You came here because you like old stuff and weird places, right? Awesome, me too. That’s why I created this blog. So, who is the Atomic Redhead? Well, that would be me, Janey. Since I can remember I’ve loved old stuff. From the corseted Victorian era to the groovy 1970s. And that pretty much sums up my aesthetic and this blog right there. Here you’re going to find abandoned places, tourist traps, stellar architecture, museums, old signs, my spin on vintage fashion, vintage home, history lessons (don’t worry, they are about fun and weird things), and trips to amusement parks, because, hey, I live in sunny southern California, with three stellar amusement parks within 35 miles of me. Oh, I’m also a bit of a geek, and love attending comic conventions – aka Cons. I’m a complex person.
Oh, you wanted a bit more of a bio? Okay then. I was born in Oregon of an Idahoan and a Californian who were antique dealers. I grew up on a healthy diet of I Dream of Jeannie and The Munsters, classic cars in the garage, and cutting my teeth at flea markets and thrift stores. I began wearing vintage clothing in middle school, and began buying and restoring vintage furniture in high school, amassing a collection of Heywood-Wakefield and a cabinet full of Franciscan Starburst before I was 18. It all came in handy when I got my first place. In college I learned I could turn my passion for history into a degree. After graduating from the University of Oregon with a BA in, you guessed it, history, I married my high school sweetheart, Patrick (he’s a key player here on the blog – designer, coder, and the man behind the camera if I’m in front of it), and we settled in Portland, where I followed in my parents footsteps and became an antique dealer, while also doing work with vintage clothing stores as a shop girl and model. After living with the rain for over 20 years it was time for a change, and we moved to southern California in 2014, and later buying our first home, a 1954 ranch located just one mile from Disneyland. After a brief stint as a Cast Member at the Disneyland Resort, I decided to dedicate myself fully to this blog, and to finding the most unique places to share and the craziest of history to bring to life.
A note when it comes to being a part of the “vintage community” and “vintage living.” This blog is pretty old when it comes to the world of blogging. I started this blog back in 2009, and there is a fairly large evolution over the years. I went from wearing vintage more on the weekends and special events, to wearing it daily, attempting period perfect looks, and being very active within the Portland vintage community. Eventually, and even more so after the move to California, I used vintage clothing as a stepping stone to develop my own personal style, mixing and matching eras and adding new pieces in the mix, and as a result have felt less and less a part of the vintage community. The home Patrick and I have however is still nearly all vintage furnishings, and that is what I mean by “vintage living” or “My Vintage Life” – living with vintage things, or using vintage items on a daily basis. But just because I love the aesthetics of days gone by does not mean I “feel like I was born in the wrong era” or wish I could live in the past. Every time period, no matter how beautiful the clothes or architecture, has its issues and extreme problems. With a degree in history, I recognize the problematic issues of the times in which the things I love so much come from, and do not reflect what are known as “vintage values” such as racism, homophobia, and traditional gender roles.
“Meet Janey Ellis, a Mid-Century Woman in a Very Modern World” – Antique Trader, January, 2022
“Cherished + Personalized 50s Wonderland” – Atomic Ranch. Originally published in Vintage Holiday magazine, November, 2017
“Meet a Fellow Vintage Blogger” – Chronically Vintage, July, 2016
I am always interested in doing collaborations with companies and products and people that I believe are in line with my blog. Therefore I reserve the right to refuse collaborations with companies that do not align with my blog’s content, the interest of my readers, and/or my morals. Collaborations are only done in the form of product reviews, where an item(s) is given free of charge in exchange for a post giving an honest review of the item. Each product review has a disclosure stating that the item was given in exchange for a review. Unique coupon discount codes for readers are welcome as part of this. Collaborations can be done with clothing, accessories (no sunglasses, unless you’re going to include my prescriptions), and non-fiction books. Product reviews allow my readers to have an in-depth look at items outside of how they are presented on a company’s website.
What do you get when you work with me? All posts include my own photography of the item(s), including photos of myself wearing the item(s) when applicable, and links to the company. Once a post goes live it is promoted via my blog’s Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram. I also tag companies when applicable.
If you are looking for writing samples you can download PDF samples below.
- Antique Trader: Various articles
- RollerCoaster Magazine: Knott’s Turns 100
- College Essay: “Oops!” The American Pin-Up: An Ignored Art Form
- College Essay: Portland’s Dirty Little Secret: How Vice and Corruption Held the Rose City In Its Clutches
All images and text, unless otherwise noted, are taken by Patrick Arlt, or myself, and are copyright of Janey Ellis/Atomic Redhead. Text is copyright of Janey Ellis/Atomic Redhead, unless otherwise noted with regards to Guest Posts. If you wish to use any of my text or images for sharing on your blog or website, you are welcome to as long as credit is given, which includes a link back to my blog. If you wish to use it for other media (print, film, etc.) please request permission using the Contact page. Thank you.
Throughout this blog you will run into posts that feature links to various websites, including museums, parks, stores, and more. Some of these posts will contain affiliate links. At the bottom of each post that contains an affiliate link there will be a notice informing you. Links are provided to help make your life easier in finding a location, company, or product.
While I was once employed by the Walt Disney Company, I never spoke for, and never speak for or on the Company’s behalf. Anything that is said regarding Disney, Disneyland or its affiliates is my own opinion, and speaks from my experience as a Guest. I am not a spokesperson for the Disneyland Resort, or The Walt Disney Company and its affiliates. Atomic Redhead is not owned or officially affiliated with the Walt Disney Company or any of its affiliates.