Tips and Tricks

Giving Props to Our Costume/Props!

A Simple hand sewn bag to a full sized coffin and ziplock bags full of who knows what in between. Is this another burlesque storage story? Some of our subject matter may require ALOT of storage but today we’re talking about costumes & props!

One performer in particular comes to mind where props are concerned; Blanche DeBris graced us with her fabulous Sound of Music in Six Minutes act at our Honey B’s Bourbon Boylesque Show; talk about amazing prop usage! And while the Angels may not be making mountains out of their “hills”, they use props of all sizes, shapes and kinds. Here we share some of our most memorable.

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Napoleon Brokenhearts
Sugar mirrors for my evil queen routine… I didn’t mean to make the kittens have melt downs

 

 

 

 

 

Karma D’Light
Holding a gun while touching yourself attempting to be sexy…awkward. But I did it!

 

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Selina Prince
The most fun I had with a prop was making a costume out of the silk from the veil poi and a silk belly dance scarf. I loved the element of surprise but was terrified the silks would tangle.

The hardest costume was stay puft marshmallow man. I had to come in 45 minutes early every night and blow up and fill 20 balloons for the costume each night. So that was easily 80 balloons for the nerdgasm run….not counting all the tester balloons.
Another really hard prop to deal with was having two giant ziplock bags taped to the middle of me from my back to stomach…arm pit to waist and holding in the bloody parts and intestine boa the bags contained so Cora could murder me!!!!

 

Performer Formerly Known as Bridgitte Petite
When I did my Corn on the Cob balloon pop, the rest of the cast took bets on how many times I’d stab myself with my (very sharp) balloon-popper. I think it was fewer than 5 for the run, so neener-neener-neener.
“I think Jada Bella won that bet. We actually put money on it.” – Katie Angel

 

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Ginger Peach
Most challenging to make was Shredder but learning to use the magic tricks for Zatanna was an endeavor too. The Shredder costume armor was made entirely from scratch with craft foam sheets, gesso and paint. I didn’t have a template to guide the shapes or anything, so I just had to go with trial and error.

 

 

 

 

Frankie Spanxx
The bathtub is awkward and I had no idea how to make it. Luckily Lola LaVacious did it for me. My hairball and plunger are my favorite for crowd reaction. My Handbook for the Recently Deceased is the most authentic, (Thanks Mona S’Amor!) I use a lot of props!

 

 

 

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Click the pic to see the video!


Minnie Ryder

One of the most challenging props I’ve made is R2D2 out of a trash can. I was completely stumped on how to attach his head to mine until Mona S’Amor suggested a helmet of some sort and her husband found one on the side of the road the very next day. Poor R2 has difficulties with his legs and pop off panels but he’s up for a reboot so will be getting some work done on his flying appendages.
The flower petals for my Cherry Blossom routine were also a labor of love. I’m sure there’s easier ways to attach thin shiny fabric to wire frames but I’m a sucker for trying to figure things out without the internet, whether that’s a good idea or not. lol!

 

 

Coty Foxfire
Evidently, Coty only uses chairs for props. I can’t really recall any props besides my “What’s This?” routine… and that was just a Santa bag (with goodies) that we sewed. Wah, wah…..

 

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Click Pic to See Video!

 

Mona S’Amor

My biggest prop is my coffin. Found it at Goodwill, had to cut off the bottom and shorten the entire length so it could stand upright on stage at the 5th Quarter Lounge, also had to glue stuffing and fabric to the inside of it so it looked more…authentic. Standing inside it is a bitch. It’s a bit wobbly and I have to hold the door closed while in it so it doesn’t just swing open before my cue.

 

 

 

The beauty of performance art and burlesque is there is always another act to try something different, go bigger, smaller, or do something completely out of character! Who knows what kind of props we have in store for you this year…Guess you’ll need to come to our shows and find out! ❤

 

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Face Off-Face On with Angel Burlesque

Back again with more Angels baring all their face for a before/after transformation! Lola LaVacious, Frankie Spanxx, and Minnie Ryder share their pros and cons to getting their performance face on.

Lola LaVacious
Favorite part of makeup? Fav part is nailing down a character look and no matter how I’m feeling a great makeup face can put me in the right state of mind.

Least favorite? 
Least fav part is if I get literally anything in my eyes and it messes up a perfect liner job.

Favorite tool in the makeup kit?  Subtle contouring with Shimmer bronzer and highlighter really brings out my cheeks and eyes in pics and vids
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Tips and Tricks?
  New things…eyebrows can really help form a character and polish up any look…go bigger with everything…it may seem garish close up but then stand as far away from the mirror and practice faces…if you can get a hint of what’s happening..neither can your audience…just play to see what suits you best.

Last Words? 
Invest in a brush set and learn how they all work…doesn’t need to be expensive at first…makes applying so much easier and precise…watch videos ask friends take workshops and have fun!

 

Frankie Spanxx
Favorite part of makeup? I love being able to transform into a different person while never leaving my bathroom. Plus it’s nice to hide my perpetual teenager skin!

Least Favorite?
I hate having to take it off at night!AngelBurlesque_frankie
Favorite tool in the makeup kit?  
I love my eyebrow pencil! I have blonde eyebrows and without that, I have no personality onstage! Also- glitter!

Tips or Tricks? 
 I am the last person to ask for make up advice. Go to a workshop with Belle Breeze and don’t be afraid to try New things!

 

Minnie Ryder
Favorite part of makeup?  I feel super glamorous after going through the process of getting my show face on.

Least Favorite?  It’s definitely a process to put my face on. I have to carve out some quality time for myself which is sometimes difficult with a family!

Favorite Tool in the makeup kit?  Fake eyelashes! They’re a pain to put on but oh what a difference they make!
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Tips or Tricks? If you are not feeling confident in the makeup department, ask for help! Go to a workshop, watch videos, get on Pinterest and practice.

Last Words? Don’t expect to get your face perfect the first time…or the second…or a year later. It takes patience, time, and commitment. My show face is a work in progress and as long as I throw a bit of extra time and energy at it, there’s hope for me yet. 🙂

 
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Face Off / Face On with Angel Burlesque

We’re firm believers in the Angel Burlesque motto,”Real is Sexy”. And to prove it we’re going to bare all…of our face! The Angels have stepped up to the challenge to show you before/after photos of their lovely visages going from “no face” to “show face” while sharing some of their makeup pros, cons, tips, tricks and more along the way.

 

Sadie Seirēn
Favorite part of Makeup?  I love that moment when I’ve finished all my hard work and I look into the mirror and think, “Damn girl, you look good.” It makes the ten minutes of applying and reapplying my eyelashes seem worth it.
Worst part?  Leftover eyelash glue is the worst thing in the world. As I type this, I see weird black smudges in my vision because I’m left with all this glue in my eyelashes.
Favorite tool in the makeup kit?  Lip liner. Most days I don’t wear anything but Chapstick and a bit of lip liner. It makes your lips pop without the fear of smudged lipstick. (Especially if you’re super animated like me and always end up with it on your teeth and chin. How does that even happen?!) For shows, liner can make your lips look fuller and can clean up edges- no one likes lopsided lips.
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Tips or Tricks? Don’t be afraid of mixing! People often ask where I get my shade of lipstick- and I’m usually wearing three different colors to get the shade I want. I use both brown and red on my eyebrows to get the right auburn look. Blend and no one will ever know it’s multiple products- and you’ve got your own distinctive colors that fit just for you!!
Last words?  Makeup and hair can be a bit of a bitch. Sometimes you have to settle for not your best work. Just keep experimenting! It’s fun, and educational too! Just please remove makeup with coconut oil when you’re playing. You’ll dry out your skin if you use wipes multiple times in a day. smile emoticon

Christina Arabesqua
Favorite part of makeup?  I can use makeup to camouflage my flaws
Worst part?  I wish I was better at hair. Also cleaning up my mess after
Favorite tool in the makeup kit? Eyelashes FacePics-03
Tips or Tricks?  Practice and try new things
Anything else?  Everyone is different so find what works best for you!

Jada Bella
Favorite part of makeup?  I love using make to highlight what I like about myself. I really enjoy using bold colors to make my eyes pop.
Worst part?  That I don’t have the funds to buy all the make up!
Favorite tool in the makeup kit?  My secret weapon is my Mac liquilast eyeliner. Seriously, this stuff rocks. It takes some practice, but once you become accustomed to the brush, this eyeliner does not move once it dries. Through sweat, water, and occasionally tears of joy, it stays put. Love it.FacePics-01Tips or Tricks?  Don’t be afraid to sit down with yourself and practice. Do some research on what type of face you have, shape of your eyes, etc. Use colors that accentuate your eye color, learn to shape your eyebrows, find the right lip color. You can find out almost anything on the Internet nowadays. Search away.

Last words?  Remember that using make up is to help accent the beauty you already have. It’s not something to hide behind. 🙂

And there you have it!  But that’s not all, folks! We have another trio of ladies who can’t wait to bare face AND Katie Angel has a “magical” journey of her step by step process for preparing herself for a show!  See you soon!

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Loving Care for Costumes with Lola LaVacious

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It’s been a long day/week/month of performing. You walk in the door to the black hole of costume pieces, accessories, crafting supplies, etc. How do you get from this mysterious and neverending story of a burlesque lifestyle in a pile back to the luxuriously organized space? Is it even possible? Of course it is and Lola LaVacious is here with tips and tricks on how to clean and store your wardrobe so they will hold up for another performance. Without further ado, the vivacious Lola LaVacious!

That moment a few days after a show where there are a bajillion various props, shoes, underthings, fringed gloves and other lovely sparkly effluvia scattered in my house makes me want to just close the door for another day to deal with the rainbowtastic mess. Having a solid storage plan in place gets the job done quickly and adds a modicum of satisfaction to my day and it can for you too!

shoe1. Cleaning Costume Pieces
Clothing:
I use my handy spray bottle full of cheap bottom shelf vodka to spray the inside of gowns corsets and other items that come in contact with sweat which are unable to be hand washed or dry cleaned. Using plastic hangars I drape the gowns inside out and hang the corsets folded over or clipped then spray away with a towel underneath to catch overspray. A light mist is all that is needed to get the yuck out and a 24 hour drying time.

Shoes:
Quick wipe with damp towel in and out and on the bottoms and them stiff with white tissue paper.

Hoisery: Dreft hand wash and roll in towels lay flat to dry

storagewish2. Costume Storage:
Gowns/Skirts/Undergarments:
For full complete costumes I like to use plastic hangars with the ability to hook bra and thong /panties to and hang gown and skirt. Hangers are also used for other gowns, skirts, dresses and pants if the material will not fall out of shape when hung. A Stand alone closet system will help protect fabric from dust and keep them in place. I recommend having a charcoal bag at the bottom to absorb any odor or dampness.

Shoes:
Character shoes or regular satin heels without embellishments are stored on a shoe rack after they have been wiped down and can be stuffed with white wrapping tissue paper to retain the toe box shape and absorb odors.
For embellished glittered or patent leather shoes I cover them with cotton sox as to prevent any glitter or bling from coming off and to protect the patent leather from smudges or accidental scratches. These are so helpful when packing for travel.

Gloves, hosiery and scarves are stored in mini plastic drawers lined silk scarves for easy and nice accessibility.

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Furs:

If you incorporate fur in your costumes or have fur coats, shrugs etc DO NOT use vodka spay on the fur! I like to use the brush attachment on a vacuum cleaner to use on the fur itself…if there is sweat in the liner dab with cotton cloth and allow to dry with liner out a few days before hanging on a wooden hanger or fabric wrapped hanger. If concerned with dust there are wonderful fabric garment bags or a sheet can be used in a pinch!


Extra Tips!

*Hanging garment bags are wonderful for toting costumes but not a great idea for long term storage as the plastics in some bags may affect natural fibers such as silk or furs.

*From dedicated jewelry trees and racks to full-blown curio cabinets, there are many ways to store jewelry and accessories!

*Lavender scented cedar blocks in a closet or storage area help keep the critters away without smelling like a forest or moth balls.

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Hope you enjoyed reading through a few of our tips and tricks to costume storage and more! These ideas may not work for all of our Angels, fans and friends however they are a great starting point to find what may work for you! Happy storing!

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Forget-Me-Not’s for Show Packing by Karma D’Light

KarmaKarma D’Light is full of prettiness, positivity, and prestigious organization! You never know what you’ll find in her purse and/or pockets but rest assured, if someone is in need of something; Karma’s got it! She also has a few quick tips on last minute “don’t forget!” items when packing for your next show and/or event!

The more shows I perform, the more I am getting the hang of what to bring with me to get ready! It seems I always forget something no matter how many times I check and recheck my bags.

Depending on when the show is, I prefer to have my hair and makeup done while I am home. I still will bring makeup, hairspray, a teasing comb, and hair products for any touch ups. Always pack an extra pair of fishnets/hose as a back-up in case you get a hole/tear. Whatever I wear to the show I make sure it is what I will feel comfortable in after the show in case I decide to go have dinner/drinks. Spray glue and/or tape for pasties are a must. A towel, jewelry, spray glitter, and all of your costume pieces including shoes! Sometimes wet wipes are helpful and my iPhone charger. Think of packing for a day trip! It is a night for you to be your alter-ego 🙂

With Karma’s tips in mind and adding a few of our own “forget-me-not” items (besides costume pieces and props, of course!):

download_20150702_140434*makeup bag with everything you need for touch-ups
*hair products – such as hairspray & teasing comb and/or   brush, bobby pins
*bobby pins (you can never have too many)
*extra fishnets/hosiery
*extra eyelashes
*spray glue and/or tape for pasties
*spray glitter
*jewelry
*wet wipes and/or towel
*sew-on-site fix-it bag – needle, thread, scissors, velcro, etc (just in case!)
*
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*pack everything you need the night before the show
*do a last minute bag and prop check before leaving for your event

These are the most important items we consider; what things are at the top of your list?

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Angel Burlesque Open Bra at Playground Production Studios

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Photo Credit: EGO Photo

Angel Burlesque is thrilled to bring back our Open Bra series for 2017!
Saturday, March 25th, 8:00 p.m.
Playground Production Studios
5529 Bonna Ave #10, Indianapolis, IN 46219

 Open Bra: Like an Open Mic Night but with Burlesque!!

Angel Burlesque’s Open Bra series started at the amazing and incomparable Cracker’s Comedy Club in Broad Ripple in 2011. Cracker’s was the home of the Open Bra series for three wonderful years, hosting over 18 Open Bra’s that featured over 350 routines!

The Open Bra series was created by Angel Burlesque to give performers a chance to perform.  The single best way to improve as a performer is to perform.You need to get in front of an audience and give them a chance to see you and respond to you.  There’s been a lot of times that I have been rehearsing and I think a move is particularly fascinating or I think I have a very clever of doing a particular thing but then I don’t necessarily get the audience response that I think I should have gotten.  Conversely, some throw away moves have gotten huge responses (and I’m not talking about when I throw away my costume—those always get huge responses!). Your best critic is your audience!

abopenbra3Yes, performers need to prepare!  Prepare, prepare, prepare!  It is often painfully obvious which performers are prepared and which performers try to wing it.  Performers should take classes, watch other performances (burlesque and non!), and always work to improve BUT, ultimately,burlesque is not created in a vacuum. Theatre, like burlesque, does not exist in rehearsal.  Theatre does not happen until you add an audience!

We created the Open Bra nights to give people a chance to perform.  Our audiences were overwhelmingly supportive and encouraging.
Over 45 people made their burlesque debuts at Angel’s Open Bra Nights.
We also hosted a variety of performers including singers, bellydancers, Drag Queens, Drag Kings! Hoopers,tappers, magicians, musicians and who can forgot the erotic readers of Mr.Damon Kent?
Our performers came from as far away as Florida and represented performers from ten local burlesque troupes and theatre groups. Everyone is welcome!

Have you ever been to a burlesque show?  Are you inspired by those confident and sassy ladies and gentlemen and want to give it a try yourself?  Over 137 distinctive performers graced the stage at Angel Burlesque’s Open Bra and we are so excited to add to the number!

-Katie Angel

Click here to read about our Open Bra by the Numbers” for more interesting statistics!

Want to learn more about how to get onstage? Click here or contact us at angelburlesque@gmail.com

Minnie Ryder on Bodies, Babies, and Burlesque

Indy Boudoir Photography

Angel Burlesque Girl for All Seasons, April 2013

Life was going awesome and then I threw up. Ok, maybe I felt like throwing up, alot, like all the time.
The morning of my eldest boy’s birthday I took a test and discovered a third was on it’s way.
“Having a baby is the best thing ever” “It’s so rewarding” “Kids need siblings”   Ok, that’s great! You have it! I already have two boys, and yes it’s rewarding but so is getting onstage!  How am I ever going to do burlesque again?! Now my very short journey into this brave, beautiful world is over! Am I going to be on probation from the stage for nine months?  Oh my body, it’s the smallest it’s ever been, my life is OVER!

 

All of these thoughts and more were running through my head on May 9th, 2013. How would I overcome the challenge of having another child and practicing the art of burlesque? At the time I was a bonified Teaser-in-Training, fresh in the program. I was so nervous to divulge that I was expecting, not sure how it would affect my performing and continuing in the program. After sweating glitter through a meeting I sucked it up and spilled it. There wasn’t an outcry of “you must leave!” or “you pregs? You outta here!” Instead there was a surge of soothing words and reassurance that I could practice burlesque as long as I felt comfortable. Which is still a major reason why I love burlesque. You do it as much and as frequent or less frequent as what fits your lifestyle. And so, my burlesque journey continued with baby in utero and an increasing bulge to my belly.

Angel Burlesque Spooktacular 2013

Angel Burlesque Spooktacular 2013

During the warm glow of pregnancy, ok that’s not true, the warm glow was for probably like a month and then I was back to feeling barfy and about as graceful as a hippo on land. My hips expanded to the size of Texas and my ribcage extended. My bras became irritatingly tight, my panties 3 sizes too small, and that awkward period between looking overweight to “yeah you’re prego” seemed the longest that it had ever been. Did I take my baby belly and slink offstage and comfort myself in chocolate and ice cream? Well I did eat chocolate and ice cream…alittle, not too much…But there was no slinking going on! I paraded at Indy’s Pride Parade, became a narcoleptic Sleeping Beauty for Indy Fringe, examined Boba Fett’s home life during Nerdgasm, and turned into a glamorous Jill O’ Lantern for Spooktacular where my final reveal was a baby pumpkin on my belly. At first I worried about what I looked like,how the audience might read my body.  As the year progressed, in direct relation to my belly size and the more performances I did, my worried thoughts faded. I was completely engrossed in my characters onstage and in a whirlwind of preparation and excitement offstage.

 

Thrifty Thrills 2014

Photo: Gray Dragon Photography Thrifty Thrills 2014

One year old baby later, my body is not destroyed; it’s changed. Not sure it will ever be the same again but that’s ok. The extra baby weight (20lbs) is taking it’s sweet time disappearing; I haven’t been helping it much, if at all. The extra wiggle in my middle isn’t keeping the shimmy from happening, if anything I’ve been enjoying it and in some ways feel sexier because of it! Maybe it’s the added curves. Maybe it’s because the big 4-0 is looming closer; maybe it’s because as you age you stop giving a damn about every pound gained or lost.  Yes, I do care about my image but not in the same manner. I want to live long and prosper, enjoy my  family, use the force, and indulge in wine and chocolate with moderation of course ;). If it takes a few extra months, or years, so be it. I’m happy. Right now.

The point here is if you’re just starting in burlesque, parenthood, and/or both, or you’re in your second trimester and worried you won’t be able to get back onstage OR start the process of performing after that adorable baby enters the world, don’t worry.

Burlesque will be here whenever you’re ready, whether it’s a month after you find out you’re expecting a bundle of joy, a few months after giving birth or 5 years later. And your body? It’s your vehicle of expression no matter what size you were, are, or will be. Be proud of it and celebrate all you’ve accomplished with it. Then go home and teach your kid(s) about glitter.

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How Corsets Shape Your Burlesque Wardrobe

kangel

Photo Credit: Angela Leisure Photography

Katie Angel has so much info to share we had to dedicate an article specifically on corsets! Why? Because they can be an integral part of your burlesque stockpile and, who doesn’t like to learn more from someone who has had super amounts of experience with them? So, here is Katie Angel breaking out her corset knowledge! 

I fully admit that I have a addiction problem with corsets. They make me drool. I loooooove corsets. I perhaps own mumble number of corsets. I love how they shape me. I love how they leave marks. I love corsets. High quality, steel boned corsets shape my body and I feel more confident when I am wearing one (and then I can project more confidence!).

I remember that the first time I purchased a corset at Victoria’s Secret (for a high school production of Charley’s Aunt) I was so very disappointed.  The corset wasn’t nearly as magical as I wanted it to be.  I didn’t know there was a different between fashion corsets and steel-boned or waist training corsets.  I am no corset expert but I know that custom corsets are the best possible option.  Many feel daunted by the high price tag of better corsets, but every time you resist buying a fashion corset, put that money towards a great corset and you’ll be happier with the results.


So what is the difference between “Fashion” and “Steel boned”? So glad you asked, keep on reading to find out!

katieangel4Your standard “fashion corset” that you can find at Lover’s Lane, Cirilla’s or online definitely shouts, “hey, I’m doing burlesque!!” and can fill needs perfectly adequately. The plastic boning that comes standard in these corsets don’t do much to shape your body. I bought a fashion corset so that I could dye it (who knew finding a brown corset to match my pumpkin pies could be so difficult?). I have had to sew the plastic boning back into the corset multiple times and am worried about the zipper popping.

Steel boned corsets with heavy fabric and cotton lining are more expensive….custom corsets that are fit specifically to you are definitely expensive but both do a lot to shape your body. How steel boned corsets help me feel are worth the investment to me…but, see above, I am addicted. (You will be too!)

Corsets come in over and under bust varieties. Because I have large ta-tas and need the support, I’ll generally also wear a bra even with an overbust corset. With the under bust corsets or waist cinchers, you can leave this on to conceal your tummy and still reveal your boobages. I feel that leaving a cincher on brings MORE attention to your waist…like, hmmm…what’s she hiding but my hubby thinks that look is super hot.

Thank you again, Katie Angel, for your fountain of knowledge. She does look pretty hot with cinchers, corsets, glitter, sparkles, and well she’s pretty awesome without all the costume pieces too!

Want to learn more from Katie and the Angel crew? Interested in the fine art of burlesque or just looking to dabble in a workshop or two? Check out our website for upcoming workshops, events and/or contact us at angelburlesque@gmail.com! We would love to hear from you!

Confidence in Burlesque Part 2: Physical Tips and Tricks

katieangel5

Photo Credit: Carrie Meyer Insomniac Studios

In Part One, Katie Angel established “Real is Sexy” through having confidence in yourself, on and offstage. We foster this confidence both mentally and physically. Last time we discussed how we can adjust our attitude to cultivate confidence through self-love and appreciation. Today we’re going to explore how to use glitter, corsets, undies, and more to build up our glamour artillery and accentuate the positive through physical tips and tricks of the burlesque trade!

There are many different tips and tricks I employ to help myself feel more confident. The physical tips are very practical and actually do help me a feel a lot better. There are lots of things I can do with my appearance that help me conceal the parts of me that I don’t want to highlight

Glitter!!!! I love glitter, this enchanting herpes of the crafting world. I put glitter on my face. I put glitter on my body. I put glitter on my costume. There is special cosmetic glitter and glitter glue available at costume stores or online (Ben Nye is a great brand for all things cosmetic). You can also use the extra fine crafting glitter (Martha Stewart’s brand is lovely and when used with a Michael’s coupon, a nice price). Avoid regular crafting glitter as the metal can scratch your skin and your delicate eyes. Mixing two different colors of glitter can create depth. I enjoy hugging people after shows and spreading my glitter…and sweat…sweat and glitter. It’s a bonus.

Glamour Hair and Makeup I feel more confident when I’m wearing pretty hair and my hair is styled. See YouTube videos for tutorials because basically I’m faking it but no one has called me out on it yet. I like to go with the “50 feet away on a galloping horse” adage of theatre…if you can’t see it while 50 feet away on a galloping horse then that smudge is fine!

kangel3Underwear in the Front I have a belly pooch. Many people have belly pooches. My beautiful lady left me a caesarean scar and stretch marks (and bags under my eyes, but, hey, that’s what we parents do, right?). The scar isn’t terribly noticeable, but when the doctors cut Jamie out, they cut through my abdomen muscles and I’m not even going to pretend that I have the energy or care enough to do the amount of sit ups it will require to make that pooch go away nor do I want to stop eating chocolate because chocolate is amazing and loves me and wants me to eat it. Who am I to disappoint the sadistic desires of chocolate to be in my belly?

I wear my underwear over my belly pooch and put a little bit of spray glue on it to help it stay there. I highly recommend dancer/professional style of tights because they smooth and shape your legs nicely. The little bit of spray glue keeps my underwear and tights in place and conceal my pooch. I don’t want my underwear to slip down…it’s not so I don’t show my labia…I don’t care if I show my labia, I just don’t want to show my belly pooch.

Underwear in the Back  When I first started burlesque, I wanted to cover up my booty…covering your butt is more flattering, right? Not necessarily so! I have found that higher coverage style underwear are not as flattering to my shape. Thongs are actually the most flattering. Take a moment and be brave—try different styles. An unexpected style might flatter you more than you suspect.

Body Makeup  Just as glitter and makeup help me feel prettier in my face, glitter and makeup helps me feel more confident all over my body. I like putting concealer, foundation and glitter on my stomach. One, it’s a way of touching my belly and I when I touch my belly I try to say, ooh, I love you belly. Thank you for growing my daughter and thank you for holding my food and bringing me some gut intuition because when I listen to you, belly, I make better decisions. I put makeup and glitter on my legs too. This helps smooth out your skin onstage but again, I’m a huge believer in the story you tell yourself. I love you legs!

KatieAngel3

Photo Credit: Carrie Meyer Insomniac Studios

Corsets  Corsets come in over and under bust varieties. Because I have large ta-tas and need the support, I’ll generally also wear a bra even with an overbust corset. With the under bust corsets or waist cinchers, you can leave this on to conceal your tummy and still reveal your boobages. I feel that leaving a cincher on brings MORE attention to your waist…like, hmmm…what’s she hiding but my hubby thinks that look is super hot. **Side Note: Katie Angel has ALOT to say about corsets, so much we had her write another article dedicated JUST to corsets!*** Learn more about corsets here!

Fringe  Fringe can be used to cover your upper arms, your butt or your thighs. It’s fun to flip around and gives the idea of “peek of boo” while still providing coverage.

Heels  A nice pair of heels (that you can move in! Tottering around on stripper heels is not my personal version of sexy…I prefer a ballroom heel that is flexible and makes me feel more stable) will make your legs look amazing and lift your butt. If you’re like me and hate wearing heels or feel unbalanced, remember you’re wearing the heels (or corset or etc.) for like three minutes. So, no, I don’t want to wear heels all day long but I can wear heels for three minutes. (Jeff Angel says, “I could wear heels for three minutes and I have.” Disclaimer, he was playing Dr. Scott and therefore in a wheelchair so it totally doesn’t count although he did look fabulous.”)

Body Stockings  I had never seen body stockings before I started burlesque. Body stockings are like panty hose for your entire body. Some have long sleeves and some are like a leotard top. They can smooth out your body and squeeze things in. (Personally, I like the let it all hang out method, but, the bottom line is, do what makes YOU feel confident.)

And that is what it all boils down to, isn’t it? Do what makes YOU feel confident.
Missing Part 1 of the Confidence in Burlesque with Katie Angel? Click here to read more!

Interested in learning more about the fine art of burlesque or just looking to dabble in a workshop or two? Let us know! Check out our website for more info on workshops, events, articles, etc and/or contact us at angelburlesque@gmail.com!

Frankie Spanxx on Burlesque with a Family

I am a 33 year old married mother of a 4th grade girl. I have been involved in burlesque for a while and performing for a year. Discovering burlesque as an art form and getting involved both happened in my thirties after wife and mother were both established titles. Though this is not uncommon in our trade, it does present different obstacles than someone that was performing pre-family.

FrankieGiggleI decided to interview my husband and daughter to get their take. I wanted to know how it has affected my husband to have a wife that was a retail manager and mom when we met become a woman busy with shows, costumes, rehearsals, workshops—OH and taking her clothes off for people on stage. Also though, I was curious to see how it is viewed by my young, impressionable 9 year old girl.

Said nine year old has the best definition of Burlesque that I’ve heard- maybe ever! (How dare you call me biased!) “Burlesque is an entertainment thingy that is done in clubs or theaters. Plus, boobies and butts” An adorably accurate take if you ask me. The elder interviewee’s vision definitely comes from the point of view of a performer and left me to wonder if he’s campaigning for free lifetime tickets to Angel Burlesque shows. To him, burlesque is “A specialized type of musical theater designed to highlight some of the best qualities of women (and men). It’s often both sexy and funny at the same time, which has got to be extremely difficult to pull off convincingly, and yet AB does consistently at every show.”

 

I never in a million years saw myself doing ANYTHING on stage. I’ve always had problems with social anxiety when it comes to all eyes being on me. Not to mention, I’ve had body issues all my life. However, I have also always wanted a creative way of expressing myself. You might, then, wonder why I have chosen to stand on stages in theaters and show my body. When asked how he feels about his wife performing, Mr. Spanxx stated it well: “She has needed some sort of creative outlet for a long time; I’m a musician, her best friend was a musical theater performer, even our daughter is now acting with YAT. I think she felt left out until she discovered burlesque.” This is true and when I found that something that just fit, the anxiety and nerves were suddenly manageable. Frankie Jr also loves that it gives her mom “a chance to express herself”.

The downsides expressed by each of them were quite similar. This is not a lucrative business (at least, for me). It is a hobby of passion. One con listed is that “budgeting for costume materials can be tricky”. I felt this was a kinder way of saying that this shit is expensive and we are broke. But, I married a classy dude. It takes up a lot of time and energy too. They are not always fond of the “hectic schedule” and that it “stresses her (meaning me) out!” Lil Frankie hates that she is not old enough to see her mommy perform. And Sir Spanxx, being the history buff that he is, wishes neo burlesque was performed in the old theaters and venues that it thrived in when it was first brought to the US. He also wishes he could change “people’s old-fashioned (and inaccurate) perceptions about what modern burlesque is.”

The negatives they listed were few and far between, especially when compared with the positives they listed. Here are some direct quotes from the interviews that left me smiling and dabbing the corners of my eyes with a tissue.

Mini Frankie:

Q. How do you feel about burlesque?

A. It is a great idea when it comes to pretty nerds who like showing their butts!!

Q. Have you seen a change in your mommy since she started burlesque?

A. A little. It stresses her out when she has a show coming up. But she seems to be happier now!

(This last one is a negative to her, but I find it positively hilarious)

Q. If you could change something about your mommy doing burlesque, what would it be?

A. A little less S-E-X.

Lord Spanxx-a-lot:

FrankieBeetlejuiceQ. How has burlesque changed your wife?

A. Performing has made her a lot more confident in her own skin, and she just appears happier. She’s quite impressive when she’s on a burlesque high. 

Q. How has it affected you?

A. Before she and I met, I went through a period where I was nearly agoraphobic (afraid to leave one’s home). I worked, and avoided doing anything else if possible, as I was terrified of awkward interactions with other people. Some aspects of that remain in my personality even now, in that I tend to be kind of a shy, hermit-type. Going to ‘Frankie’s’ burlesque shows has not only gotten me out of the house regularly, but introduced me to a whole bunch of truly special people.

Q. How has it changed/affected your relationship?

A. Though the hectic schedule can be difficult, the fact that we both have creative interests that are solely ours has actually brought us closer together.

Q. How do you feel when she performs?

A. Proud.

Q. What is your favorite routine/ performance she’s done and why?

A. Well, right now it would be Beetlejuice, but in my biased view every routine she does is typically better than the last. My favorite show would be the current finished run of Nerdgasm. In a tiny, intimate place like TOTS, you feel very connected to what’s going on, and there is absolutely not a bad seat in the house.

Over all, I think they’re just fine with the way I’ve chosen to spend my free time.