Proof you're never too old to be a pin-up girl
Averaging 88 years old, a group of elderly women at the Yangpu District Social Welfare Institute are reliving their youth by playing old Shanghai's calendar beauties.
Wearing exquisite qipao and curly-hair wigs and holding moon-shaped fans, the seniors with delicate makeup bring the pin-up girls on yuefenpai alive.
Yuefenpai, or chart of months, is a type of calendar poster, which was prevalent in Shanghai during the Republic of China period (1912-49). The yuefenpai paintings usually featured popular singers, movie stars and legendary beauties from Chinese literary classics.
"Shanghai calendar girls reflected the charm of local women," said Qiao Yihao, director of the Yangpu District Social Welfare Institute. "We want to create opportunities for elderly people to display themselves and enrich their lives at the senior home."
Dressed in a silk, floral qipao, Chen Xiufeng, 93, looks demure and bashful in her elegance. She recalled that she wore qipao every day during her childhood; however, the style was not nearly as elaborate as it is now.
"I can still remember when I was 12 years old, my mother made a fuchsia-colored, cambric qipao for me under my entreaty," said Chen. "I wore it on the first day of the Chinese New Year and my mother hid it immediately. I wasn't allowed to wear it except for occasions like attending wedding banquets and visiting relatives."
For the activity, Chen bought and wore pantyhose for the first time in her life. Reminded by her bosom friends, she ate less rice the day before the shooting.
Although the elderly women kept saying they were out of shape, their continuously hearty laughs reflected their happiness and excitement.
"It turns out that I can still be so beautiful," said Sun Xuemei, 77. "As I'm getting older, I've become less confident. But this activity gives me a sense of rejuvenation."
The elderly residents of the nursing home once stunned social media after stunningly recreating famous works of art and performing the dance from the hit song "Priceless Sister."
(From left) Jin Diman, 79, Chen Xiufeng, 93, Sun Xuemei, 76, Shi Qiping, 81, and Zhang Yingdi, 89, relive their youth by playing pin-up girls on yuefenpai.Ma Xuefeng / SHINE