Whether its just a desire to freshen your space after a long winter or to declutter after too much hoarding (c’mon #HipNJ, we can all relate!) here are your Spring 2018 tips for an organized home, compliments of Caitlin Rutkay of C.R. Interior Designs:
- Baskets and bins are your friend. If it can be hidden, do it! Create a simple streamlined look to hide a multitude of messes. These shelves are from Caitlin’s own laundry room.
- Be ruthless. The pro organizers agree–if its not been worn in a year, donate. Don’t clutter the cubbies with jackets that will never be reached for anyway.
- Better your lighting. Want an easier routine? Find what you need faster with upgraded lighting in your mud room, laundry or garage.
- Tough wallcovering decorates and protects. Not an organizational tip, but it covers a pet peeve-dirty knicked walls in high traffic areas. Dense commerical grade vinyls are stylish AND practical. Think the look of wood planks or woven grasspaper but in super durable constructions. As far as your trim and built ins think beyond white for lessening scuffs.
For more design inspiration, visit CaitlinRutkay.com.
Halloween is right around the corner. It will be here sooner than you know it, so #HipNJ has found some simple tips for capturing the perfect photo of your child in their Halloween costume, courtesy of Stacy Mae Photography.
1. Don’t wait until Halloween. This one will save you lots of stress, I promise. Don’t wait until right before you go trick or treating to try and snap Halloween photos. Your kids all dressed up and ready to go. If you ask them to stop and pose, you’re setting yourself up for disaster. Instead, take them out a few days before and make it fun! Have them get into character and they’ll love it!
2. Think about light. Light is the most important element in photography. It can make or break a photo. The best time of day to shoot is either early in the morning or late in the afternoon about 2 hours before sunset. The sun is low in the sky so you won’t have to worry about ugly shadows like you would if you took pictures in the harsh midday sun. I love the look of natural light and clouds can actually be a good thing. We shot these pictures on a cloudy day and the light was nice and even. I didn’t have to worry about where to place my daughter. If you have to shoot indoors, get your child close to a big window and open the blinds. You need to let in as much light as possible.
3. Choose a location that is clutter free. Whether you’re shooting indoors or out, you want to make the costume the star of the show, not the mess in the background. I chose the top of a parking garage at an office building nearby. It was a weekend so it was empty (safety first!) and I felt like it fit with her superhero costume. The color of her costume pops and the focus is definitely my little Wonder Woman! If you need to shoot in your home, clear the room and get rid of anything. Your front door is a great option if you don’t want to stray too far from home. Just keep in mind the lighting tips we talked about above. You want to make sure your front door or porch is shaded.
4. Get in close. There are usually a lot of fun accessories with a Halloween costume. Don’t forget to capture them! Get in nice and close and grab some detail shots. I love the headband from my daughter’s costume. So cute! And don’t be afraid to try some interesting compositions. Shoot close, far away, from above, from below. Be creative!
5. Include a few props. As long as it makes sense for the costume. Is your child dressing up as Snow White? How about including a basket of apples! Do you have a Star Wars fan? I bet your child would love showing off his/her lightsaber moves. For my daughter’s Halloween photos, we included our dog Lady, because she has a similar costume. Two super cute superheroes! One quick tip of you’re going to attempt including your pet in Halloween photos with your child – get help!! My husband was with us making sure Lady stayed in position. She got a lot of treats that day!
If you’re feeling a little ambitious you could try taking a few short video clips and making a slideshow. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. You could use your iPhone! Just another fun way to capture Halloween!
We hope these can help you when you’re having your annual Halloween photoshoot with your kids this year!