Dita Von Teese on Burlesque, Fast Cars, and Old Lingerie
Dita Von Teese was instrumental in reviving the art of Burlesque in the early 1990s, and is now known as “America’s most famous stripper.” But Burlesque is just the beginning of Von Teese’s love of vintage Americana. She collects antique hats, figurines, taxidermy, Hollywood and Burlesque memorabilia, and lingerie. Von Teese gave an interview about the things she treasures.
Aside from that stack of letters, photos, and itineraries from Sally Rand, I have an important original Alfred Eisenstaedt photograph of Gypsy Rose Lee. I also have stacks of catalogs from Lili St. Cyr’s lingerie business. It means a lot to me because each item stands for these women that came before me and made it possible for me to do what I do now, and for the entire neo-burlesque movement. I’ve learned a lot from them about how to maintain a career that goes beyond the days of looking good in a G-string. These women weren’t stupid, they all had life-long careers, and they inspire me a lot. Only a few of them managed to branch out into other businesses that pertained to striptease and glamour, but they didn’t rely on their bodies and looks to stay at the top.
Read the rest of the interview, accompanied by plenty of pictures, at Collector’s Weekly. Link
(Image credit: Douglas Friedman)