Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Jnelly's Dream Tea Party photo shoot.

It was a magical spring afternoon among friends, pretty princesses, lots of lace, cupcakes and a tea party I hope the girls will always remember.

Photographer: Janelle Van Houw 

Assistants: Johna Jamison Debbie Tisher and Kelly Prescott

Models: Sophia, Paige, Quinn, Charlie and Donaca (special thanks to all the moms who’s little ladies looked amazing and who dealt with all my crazy 3am e-mails)

Location: Heritage Green Sandy Springs

        I have always wanted to do a stylized photo shoot but didn’t know where or how to start. After reading this article by Amy Lucy Lockheart of Amy Lucy Photography on my all-time favorite blog Clickin Mom’s I was inspired and excited to plan a “tea party” themed shoot!

       After weeks of trips to the thrift store, hours upon hours of crafting , attempting to learn how to bake macaroons (they are expensive for a reason) thank goodness my friend Johna prepped all the ingredients and basically did it all ;) ) and getting some amazing etsy vendors on board I was soo excited to get  planning and shooting!!!  (I spend a lot of time on this blog its so inspiring and has so much knowledge)

Here are the 5 steps from the article that got me on my way!
How to Plan a stylized Shoot

1.  Develop a theme based on the message and emotion you want to convey.
I threw a tea party themed bridal shower for my sister last year and had the best time planning it. I still had lots of tea party themed crafts and ideas that I was excited to try.  I wanted the shoot to feel like the girls had been invited to a real tea party with real food and a grown up table. The colors I choose were peach, sea-glass blue, pink and gold. Lots of GOLD it’s a weird obsession I have right now! I spent weeks with gold spray paint on my hands from spraying EVERYTHING in sight!

2.  Envision your scene.
I knew I wanted to shoot outdoors somewhere private and beautiful. I choose Heritage Green in sandy springs as the shoots location. I love this little park its nice, quiet and beautiful. I also wanted to do a table with tea party settings, real food, a sweet merchandized teacart and something with a lace background.  

3.  Select a prop or props that will enhance your vision.
I spent quite a bit of time hanging out at thrift stores and vintage shops the weeks prior to the shoot. I set a budget for the shoot and found lots of amazing treasures at B & R Thrift store. This is my FAVORITE thrift store (I almost don’t want to tell people about my secret spot) ;) All the fabric I used for the tent, table, and the hanging lace was from old window treatments that are around $3 dollars a panel at B & R such a good deal!  B & R also has a large assortment of plates and teacups! Another treasure I found was a $3 dollar tricycle that I repurposed for an article in an upcoming Atlanta online magazine coming soon Chic Atlanta Mag.

The chairs and teacart I found at Woodstock Antiques.  This is my go to antique store!! It’s a bit of a drive but sooo worth it! I can usually get everything I need there. Plus the owners Suzie Chinal & Kimberly Posey and all the employees are very helpful I have a small car and they always help me carry my goodies and measure my trunk space to make sure it fits =)

I would also like to thank my mom for sending me the vintage umbrella and her mother’s vintage lace gloves! She always supports me and sends me lots of packages all the way from Colorado =)

Johna Jamison helped me with all the tissue paper puffs and repurpose the tricycle. She is an awesome crafty friend to have around and works for free and I can usually persuade her to hang out with me on the weekdays and get a glass of wine well before 5pm.

4.Find the perfect location.
I knew I wanted to shoot outdoors somewhere private and beautiful. I choose Heritage Green in sandy springs as the shoots location. I love this little park its nice, quiet and beautiful. I also shot my very first wedding here =) Sarah Poland was awesome about getting back to me about using the venue.

5.  Plan carefully for your shoot and be flexible.
I spent weeks dreaming of this photo shoot and planning like crazy! I even made stick drawings of how I wanted to girls to pose…this quickly went out the window as it usually does with the little ones! The little gals poses and expressions were even better then what I could have come up with! That’s why I love love love to photograph children! I knew that with 5 little ones I would have to come up with a place where they could sit and relax and color while they weren’t in the shot. I also bribed them with cupcakes for their model efforts. They had an assortment to choose from (except the ones with the glitter cause I couldn’t find food glitter so Marta Stewart to the rescue.)

6.  Photograph your session, edit, and share.
Phew I pulled it off! I hope you all enjoy my images and a BIG thanks to all involved!!!!! Can’t wait to try it again this summer…I’m think little boys camping and fishing trip!!!!

Special thanks to all the amazing vendors that donated items so this shoot!!


*    Green Party Dress

*    Turquoise damask pillowcase dress


*     Miks Boutique

*     Avabowtiquee

*     VanCocoa Designs