Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Born in Michigan, Heather Renee Sweet grew up fascinated by the golden age of cinema, pin-up and vintage lingerie. As a child, Heather was unremarkable among her peers, another average girl with blonde hair. Until the age of 15, she was seriously engaged in ballet, at 13 she already staged solo numbers and for a long time wanted to become a ballerina.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

On Twitter, Dita von Teese admitted that she is of Armenian descent on her father's side. She said this during her participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2009, admiring the performance of the representatives of Armenia-Inga and Anush Arshakyan. Dita von Teese willingly mentions her Armenian roots during various interviews, saying that her grandmother was half-Armenian.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Heather was the middle of three daughters of the Sweet family. Her parents are Bonnie and Ken Sweet, a machinist and manicurist. The older sister, Sarah, was always active and sometimes too noisy, but this earned her father's favor — Sweet Sr. saw her as a highlight, and Heather considered it too simple.

The future von Teese was a mother's daughter-she, like no one else, noticed and understood her mother's passion for beautiful clothes and cosmetics. But the family of the driver and the manicurist could not boast of a good financial situation.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

As a child, Bonnie managed to find the perfect game for her daughter: while she was doing the housework, Heather would go to her room and try on her grandmother's dresses, hats and handbags, which were stored in a huge suitcase under her parents ' bed..

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

From her mother, Heather inherited one simple truth that she still adheres to: be a woman, enjoy your femininity and shine as much as possible. All the unrealized desire of Bonnie for gloss and chic, Heather embodied in herself, becoming the world-famous burlesque queen Dita von Teese

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Even then, as an ordinary teenage girl, Heather became a devoted fan of pin-up. She bought several magazines at a second-hand bookstore. Heather looked at these girls constantly-yes, they were different from her mother's idols, but at the same time they were magically carefree and well-groomed to the tips of her fingers.Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

When Heather turned 15, the family had to move. At the new place, the girl started working in a lingerie store. In college, Sweet studied historical costume and then dreamed of working as a costume designer on film sets. Later, Dita von Teese realizes her dream-today, at her own shows, she creates stage images herself.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

From the age of 19, Heather worked part-time, dancing in nightclubs. During this period, the girl had two jobs at once. After leaving her job at a lingerie store, Heather started working as a consultant at a cosmetics store. During the day, she sold lipsticks and advised the ladies on which perfume to choose, and in the evening, she danced a striptease at the Captain Cream Club.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

As a dancer in the Captain Cream strip club, where the basis of her image was born, Heather got a job in 1990. A year later, she took the pseudonym Dita in honor of the movie star of the 20s Dita Parlo. Even then, she understood that simple and soulless undressing to the music was not for her, and the images that tanned blonde daughters in cowboy boots chose for themselves did not suit her at all.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

In those years, the girl had already exchanged an expressionless blonde for a blue-black color, which turned her into a woman from another planet. The look of the "American sex dream" of that time did not appeal to Dita at all, and did not suit her. Then she turned back to her idols-gorgeous and slightly frivolous young ladies from the pages of retro magazines.

She chose the outfits that became an important part of the show itself. What came to the fore was not the fact that the girl was undressing, but the process itself: slightly lowering the long opera glove, long, languidly and elegantly pulling off the lace stocking. The audience was delighted.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Just two years later, Dita was hit by a wave of popularity. Each of her performances was a "number" - a carefully choreographed little study, from which it was impossible to take your eyes off. For example, a dance with fans, reminiscent of the Japanese geisha. This number was revived by Dita — in honor of its creator, the legendary dancer Sally Rand.When Dita took her first steps in her career, it was the memory of Sally Rand that saved her from feeling awkward and ashamed. In burlesque, Dita began to perform not solo, but with a group of dancers who were the initiators of the revival of the genre. Von Teese is still inspired by musicals and movies of the 30s and 40s. Her unique style was inspired by the images of Luisa Casati, Anna Piaggi and Isabella Blow.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Dita started injecting Botox early and never hid it. When Hugh Hefner himself approached her with a martini glass after the presentation of the number, it seems that only the rejuvenating Botox helped her maintain her proper equanimity. Then the founder of Playboy invited the dancer to shoot for the cover of the magazine. Such an event was tantamount to world recognition.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

Before the photo shoot, Dita flatly refused the services of a stylist and make-up artist. And I did not lose-the image of a sophisticated lady, slightly flirtatious and, of course, incredibly sexy, performed by the former Heather Sweet was as always winning.

Burlesque queen Dita von Teese: the path from a nondescript teenager to the heroine of men's dreams

A few days later, Playboy requested Dita's full name for publication. Then she opened the phone book and, with a well-groomed finger, selected the name "von Treese" at random. But the editors made a typo, and the magazine came out with the signature Dita von Teese. And at that moment, a legend was born.

Keywords: Burlesque | Queen | Legend

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