Posted on: February 21st, 2012 Hot Rods & Heels Takes a Vacation

When Hot Rods and Heels announced its plans and starting taking performer applications back in October of 2008, the Dallas “scene” was very different than it is now. There was no Viva Dallas Burlesque, no Broads and Panties, no Dallas Burlesque Festival, and no Invasion Car Show. In Austin you had Texas Burlesque Festival and Lone Star Round Up, but nothing in Dallas. What there was in Dallas (with few exceptions like the notorious Lollie Bombs) was a group of gals who were performing burlesque sporadically, pin-up modeling when they could (with exceptions of those from Dallas who made it big like Angela Ryan & Dayna Delux), artists making really rad stuff geared towards the pin-up community, and of course- folks who loved their own hot rods. I had a light bulb moment at a local bar and it seemed like a really good idea to get all of these niches within a subculture together for a huge party and have a hell of a good time and entertain the public at the same time. While in the beginning the planning, booking, and organizing phase was super rocky, and I made a ton of mistakes, the Hot Rods and Heels team managed to put on a hell of a show with a more than sold out crowd, and everyone had a stellar time. The event brought people together, performers networked and became familiar with the opportunities in Dallas, and it gave way to more and more shows. The pin-up models got to know photographers, clothing designers, and vendors in the area, and were able to branch out from there. The very first Hot Rods and Heels also went to prove, perhaps most importantly, that if a clueless schmuck like me could pull it off- anyone could. And they did.

The evolution and growth of Dallas’ vintage community has been astounding! There is at least one burlesque show every single weekend, and Dallas is also home to the biggest burlesque series in Texas- Viva Dallas Burlesque. No matter what form of burlesque you are looking for there is a production company for you. From the glitzy and classic, to the ultra neo-burlesque performance art, to the hip-hop infused, you can now easily find it; and thanks to David Cornell & Jerry Fedora- the events are now neatly organized into one well run website. The allure of seeing performers from all over the state in one place was huge in 2009- when Hot Rods and Heels first hit the stage. Now, in 2012, many burlesque shows feature out of town performers, out of state, and even international. There is now Dallas PinUp, a pin-up boutique on Main Street in Dallas that has attracted the attention of every mainstream magazine and newspaper in Dallas. And lastly, there is a huge classic car show known as The Invasion which converges on the Deep Ellum neighborhood in September, and features super cherry hot rods from all over the state and beyond.

Would all of these things still have happened without Hot Rods and Heels? Of course, it was the natural evolution of the culture, but it does leave me asking- Is there still any validity to Hot Rods and Heels in the current market? Even things that we were the first in the state in- including the public in deciding who should win titles including “One to Watch” and “Performer of the Year” (a title that encompasses a performer’s body of work for an entire year- not just a single performance), is not unique. Like Hot Rods and Heels, Dallas Burlesque Festival incorporated online voting to include the public in the decision making process for the first time this year.

In addition to the Dallas events scene changing; I have changed as well. In 2008 I was a fledgling producer trying to put together one show per year and a pin-up photographer using my home garage as a studio, praying I would one day make enough money to have Raman as a side dish, rather than a main course. For 2012, I have 18 shows on the books with Viva Dallas Burlesque and Cirque du Burlesque, as well as owning and operating Dallas PinUp, which is home to my pin-up studio Through the Looking Glass, not to mention acting as editor of Pin Curl Magazine. I have stretched myself thin.

Will Hot Rods and Heels return in 2013 (provided the Aztecs weren’t right)? I honestly don’t know, and I am open to either possibility. A show like this should get bigger and better every year, and by year four be a flawless spectacle that leaves everyone thrilled and delighted, and I’m afraid I just can’t pull it off this year. That’s where you come in. Here’s one of the tricky parts to hosting an event like this: finding the perfect venue. What is perfect for the performers and the burlesque show portion of the evening isn’t fantastic for the car show, and vice-versa. The other major hurdle is sheer “man” power. It takes a lot of money and time to put on an event like this, and only the audience can decide if it is all worth it. For Hot Rods and Heels to be the amazing annual event I always wanted it to be, it’s going to take a huge team with a ton of dedication to the project to put in a whole lot of hours. The team should be made of strong influences in all three communities- the hot rod circuit, the pin-up model circle, and the burlesque industry. If Hot Rods and Heels is to continue, it’s going to take not the financial bail-out of Wall Street, but an emotional bail out- a real coming together of a fearless, dedicated, and hard-working team to put this endeavor on and make it the bad ass event that it should be. It’s going to take one hell of a team on the inside, and one hell of an eager audience on the outside. If this doesn’t happen, I am immensely grateful for the amazing years we had, and if it does happen, one thing is certain- It’s going to be one hell of a show!

Posted on: May 21st, 2011 Boobies with Breakfast! Hot Rods and Heels on WFAA

Thank you to WFAA who covered Hot Rods and Heels on Day Break. This is live TV at 5:30am!

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Posted on: March 28th, 2011 Finalists Announced

Holy cow- getting to 1,000 votes took two weeks year 1, one week year 2, year 3 it took 1 day!  We were not prepared for all of the love & support y’all were prepared to give our nominees!  We will certainly make sure we change our voting structure to 5,000 for next year, but at least there’s not extra nervous squirming time- the results are in!  We’ll be posting pretty pictures and videos soon on our contests page, but we wanted to make sure we got the news out quickly, so without further ado here’s the finalists based on Popular Vote. These gals will be moving on to the judges’ panel.

(Alphabetical order by first name)

Texas Burlesque Performer of the Year:

Angi B Lovely  (Dallas)

Ruby Joule  (Austin)

Vivienne Vermuth  (Dallas)

Pin-Up Model of the Year:

Courtney Crave   (Dallas)

Lorelei Lee             (Arlington)

Taffeta Darling      (Dallas)

Burlesque Performer One to Watch (Newcomer):

Blaze            (Dallas)

Christina Carnality     (Dallas)

Smalls McCoy     (Austin)

Pin-Up Model One to Watch:

Helena Handbasket     (Austin)

Flossie Carmichael       (Ft Worth)

Samantha Knight           (Dallas)

Burlesque Troupe of the Year:

After Dark Revue           (Corpus Christie)

The Jigglewatts              (Austin)

The Lollie Bombs          (Dallas)

Make-Up Artist of the Year:

Alex Dixon                      (Dallas)

Ladonna Stein                (Dallas)

Vivienne Vermuth       (Dallas)

Posted on: March 19th, 2011 2011 Workshops announced!

5/21/11 UPDATE: It’s show day! Because we’re busy making a fabulous day into night event for you, we have to stop the workshop pre-sales. There is a chance there will be availability at the door, please bring cash and arrive 15 min before the start of your desired workshop and we will try and fit you in. If you pre-ordered- your spot is secure and we’ll see you later today!

2011 Workshops!  All gals, regardless of level of knowledge in the industry may sign up for any of the day’s workshops!  Come out and have a great time while learning & meeting your faves!  Once payment is made, your spot is secure, simply bring printed receipt to the Lakewood Theater box office.  Please arrive 10 minutes before start of workshop.  Workshop entry does *not* include event entry, which must be purchased separately if you plan to enjoy the day into night event that starts at 6pm. Questions?  Email

Workshop descriptions:

1-2 pm Secrets of a Pin-Up Model  $29

Texas Pin-Up Model of the Year Angela Ryan teams up with photographer Benn Britt to present and information packed workshop filled with pin-up modeling tips & tricks,  poses, marketing tips, and industry terminology, followed by a Q&A where Angela will share what she’s learned in the past ten years as a pin-up model!

You’ll want to bring note taking gear (laptop, notebook, pen and paper)

2-3pm Pin-Up Make-Up Tricks  $15

The award winning Ladonna Stein shows you her tips and tricks for achieving the perfect pin-up look from brows, false lashes, and liner to the perfect red lip!  See her demo, take notes, and ask her any questions you may have!

You’ll want to bring note taking gear (laptop, notebook, pen and paper)

3-4pm The Origins of the Bump and Grind $25

Texas Burlesque Performer of the Year 2010 and Queen of Burlesque 2010, Coco Lectric takes you on a journey through the origins of the most signature of all burlesque moves.  From belly dance and hula moves to latin and african inspired moves, she’ll show you how American burlesque has taken cues from fertility dances all over the world and bring it all together for you. Basic walks and poses will also be reviewed.

You’ll want to wear comfortable stretchy clothing, and bring water and high heels.

Posted on: March 16th, 2011 And the 2011 Nominees Are…….

The following gals have been nominated by a panel of 50 of their peers from throughout Texas- models, performers, make-up artists, and photographers and here’s who they thought kicked ass this year!  (Listed in alphabetical order by first name.)

Performer of the Year:

Angi B Lovely – Dallas

Honey Cocoa Bordeauxx- Denton

Pixie O Kneel- Italy

Ruby Joule- Austin

Vivienne Vermuth- Dallas

Pin-Up Model of the Year:

Bondi Holly- Dallas

Courtney Crave – Dallas

Lorelei Lee- Ft Worth

Miss V Haven- Houston

Taffeta Darling- Dallas

Burlesque Troupe of the Year:

After Dark Revue- Corpus Christie

Bella Bombers- Denton

Black Widow- Austin

The Jigglewatts- Austin

The Lollie Bombs- Dallas

Burlesque Performer- One to Watch (Newcomer)

Blaze- Dallas

Black Orchid- Austin

Christina Carnality- Dallas

Donna Denise- Dallas

Smalls McCoy- Austin

Pin-Up Model- One to Watch

Ava Ryon

Flossie Carmichael – Ft Worth

Helena Handbasket- Austin

Samantha Knight- Dallas

Vinny Velour- Denton

Make-Up Artist of the Year

Alex Dixon- Dallas

Angel Jagger- Houston

Hillary Thomas- Dallas

Ladonna Stein (formerly Ladonna Hearne) – Dallas

Vivienne Vermuth- Dallas

(Important note, while Lisa Nayhardt of Austin was flattered and thankful for the nomination, she opted not to compete.)

Good luck to all of these gals!  The winner will be decided by a combination of public vote & judges panel- see contests page on main site for more details.

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Posted on: February 20th, 2011 2011 Judges Announced

We are so thrilled to announce the 2011 judges panel for Hot Rods and Heels!

Dayna Delux- Pin-Up Supermodel

Java – Founder of Bachelor Pad Magazine

Kitten on the Keys- legendary burlesque performer, musician,  & MC

Lola Van Ella – Producer of Show Me Burlesque Festival & Van Ella Productions

Rick Delaup- Producer of New Orleans Burlesque Festival & Bustout Burlesque

So what the heck are they judging?  The Contests

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Posted on: February 16th, 2011 Start Your Engines for 2011!

We’re gearing up for Hot Rods and Heels 2011 & we’re stoked!  Texas Performer of the Year Coco Lectric will headline the burlesque show, and we will be adding bands for the first time to the day’s events!  This is a show not to be missed!  Mark your calendars- May 21st 6pm-Midnight. Lakewood Theater, Dallas.  More info to come!

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Posted on: April 26th, 2010 Title Finalists Announced!

Wow! You, the public voted and how! We received our maximum of 1,000 votes in just five days! Thank you so much for taking the time to vote. We appreciate it, and I know the gals do to!

Here are the ladies who are moving on to the judges panel! Congrats to out finalists!

Burlesque Performer of the Year:
Angi B Lovely
Coco Lectric
Ginger Valentine

Burlesque Performer- One to Watch (Newcomer):
Bubbles vonBonBon
Bunny Bailey
Melissa Meaow

Burlesque Troupe of the Year:
The Lollie Bombs
Vixens of Vaudeville

Pin-Up Model of the Year:
Angela Ryan
Jayme Foxx
Kali Ann

Pin-Up Model- One to Watch:
Bondi Holly
Keke Noir
Trixi Toxic

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Posted on: April 22nd, 2010 Models Announced!

We are so lucky to have the very lovely Dayna Delux as MC for the 7pm Model Showcase. The Model Showcase features the very best in pin-up fashion from fashion designers from all over Texas!

These lovely designs will be modeled by the Model of the Year nominees, and newcomer nominees, a list that includes:

(Alphabetical Order)

Angela Ryan
Bondi Holly
Courtney Crave
Jayme Brains
Jayme Foxx
JJ Devour
Kali Ann
Keke Noir
Melissa Meaow
Meredith Dunn
Trixi Toxic

Congrats to all, and we know you all will come and support as they strut their stuff on the runway!

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Posted on: April 7th, 2010 Contest Info


Woooo-hooooo! We are well on our way! Our vendors,schedule, and workshops have been posted, our contest semi-finalists are up, and we are fully stocked! For all of the latest, please visit

Here’s how you, the general public can help:

There are 5 or 6 semi-finalists listed in each category. These ladies need you- the public vote- to make it to the finals (top three gals in each category) and go on to the judges’ panel. April 17th- 25th will be your week to have your say! One vote per IP address. To vote you will go to and press the ballot button (will go live on April 17th) Then of course, come out to the show on May 15th- where the winners will be crowned at the end of the evening!

Congratualtions to the semi-finalists: (alphabetical order)

Performer of the Year

Angi B Lovely
Black Mariah
Coco Lectric
Ginger Valentine
Ruby Joule
Vivienne Vermuth

Performer- One to Watch (Newcomer Category)

Bubbles vonBonBon
Bunny Bailey
Cora Coquette
Melissa Meaow
Pearl Lux

Pin-Up Model of the Year

Angela Ryan
Courtney Crave
Jayme Foxx
Melissa Meaow

Pin-Up Model One to Watch

Bondi Holly
Jamey Brains
JJ Devor
Keke Noir
Meredith Dunn
Trixi Toxic

And because their are only three in this category they are all finalists and will be going on to the judges’ panel! Congrats ladies!

Burlesque Troupe of the Year

Lollie Bombs
Vixens of Vaudeville

We still are in the process of selecting the models for the model showcase and hotrods for our car show, so if you know anyone with a fabulous pre 1962, send them our way! You can find all of the info for this on our website.

See you at the show!

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off