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Friday, August 22, 2008

Playing Dress Up

Did you ever play dress up as a child? When I was a little girl, it was my favorite game. My grandma had a small suitcase kept just for me, filled with fancy clothes and high heels. Even more fun was when she’d let me play in her makeup, so I could “do my face” to go with my fancy ball gown or tea party ensemble.

I carried the habit into my teens, with some unfortunate fashion choices. High heels and ankle socks, army jackets and miniskirts, and one unfortunately memorable semester of harem pants and ballet tops. And, again, that love affair with makeup. I love playing with hair styles and colors, changing looks with the swipe of eye shadow and pencil. This dress up thing is a lifelong love affair.

One of my favorite times of year is the RWA conference, where I get out of my ‘mom and writer clothes’ and get to play dress up for a week each summer. It intrigues me to see how simple things, an attractive hairstyle, clothes that flatter the body and in a style that suits the personality can shift a person’s self-confidence. And in the process, give them enough of a boost to do things they might not have felt okay doing before.

After playing with this concept (oh fine, let’s call it what it is –obsession) for a while, I decided to use the makeover angle for my September Blaze, RISQUÉ BUSINESS. It was so fun to watch my heroine, Delaney, discover what a difference her makeover made. And even more important, how it really didn’t change anything. Sure, a sassy hairstyle and pushup bra gave her a new level of confidence, but she had to work through the repercussions of that confidence... which are quite hot since they include one very sexy erotic suspense author and a very naughty bet.

So how about you? Have you ever had a makeover? Was it a fun experience or a nightmare? Do you do the girly dress up thing in regular life or do you only dress up for special occasions? Share your dress up and makeover stories with me and I’ll pick one person from the comments to win a copy of my September Blaze, RISQUÉ BUSINESS so they can read all about Delaney’s makeover for themselves.

30 comments:

Donna Alward said...

My aunt used to keep all her prom-type dresses in a closet and when my cousins and I were girls we'd try them all on and prance around the house. We're talking those 50's fluffy taffeta and organza creations...there was a beautiful pink one and one in a muted green that I loved. Most of them had formed bodices of some sort and we would prance around pretending we had chests.

My mum also kept her wedding dress in the closet and I remember when I was 12 or 13 putting it on - my mum is much shorter than I am and was quite petite at age 22! It was a strapless with a lace jacket and the pointed sleeves.

Michele L. said...

I played with my mom's makeup a lot! I absolutely love makeup! I started wearing it when I was 12. The colors, textures, and the selection available is just mind boggling! I have tried almost everything in my 30 plus years of wearing makeup.

I never got into clothes that much. I like to wear nice things but hate clothes shopping! I don't like having to try everything on. Taking your clothes off and then having to put the new scratchy ones on before there washed in a dressing room rather eeks! & irks! me!

Back when my mom was younger, in her 50's, and I was a teenager, we used to love to go shoe shopping. That was our big thing together! We would spend hours at J.C.Penney, Carson P. Scott, and other stores trying on shoes. We used to come home with boxes of shoes at really cheap prices! She knew all the best days of the month to go to get bargains. Plus many of the stores had bargain racks.

Michele L.

CrystalGB said...

When I was a little girl, my mom often caught me playing with her makeup and nail polish. One time I painted my feet and legs with nail polish. LOL
I loved to dress up in hats and gloves and pretend I was a fine lady.

Ellen said...

I never played dress up or wanted to use make up. I was a tomboy almost from the day I able to decide for myself what I wanted to wear. The only time you would find me in a dress was when I was at school (dresses were required for girls - and this was a public school) or church.

robynl said...

Oh dress up play, for sure. I remember at app. age 14 my cousin was visiting and we decided to do a photo shoot of me in different outfits and different hair styles. I had long hair so she did one with a pontail, another with an upsweep, etc. The poses were on the bed, on a stool at the lunch counter in our house, etc. It was fun and I still have those b&w photos to this day.

Tawny said...

Ohhh Donna, that sounds so fun. I'd love to play dress up in those NOW LOL. Your mum's wedding dress sounds stunning :-)

Tawny said...

Hi Michele :-) I'm so with you on the makeup. I love playing with it. I do year you on shopping and the fitting room issues. I wish I loved that part, but there is NOTHING flattering about fitting room mirrors!

It sounds like your mom was a an incredible shopper. With that kind of motivating shopper, it'd be a blast.

Tawny said...

Nail polish on your feet and legs, Crystal? LOLOL I'm sorry to giggle, but I thought my daughter was the only one who pulled off that look :-D When I took the nail polish away, she turned to felt pens.

I'm with you, though - I did love the fine lady dressing up, too. It'd turn on music and waltz around the house with my pinky out :-D

Tawny said...

Ellen, my youngest is anti-dressup too :-) She would rather wear shorts and a tee (as long as they are pink, thankyouverymuch) than anything else and just be left alone to play with her animals. So I totally understand the 'don't dress me up, vibe' :-)

Beth said...

Tawny, as a kid, I used to love to play dress up and both of my girls followed in my footsteps. My older daughter loved to dress up as Pocahontas but I only got to play John Smith *g*

Like you, I love to change my hair style and color and play around with make up. I do love to do the girly thing and dress up but only when I leave the house - which isn't very often :-)

I can't wait for Risque Business to come out! It's such a fantastic book with a really strong, smart heroine who learns to accept her outer beauty and her inner self.

And the hero is super HOT :-)

Tawny said...

Robyn, that is SO fun!! I used to love photo shoots :-) Its like playing model. We did somethign similar for my daughter- when she turned 14 she was allowed to wear makeup. So for her birthday we had a makeup artist come and teach her and all her friends the basics, and did before and after shots. They all did each others hair and had such a great time with it.

jo robertson said...

Great topic, Tawny. I'm popping over from Romance Bandits to say hello. I'll bet you were darling as a little girl playing dressup with your grandma's things.

I used to LOVE to dress up, wear business suits, nylons, and heels to school every day. Not so much any more. But it's always fun to get a facial makeover and have your hair styled. I'll NEVER get over loving that!

Trish Milburn said...

I was a bit of a tomboy when I was little, but I still liked playing dress-up from time to time. I'm like you though -- I love the RWA conference and the excuse to pull out the cute clothes and shoes.

And I love makeover stories.

Kate Carlisle said...

Hi Tawny! I didn't play dress-up when I was young. With four brothers, I guarantee it would've gotten ugly and tears would've been shed!

I can't wait to read your makeover story! Love your cover--especially those shoes!!

Estella said...

Have never played dress up or had a makeover.
Risque Business sounds like a good book.

Tawny said...

LOL Beth on you playing John Smith. I think you got the worst of that dressup deal ;-)

And I'm totally the same as you are about not dressing up unless its to go somewhere. This is probably a rip off to my poor husband, since I'm home 95% of the time and he's getting to see my holey sweatpants (not interesting holes, either) and sloppy tee shirts.

Tawny said...

Oh Jo... my idea of heaven! A facial! I love them. The soothing relaxation, the gentle massage, the wonderful results. Oooooh man, I need one of those! You know, you just inspired me :-D As soon as I turn this book in, I'm booking a facial with the works!!

But I have to admit, I'm not sure about the whole nylons and dressup thing. The suits, the fancy stuff, oh yeah, I'm there. But I never could swing the nylons.

Tawny said...

Hey Trish :-D I wonder if that dressup aspect isn't half the appeal of conference? I mean, I can spend most of the day just looking at shoes and having fun LOL.

I hope this makeover story works for readers :-) I loved watching how the makeover made Delaney really assess her life and her choices.

Tawny said...

Hi Kate! I only had two brothers and I was the oldest, so I tended to bully THEM into playing with me. Sadly, they were both prettier than I was in makeup LOL.

and thanks for the sweet words on Risque Business! Isn't that cover GORGEOUS!!?? I love those shoes. I'm taking the blown up version of my cover around to shoe stores and pointing in question. "Got these? I want them!"

:-D

Tawny said...

Thanks Estella :-) Risque Business was fun to write.

So as someone who hasn't ever had a makeover or done the dressup thing, is it something you'd WANT to do? Or does it fall into the 'nails on a chalkboard' appeal?

Pat Cochran said...

When my daughter, Missy, was small
she was most interested in the hats
kept in my closet. Originally for
wearing to church, we used them for our pretend attendance at soap opera weddings. She watched the soaps with me and when a wedding was about to occur, she would dash for my room. She would select our hats and, no matter what I was doing, I had to stop, put my hat on, and "attend" the wedding!

Pat Cochran

Tawny said...

Awww, Pat, that is adorable :-D I love that image and the hat ritual!

Nathalie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nathalie said...

I remember loving to play with my mom's skirts, especially that beautiful one that looked like a spanish flamingo dress and I used to dance hours in it. The funny thing is that now I wear it on special occasions as it is a beautiful skirt.

Tawny said...

Nathalie, it sounds like a lovely skirt and an even lovelier memory! It must make you feel wonderful to wear it.

Helen said...

I used to love dressing up as a child and playing with make up as I got into my teens I never went anywhere without make up I have even done about 5 make up courses so as I can get it right.

I still wear make up when I go to work and somewhere special but I don't wear it like I used to maybe I should I always think getting dressed up and looking your best is great for the confidence.

Have Fun
Helen

Tawny said...

Helen, I so agree with you about how a person feels about their appearance heavily impacts their confidence. This is a theme I really worked on in Risque Business, too. Both the positive and the negatives of this perception.

and I'm in the "need to fix myself up a little more lately" category, too LOL. The grocery store clerk is probably wishing the same ;-)

Tawny said...

Robynl wins the copy of Risque Business! Robyn, if you'll drop me an email with your shipping info to Tawny@TawnyWeber.com with TBNB winner in the subject line, I'll get that right out to you :-D

thanks everyone for hanging out and sharing your makeover and dress up experiences with me!

robynl said...

woohoo, thanks so much for the win; e-mail on it's way.

Lisa said...

As a child I would only dress up for special ocassions, actually that's still true today. LOL I would love to have a complete makeover since I am stuck in a rut and look the same as I did 15 years ago in highschool.