Header photo by Miss T Pinups
It was April 2014, and the third Very Vintage Day Out was in full swing. A raven haired, sparkly-eyed cutie, whom I had only ever seen on Twitter before, sidled up to my stall and chatted away friendly, whilst we watched the happenings on the main stage. Her name was Bettie Rage, and boy did she know how to work a room! I think she had something like four to five outfit changes during the day, as the face of Bombshell Clothing. And each time she made sure to come back to see us and hang out a little.
We watched the Miss Pin Up New Zealand proceedings, knowing full-well who the winner was going to be. If you weren’t there, our stunning Miss Victory Violet also knew how to work a room, had put in significant promo miles leading up to the competition, and had come with a full support army, who whooped and hollered whenever her named was mentioned or her Disney-sweet face appeared from behind the red curtains. The excitement was palpable!
The crown was laid, the sash was draped, photos were snapped and the crowd dispersed soon after. Bettie turned to me and said “Next year, that’ll be me” with weighty sincerity. And what do you know?! She was right on the money.
Photo by Miss T Pinups
That’s not to say this year’s competition came down to gambling odds, oh no siree! This year’s ladies had to work their tushies off to get selected for the 2015 finals. And Bettie put together one hell of a show for us all! From her authentic recreation of Bettie Page in her application video, to her Rosie the Riveter talent section where she actually put a vintage motorbike back together infront of our eyes (in custom 1940’s coveralls by yours truly), to finally, her stunning Dita Von Teese-inspired evening gown made custom by CurvyCouture by Judy Dee. She worked her magic hard, and was well deserved of taking out this year’s crown.
The Miss Pin Up New Zealand crown must serve as a cherry on top of a very exciting year for Bettie, which saw her become the cutie-pie face and manager of a retro diner in her hometown, being crowned Miss Hot Rod Blowout 2015 in March, a model for many top vintage NZ clothing labels, amongst all the stunning pin-up, cheesecake, and alternative photoshoots she has done with talented local and international photographers.
This month I worked with Bettie on something custom and special just for her, as part of my sponsorship of the Miss Pin Up New Zealand competition. And I took this opportunity to ask her all those probing questions about the competition and the journey leading up to it.
So, without further ado, here’s what she’s got to say…
1) So, how does it feel to be Miss Pin Up New Zealand 2015??
It’s surreal to say the least, even now I still have people congratulating me and I can’t believe it haha
2) In the competition, which bit was the most fun, and which bit made you the most nervous?
Everything was amazing! The most fun was competing with some of the most amazing women I know And of course it was the talent section that made me the most nervous, once it was done the nerves were gone!
Photos by David Watson
3) Now that you’re on the other side of the journey it takes to become Miss PUNZ, what words of advice to offer retro gals who are considering entering next year?
Start planning now, have fun with it and think outside the square! Oh and be there for the other girls, you’re all in the same boat so help each other out if you can xx
4) The journey towards the Miss PUNZ crown is an epic one, but should be enjoyed while it unfolds. What was your favourite moment (or two) in the year that led up to your win?
Definitely working with Judy Dee and You! [as designers] Seeing my vision come out so perfectly! The custom outfits were EXACTLY how I imagined them! And working with my better half on my talent! Without him I would have been so stuck!
Photo by Kate Tovey Photography
5) With your crown in tow, what exciting projects are you looking forward to sinking your teeth into before the year is through?
At the moment I am working hard at helping gain awareness for Bully breeds. I am currently working with HURRAH (Human, Rescue, Rehabilitation And reHoming charity) on their fundraiser for Kira. A gorgeous lil pitbull who needs surgery to remove a growth from her spine so she can find a fur-ever home
6) And one last one for fun, what was your Miss PUNZ celebration song?
21st century Bettie Page, by Jack Rabbit Slim haha
Photo by Miss T Pinups
That’s our girl! I look forward to following Bettie’s reign over the next year, and see more of her wonderful work with our furry friends.