The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.

The title of this post is a quote from Coco Chanel. And even though she said it almost 100 years ago, it still rings so incredibly true.

I get so many letters from young girls saying that they want to try the pinup style but they don’t want to be a “poser” or that they have already tried it and gotten picked on for being different. My answer to this is… SO WHAT. Do you really want to be friends with people that would pick on you and belittle you for just trying to be, well…you? I sure as heck hope not. And to be quite honest, I don’t dress pinup or vintage every single day. How boring to just be one way always!

I was the weirdo in high school that sat in my honors classes with a mohawk and pierced lip. I wore vintage prom gowns to school and told everyone that passed me that I loved them. I spoke my mind and fought against unjust rules and policies. I was a regular in the principals office– not because I was a trouble maker, but because I was a free thinker and the fastest way to foster change is to roll up your sleeves and get shit done. In fact, I was the only one of my class of 600 that the principal hugged when she handed me my diploma.

high school

I wasn’t popular in school. I am not even sure if I could even call myself well liked. I had my years of being picked on and being laughed at. And I also had my years of making loyal, stand up, lifelong friends– who accepted me for the person I was on the inside and couldn’t care less about how much my jeans were or if I was wearing the Gaps signature scent.

pimps n hos

And here I am, so many years later, and when I wake up in the morning, I know that I have led every single day of my life as me, and for me. And honestly, I am pretty damn happy. So I guess the moral of this mini saga is… BE YOURSELF. You only have one life to live and one person to be… so don’t waste it trying to figure out who THEY want you to be. If you are going to put energy into something, put it into figuring out who YOU want to be. If you want to wear a pencil skirt and combat boots, that’s ok. If you want to shave your head and pierce your tongue, that’s ok. Odds are, when you look back you will laugh and shake your head at yourself. But at least you won’t be a clone.

Becoming an individual when you are young is something that will stay with you for the rest of your life. Don’t let some clueless 15 year old peer dictate who you will become. Become who you are.

17 thoughts on “The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.

  1. Erin

    I know you probably get hundreds of emails and comments everyday, and they probably sound a lot like I do, but thank you.
    Coming into my own has been a long and difficult process, and I am lucky to have made it out of my adolescence unscathed. I could have ended my life and let all those people get to me. But I knew, somewhere along the line, I’d begin to see that pinprick of light at the end of that (seemingly endless) tunnel. And I am so thankful for my inner strength, and for women like you who share that strength.
    I needed a reminder today, that I am fine just as I am.
    Thank you for that spark <3

    Erin W

    July 1, 2014 at 6:16 pm
  2. Kait

    I originally started following you for your tutorials, and looking back I’m so glad I did! You’re very inspirational, thanks for being true to yourself.

    July 1, 2014 at 6:32 pm
  3. Terry

    Thank you! My daughter, Jessica has had similar situations at school and from the same girls at church. My wife and I try to encourage her to be herself and not let the meanness of a few to bring her down. My wife and daughter started watching your videos on victory rolls last year for her dance team(which they used again this year, and will do again next year). We all appreciate your willingness to message her or like the pics she posts, that alone helps my beautiful daughter more than you know.

    July 1, 2014 at 6:49 pm
  4. Crystal

    When I first started to get into the pin up culture I thought I would be called a poser. I really loved the style but I do not call myself a “pin up” or any label because I do not like to label myself. That is not the only thing I am I have so many other interest why should I label myself when I’ve spent my whole life being labeled by society. Thanks for being such a good role model :)

    July 1, 2014 at 6:53 pm
  5. Nancylu

    Cherry i met you some years ago while I was looking for a tutorial on youtube, And I am so glad that happened, you are an amazing person, a super strong woman and I am thankful for your words, thanks for all the supporting words you write and say on your videos for all girls around the world, love and best of all wishes from monterrey, mexico

    July 1, 2014 at 6:55 pm
  6. This was a great post! I was just talking with my fiance about this exact thing yesterday. Personally, I very much appreciate the pinup and rockabilly style and culture. However, I feel awkward identifying as part of it. I definitely feel like I’m not committed enough to fit in. I’ll occasionally look the part, but usually I’m honestly just too lazy. Also, I work for Disney so that greatly stifles any creativity I can have with my hair/makeup/skin… I’ve always just liked a hodgepodge of different things and I’m fine with that! I guess I shouldn’t worry about what everyone else thinks of it. :)

    It’s nice hearing this from someone I look up to!

    July 1, 2014 at 7:09 pm
  7. Susan

    You said it all…..I have a magnet stuck to my apartment door that I read every time I leave… It is a quote by Oscar Wilde .. `Be yourself…everyone else is taken..

    July 1, 2014 at 7:30 pm
  8. Esmay

    I’ve been a the oddball all my life , hasn’t changed much. A mother of 4 and Pin up is my style. In high school I was considered a geek. And when I was called one. I would say, I rather be a geek. Then an brainless jock. Live, and let live. and never judge a book. By it’s cover you. You might judge your self out of some great knowledge.

    July 1, 2014 at 9:17 pm
  9. ashley

    Cherry,
    Thank you so much for these words. You are such a inspiration. Thank you for being a role model to being yourself and not caring what others think.

    July 1, 2014 at 11:01 pm
  10. That is so true!! I have been fighting for being myself when I was younger, and now when I am older it was totally worth it. When you are yourself you are happier than when you are faking, even if most people would think you are weirdo.
    thank you for this lovely post! I wish it helps somebody to get the gourage! ;) <3

    July 1, 2014 at 11:23 pm
  11. Samantha Rolfe

    I find that the community outside of the vintage scene is very judgementally they see a look and I really believe they envy the courage to look differant. But all those who dress to please themselves are the best they know the how hard it can be and they encourage everyone no matter shape colour size or ethnic orientation.

    July 2, 2014 at 12:25 am
  12. Loren coskerie

    You are such a great role model cherry i can’t even explain.

    July 2, 2014 at 4:30 am
  13. Love this. Thank you.

    July 2, 2014 at 6:09 am
  14. Samantha

    THANK YOU!!!!!! Most people forget that they just need to be themselves and NOT what society thinks you should be. I remember in high school my junior year I was in advanced show choir, which is a competition choir,and was “advised” by the teacher that we needed to maintain a certain look on stage. I asked if is was a requirement and she said no. Well the next day I show up with my hair purple and half my head shaved. She was not happy and said I couldn’t be in the choir because of it. I told her it was a requirement for to look “normal” to be in the choir. I took it up with the principal and I won that battle! My family was so proud that I stood up for myself, even if they didn’t like the new look.

    July 2, 2014 at 7:24 am
  15. just wanted to say I so wish I’d have lived true to myself for the first 28 years !! …I’m nearly 36 and love each day of my life…ppl often see me as the weird one ,the hair ,the tatts etc however I learnt through changes a few years back …all these ppl i cared so much for their opinions and thoughts -were not there when I needed them most so I stopped caring ! I’m happy with me and real friends,my dad,colleagues etc think I’m the best version of what I ever was! Proofs in that pudding :) Live true too you is my motto and never talk/think bad of myself cos there’s enough twats out there doing it for you! <3 ;-)

    July 2, 2014 at 10:52 am
  16. Ariya Bratton

    I still struggle with this and I’m 26. I’m in Cosmotology school and I’m constantly made fun of and criticized for the things I say. I joke a lot and I love my dog(so I talk about her a lot) and I’m also into animal rights and no one cares to hear about it, so their response is to put me down for how I feel. I try not to let it bother me, but in the long run….. It does.

    July 2, 2014 at 1:01 pm
  17. I will never regret telling my autism “experts” where to shove their attitude, when they told me that emulating “normal” was the way to make peace with my peers. Girls gave me tons of hell for my quirks and special needs, but I knew that my neurology was not to blame for their bigotry. Long after those days were over, I continue to fight for widespread acceptance of my fellow autistics.

    Meanwhile, I also find time for my other passions; animals, numbers, cartoons, and the rockabilly era. So what if they are not typical of a 22-year-old looking for jobs.

    July 17, 2014 at 1:14 am

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