DIY Props {Gold Masquerade Mask for TGHP}

I am so excited to tell you about a new project that just started this September!!! It’s called The Gold Hope Project.

The Mission:

The Gold Hope Project is a group of photographers that have come together to capture the moments that your family holds so dear to their heart. Some of us have been touched by the presence of cancer, and some have not, but we have all been given a gift that we would like to share with you.

More precious than the gold that represents them, children are our future. This year alone, approximately 13,500 parents will have to listen to a doctor tell them, “Your child has cancer.” 
Can you imagine?

There are twelve major types of childhood cancers. From there, they are broken down into three groups.

  • Leukemias (cancer of the blood)
  • Lymphomas (cancer of the immune system)
  • Solid tumors (cancer in bones, organs, or tissue)

While the survival rate has increased over the past 40 years from 10% to nearly 80%, the number of children diagnosed increases slightly each year. And, while there have been many medical advances in the field of cancer research, treatment of pediatric cancer is still very aggressive and can have many lasting side effects. Some pediatric brain tumors, such as brain stem gliomas and pontine gliomas, are terminal upon diagnosis and no new protocols have been developed in 30 years. Despite the astonishing number of children being treated each year (approximately 40,000), funding for the research and implementation of better treatment remains largely underfunded.

I have been accepted as a volunteer photographer for this amazing group!! There are photographers worldwide and it’s still growing!! So many wonderful things are yet to come, so keep checking their website or Facebook page. If you have a fighter or know of a child fighting cancer please have them apply here.

Okay now to the real reason for this particular post. We are encouraged to use something gold in our photo sessions. I went out shopping the other day for something just to get my gold prop stash started. I came across a gold masquerade mask at Joann Fabric. I bought some gold sequins, really wanted gold feathers but they didn’t carry gold. Darn it!!!!

Anyhoo…I wanted to share the project with anyone involved so that you know you don’t have to spend a ton of money, just takes a little bit of creativity and time. I searched Etsy for a similar project and didn’t find any that were “kid friendly” and cheap. So I think I made the right decision to make my own mask.

As you can see there were very little supplies and you can make it as simple or fancy as you’d like. If I ever make another I’ll buy the strands of sequins that you can find over in the ribbon section. Yea, I hot glued each little sequin!!! I would’ve put sequins around the entire edge where the glitter is, but I was over it by then!! haha

If you have a gold DIY please leave a link in the comment section so we can all visit and see!!!

Spring Cleaning

I’m thinking its the coming of Spring but oh my goodness I have been in the most organization/cleaning mode I’ve ever been in!! Has it hit you yet? The mornings are the best  with the cool weather, mid afternoon I need a break, but then the evenings rock again!

I’m staying with my parents as I get my business up and going and so the organization/cleaning has been happening at their place, not my own. Sunday I forced my dad to take down an old shed that was about to fall down anyways. We emptied it, took boards down off two sides, then he pulled the rest down. We are saving the tin roof and some of the wood but most is so old we can’t salvage it. We worked all Sunday and my prize was a slight sunburn, the first of 2012. In it’s place we’ll build a replacement building that will serve as storage and a garden shed, since it’s located right by the garden. Before and after pictures will be posted as the build starts.

Then as if that wasn’t enough, yesterday I start cleaning out the tiniest room we have in the house. It’s so tiny that it becomes disorderly super fast. Old carpet (that was just laying there) is out. Tons of stuff was donated to Goodwill today and more was trashed. The closet got cleaned out today and I took the door off. I’ve been scouring Pinterest for craft room ideas and I am so blown away by what some lucky people get to have!!!! I started a “Craft Room Inspiration” Board if you’d like to check it out.

The room is only about 9×9 with one wall taken up by windows, one the has the closet, one has the entry door, leaving only one clean wall. I’ve got lots of ideas and I can’t wait to get it completely empty so we can get started! I just found this linoleum lacquer stuff  and am thinking about painting the floor and putting some sort of stencil on it. Way cheaper and more creative than replacing it all together! I’ve taken many photos of the progress and look forward to photographing the final result.

If you’ve got a craft room you’re super proud of I’d LOVE to see it!! Post a link in the comment section!! Or if you need to start a craft room project, too, let’s do it together and share ideas, inspiration, progress, and final results!!! That would be so fun! Comment below and let me know!!

How Do I {Fill in the Space Pt 2}

So in Pt. 1 we covered how your home reflects your style and personality.  With that said, there are many ways you can use photographs to enhance that style and particular look that you want in your home.

This is going to be an ongoing lesson as I cannot cover all the different options in one blog post. I don’t think I could keep it interesting for that long! So let’s think of this lesson as one in a lesson of size. You know what they say…….Never mind, not going there.

I could sit here and tell you all day that size A is better than size C but I’d much rather show you. I’ve put together a few wall display guides to visually show you how the different sizes impact you as you view them in a room.

*Note – These are not precisely to scale. I did my best to accurately portray the measurements but please don’t take me to court over a couple inches. The message is still powerful. K thanks!

I think you can see what I’m showing you here. This is an 8×10 drowning over the fireplace.

Now if you walked into this room you would take notice right away! This is representing a 24×36.

You could easily have just the one over the fireplace and it’d be enough to grab attention.

Again I’m starting with an 8×10, the standard that we’ve been conditioned to gravitate towards. Not because it’s the best size, its just common. I’d love to see it go away all together! A 8×12 would be my replacement. (More on why in another post)

Here’s a 24×36. See how more balanced and pleasing to the eye this size is? Already the empty wall looks better. If you had some overhead lighting and not lamps you could put sconces on either side and waaalaa! You’d be done!!

For this room however since the lamps are there I’d put two other canvases on either side to complete the look. These are two 12×18 canvas wraps.  I love the idea of a frameless photo on the wall in place of framing each photo. The gallery canvas wraps are perfect for this room.

Once the kids grow up these can be easily moved to the den or hallway to make room for more current photographs.  If you had a smaller wall the two 12×18 canvases could be stacked on top of each other to conserve space.

If you feel intimidated to configure your own collection we have 5 predesigned gallery wrap collections you can purchase. These are designed for wall spaces 20×20” to 45×24” with a 1” space between each canvas.

I hope you enjoyed this post and possibly learned a few things. I would also like to make it known that I am not trying to pass as an interior decorator and will not be advising you on drape choices or fabric colors haha (However, I would like to hope that I know a thing or two from my 6 year experience working for an interior decorator.) Stay tuned for further tips and ideas…

How Do I {Fill in the Space Pt 1}

You live in a  home. Maybe you own it, maybe its a rental. You might have everything decorated and updated just the way you like it or your home could be a work in progress. (Still not loving the floral wallpaper in the bathroom? I get it!) Whatever the current condition may be it is still your home. It’s where you raise your family. It’s where after a certain time you opt to be on a Saturday night rather than going “out”.

Another thing about your home is it’s where you can show your personality and show off your family! It’s the one and only place that basically is your territory and you get to show visitors just who you are and who your family are.

If you’re spunky and outgoing you may have a funky bright accent wall in the kitchen or living room. If you are a minimalist you might have clean lines and a soft color palette throughout.

How you display your photos needs to reflect your style as well as show off your unbelievably adorable family!!

So you’re asking “How do I?”. I know that big empty wall in the living room is scary and its just easier to leave it blank than actually come up with a way to fill it up.  I also know about the small bathroom and how you think the kids’ rooms are just hopeless.  I’m here to tell you to take a breath and that I’m here to help.

Stay tuned for Pt. 2 of “How do I?” for inspiration and tips to fill in those gaps and amaze those who enter your home.