September 24th, 2014 |
WE ASKED CHICAGO-PHOTOGRAPHER, KATIE GIERKE, OF KATHRYN HASTINGS PHOTOGRAPHY TO GIVE US HER BEST TIPS FOR STYLING AND CAPTURING YOUR LITTLE ONE. READ ON FROM THIS EXCERPT OF OUR BABY by WH HOSTESS DIGITAL MAGAZINE, TO LEARN HOW TO CAPTURE YOUR FAMILY’S PERFECT LITTLE MOMENTS. THIS LIST WILL HELP YOU TAKE THE PERFECT PHOTO FOR YOUR BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENT.
Light, light, light! It is so important to have really great natural light. Babies are so naturally beautiful you want to make sure that the lighting in your pictures is as natural as possible. I love shooting early in the morning in a room with lots of windows and if possible on a bright overcast day. The soft natural lighting will eliminate your little one.
Simplicity. I love simple, beautiful and natural pictures. The baby should be the main subject in your picture. While backdrops are cute, real life backdrops are more natural and classic. Your pictures will never be dated and will never go out of style. Get rid of all the extra stuff (stuffed animals, signs and props). You want your back ground to be clean. I think a great location for a newborn shoot is a bed. Clear the extra clutter off your nightstands, dressers ect. You can’t go wrong with simple!
Dressing your baby. Wraps are timeless. Babies seem to sleep deeper if they are swaddled and you will be able to play with them more for pictures while they are in a deep sleep. I love the beautiful Aden & Anais wraps and they are easy to find on Amazon, target or a baby store. Make sure you get the blankets that are plain colors. Once your swaddle them tightly you can add a cute hat, bow or just leave them as they are.
Preparing your Baby for the Shoot. When you shoot a newborn you want to make sure the heat in the house is turned up. Make sure it is warmer then normal. This will help them sleep and stay asleep. Make sure the baby is fully fed and their diaper is clean. It takes patients and time to photograph a newborn.
P.S. That is Kelly’s son Daniel!
Your Camera. This amazing instrument can feel like a very daunting task to figure out. I would recommend you read the manual. I know that sounds like a silly tip to give, but honestly so many people have these great cameras and never pick up the manual. Auto is a great tool that all these cameras have, but there is so so so much more to them then just the auto click and capture. If you are getting adventurous Throw your camera in M (manual) and keep the lens in AF(auto focus) play with your ISO settings. If you want to keep it simple for now then keep it in auto and play with your angels. Don’t be scared to off center your picture or to take your picture from farther away. An inch one direction or another can change a picture.
“Photography is so much fun and can be so rewarding. It take a lot of patients and practice. Keep playing with that camera and you will be so happy with the images you create all on your own. If you have any questions or would like me to photograph your newborn, please reach out to me, email@example.com. Now grab that camera and get to work!”
~ Katie Gierke of Kathryn Hastings Photography
For more tips, follow Katie on Facebook. If you are interested in a shoot in the Chicagoland area, please contact her thru her website, kathrynhastings.com.
September 23rd, 2014 |
After waiting nine long months for your little bundle of joy to arrive, you are naturally eager to share the news with your friends and family. Birth announcements are a wonderful way to introduce your precious baby to the world, yet proper birth announcement etiquette can leave new parents with questions. We’re hoping to answer those today and also introduce you to the new birth announcement collection from WH Hostess (featured in the new digital magazine BABY by WH HOSTESS).
BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENT SELECTION
While it’s wise to have a short list of announcements selected prior to your baby’s birth, we encourage you to select a design that compliments the photo of your newborn. (see tips from Kathryn Hastings Photography tomorrow on the blog!)
BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENT TIMELINE
With social media so available these days, chances are the arrival of your baby was news minutes after it happened. A classic birth announcement should be sent out within the first 6 months of life. We like to encourage clients to aim for sometime within the first 3 months!
CREATING A RECIPIENT LIST
Clients often ask us how many cards they should order, and that is a very personal question. The simple answer is: send them to whoever you think would want to celebrate your big news. This may include you family, best friends, neighbors, coworkers, workout buddies, old college friends. Bottom line, who wouldn’t want to celebrate the arrival of your brand new baby?
WHAT YOU SHOULD & SHOULDN’T INCLUDE
You should absolutely include your baby’s full name, birth date, and height and weight. Make sure to include “welcomed with love” followed by the parents’ names or “Daniel has a little sister” to include the whole family in the joy. Don’t include any registry information on your birth announcement. If recipients wish to send your little one a gift, they will seek out the information. If you do receive gifts for your baby, don’t forget to send a thank you note as soon as possible, though it is acceptable to take up to three months.
Can you send a birth announcement for an adoption? Absolutely! What if your baby was a premie in the NICU for 2 months? We suggest sending announcements once the baby comes home. Bottom line, there are no rules and you can make up your own guidelines for your specific situation.
Printed on a luxe, smooth cardstock with classic, yet updated designs that ooze that fresh baby look, here are a few of our favorite new birth announcements from WH Hostess:
And if you can’t find the perfect card to suit your image, or are looking for a more unique design, please contact Kelly to inquire about a custom design.
September 17th, 2014 |
The birth of a new baby (or a brand new stationery collection!) is an exciting time that deserves to be celebrated in style. The Party Dress Magazine is pleased to launch a special issue full of gorgeous inspiration for all things baby. From planning baby showers, sip & see’s, and baptisms, to gift ideas, recipes, advice for photographing your newborn, etiquette for selecting birth announcements and writing thank you notes, to ideas from your favorite bloggers on how to create traditions and modern heirlooms with your family, this issue is gorgeous and full of very happy occasions.
It also showcases the products from the new BABY by WH HOSTESS collection of birth announcements, stationery and baby shower party goods.
Join us in celebrating our new “baby!”
This issue features contributions from some special ladies. Katie Gierke of Kathryn Hastings Photography shares her tips for photographing your newborn, Melisa Fluhr and Pam Ginnochio of Project Nursery share ideas for the perfect baby shower gift, Vana Chupp of Le Papier Studio shares a unique idea for creating a modern heirloom, and some of your favorite bloggers share their family traditions in hopes to inspire new ones for your family! (thank you to The TomKat Studio, Project Nursery, Pizzazzerie, Kate Landers Events and Swanky Chic Fete)
This issue and collection of paper goods was inspired by the birth of my first child in late 2013. This little love has brought so many happy occasions into my life this last year, many of them documented in the issue. Each event, milestone or happy occasion brought about a need for stylish paper goods….thus the BABY by WH HOSTESS collection was born. It will continue to grow, but for now – I hope you enjoy this new collection that oozes that fresh baby look and feel. Classic gingham checks, soft stripes, sweet baby monograms – all done in my signature style offered on birth announcements, stationery, baptism invitations and the most gorgeous collection of baby shower invitations and party decor around.
September 2nd, 2014 |
Now that the kids are back in school, it’s time to start planning fall birthday parties! Let WH Hostess help you create a party to remember. From darling invitations, to coordinating party decorations, WH Hostess has a variety of themed party collections that are perfect for Fall. Today, we’re showing you a few of our favorite party themes for September, October and November.
Click the images above to view the party collections!
August 26th, 2014 |
Working with my custom party-planning clients is one of my favorite parts of my job. I love assisting them to create an experience for their guests that is both entertaining and stylish. And typically, it results in a fabulous new party collection for us to offer in the shop. With the Frozen movie taking the little girl group by storm this year, we have done a few different custom invitations and party goods. For this party, we expanded on those and created a party fit for an Ice Princess! Focusing on a turquoise, light blue and fuschia color palette, I used snowflakes, snowmen, and lots of white accents to design a party that fit the bill for the frozen-obsessed birthday girl, and was sophisticated in feel for the parents. Our new collection is now available in the shop!
These beautiful photos from Stacey Woods tell the story of the day. Here are a few highlights to look for:
- A Princess Dress Shoppe where guests could dress in sparkle tutu’s, crowns & tiara’s and jewelry. Styled like a fabulous dessert table, it featured a custom fabric backdrop and coordinating signage to brand it.
- A Let it Go Drink Buffet with coordinated paper goods, foil-stamped beverage napkins, water bottles with “Melted Snow” labels, and drink dispensers with signage
- A darling tablesetting for guests, complete with table runners made from our snowflake fabric, chair plaques, and an Ice Princess chair sign for the birthday girl’s seat.
- A white dessert table featuring pops of color in the fabric backdrop, pennant banner soaring across the front of the table, cupcake toppers and cake plate clings. Desserts included jumbo marshmallows, chocolate covered oreos, gorgeous snowflake sugar cookies from Flourish Sweet Shop and a stunning tiered cake!
- A Snowman Toss game to keep the kiddos entertained.
Our new collection is available in the shop, including invitations, party decorations, custom fabric and Cake Plate Clings. We are so excited to introduce a couple new products to this party collection as well: foil-stamped beverage napkins, and foil-stamped cello bags!
Party Plan, Paper Goods, Fabric + Cake Plate Clings by WH Hostess | Photography by Stacey Woods | Sugar Cookies by Flourish Sweet Shop
August 5th, 2014 |
Did you know that some of our most popular birthday party collections started out as customer requests for custom designs? Yup. And that’s why we love our customers so much! I thought this week that I would show you a few custom parties that we designed recently. And if you are interested in them – e-mail me!
This particular collection was designed for a Max’s 1st birthday. His mom asked me to come up with something fresh, preppy and all about #1! A classic navy blue, light blue and green color palette, a few cute patterns and a little monogram love was used. I created a custom #1 basketweave pattern to use for the invitation and then we carried it onto party goods throughout the event on a custom poster, paper goods and Cake Plate Clings.
I think Max’s mom did a great job infusing our paper goods into her design – looks like a great party to me!
July 15th, 2014 |
When the weather heats up and summertime approaches, I’ve got one type of entertaining on my mind….and it always has a nautical theme. I don’t think it’s a secret that I love a crisp red, white and blue color palette. Throw an anchor, crab or lobster in there and I just about die and go to heaven. So when it came time to pick the classic themes that I wanted to include in my book, Stylish Kids’ Parties, a Nautical themed birthday party was a no-brainer.
Stylish Kids’ Parties makes it a snap to plan, design and execute festive kids’ parties that wow adults and thrill little ones! Filled with 12 creative and colorful party ideas, my book shows you how to confidently tackle party preparation by using color palettes and themes that carry through–from invitations and decorations to party favors and treats. Complete with DIY tips, recipes, projects, themed activities and templates, you’ll love these party ideas for boys and girls, first birthday celebrations, baby showers and holiday gatherings. You can purchase the book thru Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or a signed copy thru WH Hostess.
I’m excited to share a few of the ideas today from the Nautical Party chapter in the book. Classic, preppy and perfect for a boy or girl – this party has some simple DIY party ideas that you can recreate in a flash.
The book includes a bunch of fabulous templates that you can use to create these projects. A nautical party invitation, a maritime banner, anchor accents, stickers and gift tags, sails and the recipe for my sailboat rice krispy treats. It’s a great resource!
I love serving milk & cookies to kids during a birthday party! Don’t you just love the striped cookies that Sandy from Firefly Confections made for us? The stripe is the perfect nod to the Nautical theme, and instead of doing a traditional anchor or sailboat shape, we opt’d for the #4 to celebrate the birthday boy’s age.
It also includes some great ideas for activities to keep kids entertained during the party, such as a sailboat race! And also some simple ideas for infusing the nautical spirit into your party details, such as tying a lifesaver candy to your napkin rolls to look like a lifesaver float! These ideas could be used for a birthday party, pool party or even on a nautical-inspired tablesetting for a summer dinner party. The book is laid out in a beautiful and easy-to-use way, full of DIY tips and instructions for recreating the ideas shown. Here is an example of my DIY water buoy paper lanterns:
I hope these classic ideas have helped to inspire your nautical party! Pick up a copy of the book for even more party inspiration for kids’ birthday parties and baby showers.
And if you love the nautical look, check out our Mod Nautical party collection, anchor lucite tray, anchor ceramic mug, and darling chunky notepads!