually looked like that especially with that particular hair cut. We rotated taking both color and black and white/monochrome photographs. With my hair style and the dark makeup, I almost felt like a French or silent movie actress. I was felt very confident shooting yesterday which made it that more fun.

   Since I wasn’t doing a typical Halloween shoot where you just dress up in any costume and stand there,  I came up with the idea to utilize my Halloween decorations and props in each photo. I thought the juxtaposition would look really cool and give the pictures a spooky and edgy but beautiful look. Here is my GOTHIC HALLOWEEN BEAUTY set. Hope you enjoy my photos and post and comment down below about what some of your favorite costumes have been.

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Again with My big sister Rhonda

39660F16-DE4C-4B5F-B74E-3958875244E3   My big sis who I recently did a feature on my site is the Tim Burton tattooed and amazing horror makeup artist, Rhonda Burnett. She just posted this photo of her on social media and I thought the look was brilliant so I had to show it off tonight!!! Make sure to check out her first feature interview on here a few articles back!

Hope you like and make sure to check my sister out. Love my sister Rhonda!!!

10 Looks For Summer: Outfit Nine: “Universal Monster Look”

I love mixing my pinup/rockabilly style with my horror inspired pieces. Since it’s almost Autumn, I wanted my last two summer outfits to look like that they can work during the summer as well as in the fall when it starts to look cooler. For this outfit, you can definitely still rock it in cold weather, you just need to layer a jacket or sweater over it. This outfit is very versatile. 

I know this universal monster print can be found anywhere now BUT I was one of the VERY FIRST BUYERS for this material about fifteen years ago and got it from the first company that used this print so I feel extra special. I loved pairing it with my black crop top decorated with my brand new HOCUS POCUS pendant from my girl, LunaMoon. I’ve known here a long time now and love her!

  For the finishing touches, I wore this outfit in my cute Bettie Page heels and my fabulous unique strawberry flower hair clip. Hope you like this look and can inspire you in some of your looks and like I said before, this outfit can still be worn during cooler weather, just find a fabulous and/or sexy coat to keep your beauty toasty warm.

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Hope you like this fashion article and photos and be sure to stay tuned for the very last summer outfit! And make sure you subscribe and follow my site if you haven’t already.

Lots of love! xoxo