Thursday, July 30, 2015

How to Plan the Perfect Photoshoot

One of the main ways that I love communicating with others is visually. I'm a visual communicator of sorts. I always have been. It's been validated through my love of color, style, and even through my facial expressions which sometimes convey exactly what I'm thinking without me having to say a word. I've even been able to grow my brand by visual communication. The question that I get asked the most is: "How do you take such great photos?" The simple answer to that question is that I often plan photoshoots. Doing this has allowed me to become great at capturing stunning photos even on the go. Today I'm sharing how you can plan the perfect photoshoot and take stunning photos too! Check it out below.

How to Plan the Perfect Photoshoot 

1. Create Your Story

Before you even begin to plan a photoshoot, it's a good idea to know what story you are trying to tell. When it comes to branding and shooting editorials, many companies rely on story boards. It's a visual way to bring to life the story they are trying to tell. It's a way to know ahead of time if your story will convey the feeling you want your audience to feel.  Take some time to think about what the purpose of your photoshoot is (your why) and how you will tell your story.

2. Find a Great Photographer

Now there are tons of ways to find a photographer including: word of mouth, googling, and even asking a friend to take your photos. The point that I'd like to make here is that you have good chemistry with your photographer. More importantly you have to be sure that your photographer can capture the feel & look you are going for. If you need to hold a mini interview! Discuss with the potential photographer what you're looking for, ask questions, and ask to see a portfolio.

3. Plan Your Photoshoot Wardrobe

If you or others will be featured in your photoshoot then take some time to choose outfits that will be appropriate for the story you have chosen to tell. Do this ahead of time. I'd say have your looks chosen 2-3 weeks ahead to allow time for any cleaning or alterations that may be needed. I alway recommend planning more than enough outfits in case of accidents. 

4. Secure Photoshoot Props

Whether you are featuring humans in your photoshoot or not, it's likely you'll need some sort of props. This is why it's really important to know your story early on so that you can plan for the intimate details that will make your photos pop. Props can be anything from accessories, to plant, to food. Consider what kind you'd like to use and plan to secure thee items ahead of time.

5. Scout Locations

Sometimes a stunning location can really bring a photo to life. Location is a part of the story. So make sure you find locations that support the story you are telling. Take sometime to brainstorm ideal locations. Once you've done this make a day of searching for locations. Also make sure that you will be able to shoot photos at the location you have chosen.

6. Watch the Weather

We all know that weather is unpredictable, so create a plan B in case of bad weather. If you are taking your photos outside, depending on the season, you will also want to shoot at the time you'll be least affected. Believe me, it can be hard to smile and pose if you feel miserable from being too hot or too cold.

7. Beat the Crowd

If you've found a really cool public location, do your photoshoot early. This will allow you to beat the heat (if you live in the south you'll understand), harsh sunlight, and, crowds. 

8. Take a Trial Run

I'm a firm believer in working out the kinks ahead of time, blame it on my mom! Doing a trial run of your photoshoot will give you a good feel of the area. It will allow you to practice being in front of the camera, and it will give you confidence to rock you official photoshoot!

Which of these tips will you be incorporating to help you plan for your next photoshoot?

Remember to sign up for some new upcoming goodies that you can only get if you're on the list!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

How to Celebrate Your Blogiversary

Kelley With Love has officially turned one! I can't believe how quickly time flew by. It's been a true pleasure making something I could only envision a reality. Since I'm in the process of planning a blogiversary celebration I thought it would be fun to share some fun things with you that you can do to celebrate your blogiversary. Check them out below. 

How to Celebrate Your Blogiversary

1. Plan a photoshoot

This goes without saying right? Celebrating your Blogiversary with a fun photoshoot is a fun way to create memories for yourself and your readers. It's a way to visibly remember where you've been and where your going. If you decide to do a photoshoot go all out! Make sure to capture the feeling of excitement, pride, and love you felt in that moment. 

2. Recognize readers

Another really great way to celebrate your blogiversary is to recognize your readers! Without them you wouldn't be the success that you are so let them know just how much you appreciate them.

3. Create opt-in

Speaking of recognizing your readers...create something special for your readers as a sign of your appreciation. Opt ins are always a good idea, but only if they're valuable!

4. Send thank you cards to new friends and supporters

Along the way I'm sure you've connected with new blog friends and collaborated with supporters. There's no better way to thank them then through a thank you note! Get some pretty stationary, some stamps, and send a little thank you card in the mail!

5. Pat yourself on back & set new goals

Let's not forget you! You deserve a pat on the back! Make sure you take time to really assess how far you've come. You should really be proud of yourself. I definitely think a cupcake or two is in order! Once you're done celebrating set some new goals & get back to work!

If you're celebrating a blogiversary...congrats! If you're not there yet, keep going!

Remember to sign up for some new upcoming goodies that you can only get if you're on the list!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

My Summer Beauty Routine

I can finally say that I've come up with my very own beauty routine. I love buying beauty products, but coming up with a good routine has been a game changer. I decided to create a summer beauty routine because the summers in SC can wreck havoc on your skin. I got tired of buying tons of products, but never sticking with one so I decided to sit down and do some research. If you want to know how I created my beauty routine and how you can create your own click here. The main things that I wanted to focus on with my skin were:

-smaller pores

I decided I'd like to try some natural products and my bestie told me about some new products she was trying called Boots Botanics. I headed to Target to check out the line and find out if there were any products that targeted what I wanted to focus on with my skin. 

I thought it was really cool that the Boots Botanics line uses plant extracts and decided to give it a try. I've always wanted to try a clay mask so I purchased the Boots Botanics Ionic Clay Mask Shine Away. This product cleanses and removes oil and other impurities. I love how tight and soft my skin feels after I use the clay mask. Bonus, my skin is defiantly not oily after using this mask.

I also purchased the Boots Botanics Rose Water Toning Spritz. I think this is my favorite Boots Botanics product so far. I've been trying a little more make up lately so I love that this spritz helps to remove any left over make up even after I've washed my face. Boots Botanics Rose Water Toning Spritz also helps to shrink my pores which I love! Oh, and it has a faint sweet scent that makes it that much more refreshing.

I know you've heard the saying old habits die hard. That's definitely not a bad thing when it comes to the St. Ives Apricot Scrub. I've been buying this since I was a teenager and I still love it. It's one of my go to beauty products. I love how bright and smooth it makes my skin.

Using these 3 products I've created a simple summer beauty routine that seems to be working for my skin right now. Check out my summer beauty routine below.

My Summer Beauty Routine:

1. Remove make up
2. Wash face and neck with warm water using St. Ives Apricot Scrub.
3. Spritz face with Boots Botanics Rose Water Spray after daily cleansing.
4. Use Boots Botanics Clay Ionic Clay Mask Shine Away 1x a week.
5. Drink lots of water.

Simple right? It's super easy and effective for my skin this summer. I'll be starting my fall beauty routine research soon so that I'm prepared and I'll be sure to share my finds with you right here. Until then, comment below and tell me what you use for your summer beauty routine.

Remember to to sign up for some new upcoming goodies that you can only get if you're on the list!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

How to Create a Summer Beauty Routine

As I approach my one year blogiversary, I can't help but burst with excitement inside. Starting this blog and brand has been a labor of love. Creating a blog and brand can be tons of work and sometimes I found that I was neglecting myself a little. I know...terrible, but the good thing about that is now that I've been there I can help you avoid it! Ah! Silver (or gold if that's your thing like mine) Lining! I always get tons of emails from you amazing ladies asking for tips about blogging and branding. I love sharing blogging and branding tips and now I'm super excited to bring you more lifestyle content.

For me, lifestyle and branding go hand in hand. So today I thought we'd focus on something us ladies always obsess over...our skin! As I create business systems, I make sure I also create lifestyle systems. For the summer I decided to create a summer beauty routine, and so far I've been loving it, but more about that later. Today I want to help you create your very own summer beauty routine.  Check out some super easy tips that will help you achieve smooth and stunning skin.

How to Create a Summer Beauty Routine

1. Assess your skin's needs/problems

First thing's first! Take sometime to understand what your skin needs. Because it's summer and we all live in different climates you have to take the time to assess the climate you are in and what affect it is having on your skin. You may be dealing with dry skin, oily skin, or maybe even combination skin. You could be dealing with acne, psoriasis, or a seasonal skin condition. No matter what your skin is experiencing, take the time to be aware of it.

2. Increase water intake

In my experience, water is a great healer. The best way to start creating beautiful skin is from the inside out. Increasing your water intake is one simple change that you can make that will have a huge payoff. You'll begin to notice that you skin will clear up and have a natural glow when you add more water to your diet.

3. Research your products

Now that you've assessed your skin it's time to research products. There are tons, and I mean tons, of skincare products. You can't watch television, or open a magazine without being presented with endless options. I think the best way to start your research is to list out what your skin needs. Once you've done this you can search for products that address the issues you are experiencing. Be sure to also research ingredients used, because although some products claim to do certain things, the ingredients they include do the opposite.

4. Purchase products based on skin needs

Once you've gotten the hard stuff out of the way it's time buy your favorites.  Do try to buy everything you've found. Instead purchase a few things. For example, you may want to start with a peel, cleanser, and moisturizer. The key here is you want to be able to stick with a product for a reasonable amount of time to find out if the product will produce results. If you purchase too many products at one time you may be tempted to jump from one product to another without truly giving any one a real chance.

5. Test your products

Before going full out with a product, test it on a small section of your skin. You never really know how your skin will react to a product so you never want to fully commit without testing it first. A small break out is better than a full face break out right?

Is there some lifestyle or branding topic you'd like to see here on the blog? Comment below and let me know! Don't forget to sign up for some new upcoming goodies that you can only get if you're on the list!

Thursday, July 16, 2015

How to Use Hashtags

We're living in a hashtag world and I'm here to help you navigate it. If you're an avid Instagram or Twitter user (more recently Facebook) then you know there's no escaping the hashtag. There's no reason you should want to either! Engaging is key when you're looking to build relationships and that's the beauty of using hashtags. They give you the opportunity to engage with others instantly and that's what so amazing about them. Currently Instagram allows 30 hashtags, but if you use them effectively you won't have to use nearly that many. There are a few key tricks to getting the most out of your hashtags and that's what I want to share with you. Check out how to use hashtags below.

How to Use Hashtags

When looking to connect with Your favorite brands..... 

If you're looking to connect with your favorite brands one of the best ways is to participate in their communities by using their hashtags. It's pretty easy, here's what you do:

1. Make a list of your favorite brands
2. Find them on Instagram and check their profile or posts to find their hashtags
3. If your favorite brands use multiple hashtags figure out which ones will correlate with the photos you will share
4. Use your favorite brand's hashtags when you share photos that relate to the hashtag

When trying to find your ideal audience.....

If you're looking to find followers and engage with your ideal audience/clients on Instagram hashtags can be very helpful. Here's how to make the most out of them:

1. Identify companies and brands similar to yours. 
2. Once you've identified a few brands you like go to their Instagram profile and check out similar brands by clicking the arrow next to the follow button on their profiles
3. Now check out the followers for the brands similar to yours and like, comment and even follow some of the users following those brands - it's likely they are a part of your ideal audience

When you want to connect with like minds....

If you're looking to connect with like minds and sometimes even connect with brands using hashtags to participate in twitter chats can be useful. Here's how to engage using hashtags:

1. Identify the brands or types of peers you'd like to connect with.\
2. Research to find out if those brands or that group peers hosts any twitter chats
3. Identify the time of the chat and the appropriate hashtag to use in order to participate in the chat 
4. Actively participate in the chat!

If you found this post helpful comment below and share with a friend. You're also invited to sign up for some new upcoming goodies that you can only get if you're on the list!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

How to Take Your Blog From Simple to Stunning

Keeping it simple really gets a really bad rap, but it’s one of the best things you can do for your blog. When I say simple, I don’t mean plain, I mean simple in terms of complexity. By now I’m sure you’ve come across some really stunning blogs, I know I have. If you’ve ever wondered what it is about those blogs that make them stunning well I’m here to share that secret sauce. There are some really simple things that you can do to take your blog from plain to stunning. Although the techniques I’m about to share with you are really simple when combined they make for a stunning blog design every time. Check them out below.

How to Take Your Blog From Simple to Stunning

1. Clean Space

Some of the most stunning blogs I’ve seen all have one thing in common – lots of clean space. No matter what your background color is making sure that your blog space is clean makes a world of difference. When thinking of where there needs to be clean space think side bars, posts, and navigation bar. When there is not a lot of distraction this allows your readers to truly focus on what they need to…your content.

2. Custom Color

With any business, brand, or blog, color is very important. The colors on your blog speak to your reader before you ever get a chance to. That’s why it’s very important to create your very own custom color theme. Choose 2-3 colors that speak to what your blog provides, what your reader needs/wants, and what the overall experience is that your blog provides. Here’s more about creating a brand style guide for your blog.

3. Clear Navigation

This is very self-explanatory, but I will say a couple of things. Clear navigation on your blog is a must. This is a chance for you to capture your reader’s attention and guide them to the most important click worthy parts of your blog. So make sure you make it clear where they can find the things they come to your blog for.

4. Amazing Photography

The best thing you can do for your blog is to invest time into producing amazing photos. One of the simplest tips that I can give you is to focus on good lighting. Lighting is everything. Here’s how to take great blog photos.

5. Readable Font

You know I couldn’t leave without referencing fonts. Make sure your font is readable. Please, please, please consider font, size, and color. My eyes and your reader’s eyes beg of you!

So there you have it, five simple but easy ways to make your blog stunning. I can’t tell you how much I enjoy our weekly chats and I can’t wait to share more gems with you. Until then, what questions do you have that you’d like answered? Write them in the comments below. You never know, I may make a blog post just for you!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Social Media Refresh Kit

Okay so who's ready for a refresher? I think it's so important to revisit your goals from the beginning of the year to make sure you're on track.  One of my goals this year was to create an effective social media plan for my brand so that I could connect and engage with my ideal audience. I'm sure many of you share that same goal. If you have a business or blog then it's important to create a social media plan for your brand. Part of creating a successful plan means knowing your audience and how to keep them coming back for more. It's also important to know how to turn your brand into an experience. The way to do this is to really give your brand a life of it's own. Part of your social media plan should be dedicated to creating stunning visual content especially on platforms like Instagram. The fun thing about Instagram is that you can style your photos, microblog, and really just create a really irresistible  account that people love to share. I even have some tips on how to brand your business on platforms like Snapchat. I really want to help you finish the year strong by having a brand that really stands out on social media. I hope you'll check out this social media refresher kit I created just for you.

Social Media Refresh Kit

1. How to Create Your Brand Social Media Plan

2. How to Keep Your Audience Coming Back for More

3. How to Create Your Brand Experience

4. How to Bring Your Brand to Life

5. How to Style Your Instagram Photos

6. How to Create a Microblog on Instagram

7. 3 Strategies for an Irresistible Instagram

8. How to Brand Your Business on Snapchat

I hope you enjoyed the social media refresher kit. If so, I'm working on something special for my VIPs and you're invited to join in on the fun by signing up here.  

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Ruffled Blouse and Polka Dots

Outfit Details:

Pants: Forever 21 | Blouse: Forever 21 | Necklace: Forever 21 | Bracelet: Forever 21 
Shoes: Forever 21 | Purse: Similar | Nail Polish: Revlon | Lipstick: M.A.C  


There's nothing like a good smack down from life to remind you that you're only one person.

It's been a really busy year, but June blew into my life like a whirlwind. I ended the month of May by getting on my 1st plane (yes plane, and it was more like 4 planes) for work. During the month of June hubby and I moved into a new home which was hectic because for the first time we moved all of our stuff in together plus our wedding gifts. To top it all off the pet love of my life, Benjamin, had to have an emergency surgery and unfortunately passed away. Talk about crushed! When my health started to slip a little around mid-June I knew that it was time to take a little me time and that's exactly what I did!

Fast forward to July and I'm feeling like myself again. The month of July has been a breath of fresh air for me! I'm finally getting back to working towards my 2015 goals. I took a little break this weekend to celebrate the 4th of July with family and friends. I decided that I wanted to keep it pretty easy breezy and casual so I opted for these polka dot draw swing pants and this pleated ruffle blouse. I paired it with a double necklace and some gold slides and hubby and I were out the door in a flash to enjoy the 4th of July festivities. I opted for red lips and nails to finish the look. 

With life feeling so frantic and hurried, it felt so good being able to cut out all of the fuss and wear something simple and freeing that still made a statement. This look was so comfortable and cool in the hot weather we've experiencing down in the South. I'll definitely be styling these pants again in the near future. Speaking of the near future, it's full steam ahead and I'm working on something special for my VIPs and you're invited to join in on the fun by signing up here

I hope you enjoyed your 4th and I hope you'll stop back by for some more girl time with me!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

3 Fun Outfit Ideas for the Fourth of July

4th of July Outfit Ideas

I absolutely love helping you ladies and that help is not limited to just your blogs and brands! You know what they say and of all work and no play and that's why today we're talking fashion. I love helping to create outfit ideas because I get to share a little bit of me with you. There's no perfect time for some outfit inspiration with the 4th of July coming up this weekend. Whether you want to keep it chic or go a little more festive I have few looks that can work for just about any 4th of July activities.

Look #1 - The Canadian Tuxedo 

Denim on denim is usually referred to as "The Canadian Tuxedo." This is one of my favorite go to looks and any variation of it is perfect for the forth. With this look it's easy to be patriotic by throwing on a few red, white, or blue accessories.

Look #2 - The Bohemian Doll

Bohemian just got an upgrade. Being bohemian is all about being fun and free. This fun cut out dress with some Keds and a cross body is easy to through on for a fun day with family and friends! Bonus: If you're going to enjoy some pool or beach time this dress can act as the perfect cover up until you're ready to reveal your fabulous swim wear and beach body.

Look #3 - The Classic Contender

I love a good timeless classic and this look is it. A good pair of distressed denim  shorts matched with a white tank and a pair of converse is an easy look to throw together. It's a no brainer really. This look just works. It's perfect picnics and outdoor concerts with you bf or besties. 

If you're looking to add just a touch of color outside of your outfit you can try these monochrome manicures:

1. White - Essie, Blanc
2. Red - Essie, Lollipop
3. Blue - Essie, Butler Please

You could also mix and match the colors to spice things up a bit.

4 of July Nails

If nail polish isn't your thing then try this simple tip:

Wear a bold red lip! This is sure to make whatever you wear pop. Plus, it's a quick way to add a little glam with a lot of impact!

Ruby Woo

Ruby Woo by kelleywithlove featuring a concealer

What are you planning to wear for the forth of July?