Wednesday, 16 January 2013

My Marilyn Monroe

A PhotographicTribute to Marilyn Monroe
'Suzie Kennedy'

Like many of us, I have alway been fascinated by Marilyn Monroe. A few years ago I watched a great documentary on Douglas Kirkland who photographed one of Marilyn's famous images on the white bed sheets. Kirkland explained exactly how he shot the whole thing and ever since then, I had wanted to recapture the moment. 
So where do I start, I needed a Marilyn, so I contacted the world famous Marilyn look-a-like Suzie Kennedy and to my delight, Suzie said she would love to work with me. 
Kirkland shot this by standing on a mezzanine level whilst Marilyn lay on a bed below in his studio, my images were not shot in a bedroom either or on a bed but in my hallway, as I have a mezzanine the same height as Kirklands, so I felt halfway there.
I was extremely excited to meet Suzie, well, it's not everyday you meet someone who is the image of such an icon.
As you know (if you have followed my blog ) I love buying vintage clothes , so I chose a few outfits that I thought would look really authentic on Suzie, everything I dressed her in came to life, it was so wonderfully retro, it made us girls feel we were in the wrong era! 
Don't forget to check out our behind the scenes of 'My Day With Suzie' video!

Suzie wrapped in white sheets
                                              Suzie Kennedy as Marilyn

   I love the 50's feel to all the photo's and I have to say, working with Suzie was a dream, she knows    how to perform in front of the camera, which made my job terribly easy!

 I bought this amazing suit years ago and once Suzie put it on, my jaw dropped, it fitted her perfectly and the colours just enhanced her flawless complexion and blonde hair.

The dress is from America circa 1950's.  Could it have been Marilyn's? .... Well that's what I thought when I bought it!


All images are Copy right of Shirlie Kemp
Photography & Styling Shirlie Kemp

Special thanks to @Harleymoonphoto  & @Beckyruiphoto 
My Photography website: 

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Pretty Pretty Lilac!

I seem to have got a bit sidetracked with my 'Hello Dolly' hat decorating but nevertheless, I'm still creating and to be honest, it all looked so pretty that I had to take some lovely photo's of what was around me. To decorate the hat I needed to get out my containers of flowers, ribbons, lace, etc and as always, I forget what I actually have so it always a nice surprise when I open the containers up.
What struck me was all the lilac, which is obviously one of my favourite colours. Once I started laying it all on my pretty pink table it all looked like a lovely desert ( for the eyes)!

                                                      You can't beat lilac & creamy lace
     The umbrella in the background looked just a little too plain, so lilac roses brought it back to life!

                                     So this is how my search for hat decoration ended up!

Photographed By Shirlie Kemp
All images are copyright of Shirlie Kemp

Friday, 4 January 2013

Hello Dolly Hat Shop


After watching lots of wonderful old movies over Christmas & New Year, I felt as if I was working out little pieces of a jigsaw puzzle about myself and remembering why I love all the old pretty hats and dresses  and why certain clothes just jump out at me. As a child, you watch and absorb everything and I was always in awe of the wonderful world of  glamour, singing, dancing and dressing up to the nines, of course!.
 A lovely memory I have of my mother, is when we used to watch old movie's together, she loved them and would stop everything if there was something she wanted to watch and I became hooked too.  Unfortunately, her life was nothing like the glamourous movies and that's basically why she loved these epic costume movie's so much, as she would escape into a whole new world and afterwards, we would sing, dance and dress up and pretend we were glamourous movie stars, which basically meant, getting her headscarfs and jewellery out, as they were the nicest thing she owned, I also used to get them out when TOTP's was on to be just like Pans People!

So there I was,  watching 'Hello Dolly'  with the amazing Barbara Streisand, there is one scene in particular, that I always remember and thats in the wonderful hat shop, so after watching the movie I wanted to go and recreate my own little hat shop, on a much smaller scale of course. Another problem was, I was lacking hat boxes, I have plenty of hats but no beautiful hat boxes (yet). I love to be inspired and it doesn't take much to inspire me, so I went into my studio and started to play. I am however going to create a wonderful 'Hello Dolly' hat soon, so watch out for that to show up in a photo shoot !
Meanwhile, here are a few images of my hats and dresses.

                               This hat is going to have a huge 'Hello Dolly'  transformation

                              A 50's  hat from Polkadots & Moonbeams

                  I love the colour of the blue roses on this hat I bought from Hidden Treasure's
                                         A pile of vintage hats to sort out

                            The wonderful & elaborate Hat Shop in Hello Dolly

My little collection of pretty vintage hats and dresses are just waiting for some wonderful sunny days so I can actually wear them!

                 I'm still loving my top hats, especially decorated in vintage flowers
                                        Big Amaryllis heads left over from Christmas
                                                 My next project  awaits me!

All images are copy right of Shirlie Kemp