A Year in Pin Up – 2017

Time for the annual best-of list. So here are the highlights for our 2017 Year in Pin Up.

Week. By. Week

Week 1: January 1-7

The week we learned about the man-eating singing mermaids musical film. #swoon

Week 2: January 8-14


This photo of Gypsy Rose Lee. Well, it was her birthday…..

Week 3: January 15-21

The week more than 3 million women around the U.S. marched against racism, sexism and bigotry.

Week 4: January 22-28


The week we lost Mary Tyler Moore. RIP.

Week 5: January 29-February 4


The week of Bang Bang Von Loola’s pirate adventures.

Week 6: February 5-11


That week of Mainbocher …


…and screenings in Illinois

Week 7: February 12-18

Circa 1950s. From vintagegal.tumblr.com.

Circa 1950s. From vintagegal.tumblr.com.

That week we sealed everything with a kiss.

Week 8: February 19-25

The week of Amazon Barbie.

Week 9: February 26-March 4

That week we worshiped Janelle Monae’s panniers.

And Emma Stone’s fringe.

Week 10: March 5-11

That week we were all about lifting women up.

Week 11: March 12-18

Our director with Ginger Rose.

The week of the screening in NoCo.

Week 12: March 19-25

Lauren Dukoff for Harper’s Bazaar.

That week we said sexiness comes from confidence.


Week 13: March 26-April 1

Miss Dotty DeMure by by JRM Photography (left) and Jill Kerswill Photography (right) via the Nylon Swish.

The week we put on our stockings.

Week 14: April 2-8

The week we discovered the Old Milwaukee pin up beer cans.

Week 15: April 9-15

The week we discovered burlesque mermaids.

Week 16: April 16-22


That week we were all about gender bending.

Because, makeup.


And princess dresses.

Oh, and tattoos.

Week 17: April 22-29

That week we closed out a film festival.

And won best documentary


Week 18: April 30-May 6

Rita Ora. Benjamin Norman for The New York Times

The week we swooned over this.

Oh, and did a little thing called a podcast….

Week 19: May 7-13


Bellocq. It was always Bellocq.

Week 20: May 14-20

Whitney Bell’s show “I Didn’t Ask For This: A Lifetime of Dick Pics.” Photo by Michael Mendoza for Vice.

The week of dick pics.

Week 21: May 21-27

A scene from a vigil outside the Town Hall in Manchester, England, on May 23.
Leon Neal/Getty Images

The week Ariana Grande became an unintentional symbol for people attempting to shut down the voices and empowerment of girls and young women.

We still ache for Manchester.

Week 22: May 28-June 3

Did you really need to ask?

Week 23: June 4-10

I still say the shorts would look hella better with flip flops.

Week 24: June 11-17

Angelique Noire by Tibrina Hobson/Getty

That week we celebrated black pin ups.

Week 25: June 18-24

The week boys at Exeter protested their uniforms…. by wearing skirts.

Week 26: June 25-July 1


Le clitoris – Animated Documentary (2016) from Lori Malépart-Traversy on Vimeo.

The week we discovered Le Clitoris

Week 27: July 2-8

The week we went vintage for July 4th.

Week 28: July 9-15

The week we saw I Love Lucy in color.

Week 29: July 16-22

June Rivas dressed in cosplay after her boss told her a headscarf and ponytail were “unprofessional.”

Because we’re all about cosplay… and fighting back against the system.

Week 30: July 23-29

When we met the Rolling Stones.

Week 31: July 30-August 5

Rose McGowan. Betty Boop. This made our week.

Week 32: August 6-12

Ashley Graham as seen in the New Yorker.

Two words: Ashley Graham.

Week 33: August 13-19

The back end of the pages and media files for the interactive online documentary for Pin Up! The Movie.

The week we launched our interactive documentary.

Week 34: August 20-26

Selena Gomez’s BTS of Fetish really caught your eye.

Week 35: August 27-September 2

Meet the LadyByrds. Girl band. Topless. #firsts

Week 36: September 3-9

*sigh* Paris Blues. With Louis Armstrong, Sydney Poitier and Paul Newman.

Week 37: September 10-16

Weegee (Arthur Fellig)/International Center of Photography via Getty Images)

Weegee + movie theaters + infrared + 1940s = photographic gold.

Week 38: September 17-23

Al Brule, September 1941

We KNEW you really liked #CalendarWednesday.

Week 39: September 24-30

Ernest Chiriaka 1954

Like really really liked Calendar Wednesday.

Week 40: October 1-7

THIS. From AJ+ on Facebook.

Week 41: October 8-14

Courtesy Messy Nessy Chic.

The week of Friday the 13th. During October. And five places where you don’t want to get stuck.

Week 42: October 14-21

Melanie Greensmith of Wheels and Dollbaby. Photo: Steven Siewert

The week Wheels and Dollbaby called it quits.

Week 43: October 22-28

Carrie Fisher. The Last Jedi. Why General Leia is important. #imnotcryingyourecrying

Week 44: October 29-November 4

This seasonal gif.

Week 45: November 5-11

The week we celebrated Veteran’s Day, and remembered the women who served in the US Navy as WAVES.

Week 46: November 12-18

Esther García López / TetraTheRipper

The week we were reminded why it’s so important for an artist to get credit for her work.

Week 47: November 19-25

Because who doesn’t need Prince roller skates?

Week 48: November 26-December 2

Rita Heyworth. The Bee Gees. ‘Nuf said.

Week 49: December 3-9

Just watch. It’s mesmerizing.

Week 50: December 10-16

Meet the girl behind Alice in Wonderland.

Week 51: December 17-23

I’m looking for the sequel: revenge of the model.

Week 52: December 24-30

That week we (FINALLY) released our “Girls Like That” music video.














Your Week In Pin Up Issue 57: The Holiday Weekend Edition

3 June 2017

We’re All About the Fireworks

Editing, Editing, Editing

We’re using this “Coming Soon” card for pages that are under construction.

We’ve got about 20 of the video stories for the i-doc completed and expect to have the initial site launch in the next week or so.

Fingers crossed.

Now Back to Your Regularly Scheduled Update

Via PopSugar

Or, magnetic eye lashes. Yes, this is a thing.

Age is Only a Number, Part 1.

Dance like no one is looking.

Age is Only a Number, Part 2.

Pin up looks good at any age… even in these “what if” images.

Age is Only a Number, Part 3.

I’m hoping I look as good at 100 as the Pignaton twins.

This. GIF.







The Bata Shoe Museum

The Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto.

I was in Toronto doing archival research and presenting at a conference and came across the gem of the Bata Shoe Museum. It’s the in the northwest-ish section of the city, near the University of Toronto.

It’s amazing.

I posted some of the images from the museum on Instagram, but one exhibit really caught my attention. It’s called Fashion Victims: The Pleasures and Perils of Dress in the 19th Century. It looked at the role the industrial revolution had in the process of making shoes, and the fashion connected with footwear.

From the wall text at the exhibit:

In stark contrast to the somber business suits and sensible shoes worn by men, 18th- century-inspired fashion reinforced negative notions about women as slaves to fashion. It also helped to frame womens’ role as consumers rather than producers.

Gold bespoke boots at the Bata Shoe Museum.

This pair of boots is a great example of that. They have high heels, highly impractical, but hearkening back to court styling of the 1700s. They’re bespoke, and the handmade detail was necessary to differentiate upper class women from those from lower classes, who were wearing fashionable machine crafted shoes such as the lovely blue boots below. Upper boots feature custom gold details and were made for the individual, the lower, novel elasticized gussets for greater flexibility (in other words, they were mass produced and could fit a greater variety of foot shapes).

Mass produced boots, at the Bata Shoe Museum.

I had no idea that the color “mauve” was discovered as British chemist William Henry Perkins was trying to discover a cure for malaria. He came up with a new dye that made the formerly-royal color of purple accessible to the masses. According to the wall text at the museum, it also made Perkins a very wealthy man. The color was a huge success.

Mauve shoes at the Bata Shoe Museum.


I love this pair of red boudoir slippers, which, like the gold-plated bespoke boots above, have high heels reminiscent of 18th century styles. They’re so completely impractical, but completely lovely, with the severe point at the toe and the ribbons to anchor the shoe to the foot. Of course, something like this would never be worn outside. But that’s part of their pleasure.

Boudoir slippers at the Bata Shoe Museum.


Your Week in Pin Up Issue 56: The Traveling Edition

26 June 2017

Losing Track of Time and Catching Up

Our Public Service Announcement


Le clitoris – Animated Documentary (2016) from Lori Malépart-Traversy on Vimeo.

Via the amazeballs Lori Malépart-Traversy. Must see.

Too Fat. Too Slutty. Too Loud.

I’m not a big fan of Anne Helen Peterson’s writing style at times, but she does say what I’m thinking. And her new book kind of sums up the conundrum facing women in contemporary culture.

Maybe we’re just too female???

Not Forgetting.

And the Hello Beautiful article included our bae Ashleeta!

Repeat after me: pin up isn’t white.

Thank you.

Our Public Service Announcement, Part Dueux

No, Betty White wasn’t that blonde bombshell. That would be Betty Brosmer.

This is Betty White in her youth. Still a bombshell.

This. GIF.






A Day in the Archives with Berenice Abbott

Berenice Abbott, Daytona Beach. Published on Art Blart. Courtesy Getty Images.

I’ve been spending the last few days in the archives at the Ryerson Image Centre in Toronto.

Archives are strange places. As the book Archive Stories points out, archives have individual personalities and identities. Some are staid and bureaucratic. Others are more informal. Individuals can be archives, as well as some websites in addition to bricks and mortar spaces.

The Ryerson Image Centre is a type of hybrid. On the one hand it’s terribly structured, with limits on what photographs can be viewed or handled due to the status of the negatives or images. One of the archivists walked me through a number of uncatalogued images; other were too fragile to even be handled. A giant climate controlled space, similar to a huge refrigerator, is used to store the photographic negatives.

But on the other hand, it’s a very loose space. It’s busy, with archivists and researchers talking to one another in normal voices. Some people wore headsets to block out the distractions from people talking and writing.

A quiet space it’s not.

Nonetheless, I found myself getting caught up in the “time” of the archive I was researching. I’m doing a new project about female photographers. Berenice Abvott’s archives are held, in part, by Ryerson. I’ve spent the last week reading her notebooks, looking at a (very small) selection of her images, and reading her oral history.

Berenice Abbott, billboard at Palisades Park New Jersey.

I’m struck immediately about how little things have changed. In an interview Abbott did for an oral history project at the International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House, she said,

There are a great many social factors that guide women in one direction, but this is not natural. It is not human nature. They are being absolutely deprived of their birthright. It starts way back before birth. They’re cooked by the age of four.

This was in 1975. Forty-one years ago.

I’m going to hash out some thoughts on this in the next few days. But one of the reason I’m drawn to Abbott is the detail of her photographs. In the Route 1 series, she traveled America’s Atlantic Coast from Maine to Florida in the mid-1950s. This is a lovely detail of a particular point in American life, and worth sharing.

Sunoco Station, Berenice Abbott. Published on Art Blart. Courtesy Getty Images.




Profiles in Art: Rebecca Bedell

Art History offers the knowledge and the critical skills that equip us to probe, analyze, make sense of and make meaningful the visual aspects of our environment.—not just paintings hanging on museum walls, but the buildings we walk past each day, the parks we visit, the spatial configurations of the places we inhabit, the digital advertisements that assault us all through the day.

See this fabulous interview with Art Historian Rebecca Bedell for more.

Rebecca Bedell is an Associate Professor of the Art of the United States, Art Department, Wellesley College.  Professor Bedell is author of The Anatomy of Nature: Geology and American Landscape Pai…

Source: Profiles in Art: Rebecca Bedell

Your Week in Pin Up Issue 55: The Superhero Edition

12 June 2017

Hint: They’re Not All Comic Book Characters

This Powerful Anti-Rape Message.

Was it Rape Then? from Lady Brain by Casey Gates on Vimeo.

The short film Was It Rape, Then? uses language from Shakespeare to talk about the issue of sexual assault. Beautiful.

RIP Adam West.

If you were from a certain generation, he WAS Batman.

If you were from another, he was the voice of the Mayor of Quahog on Family Guy.

Adam West died last week at the age of 88.

Our Quote of the Week

I want to make a great superhero film. Not a great female superhero film.

Jenkins and Godot on set. Warner Brothers Entertainment.

From the set of Wonder Woman. Thank you for succeeding, Patty Jenkins.

Hello, Bettie.

Our repost of this great blog from Graphic Policy on the reappearance of Bettie Page in the comics had you all buzzing.

This. GIF.


Your Week in Pin Up Issue 54: The Wonder Woman Edition

5 June 2017

Hint: They’re Not All Superheroes. Or Women

OK, So We’ll Start in Themyscira

Because, Wonder Woman. But, seriously, the film also set a record as the highest single day gross for a movie directed by a woman EVER. And the biggest opening day for a female comic book superhero film. Oh, and the biggest opening weekend for a film directed by a woman.

And, according to a Forbes article Saturday morning, recapping opening day:

Fun fact, had men been barred from Wonder Woman screenings last night, the film still would have grossed more than the entire opening weekend of King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.


These Gorgeous Photos from World War II

Because men can be pin ups too.

From a new book published by Taschen.

That’s Montgomery Clift, Honey!

The amazing 1961 film The Misfits was on cable the other night. Clark Gable, Montgomery Clift, Eli Wallach, and, of course, Marilyn Monroe. I’ve loved the film since I was a kid.

The showing was part of a Turner Classics Movie Spotlight on Clark Gable, who died just days after filming completed in November 1960 at age 59. It was the last film completed by both Gable and Monroe.

BTW, TCM is featuring Audrey Hepburn Mondays and Gay Hollywood Thursdays for the entire month of June.

The Google Doodle from June 3rd

Celebrating the incomparable Josephine Baker.

This. GIF.


Your Week in Pin Up Issue 53: The Memorial Day Edition

28 May 2017

We’re Remembering this Memorial Day

First Up: The Good News

We were so glad to hear that Laura Jayne Ketchum was found safe.

But Then, Manchester

A scene from a vigil outside the Town Hall in Manchester, England, on May 23.
Leon Neal/Getty Images

The terror attack on Manchester, as many have argued, was an assault not only on Western freedoms, but also specifically on young women and Ariana Grande’s message of feminism and empowerment.

The youngest victim was eight years old.

Hatred Breeds Terrorism

Outside Manchester Arena after the attack. Photo by Dave Thompson/Getty Images

Yes, we’re taking a serious turn here, but the Manchester attack was horrifying.

But it’s also symptomatic of the toxic political climate we’re currently encountering from fundamentalist groups and many political leaders here in the US. Terrorism extends beyond a person’s religious ideology or skin color. It’s fed by ideologues, and based in hatred, fear, and bigotry. A desire not to honor the aesthetics of the past, but to go back to a time when only certain members of society had privileges. A desire to diminish people.

That’s unacceptable.

We just want to be completely clear: girls and women matter. Period.

But Kudos to Ariana

(Valerie Macon / AFP/Getty Images)

In the wake of the tragedy, Ariana Grande didn’t back down. She instead announced a benefit concert in Manchester for the victims.

The compassion, kindness, love, strength and oneness that you’ve shown one another this past week is the exact opposite of the heinous intentions it must take to pull off something as evil as what happened Monday. YOU are the opposite.

Date to be announced.

This. GIF.


Your Week In Pin Up Issue 52: The Body Positive Edition

21 May 2017

AKA Girl Power. AKA Fourth Wave Feminism.

It’s Not Up to You to Say What Is… and Isn’t… Empowering

Dirty Martini

A former videographer in the burlesque world got a little bit of a pushback on Facebook when he tried to say that burlesque can’t be feminist and empowering because women are taking off their clothes and men look at them. Oh, and he’s protecting his six-year-old daughter.

I’m not posting the link to his page because he doesn’t need any more attention.

Me, vanquishing asshats.

But here are my main points in rebuttal:

  1. No one has any right to tell anyone else what that individual finds empowering … or not.
  2. When you say, “I like you but I can’t condone what you do” you ARE attempting to silence or shame that person.
  3. Misogyny.

(steps off soapbox, ends rant)

Speaking of Lists (steps back on soapbox)

  1. Wonder Woman is feminist.

Glad to clear that up for you. h/t Gal Gadot

BTW, Dick Pics? Isn’t that so 2012???

Quote by Simone Fiasco, from Whitney Bell’s exhibition

But at least one artist found a way to respond.

Whitney Bell’s show “I Didn’t Ask For This: A Lifetime of Dick Pics.” Photo by Michael Mendoza for Vice.

Reminder 2,822 that Beauty Knows No Age Barriers

Yazemeenah Rossi is GORGEOUS at any age (she’s 61).

This. Gif.

Artist Xaviera Lopez. CHECK OUT HER INSTAGRAM!!!