Megan Mitchell, Deborah Farrell, and Lily Mitchell at the Kitsch in the Swich in the Ipswich CBD on Saturday.
Megan Mitchell, Deborah Farrell, and Lily Mitchell at the Kitsch in the Swich in the Ipswich CBD on Saturday. Rob Williams

City centre dances back in time for Kitsch in the Swich

IPSWICH was transformed into a retro lovers paradise on the weekend, as people converged to celebrate everything they love about the rockabilly era at Ipswich City Square and d'Arcy Doyle Place.

In its fourth year, Kitsch in the Swich, saw the centre of town transformed with pink flamingos, tikis, vintage and pin-up babes, swing dancing, rockabilly tunes and market stalls.

For Ray Keepence, who has lived and breathed retro for 20 years, it was a no-brainer to get involved.

Ray, who runs a company called Swing a Billy Ray, has been in charge of the tunes at Kitsch in the Swich for the four years it has run.

"I was approached to do the music here, and my wife and I jumped at it," he said.

"I play songs in between the bands and I just love it.

"It's a great atmosphere, a beautiful mall and great space to do this in."

Ray said he believed the reason people flocked to the fiesta was because people saw the era as "easier times".

"The people who lived it probably didn't, but it is seen as a fun time, bright and colourful," he said.

His wife Chrissy Keepence was the MC on the day, but also worked her charm making over people.

"I love the gathering of people and the colours," she said.

"Vintage-styling for me is a lifestyle, I think we can take the glamour of that time and leave the rubbish behind."

Chrissy was busy giving Miss Swich 2014, Maree Horseman, a makeover at the event.

Maree, who won the pin-up pageant in 2014, said her role had been about promoting Ipswich and the event in positive way.

This year's Kitsch in the Swich saw some of the biggest entertainment in its history, with three live bands - West Texas Crude, The ERT Trio and Asylum of Voices.

Hawaiian burlesque dancers hit the stage in the evening, following by the beauties from Tamblyn Models.



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