I met Olga Rudenko through a common friend 2 years ago. She was introduced to me as an "aspiring photographer", which, if you have been a burlesque performer for a while, can actually be a terrible recommendation. But what got me was that she said that she's up for anything - not "if it's interesting enough" or "if you lose some weight" as many male Russian photographers tend to say to ladies they have just met.
A week later we were in a public park with a 150 candles, a pig's heart and my huge victorian showgirl dress, at 10 o'clock in the morning on what I recall as Saturday. The pictures turned out to be absolutely perfect and what can I say, we did it again and again to the point where we are planning to create a calendar with our work to be released for 2018.
And here's our latest thing, the promo my "Golden Twenties" act.
This costume is 2 old ones put together - my "Monkey Jazz" number that I used to do for a few months back in 2014 and the golden flapper dress I made to dance to live jazz by Kikipickes in 2016 (or 2015?). I had them lying around and being sad for a while and at some point during my fall-2016 costuming purge I tried to challenge myself to make use of at least some of the expensive rubbish that I have amassed over the years.
This one gave me the golden embroidered fabric and snaps:
And from this one I have salvaged the red vintage ostrich feathers, all the appliqués, gloves, shoes, rhinestones and the 55 tons of beaded fringe that used to decorate the bottom of the dress:
After a month of work and maybe way too many trips to my rhinestone dealer, I had a costume that was flashy, easy to travel with (unlike most of my costumes here I managed to find a good fabric that wasn't silk and didn't crease terribly from travelling) and relatively cheap. That is, until I got this gorgeous coque boa as a birthday present from my amazing mom. It takes 1/3 of my big suitcase and 1/2 of a usual European dressing room. I might swap it for more practical ostrich at some point.
The only small challenge that I faced with this costume was creating a headdress that would look like a lattice on an apple pie, but that was something anyone who has ever attended a craft class in primary school could do, maybe sans the wiring and rhinestoning. The base is felt with thick aluminium wire added at the edges. The feathers are detachable for ease of travel. The entire costume, except for the boa can be folded and put in a medium-sized laundry bag.
The nude deep plunge bra is from Intimissimi and for the panties I copied the pattern of my favourite high-waisted pair from Ann Summers.
Overall cost of this outfit was maybe 150 euro if we don't count the boa and the pieces that I already had and that have been used in paid shows for a while before I retired them. It was around 15 hours of sewing and rhinestoning. Easy.
P.S. I would like to start taking costuming commissions starting June 2017. Email me if you're interested!