Thursday, October 18, 2012

Ten Reasons to Have Professional Boudoir Photos Taken

There are many reasons to have boudoir photographs taken. Each women has her own special combination of reasons that inspire her to take that leap of faith to do these photographs... but to help you with your decision we have compiled a "Top Ten" list to help get you excited and understand just what boudoir is, and what it can do for you and your significant other!

Top 10 Reasons to Have Boudoir Photographs Taken

10. Celebrate a milestone. Getting married? 5, 10, 25 year anniversary? Just turn 25, 30, 40? Just enter into a relationship? Just end one? Hit a goal weight? All perfect reasons to have A M A Z I N G boudoir photographs done. A boudoir photography session will make you feel amazing about yourself in this moment right now, whatever milestone you may be celebrating.

9. It will shock your friends! They are going to see the images of you looking incredible, and be insanely jealous. Most likely they are going to have their own session done too after they see your photos and how it made you feel. You may even start a movement of women who are incredibly sexy and have the photos to prove it.

8. Every woman should have at least one photo (or a whole set of them) that makes them feel so gorgeous that they just get giddy inside!

7. Putting together the outfits is a blast. Sneaking away your man's sports jersey, buying lacy, frilly, pretty new lingerie, or maybe even a costume. Coming up with looks that you love is a really fun part of the whole experience.

6. Because he won't be able to pick his jaw up off the ground! Trust us, speechless won't even begin to describe it. Seeing the woman he loves all done up glamorous and gorgeous is enough to bring any man to his knees. Plus, do you think he would rather have another new tie or shirt... or pictures of you wearing that shirt... or maybe just the tie...

5. To reconnect with the more intimate parts of yourself. Life happens... between school, jobs, kids, husbands, families, friends, volunteering, etc... its EASY to lose sight of the intimate parts of ourselves and our relationships. What better way to rediscover that fire than with a boudoir session?

4. Its about feeling sexy... not getting naked. There are few feelings more powerful than feeling sexy. That can be done a myriad of ways. From barely there lingerie or nothing at all, to shorts and a camisole and sports socks or a football jersey, all can create incredibly fun, flirty, and sexy images. The point is, that decision is up to you! Some girls want to bare it all, some want to bare a little, just remember you are in control. The amount of clothes isn't whats important, its the feeling of being Sexy that we are after. If you feel it, you will look like it!

3. You don't have to do it alone! Everybody is different, some women will want to bring their friends for support, others will want to share the whole experience with somebody and do a dual shoot, still others will want the whole experience to be about them. Whatever the case, we will make it happen. If you have a friend that wants to come along for moral support, bring them! We will give them a comfy place to sit, watch, and comment, and may even have them hold a light, or a reflector, or fan your hair, or something! Heck, even better, book a dual session and share the whole experience. The only thing we discourage is bringing husbands, boyfriends, or otherwise significant others. Half the point of doing this for them, and keeping things under wraps until the images are finished is the best way to really knock their socks off!

2. Because professionals will make you look gorgeous! Ever wonder how the girls in the magazines look SO amazing??? Teams of professionals, that's how! With our most popular packages, from the moment you step in our studio you are being pampered, cared for, coached, primped, plucked, and polished. We work with some of the premier makeup artists and hair stylists in the Hays Kansas and Central Kansas areas. We are familiar with their boudoir work, and its incredible. As a professional boudoir photographer, its our job to take your new glam look to the next level. We will coach your posing and expression until its perfect, and lighting will be done just right to accentuate your best features while diminishing anything you are self conscious about. Full professional retouching is also done to every photograph before you ever see it. We don't change who you are, but we do nip, tuck, smooth, and polish the image to the level you see every day on billboards and magazines. As a husband and wife team who do this for a living, professionalism is paramount to us. We have different viewpoints, and a male and female eye at each session is somewhat unique to us in the boudoir photography profession. We are complete goofballs, and the mood in the studio will be fun and light, and your nervousness will turn into confidence and you will be hamming it up before you know it.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Women Deny Their Age or Compete With Daughters

The following comment was made in response to one of my articles about "mid-life "mean girls" behavior"

Great advice! As one who is in her forties I avoid the middle-aged gripe club and referencing my age all time. But I have a question. Maybe the answer is in your e-book, but what do you say to people who claim that doing what you prescribe is denying their age? And what do you think about women who say having a youthful vibe, particularly in dress is "trying to compete with your daughter?"

Let's agree on this: It's stupid to deny your age or that you are aging.

Let's also agree on this: While it's stupid to deny your age or that you are aging, it's smart to engage in deliberate defiance of the vicissitudes of aging. That said, it's not easy to make the effort to fight decline because our human nature prefers ease over effort and the leisure oriented senior culture mindset and lifestyle compound the issue.

When "up there" in years, little is worse than being dependent, particularly if dependence results from failure to engage in positive acts of defiance early on. An example of a positive act of defiance is starting an exercise routine while you still have the strength and capacity to bend and stretch, and sticking with it year in and year out. Continuity of effort produces amazing results needed most in the older years.

As for the charge of "trying to compete with your daughter" - let's face it - many older women DO look as good as their daughters, and can wear their daughters' clothes and look great in them, but I don't think women consciously or deliberately try to compete with their daughters.

When a woman makes a negative comment about another woman's appearance or clothing choices, it may be envy. Or, maybe not. Perhaps it's an honest opinion that something "on trend" for a young woman looks silly on an older woman. For example, older women wearing dresses that seem to be made of barely (no pun intended) a yard of fabric. Upon seeing such sights I am often tempted to utter a childhood expression applicable for confused fashionistas:

"I see London, I see France, I can see your underpants". (And sometimes, even more!)

Perhaps you are not old enough to have heard that expression but as a first grade six year old (waaaay back when) I heard it a lot. A cute classmate's parents owned a clothing shop for young children and Jacqueline always looked picture perfect in her short short flouncy Shirley Temple dresses, a sight that motivated gleeful little boys to let her know they could see her picture perfect lace-trimmed underwear. Never seen a Shirley Temple dress? If you have watched teen idol Selena Gomez energetically bounce up and down around the stage in her short short flouncy dress (to the delight of panting pre-pubescent boys), you have the picture.

I digress. If you are making an effort to hang on to as many youthful attributes as possible, good for you! Do what it takes to keep and improve what you have now. Don't allow disparaging remarks from envious or misguided women about denying your age or competing with your daughter deter you from achieving your goal of healthy, independent, DEFIANT agelessness.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

What Fun Is a Clothing Budget?

I have had a budget for about 20 years, and when I took a break for a few years, I gradually started spending too much, and realized that I felt guilty no matter how much or how little I bought! When I started budgeting again, I saw the benefit of keeping track of what I was buying, which made me feel much more in control.

Use a Spreadsheet

My husband and I started a household budget when we were first married, and we used Microsoft Excel, but there are other spreadsheet and budgeting products. Even paper and pen will work, just use what you like.

Save Receipts

I save receipts for everything that I am budgeting for--clothing, shoes, jewelry and accessories. I don't include beauty products or appointments, because they aren't as difficult for me to control. Create categories as you see fit. Keep receipts from these categories in your wallet, or designate a basket or bowl in a prominent place at home, which works well if you are budgeting as a couple for your household. This helps to have them handy for returns as well. If you do return something, make sure you credit your spreadsheet.

Record Purchases Once a Week

Choose a time, for example, Sunday evenings, and sit down, gather your receipts, and record the purchases onto your spreadsheet. This will give you your current balance. If you do this, you will always have a number in your head that's available to spend.

Set a Monthly Budget Amount

This is the hard part, and it's different for everyone. Obviously, you need to be able to afford it, but beyond that, try to come up with what you would like to be spending. You can make it quarterly or weekly amounts if you'd like, but monthly seems the right timing for me.

Keeping my clothing purchases within a budget has helped me to shop more intelligently. I shop at a variety of stores, such as Target, Nordstrom Rack, and consignment, as well as traditional clothing stores. Budgeting also helps me make better use of the clothes I have in my closet, by wearing them more often, but mixing them in different ways. I am more careful with what I buy, making sure it is the right fit and color, and that I really love it. It has helped me to be aware of major store's sales and keeping some money available for those sales.

Using a budget allows you to save up for large purchases you otherwise would think are too expensive or you would feel guilty about. As you purchase items, be very sure you want to keep them and wear them. This can take some time and trial and error, so always save receipts and invest the time to return items that you decide you don't like. Also, if something is in good condition, and can't be returned, sell it at a consignment shop and use that money for new clothes.