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Lady A Broad – Claire and Cherry Pie

Claire and Cherry Pie

Lady A Broad

 

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On Sunday I caught up with a fabulous friend of mine, Miss Lady A Broad, and she kindly let me interview her.  Internationally published pinup model, graphic designer, wife, mother, fellow crazy bunny lady and winner of Australian and International pinup titles – Lady A Broad is a force to be reckoned with! She is also one of the most humble and genuinely lovely people I have had the pleasure of meeting.

Miss Viva Las Vegas 2013 - Miss Lady A Broad!

Miss Viva Las Vegas 2013 – Miss Lady A Broad!  Photo by Matchless Snapshots

When I first met her at the Camperdown Cruise Rockabilly festival 3 years ago, I was a budding pinup, just dipping my toes in the rockabilly scene and was completely star struck. She was wearing a stunning deadstock Tiki Dress, deep red with ruffled sleeves and hem and she just looked so glamorous I thought that if I could only have half her charm and grace I would be set!  Ok I know I’m gushing a little but look at her, what a stunner!  It was no shock when she won best dressed at the cruise that year.

Miss Lady A Broad in a stunning Tiki Dress Photo by Helen Mclean

Miss Lady A Broad in a stunning Tiki Dress
Photo by Helen Mclean

We became better acquainted soon after when she kindly stepped in to help at a catwalk event where I was presenting my then accessories label (Cherry Pie Accessories) in collaboration with The Little Taylor, who makes beautiful vintage inspired dresses.  One of our models had sprained her ankle at another event and was unable to attend rehearsals but Lady A Broad was able to jump in at short notice, attend rehearsals and walk the catwalk for us.  I was thrilled to get the opportunity to get to know her better!

If you are familiar with Lady A Broad’s pinup modelling work, and as you can see from the above images, you will already be aware of her classic good looks and the style and class she brings to images but may not know that she also has a very photogenic family – let me introduce you to the A Broad family; Lady A Broad, Mr A Broad, Miss A Broad and the younger Mr A Broad.

Family A BroadFamily A Broad 2

Lady A Broad and Mr A Broad have worked together on several occasions to produce spectacular and unique trophies for several Pinup competitions like this one from the 2013 Miss Camperdown Cruise competition – don’t they make a great team!

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Miss Camperdown Cruise 2013 trophy

Sunday’s event was the Yarra Valley Hotrod and Rockabilly Rumble, a community event that Miss Lady A Broad was involved in, with all proceeds going to Project Zachariah.  Zac is young boy who was born with significant Cerebral Palsy and has several other medical conditions contributing to his overall health and development.  He requires 24 hour care and monitoring at home and of course all the equipment and modifications that go hand in hand with home care.  Zac’s family are not in a position to fund all this themselves so project Zachariah was set up to help them out and the local community have been wonderfully supportive.

C: Tell me a bit about your involvement with the Hotrod and Rockabilly Rumble
LAB:  My uncle is into the hotrod scene and is friends with the family and they were trying to put together a fundraiser.  He wanted to provide some cars for it, it wasn’t a hotrod event until the cars got involved and then of course the theme got going and live music and that’s when I happened to be discussing it with my uncle I said ‘oh I might be able to get some pinup friends to come along’ and he said it would be great to have the atmosphere and have some people dress up so it evolved quite quickly after that, even if it was short notice!  So we just had a couple of weeks and we put together a register on the day fashion parade sort of thing and that’s how I got involved.
C: Well you’ve had a great turnout, there were 6 entrants in the fashion parade and everyone seems to be having a lovely time.
LAB: Yes it was fantastic, it’s been a beautiful day as well and it’s for a very worthy cause.rumble flyer

C: How did you find out about project Zachariah?
LAB: I found out about Zac through my uncle.  He was telling me about the family, about how Zac’s needs are 24 hours a day and his parents don’t get much relief at all – Zac’s father has his own business doing wood chopping so he can come home whenever he’s needed.  Having several brothers and sisters as well can make it very hard on his parents looking after him because his siblings are fantastic and help out but they need their parents too.  Then of course being able to have the facilities and money to provide care for him at home and having the equipment he needs in the house is vital to him.
C: And you thought you would like to help out
LAB: I certainly did, I didn’t know the family but I felt it’s a good cause and I would like to be involved.  Also it’s a great way to get the girls together to have a competition, see some cars and have a Rockabilly event – any excuse! And of course to get something out this side of town – we have a lot of car events but not actual big events with everything like stalls and bands etc.  When there is anything on it’s usually out the Eastern side of Melbourne not out here so it’s been good.

Lady A Broad - Cards of Kindness

Lady A Broad – Cards of Kindness

C:  Speaking of big events, the last time I saw you, you had your very first stall set up at Ballarat Beat for your Lady A Broad label of accessories and homewares – would you like to tell me about that and how it came about?
LAB:
 Yes! Studying graphic design I’ve always have a love for creating and having my designs just out there on something and getting into the pinup scene I love vintage and I love the look of it.
C: More than love, excuse me! Have taken over is more like – Miss Viva Las Vegas 2013! Etc – how many titles do you have?
LAB: I only have 3!
C: ‘Only 3′ she says!
LAB:  That part of my design side had been left behind after getting into pinup and everything, which is also something I absolutely love, I thought ‘I have to be able to combine this’ so this is where I suppose winning my titles and having a bit of a name has definitely helped to launch something I love.  I found a niche in the market where there is a lot of heavy design work that is more rockabilly and often quite dark and I thought I really do like the softer side of the 40’s and early 1950s, that really soft, girly side and I think there could be a market for it.

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C:  Your products are so unique, I haven’t seen anything like them around and when I wear your brooches and earrings I receive many compliments! My sister saw your magnets on the fridge the other day and wanted to know where I’d got them from so they’re definitely eye catching, definitely something that people don’t see much of!
LAB:  Yes I was trying to come up with something that is unique and a bit different and something that you don’t really see out there.

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Broad Spectrum Collection magnets

C:  Lets talk a little bit about your range of products you have homewares and accessories
LAB:
 Yes, at the moment I have two main ranges – I have the Broad Spectrum Collection. That involves all the pinup faces, the pinup girls and I have created names for each pinup design and then I also have Acute Ark series which is a bit like Noah’s ark so we have animals, they’re a more cutesy animal style and then I have my ABC high tea where I’m bringing in the 1950s alphabet with the gorgeous images style of thing. I have a range at present that consists of magnets, brooches, earrings, coasters – each collection will end up having a coaster set because I really want to go more into homewares so things for the kitchen

Alphabet Coasters and Tea Tray

Alphabet Coasters and Tea Tray

Claire:  Are you going to print tea towels?
LAB:  Yes! I am, Tea towels and shopping bags, I just want something that’s cute! Along with coasters and placemats and things you can put in the kitchen that are just cute
C:  Oh I love a good shopping bag! Do you have a most popular design yet? And is it Honey Bunny!
LAB:  {Laughs} It is actually the bunny! He has been very popular!
C:  I love Honey Bunny, though I may be a little biased as a bunny owner and pink-obsessive!
LAB: Also Easter with coming up, it’s something cute!
C:  This bunny is for life, not just for easter!
LAB:  Absolutely, that’s right! But actually it surprised me with the range, it varies what people tend to like.  My Miss May Bites pinup, that is more like a vampire, more of a gothic style I thought, clear winner and yet Miss Be Mine (the valentines one) and honey bunny sold the best!
C: Well Ballarat Beat was valentines weekend!

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LAB: Of course!  And also I have the Oldeander bloom pinup which is more of a Hawaiian style.  I am trying to design images in a broad range of nationalities; for example the oleander bloom is an oriental pinup. I think it’s important to have different nationalities represented as that is what pinup is – it is different styles, different looks. Not everyone looks the same and they shouldn’t be made to feel they have to.
C:  You don’t have to be any particular size, style, background, age, hair colour, height or whatever to enjoy pinup
LAB:  Exactly, I agree, just be yourself.

Miss Oleander Bloom and Honey Bunny

Miss Oleander Bloom and Honey Bunny

C:  Can you share some of your general plans for the future with us?
LAB:
 General plans for the future is of course expanding.  I would like to get my brand into local shops and businesses first and then branch out more. Being recognised locally and getting people talking is important as that then branches out. I still plan to go to all the hotrod events and have stalls and be involved
C:  I hope so! I need to add to my collection! I am becoming a Lady A Broad addict!
LAB: I am also planning a Christmas decoration range
C:  Ooh I LOVE Christmas decorations!
LAB:  So do I! and there’s nothing nice out there so I thought that’s the next step
C:  True, there’s a lot of mass-produced plastic yuck
LAB:  That’s right! So that’s why I thought, yeah I want to do that.
C:  Well I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

Lady A Broad loves Christmas!

Lady A Broad loves Christmas!

C:  Lastly; do you have any words of wisdom for people who might be starting out in design and wanting to look to do something with their work? Who don’t just want to work for other people forever and want to do their own thing set out on their own
LAB:  You have to work hard at it, don’t expect to go too big too soon. Start small and go through friends and family and then eventually expand.  I think that’s the way to go because it’s such a competitive industry and you know, everybody’s a designer and says ‘I can do this I can do that’, you need to find what your strength is and push that strength.

Lady A Broad and I at the Rockabilly Rumble

Lady A Broad and I at the Rockabilly Rumble

Of course I couldn’t let the occasion pass without a photo opportunity, so here we are!  Lady A Broad looking lovely as per usual (everyone was coveting those cowboy boots!) and me looking ever so slightly windswept – I promise my hair was fabulous earlier on!

I hope you have enjoyed reading this interview and finding out more about Lady A Broad and her stunning range as much as I enjoyed conducting it.  I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next; tea towels, shopping bags and Christmas decorations all sound very exciting.  And if you happen to see her out and about don’t hesitate to go up and say hi!

Now I will leave you to check out Lady A Broad on Facebook

and her stunning website!

2 Comments

  1. Bettie B Goode

    So good to see our Aussie miss Viva las Vegas 2013 just days before the next winner gets crowned. I am in love with Miss Lady A Broads entire vintage collection and cant wait for those christmas decorations. Thank you Sugar for a wonderful read once again. Love Bettie

    Reply
  2. Pauline Hanlon

    Miss Lady A Broad, what a fantastic interview, and what an amazing Lady… extremely talented and full of wonderful ideas for original products for everyone and every occasion.

    Reply

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