Ten years ago, I made a living posing for pics. It sucked because most modeling agencies are crooked and steal your money. But the fun part was being hired over and over again by the same Chinese bridal gown company.
  1. Wedding gown models are rarely married.
    I was married to my first husband at the time, and the fact that I got to wear my own wedding ring in the photos was a novelty for the clients.
  2. It's cheaper to ship models than gowns.
    Most of the time we shot in San Gabriel, CA. But there was one time this company flew a makeup artist, another model, and me to Guangzhou to photograph us in a studio for a week because it was cheaper/faster to send us to China than to haul all those gowns to the States. (Working in China deserves its own List.)
  3. Italian bridal gowns are the most beautiful.
    One of their lines was for Italian women. Holy hell! All of them were ornate ball gowns that somehow managed to be tastefully ostentatious. And bold colors! Vibrant purple, gold, or burgundy. Just stunning.
  4. Modesty gowns are for Mormons.
    The Church of Latter Day Saints requires capped sleeves and a higher neck line than a regular gown.
  5. You've seen one strapless mermaid gown you've seen 'em all.
    I don't get why women starve themselves for this look. So uncomfortable! Plus you can't really dance in them without your tits popping out.
  6. Double. Petticoats.
    Every dress I modeled was photographed with TWO petticoats underneath.
  7. Don't breathe.
    There was a tiny Chinese women named E.B. whose sole job was to tape down the hem of each dress to the floor. I'd step on my mark, and we all waited as E.B. meticulously placed a one-inch piece of (rolled up) masking tape around the circumference of the skirt. Then I would isolate my arms in different positions without moving my waist because that would pull up the hem and E.B. would then get back on hands and knees to re-tape. When she wasn't on all fours, E.B. would be prepping tape rolls.
  8. There are only 4 poses.
    Since I couldn't move from the waist down, this left the following options: 1. Arms up 2. Arms down 3. Right arm up Left arm down 4. Left arm up Right arm down. Then repeat the same poses with the corresponding stole.
  9. Every dress comes with a specific stole.
    First of all, those wraps around women's arms are called stoles. That was new information. Second, every dress came with its own uniquely detailed stole that needed to be featured, which is weird because I never see these stoles in real life.
  10. Don't be honest.
    The makeup artist was a CHAIN SMOKER. Even tho she'd compulsively wash her hands & use breath fresheners, I could still smell the stale odor from deep within her lungs. Makeup artists get intimate with you, closely examining each pore, so if you don't like his/her breath, you're in hell. I finally spoke up after 2 years of working together (she couldn't understand why she wasn't being hired by other companies). I said, "I bet you'd work more if you quit smoking." I was never hired by them again.
  11. Blonde is hard to fake.
    Some of our hairstyles were sculptures that required several pieces of extensions. Inexpensive blonde hair extensions were used on this one model and they photographed YELLOW even though in real life the color matched her hair perfectly. I dunno, I thought that was cool.
  12. Playing princess never gets old.
    I loved to play dress-up when I was little. And I still do. Next time you have a night in, treat yourself to a little dress-up party. Try that aqua eyeshadow you haven't opened yet. Gives Netflix and Chill a whole new flavor.