Playing Dress Up: An Instagram Star Celebrates Her First Birthday This Month

Anna Wintour. Han Solo. A bottle of Sriracha. These are a few of the people and things baby Joey Marie Choi has been dressed up to resemble. Photographer Laura Izumikawa began taking portraits of her daughter napping in homemade get-ups as a creative way to entertain family members. In August, a photo of Joey as the character Eleven from the TV show “Stranger Things” blew up online. Now the former Buena Park resident has more than half a million followers on Instagram (@LauraIz). Here’s what Izumikawa has to say about her daugher’s viral success.

“She’s a super- deep sleeper, and I found it a fun way to bond with her. I wouldn’t continue if she didn’t like it.”

“I almost didn’t post the picture of her as Eleven because I didn’t think any of my few followers would know who it was. Then celebrities started reposting it.

“When it went viral, it was a little scary. I didn’t want people to take advantage of us or use her as a prop.”

“What kept me going were the positive messages. We still get tons of messages saying it makes their day. Someone from the Philippines told me they’d look at our photos with their mom who was sick in the hospital and that Joey made her smile.”

“We’re doing a series with beautiful, traditional outfits from around the world. People send them to us.”



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