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Home, Knoxville, TN

Thursday, October 7, 2010
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I'm always looking for fun and creative ways to use photographs, and I think that these new ornaments from Mpix fit the bill. If you haven't heard of Mpix, it's my favorite online lab for consumers. They have better quality than what you get locally, and their shipping is fast so I recommend them to clients who purchase their high-resolution files.

I think that these would make great gift tags for Christmas. Knowing how much people love photographs, the ornaments will probably be around longer than the actual gift you attach it to!

Of course if you're wanting to order some of these and don't have a great, recent photograph then it's not too late to schedule a fall portrait session. Just email me or fill out the form on my website.

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Home, Knoxville, TN

Monday, September 20, 2010
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Most brides appreciate a photo of their wedding gown before they put it on, and it's a photo that I like to try and take whenever I can. However, I strongly encourage brides to think about the hanger that the dress is on. Usually the dress is hanging on an ugly, plastic hanger that is just not very photogenic. A wooden coat hanger is always a better choice, but there are also really cute, personalized options.

I've seen monogrammed hangers online, but I just ran across the most unique silver hangers on etsy. They can spell out the couple's name or have a design. Check out LilaFrances shop for photos of these cute little wedding keepsakes.
 
If you're super crafty and can find the right gauge wire then you may be able to make one yourself. However, the woman lives in Nashville and donates 10% of profits to ovarian cancer research so purchases from her shop support a semi-local artist and a good cause. You could also buy them for your bridesmaids, but shop early because there is a waiting list.

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Farragut, Knoxville, TN

Saturday, September 12, 2009
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I've always recommended that newborn sessions be scheduled in the first 7-10 days after birth. Primarily because that is when they are at their smallest (babies can lose about 10% of their body weight right after birth), and they're the most flexible and likely to curl up into cute little balls. After working with Hayden, I've decided that the best reason to do the session early is that the newer babies tend to go to sleep after feeding and stay asleep much better. Once they get used to being out of the womb, they don't expect to be moved around while sleeping. He's just 12 days old, and already Hayden is difficult to pose and photograph while asleep.

Because I was recovering from the c-section, I had to postpone the family photos that I wanted to do until yesterday. Marcus and I tried off and on for most of the day to get him to cooperate, but he just wasn't having it. He would fall asleep right after eating and then wake up and throw an inconsolable fit when we tried moving him around. Everything is on HIS schedule right now, and he just wanted to be left alone to sleep. Considering how long it takes to get everyone ready (it is much easier to be just the subject or just the photographer than both) and how unhappy it made Hayden (not to mention that Marcus is returning to work Monday), I'm afraid that I may not convince Marcus to try it again.

Here are a couple of sleeping photos that I took a few days ago though.

Newborn Photography Tip

Newborn Photography Tip
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Home, Knoxville, TN

Thursday, May 7, 2009
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A professional coordinator will make sure that all the details are under control and can go a long way in relieving the stress on your wedding day. However, if you can’t afford to hire a pro, do ask a trustworthy friend or family member to put together a survival kit. If you’re prepared then you’re less likely to have anything go wrong, right? Most importantly, make sure that they remember to bring it on the wedding day!

 

Also, make a list before the wedding day of items to take to the venue and go over it before leaving home. Things can be so hectic. I’ve seen a groom forget the wedding bands and a bride forget her gown, but more likely you'll forget something like the garter, jewelry, or cuff links. The further you are traveling from home, the more important a survival kit and wedding checklist can be.

 

I am not saying that you need to spend a lot of time or money putting this together, but here are some things that you may want to include in your kit depending on season and venue:

Clear nail polish (for runs in your hose)
Individually wrapped nail polish remover pads, nail file, polish for touch-ups
 

Scissors 

Safety pins, straight pins, corsage pins 
Travel sewing kit
 (including thread to match the dress)

Tissues 

Aspirin/Advil 

Brush, comb, bobby pins, hairspray 

Super Glue (broken heels, jewelry, etc.) 

Sanitary products 

Gum, Mints, breath spray 

Shout wipes - removes stains/dirt from tuxes and dresses 

PeptoBismol Tablets, Tums, Imodium 

Duct tape, Scotch tape, double-sided tape 

Lighter or matches

Bactine, clear bandaids 

Mosquito repellent 

Club soda (if serving red wine) 

Sunglasses 

Bottled Water and light snack

Rice/blotting paper and powder for shiny skin 

Umbrellas 

Wrinkle releaser 

Jumper cables 

Benadryl 

Black socks for the men 

Lint remover 

Compact mirror 

Lip gloss or lipstick for touch-ups

Toothbrush and paste 

Deodorant

Fix-a-flat aerosol can 

Wooden or padded hanger for the dress

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Church, Knoxville, TN

Tuesday, December 16, 2008
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I love petal tosses. There's something very jubilant and carefree about them. The wedding day is the one day when a girl can dress up like a princess in a frilly dress complete with a long veil and then act like a child and throw flowers in the air. Why not live it up and take full advantage of the opportunity?

Unfortunately, some brides think that tosses are only done during the couple's exit from the wedding. This just isn't true. When they are having the ceremony and reception in two different locations, couples often do a toss as they leave the first location. Some even do a toss as they leave the church and then sparklers or bubbles after the reception. However, when you are staying at one venue and have a reception that goes into the night, having a petal toss in the dark may not be the best idea. One idea that I really like is to have a toss during the recessional at the end of the ceremony. Everyone's excited, and what better way to celebrate than to shower the newlyweds with colorful petals (or bubbles if you prefer)?

As much as I like this idea, it doesn't always seem to work out as well as I would like because the guests just forget to participate. Jill and Chris addressed the problem at their fall wedding by attaching a cute little note to the petal cones that hung on the chairs.

Ceremony Petal Toss

Even then, guests are sometimes a little shocked by the end of the ceremony and may still forget to pick up the petals and throw them. I've thought that there must be a good way for the officiant to give instructions at the end of the ceremony, and I just read one way to do it on the peonies and polaroids blog. Peonies are my favorite flower so I was curious when I stumbled on this blog. The writer is self described as "a girl collecting ideas and inspirations for a wedding and for life", and if you're planning a wedding or are just inspired by art and beauty then you ought to check it out.

Anyway, Peony (as the writer calls herself) has shared some of her own wedding photos along with parts of her ceremony, and it is really beautiful. At the very end are these words

Now if you would like to throw a little luck and love Peonies and The Boy’s way, please find your little bag of confetti to shower them as they walk back down the aisle...

Perfect!
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Welcome!
Welcome to the Nancy Hellsten Photography blog! This is the place to be if you’re looking for wedding ideas and photography promotions or if you just want to view some great photos and see what I’ve been up to. If you or someone you know are getting married, having a baby, or just want some relaxed portraits with the family, please visit my website or contact me for more information. I would love to hear from you. Thanks for visiting and check back often to see what’s new.
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