Wednesday, 30 December 2015

[2015] Lots of Gorgeous Babies

Oh my goodness, 2015 is almost at an end
and just look at all the gorgeous squishy babies I've got to photograph.

It felt at one point that I had nothing but a run of baby boys, and it normally evens out but not this year. I have photographed 23 gorgeous girls, and 33 handsome boys - including two in one session!

I love being a newborn photographer because I get to capture all these new moments with the most precious little thing ever. And you trust me to do that.

And I may get wee'd and poo'd on more than a normal day in the office - but I wouldn't swap it!

2015 saw me not just be a member of the Baby and Newborn Photography Association - but to also be a Regional Ambassador too - promoting Baby Safety at every corner.

With customers from local and from as far as Derby and York - I really do want to thank each and every one of my clients who bring their gorgeous bundles to me to photograph these forever memories.

Are you due in 2016? You could have photographs like these too! You can book in from your 12 or 20 Week Scan and a £30 booking fee secures your Due Date and a guaranteed session when your little one arrives!

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

My Guide to Gift Shopping - throughout the year...

Now, I'm going to share with you some secrets but you need to promise not to laugh.

I've already started present shopping for 2016. Not just for Christmas of course, but for birthdays too.

You see, being self-employed I need to be planned, especially when it comes to Wedding Fairs and mad Wedding Season. And then add in the baby booms and Christmas and before you know it there is little time to get things planned really.

And I do come from a small family - there is just myself, mum, dad and grandad that I buy gifts for - oh and 10 of my friends Children.

Yes. I buy for 10 Kids for both Christmas and Birthdays. Now this normally isn't too bad when people budget to spend £10-£15 for each child for each occasion. But when most of the 10 kids' birthdays fall between August and November - you kind of have to decide that enough is enough.

So - I thought I'd share with you - my structure on buying gifts.

1. Write a List of everyone you buy for and when.
Ok for me this isn't everyone - this is just the children that I buy for. I also note down whether its Birthday and Christmas and how old they will be at that time. I do this on a spreadsheet / google docs.

2. Bulk Buy.

I'm lucky that I have friends who have kids of the same ages. And same ages means they're into same or similar things. I buy for 2 lots of girls at the same age and 3 boys at the same / similar age. I might also see something and buy it in 2 or 3 different sizes or multiples so I can give it to children at either Christmas or Birthdays.

3. Keep a Spreadsheet.

Yes I'm that person who has a spreadsheet. It relates back to number 1. But because I buy throughout the year, I keep a good track of what I've purchased and who for. And then I can concentrate on who needs more and go from there.

4. Clothes.

Seasonal Sales are great for purchasing in the size above (or two) especially if you know that they will be seasonal appropriate when birthdays or Christmas come around. For instance, I bought an item in JULY for a birthday in February because I know it will be PERFECT but it wasn't a Christmas Suitable item.

5. Toys.

If buying toys, try and make them educational. Buy a little bit in advance of what they need because then they'll get more used to it. Things for imaginative play work really well too. And WOOD Toys never go out of fashion!

6. Books. 

Books are brilliant as a "top up" to add a couple of extra gifts. The Works occasionally do 10 books for £10 on children books - PERFECT Stocking fillers!

7. Sign Up.

Sign up to newsletters from the places you buy more often. Sometimes you get a heads up before discounts go online for anyone else - giving you quick pickings of some of the best sale items. I always look from low-high unless I'm looking for a specific high-priced normal item I know that is going to be more than likely in the sale.

8. Cashback.

Check out Cashback websites too. You may only get a small percentage but they soon add up. I've been lazy not using Quidco for a while and signed in and realised I had £48 waiting to be paid - which in turn paid for my Dad's  
Christmas Gift! Even better!

So there you have it - I may spend £10-£15 on each child still but because I do it this way they get more for the money. They get a selection of gifts and I get told off for spoiling the kids - but I didn't....honest!

Monday, 16 November 2015

Newborn Baby: Baby Boom, Availability and When to Book

Baby Boom

Back in February when 50 Shades of Grey was released in the Cinema it was warned that there would be a baby boom some 9 months later. It seems there is some truth to it if this week is anything to go by. 

I have had lots of gorgeous babies in and still more due but I have also had calls, emails and a couple of people visit the studio wishing to book in for a newborn session with baby already over one or two weeks old. It is with a heavy heart I have to inform people that I have no current availability within the next week for newborn sessions due to my annual holiday and pre-booked pending arrivals.

It is never too early to book a newborn photographer.

Myself, and most Newborn photographers will take bookings from your 12 or 20 Week Scan and book in your session via your due date. This means that we have to take limited amount of due dates per week and month to accommodate early or late babies. This means that some months can be busier than others, but also it means that sometimes we can fit in bookings where baby has already arrived.

Most sessions are booked in around 10-14 days after the baby has arrived and involves informing your chosen photographer as soon as possible to give you the best choice of available dates within the timeframe.

Small Squishy Babies

Being a Newborn Photographer I will, where possible, photograph newborns up to 4 weeks, sometimes even 6 weeks. I understand that not everyone gets discharged from hospital straight away, needing medical attention or a little time on SCBU. I just advise to book in as soon as you can. 

The age of the baby can make a difference to what type of poses or props that we are able to achieve and whether or not they will like it and settle - because babies can be fussy little things.

Timing is everything

Most Newborn Sessions can last 2-3 Hours. This depends on the photographer and each baby. However, this is a great time for you to sit back and rest whilst you get to see your chosen photographer take lots of gorgeous photographs of your little bundle. Feel free to bring snacks, tablets and drinks with you for the experience.

[Newborn] Big Sister Maddison shows off Korey

When I found out that this little lady was going to be a big sister I was over the moon. I've been photographing Maddison since she was a little titch - and I've known her mummy since school so it was wonderful to see them grow from a family of three, to a family of four! 

Maddison loves her photographs taking, so I knew that being a big sister and having photographs was not going to be a problem. I know she can pose better than ANYONE haha! 

Korey was also very good, something tells me that he's been taking direction from his sister and next year I'll have two little posers on my hands! teehee!

Friday, 13 November 2015

[Newborn] Baby Skin

Newborn Skin before and after editing

Newborn skin goes through phases some babies can have perfect peachy silky soft skin - and other babies can have patchy, dry skin - and you never know which you are going to get.

As a rule of thumb, overdue babies tend to have dry skin everywhere, mainly hands and feet but can be across the chest and arms, face - in fact - almost everywhere. 

Other babies are blotchy, which could be due to hormones, or a small bruise from delivery. Some children have marks if it's an assisted delivery - but no matter what - babies are babies and they are super beautiful.

As a rule of thumb - if something isn't permanent it can be removed. Such as dry skin or a bruise. If it's a birth mark by rule of thumb I won't edit it out.

I show parents an edited skin shot - and work on items which are ordered, rather than editing them all.

Have a look at these two gorgeous guys before and after I edited them.

Just remember, don't miss out on the newborn stage for a reason such as this - newborn photographers are as used to this as we are being wee'd and pooped on!

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

TWIA Feedback - Thank You

Every year I enter The Wedding Industry Awards and I get some amazing feedback from my clients. It really is the only reason that I enter them for the anonymous feedback - unless someone puts something that I definitely know only relates to a certain Wedding!

I love this feedback. And this year even though I am disappointed to not be a regional finalist the comments I have received have still left me on cloud nine.

Thank you to my amazing clients. Always.

And not only that - why do people book! #Love

Thank you to all my wonderful clients - as always! 

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

[Gifts] Christening Gifts Under £20

I hear a lot of people not knowing what to buy people when you are attending a Christening.

So I headed over to NOTHS and had a look at what kind of things you can get as Christening Gifts for under £20, with three items on this list also being under £10 I hope this helps you with some inspiration!

Top Left: Personalised Oak Letter £16, Top Right: Star Keepsake £9.50
Bottom Left: Personalised Sailing Boat £16.50, Bottom Right: Single Christening Building Block £5
Top Left: Happiness Tree Print £18, Top Right: Personalised Organic Rattle £16.50
Bottom Left: Personalised Book of Nursery Rhymes £19.95, Bottom Right: Christening Candle £9.95
Left: Photo Block Stand £12.50 , Right: Personalised Wand £12.50

Happy Shopping! And remember, if you need something within the next couple of days and last minute shopping you can always check out Blue Lights Gift Range 

Sunday, 25 October 2015

[Newborn] Little Ronni comes to visit

I want you to meet beautiful Ronni - a longed-for little girl to join her two big brothers. 

I photographed Ronni's youngest big brother as a newborn too so it was always lovely to see mummy again, and this time with her gorgeous little girl.

Mummy knew what to expect too from being before - and she had come prepared with a couple of her own baby headbands - and some I wanted to keep too! ha!

Since I photographed Ronni, I have found out that mummy runs Jaxons Gift. No matter how many times we hear of the beautiful newborn baby stories and squishes, sometimes there is heartbreak behind them too.

You see, Ronni, not only has her two big brothers, she has an angel big brother too who was taken far too soon from growing within mummy, and she will always know about him because mummy has managed to create a legacy for him in Jaxons Gift.

I love Baby Bubbles!

A beautiful little flower.
Thank you Mummy for letting me share, not one, but two of your gorgeous babies. And sharing Jaxons story with me. Keep doing what you are doing. 

#LovelyMummy #GorgeousBabies

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