As you may know from a previous post, I was offered the fantastic opportunity to join Blair Hopkins and Lauren Oppelt, collectively known as the tour-de-force that is “Burlesque Me Baby” for the makeover of my life. And join them I did, last Saturday in the gorgeous little nook of Wales that is Llanwrtyd Wells.
It is a beautifully scenic part of Wales. I was in awe at how picturesque and quaint it was, and as I pottered around the pretty roads trying to find our venue, I marvelled at the church flower sale, the cute cafe’s and the smily locals. It also served to make me feel all the more naughty for knowing that the hold-all I clutched nervously contained a plethora of lingerie, basques, suspender belts and kinky boots.
The venue was New Hall Guest House (which I must say – under no obligation – was lovely, and the owner, June made me extremely welcome. Would recommend.)
So. . . I am plunged headfirst into a world of feathers and fans, giggles and champagne, Prince on the stereo and a room full of amazingly “up for it” girls from their 20’s to their 60s! Fabulous. Any last-minute nerves were immediately quashed on meeting Blair and Lauren. Amazing, professional women, they have a knack of making you feel instantly at ease. They are all about celebrating the beauty of the female form in all it’s many shapes and sizes, and will have you willingly flinging your clothes off faster than George Clooney could! What started as some friendly handshakes and “Have you travelled far?”s ended in a group of women, happy to be sitting around in their undies singing along to “Raspberry Beret” and swapping basques and heels as readily as you’d share your Pringles.
Seriously great atmosphere.
Make-up was first. Lauren didn’t let me look while she expertly whipped her make-up brush about my unquestioning fizzog. She chatted away, told me I was gorgeous and that my nose was cute. I think I love her . . .
Then on with the outfit and . . .
AHOY THERE SAILOR! Haha! I LOVE this shot as I’ve always fancied doing the 50s pin-up look.
The photo session itself is private and Blair is fabulous to work with. Reassuring if you’re a little hesitant, and cheering you on as and when you feel a bit more game! She talks you through every pose and gives clear directions so you’re not just stood there feeling like a bit of a twonk as I had feared. I got so carried away I think I slightly strained a back muscle sticking my ass out a-la-50’s pin-up girl stylee!! She is indeed a true pro – and made my bazongas look twice as large as they really are. ***high five***
We did two looks in total, and went from 50’s pin-up to a more natural kind of look. Hair loose, and more sultry poses:
I love all my pics but I preferred the sailor-themed ones. My husband however loves this second look, which maybe says a lot about my mind-set: I was much more in my comfort zone when I was dressing up as a caricature than just being me.
(Can I take a minute to mention the gorgeous fans too? Handmade and kindly provided by my lovely friend over at Dengra Designs. . . thanks Kate.)
ALL the women looked gorgeous after the Blair and Lauren treatment. Here’s one of the fabulous Bernie, proprietress of the Cerdyn Villa B and all round good egg!
. . . and here’s one of my lovely new friend Jem -(who incidentally, has an ass you would sell your own granny for!)
I have to admit, I had reservations before the day arrived. Many a time in the run up to the event, I would eye myself critically in the mirror and think “what the HELL am I doing?!”
Well here’s what I was doing: I was having fun. I was showing off. I was being girly, and dressing up, and feeling confidant about my looks. Since Mummy-hood arrived, that’s not a feeling I’ve been to au-fait with of late . . . it felt nice.
I left Llanwrtyd Wells with a spring in my step, my chin up, and my huge false eyelashes still a-flutter . . . this descended into feeling a bit silly when buying petrol from a slightly baffled, elderly asian gentleman whilst in full burlesque make-up on the way home . . . which escalated to feeling brilliant again when I saw the pictures.
THANK YOU to all the ladies at the Burlesque Ladies Weekender. You were so welcoming and such good fun – I hope our paths cross again one day.
And a VERY special thank you to Burlesque Me Baby’s Lauren and Blair for letting me be a part of what you do. You should be available on prescription! Every girl should get Burlesqued xXx