Retro Sexy

Taking the classic cocktail resurgence a step further, the management at the DrinkShop at the W Hotel in downtown Atlanta recently teamed up with Dixie Pin-Up, a company specializing in pin-up-style photography. With a little creativity, DrinkShop was transformed into a photography studio and a walking homage to the provocative styles of yesteryear.

Guests were asked to come dressed in fashions from various eras, namely the 1930s-1950s, and photographer Matt Odom set up lights and a small studio space inside the bar. Dixie Pin-Up founder Sarah Caudel enlisted the services of a makeup stylist and hair stylist, and guests were glammed with red lips and pin curls to complete their ensembles. Most guests dressed in getups from the ’40s and ’50s, Caudel says, with a majority of men donning fedoras and suspenders.

“It’s a classic cocktail lounge where we specialize in hand-crafted, Prohibition-era cocktails. So I felt Dixie Pin-Up’s retro glamour was a good fit,” says manager Nicole Petro. And the feeling from Dixie Pin-Up was mutual: They liked the idea of using that venue because “the space was, décor-wise, a modern twist to classic cocktail lounge,” Caudel says.

Behind the stick, bartenders mixed up three vintage-inspired cocktails, which were specially priced at $6, along with three discounted beers. All of the male staff came to work in vests and ties and the females on staff were treated to hair and makeup makeovers as well.

“There was no charge to come,” explains Caudel, “and the styling services were for tips only. All photos were posted on our web site and available for purchase in high resolution [prints]. Nicole was looking to bring in some business to the new property, so we did it on a Monday. That helped us to pull in an industry crowd and cater to stylists at salons, which are always closed on Mondays.”

The night’s turnout was approximately 150 people, thanks in part to an e-mail blast that helped pull in patrons.

“Financially for the bar, it was quite successful,” Petro explains. The event has now taken place twice at W Atlanta-Downtown.


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