Today is thrilling for many reasons.

First of all I get to finally share a secret I've been holding on to for close to a year - a big load off. Secondly, I get to share this info with all of you lovelies. And finally, I get to show pictures of my work that are more true to life than anything I am ever able to produce. Proof positive that I am NOT a photographer.

But enough chatter, let's get to the good stuff. The farmhouse kitchen that I shared with you last year is featured in the summer edition of Kitchen + Bath Makeovers magazine!

photo by Alise O'Brien for Kitchen + Bath Makeovers
photo by Alise O'Brien for Kitchen + Bath Makeovers

What the what?! I know, right! Pretty cool. I always wonder how these shoots come to be, so I thought I would share a bit about my experience for any that are interested.

Not long after I posted about the kitchen I got an email from Meredith Field Editor Bonnie Broten saying that she would like to submit the kitchen for publication and would I be interested. Uh, yeah I would. And with that email began weeks of back and forth phone calls and emails between Bonnie and me and my clients', the Franks. Additional pictures from every angle imaginable are requested as well as a rough before and after floor plan (which I'm sure they pinned up on the bulletin board in the break room at Meredith so that everyone could laugh at my rudimentary drawing skills), budget information, information about me and the Franks'. Everything.

And then, we waited. And waited. Until one day it was official - we were on the editorial calendar and the shoot was a sure thing.

A week or two before the shoot a shot list is sent which is what the field editor and photographer use on the day of the shoot to make sure they are getting just what the magazine wants. It basically will give a picture of a certain angle of the kitchen and then directions for each shot (add more color, open window, make sure to show the floor, etc.). Then Bonnie and I got on the phone and went thru the shot list together, making sure nothing in the kitchen had changed since the original shots were taken, ideas we had for accessories, photo direction etc. Bonnie has shot with so many amazing people and spaces over the years so of course she was full of great ideas, but was also so open to any suggestions or ideas I had.

She came into town the day before the shoot and we were able to spend the day shopping for accessories that I had scouted beforehand and getting more flowers that I've ever bought at one time. Perfect day material if you ask me.

Then after months and months of talking and anticipating the day finally arrived and we took over the Franks' house for the day.

Each individual shot is set up, tweaked, photographed, tweaked again and photographed again. Then, you move on to the next shot and do the process over again. I found the whole thing thrilling and soaked up every bit of knowledge I could gain from Bonnie as well as from Alise O'Brien, the amazing photographer, and her assistant TeAnne. It was a long, full day of work and by the end I was both exhilarated and exhausted. And any other words that you can think of that start with 'ex'.

Bonnie checking out a shot
Then several months later the writer for the article, Mara Boo called to talk about the kitchen, the process, the pictures etc. It was just as thrilling to read the article as it was to see the pictures. It was something I will never forget. And even better, I've been able to do some additional scouting for Bonnie since then and helped with a few other shoots. I am nuts over the whole process and I could do it a million times over. What a thrill.

So with that, I think I've reached my gush quota for the day. I'll stop, I promise but first - a million thanks to my wonderful clients who not only have been a joy to work with for the past year and a half but were brave enough to trust me on so many levels and just let me 'run with it'. Thank you also to everyone at Meredith and Better Homes and Gardens, Mara Boo, Alise O'Brien, and especially Bonnie Broten. You are one in a million Bonnie!

Ok, now I really am done. Thanks for letting me indulge in a bit of horn tooting. And now you know, when someone says to me, "don't tell anyone yet" I lock that stuff in my iron clad vault. I'm a secret keeper like no other.

So go out and pick up a copy of Kitchen + Bath Makeovers for more photos and information and join me tonight for a celebratory cocktail! Cheers to hard work!!


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