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Sweet Baby Cadillac’s Thoughts on Vintage Internet Culture

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As a disclaimer, I in no way intend for this post to be harmful mentally or likewise to anyone who identifies with any of the subcultures related to in this post.  My main subject is to discuss the reasons I decline to consider myself part of or involved in any form of Pin Up, Rockabilly or Fashion Based Retro Culture.

 

During my grand 4 years of high school, as most who entertain the same fashion style as I do; You may have labeled me as Goth, Emo or Punk. I have a multitude of photographic evidence. I’m not entirely sure why it is the kids who identify with these social cliques that seem to be the ones who grow up to dress in mid century fashion or identify as psychobilly or rockabilly. But I can guess with a fair shot it has something to do with the fact both garner attention, usually one more positive than the first. It seems to be this constant stretch for attention that drives a lot of women to dress in mid century fashion. Men’s jaws drop when they see a finely sculpted female figure in a 1950’s wiggle dress complete with glossy finger waves and mauve lipstick. I’m not at all insinuating that I do not enjoy compliments, because I do get them often and they are much appreciated. But why exactly do most people {80% females} Identify with this sub culture we label as “Pin-Up” and furthermore, why don’t I?

 

My largest and most grounded issue is what I like to call “pageant syndrome.”

I have attended the Detroit Autorama for the last 4 consecutive years. Every year they hold a Pin Up Contest for Miss Autorama. If this is something you want to do, by all means that is your prerogative. But if I show up dressed as I am, I would hope that you do no immediately start eyeing me and avoiding my glances in that way women do when they feel they have competition. {It happens all the time, so do not pretend that it doesn’t happen.} I have never participated in any of these contests for I feel they pit women against one another for rather outwardly trivial reasons. This is exactly what I call pageant syndrome. Especially because I know it happens over the internet as well. I have felt that slight ping of jealousy over some of the vintage fashionistas I see on the internet. And I could try to blog all about retro fashion and kitschy things such as Modern June Cleaver and Amelia Jetson. {I love those beautiful ladies so please do not assume I am bashing them.} But I am not they. And I never will be. So instead of being jealous about their followers, their figures and their massive wardrobe collection. I concentrate on being me. I have done away with my own pageant syndrome habits and learned to love myself for exactly what I represent. And I do not represent Pin Up Culture.

To be frank, I dislike most modern reproduction vintage clothing. And if you feel this is me being a purist, I apologize. I have had and experienced both true antique vintage and reproduction clothing and I feel the manner in which modern and antique clothing is constructed is vastly different. Antique clothing has stood the test of time in my book, and the fabrics and methods used haven’t been duplicated by modern clothing. I know this is for ease of care, freedom of movement etc. But deep in my heart I feel they made clothes this way for a reason. My posture, the thickness of fabric smoothing all the right places and the sturdiness of each piece is something I haven’t found in many repop brands. We focus so much on being “#CollectifGirlOfTheDay or #BAITFootwearBabe” that I feel we try to replicate who we are seeing in these internet presences. The pressure to be liked and use the tags social media has developed to get noticed is something that chokes me. And I do it too. I can be just as guilty. But lately I have found myself wanting to rid my social media of the riff raff and just do me. We all want to connect with people that share our passions, but does anyone else feel like it has turned into more of a sporting what I have and what I can do contest?

I could probably usher in quite a few followers if I posted the hash tag “Pin Up” “Pin Up Girl” and others after every picture of that quality I post. But to be bold, I am not a woman who comforts sexually deprived men in time of war or other situations. I am a modest woman who lives more a life of my Grandmother in 1940 than Some Red Hot Babe Straddling a War Plane. Not that there is anything wrong with either. I once again just state my views of myself in this little world of “Retro Culture.”

On to my next subject, Which I know may offend some…is my lifestyle choices to be that of a Traditionalist.

Many of the women you see in the Pin Up Tag are feminists, living their lives by their career, everything short of a stay at home wife and help meet. I have also met some women in the Rockabilly and Pin Up culture who despise just that. I am a live and let live person, because debating takes far too much time away from the time I could be spending productively, So I do not mean to suggest your way of living is wrong. I hope you are happy doing as you do, and hope that you allow me the same justice. I simply wish more people would identify the Retro cultures as more than just fashion. I love history, the tried and true methods of mid century living and I wish that Retro communities embraced more than fashion. That the tags weren’t all #OOTD’S And “Unique-Vintage Hauls.”

A dear friend, Anna over at A Sweet And Delicate Thing had started a hash tag back when we frequented Tumblr called Housewives Association. This was a haven for those who were seeking traditionalism. Even farther beyond the realm of vintage.  A Home Makers paradise. But I feel as though its lack of admiration came because most of those who are into Vintage aesthetics and who may be interested in the tag are not traditionalists and have absolutely no interest in such. We are few and far between.

I hope through all of this, I have not thoroughly offended anyone.  Again I am just stating my reasons behind not identifying with this specific crowd. I would love to make more connections, but I am a bit different. I can’t talk horses with most women on the “Pin Up Tag” and I can’t identify with their obsessions of Pin Up Girl Clothing or Modcloth purchases. The reason that I live as close a mid century lifestyle as possible, is for the morals, the modesty and the comfort and satisfaction it brings. Not for attention and not strictly for fashion.

 

Now, Let’s look at that punk SBC.

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Oh Man… What a laugh.

 

Anyways I hope you all enjoy your week, I hope you all are blessed and well.

XOXO Sweet Baby Cadillac.

 

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5 thoughts on “Sweet Baby Cadillac’s Thoughts on Vintage Internet Culture

  1. I have an appreciation of the vintage culture out there. I like the retro look of a simpler time. The look and the dress harkens back to a age where fashions were highly stylish. I hope there aren’t situations where people are critical of those who aren’t retro enough.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There’s exceptions to every assumption. Always. And I in no way mean to say that everyone is the same in these sub cultures. My main reason for writing this post is because today, as every day, someone made a “pin up” comment and I felt the need to clarify my feelings on the matter.

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  2. I know this is from a few months back, but I’d just like to throw my two cents in, because I find it to be a really interesting topic.

    One thing that has always made me feel rather out of place in the vintage/retro/pinup scene was the general opinion of traditional households. As you said, the majority of the pin up ladies are feminists, and as a result find the idea of being a traditional housewife repulsive. Now for me personally, my goals in life are to settle down, to be a wife and hopefully a mother. So then I feel a disconnect from that community because of the conflicting views, and it’s a shame. Because although many of these ladies will wear vintage and decorate their homes vintage, many consider the traditional lifestyle to be “taking it too far”. They are of course entitled to their opinions, as we all are, but like you were saying, I really wish it was more than just the fashion that people were interested in.

    However one point I would like to make is about the reproduction vintage clothing. Obviously it differs depending where you are, but where I live it would cost me an arm and a leg to have a wardrobe of actual vintage clothing, whereas I could get more affordable and practical (but still modest and feminine) clothing from my local reproduction vintage places, as well as sew my own dresses, much easier and with less of an impact on my bank account. But I respect your opinion and can definitely see where you’re coming from.

    And finally, as a sidenote, I just want to say thank you for this blog. As someone aspiring to be a home maker one day, I sincerely respect you. And to be quite honest, I feel like your blog inspires me to be a better woman.

    x

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    1. Oh my Dear! You have really topped the compliment chart. Thank you! Knowing that you take my words as inspiration helps me to strive to be a better woman as well. I truly appreciate your feedback. I would like to point out, I am not against reproduction, it just doesn’t work for me most of the time, but I do have many repro dresses. Sewing your own clothes in essence is as vintage as it gets. Women used to make their own clothes often! So despite the fabric being modern, I consider hand sewn goods to be vintage! I hope you come back to the blog often! I love getting to know other traditionalists! Sending you so many warm wishes and blessings!

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