If there’s something that reality TV has proven so far, it’s that there’s always space for all types of people and niches on the small screen. Car centered shows have been particularly highly successful in the last two decades, but while some of these have been running for years and aren’t likely to stop anytime soon, others’ path on TV was certainly brief.

Unfortunately, the latter’s case applies to “Vegas Rat Rods”, which despite bringing its audience high quality car restorations and lots of creativity, saw its end after only four seasons.

While this isn’t a rare occurrence in the genre, people still wonder what happened to some of its stars, such as the creative welder Twiggy Tallant.

So where is she now? Is she still working in the automotive world or taken a different career route? Stay here to know all about Twiggy’s whereabouts, and get a hold on other important matters related to “Vegas Rat Rods”!

What Is She Doing Now?

Despite having left TV several years ago, longtime fans of Twiggy Tallant would surely be happy to know that she’s still active as a welder, content creator and as a model. As seen on her social media, Twiggy is back living in Toronto, where she works in steel welding with her business Hair Up & Hustle Company, and often attends conventions and other public events meant for women in the automotive and heavy duty industry.

Although Twiggy hasn’t apparently continued her tradition of attending the yearly Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) events to meet automotive fans in recent times, her Instagram and Facebook make it evident that she still has a large following from her days in “Vegas Rat Rods”, with over 300,000 followers on all her social media accounts combined.

Regarding her modeling career, in recent years Twiggy started creating content for the adult subscription platform OnlyFans, besides posting merchandise for sale on her online shop TwiggyTallant.com. All in all, it seems that despite not appearing on TV anymore, Twiggy is having a great time doing what she loves.

Why Did She Leave The Show?

Despite being one of the most popular cast members of “Vegas Rat Rods” back in the day, Twiggy Tallant left the show right before its fourth season premiered in 2018. Her sudden disappearance was heartbreaking for her fans, who quickly went asking on social media what was the exact reason she was no longer on TV, and fortunately for her fans, Twiggy has been quite open about it.

As she admitted on an Instagram post from October 2017, she actually quit her job in WelderUp and “Vegas Rat Rods” together in order to focus on improving her professional skills: ‘Taking a little break from cars to focus on specializing in welding, which has always been my main squeeze’, she wrote.

While Twiggy’s decision to leave the show was seemingly sudden, it appears that there aren’t any hard feelings between her and her former job. As seen in a post from October 2018, Twiggy was ‘proud’ and grateful for her times in “Vegas Rat Rods” and the experiences lived with her former co-workers: ‘They gave me jobs I could do, taught me how to weld, let me shadow. They inspired me, I wanted to be them when I grew up’, she finished the post, wishing the show a successful fourth season, pretty much putting an end to the exciting and apparently learning experience of appearing on TV.

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What Is The Nerdy Stripper?

Those who’ve been following Twiggy Tallant for enough time surely remember the Nerdy Stripper, a sort of nickname she often used for her modeling career. Although back in the day the Nerdy Stripper persona was her platform to share her creative, non-welding related works and promote her job as a cosplayer, nowadays Twiggy has successfully turned this project into a side-business.

Describing herself as a ‘conceptual artist’, Twiggy uses the Nerdy Stripper to promote her modeling career, focusing on producing fictional inspired cosplays and horror themed posters, sold through her website TwiggyTallant.com. The Nerdy Stripper’s success is quite huge, having amassed around 55,000 followers on Instagram and over 40,000 on Facebook.

Other side projects by Twiggy worth-mentioning include her aesthetic account Pretty ‘n’ Punk, and her dog’s account the Money the Corgi. However, it’s the Nerdy Stripper which evidently attracts the most attention out of these.

I want to love you madly 🥃••This little vintage inspired Zine I did last year @queenstqueen was epic and I’m so proud…

Posted by The Nerdy Stripper on Monday, February 14, 2022

How Did The Nerdy Stripper Start?

Although the Nerdy Stripper is nowadays the platform fitting for all visual and creative content by Twiggy Tallant, back in its beginnings the project’s focus was more about so-called nerd media and pole dancing. Self-described as a ‘weirdo’, Twiggy has been all about video games, horror themes and sci-fi all her life.

As she said in an interview with The C-Word in 2014, her earliest ‘nerdy’ memory was of herself playing the video game “Sega Genesis” with friends in her childhood, and being inspired by it: ‘We battled with medieval foam swords and arrows, played video games and hide and seek with foam weaponry. T’was good times’, she said. Twiggy’s love for cosplaying also comes from her youth, when the Halloween costumes her mother sewed for her awakened her interest in dressing up as fictional characters.

While it’s unknown how her pole dancing came to be, Twiggy eventually realized that her job as a dancer and her love for nerd-related media fit well together and opened doors for her in many aspects: ‘I also noticed how much easier it was to find my people’, she explained.

All in all, the Nerdy Stripper has been an ongoing project for several years, always going hand-in-hand with Twiggy’s personal changes and creative development.

Educational Background & Career

Although not much is known about Twiggy Tallant’s early years, we have learned some bits about her professional life and educational background during those years. The first time Twiggy set foot in WelderUp garage looking for a job, she wasn’t as knowledgeable in the steel welding area and automotive industry as she would have liked: ‘When I got to Vegas I was useless. I tried my best, but these guys were just so much faster and more experienced. I could never keep up’, she wrote on a Facebook post in 2018, in reference to her former WelderUp and “Vegas Rat Rods” co-workers.

Fortunately, her co-stars were always open minded about teaching the young Twiggy what they knew about the job, eventually inspiring her to go beyond the limits and pursue welding as a profession. That’s how in late 2017, she enrolled in a one-year-long Welding Program held at George Brown College.

Pursuing a professional education was only the first step into founding Hair Up & Hustle, her business which she describes as: ‘a brand, a community, education, an ode to people who hustle and get the job done’, she wrote on Instagram. Twiggy has certainly built her own path in the automotive and welding industries, nowadays using her influence to prompt and uplift other women with the same interests in pursuing their dreams.

What Happened To “Vegas Rat Rods”?

It’s been a while since “Vegas Rat Rods” left TV screens without saying ‘goodbye’, right after the end of its fourth season. Nonetheless, given the show’s success while it aired and the several memorable moments it gave its audience, it’s not a wonder that many people still have questions regarding the show’s fate.

Although there was no official statement regarding “Vegas Rat Rods”s end, we have a good idea of what really happened thanks to the show’s main star Steve Darnell interview with Review Journal in 2018. As the article points out, 15 months passed between the end of the third to the beginning of the fourth season; this is an unusually long time of production for reality TV shows, but it was necessary considering the big efforts made to turn every project featured in the show into a finished product: ‘It’s unbelievable. Really, it is. I would put my crew up against anybody to build something, because we’re animals in here when we get going’, Steve said, saying how ‘fine-tuning’ meant the show’s extended production periods.

Given all these difficult conditions, it wouldn’t have been rare for the show to eventually be canceled. Nonetheless, the hopes of seeing “Vegas Rat Rods” back on TV again haven’t completely faded yet.

What Was The Show About?

There’s something beautiful about rat rods that only the most committed and less traditional car fans understand. One of those people is Steve Darnell, owner and founder of WelderUp and star of “Vegas Rat Rods” whose main passion is not to turn cars into shiny and stunning pieces, but to make road fitting speed machines which could actually convey the meaning of owning a real rod.

Regardless of not fitting to the ideal of what cars should look like, he considers his rat rods real pieces of art: ‘They’re just creative. They’re artistic, they’re put together in a way that you can just have fun with it and just enjoy building a hot rod’, he said in an interview with Review Journal in 2014, when “Vegas Rat Rods” had just premiered.

Although Steve was always sure of what he wanted his cars to be like and represent, later in a 2018 interview he admitted finding lots of opposition to his cars and the TV show during its early days: ‘Everybody was like, ‘Yeah, it’s all right. This guy’s building these junk rat rods? OK, whatever.’,’ he said. Nonetheless, the show eventually found its niche audience, ensuring the permanency of the “Vegas Rat Rods” on air for several years.

How Did WelderUp Start?

Many businesses result from a combination of hard work, passion and lots of creativity. It’s no different for Steve Darnell, whose love for cars started very early in his life, thanks to the influence of his father, a welder and steel worker based in Las Vegas.

Growing up surrounded by cars, and the tools which could modify these if used correctly, it didn’t take long for Steve to take matters into his own hands by working on several complicated mechanical updates. His love for automotive was quite different from others though, and instead of focusing at how great-looking a hot rod might be, he paid special attention to the aspects he thought were more important behind the wheel: ‘I think people have just lost the reality of what vehicles are’, Steve affirmed in a 2014 interview, also admitting that nowadays he considers hot rods ‘fake’, and ‘not cool anymore’.

Steve has encountered all types of negative feedback and criticism along the road, but that hasn’t stopped him from continuing his journey of creating his Frankenstein-built like hot rods. That’s when the true passion that he feels for his autos becomes more evident than ever.

Is The Business Still Active?

It’s been a while since “Vegas Rat Rods” left TV screens, without explaining if it’ll ever come back. As a result, several questions regarding the current state of WelderUp have become common on social media.

Fortunately, not only is WelderUp still in business, but it’s also expanded quite a bit since the last time we saw it on TV. Besides still building extreme-looking and fast hot rods, the business found a new fruitful niche in the wedding industry. Although rat rods and tying the knot might be an unexpected combination, WelderUp’s services of officiating weddings or renewing vows seem to be quite popular. Led by Steve Darnell himself, they’re usually held at the business’ garage, though the leasing of his rat rods as bridal cars is possible as well.

How To Keep Up With WelderUp?

While WelderUp’s social media and website are pretty much active, those who wish to learn Steve Darnell’s welding skills first hand nowadays have a chance of doing so.

As seen on WelderUp website, the business headquarters host in-person programs meant to teach those interested in the art of welding to acquire the necessary skills to stand out in such a competitive industry. On the other hand, the Welder 101 courses offers its student online resources and lessons for those who can’t attend Steve’s classes in person.

All in all, it’s evident that WelderUp is doing well despite not being on TV anymore. The same can be said about Twiggy Tallant and her professional life, so there’s little else than to wish that she and all our favorite “Vegas Rat Rods” stars continue to be successful.

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