For boudoir, most people think you have to limit your color options to black, white, or red. But who doesn’t love wearing their favorite color? Don’t be afraid to wear something in yours–whether it be lingerie, a dress, shoes, or maybe even a flower. We love playing with colors to enhance your look. What’s your favorite color?
Ms Rachel brought a gorgeous cozy sweater, lacey teal bodysuit, and this WOW bra for her session. But we’ll let her tell you a little more about her mellBella Boudoir Experience.
Before Her mellBella Boudoir Session– “It is hard to put my feelings into words with how I’m feeling/thinking. I’m a mix of anxious, excited, a little nervous because this is out of my comfort zone. Despite the fact that I feel like I’m shaking like a leaf. I’m excited for this experience and can’t wait for what unfolds.”
After Her Photoshoot– “Nervous at first, but felt so comfortable by the second pose. The amount of confidence I felt was surreal. Any insecurities I had, didn’t exist. I’m walking out of the studio a stronger woman that has gained self-love. I’ll forever cherish this experience.”
After Her Photo Reveal– “My self confidence has improved tremendously. I can be beautiful without being a pre-pregnancy size 4. I’ve learned how to embrace what other “gifts” motherhood has given me in addition to my daughter.”
I don’t know where to start, but here it goes… As you know, the world is battling the pandemic known as COVID-19. AND every state in the USA and several countries around the world are protesting police brutality and standing together to declare that Black Lives Matter. Wow! In my whole life, I have never seen such unity around the world. As some of you, I was in quarantine for several weeks, and in some ways, it’s been a bit of a reset… a time to rethink, listen, learn, and focus.
In Charleston, we’ve also had protests, acts of rebellion, walks against hate, one night of people getting tear gassed by the police, arrests of protesters violating curfew, defacing of Confederate and/or monuments of slave owners or supports of slavery, mask wearing optional, some social distancing, and a lot of what should we do/where do we go from here.
For the last several years, I’ve been researching, reading, listening, and learning about racism, systemic racism, and White Privilege. I’m not an expert. I’m still learning, but I just want to be a part of making the world a better place. I grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania until I was 11, and I never met a person of a different race until I moved to South Carolina. And I grew up very white– meaning that my neighborhood, church, school, my mom’s work, and almost all of my friends were white. My family never talked about racism, and for a long time, I literally had no clue there was racism because I was in my little bubble. I thought that the Civil War and slavery had ended, so why is racism a problem? I don’t treat POC any differently. According to our Constitution, everyone is equal, right? Racism solved (NOPE). My history classes in school glazed over the Trail of Tears, slavery, and the Civil Rights Movement.
So what is racism? Being racist isn’t simply not saying the N word and just treating everyone kindly. We have to be more than that simplistic view of racism… we have to be actively against racism in all its forms… antiracist. But what does that mean? “Racism is a powerful collection of racist policies that lead to racial inequity and are substantiated by racist ideas. Antiracism is a powerful collection of antiracist policies that lead to racial equity and are substantiated by antiracist ideas.” –Ibram X. Kendi from How to Be an Antiracist
A dear friend allowed me to share some of her writing, and here’s a quote from her that I’ve been thinking about: “Meditate on how this saturation in whiteness has shaped your thoughts, your beliefs, and the lens through which you see the world. Let go of your belief in white innocence and your need to be *seen* as a good person; become that person instead … This is mostly an inward journey where your mind and beliefs and actions will be challenged and ideally transformed.” –Jada Elata
Basically stop trying to prove you’re a good person and just go become one. Embrace the discomfort, listen, and learn before you speak. You don’t have to do it alone. You will still make mistakes but keep learning and trying. Talking about race can be really intimidating, but not talking about it hasn’t helped at all. But what can we do? Thankfully, there are many different ways we can learn, be an ally, and show support. As a White person, I will never know nor fully understand everything that a Black person deals with every day of their lives. But there is hope, and I can be an ally and do something. You can too! And hopefully with everything that is going on in the world, together we can be a part of the change to make the world a better, more just place. Because lives truly do depend on it.
So what can we do…..This link has petitions to sign, resources for education, places to text/call, links to voter registration, and more: https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co/
Another great way to help is to support Black-Owned businesses. Here’s some just to get started, but I’ll list some local ones first. I tried to list a variety of businesses from food to art–
Fresh Future Farm
Kasada Beauty Supply
DNA Sweetgrass Baskets
Turning Page Bookshop
Kiddie U North Charleston
SC Division of Small and Minority Business Contracting and Certification
Black-Owned Beauty Businesses
I’ve been thinking… you know I could tell you 1,000 reasons why you should do a boudoir photoshoot with mellBella Photography, but why not let our clients tell you about their experience instead. So, we’ll be sharing actual client images and what they had to say about their mellBella Experience. All clients that we share with you have given us permission, and we never share your images without permission. So, let’s start off this series with Ms Coco, and see what she has to say.
BEFORE Her mellBella Boudoir Session— “How to describe what I feel before this photoshoot? Scared, anxious, and excited! The ladies have been welcoming which has helped with the nerves. We’ll see how this goes! At the end of the day, it’s about feeling confident and beautiful in the body I have, and I know he will appreciate any gift that shows my confidence!”
AFTER Her Photoshoot— ” 🙂 If I could match the smiley to reflect these flase lashes I would. Never in my mind did I think I could handle being photographed, let alone in boudoir, but this was so much fun. I was also able to stay out of my own head with their directions. I owned my sexuality in this for sure!”
AFTER Her Photo Reveal— “This experience helped me develop a confidence in not just my sexuality as a woman but in being the subject of photography in general. It also showed me that taking a little risk may have big rewards. I’m a badass! :)”
It’s official… we’re NOW offering Virtual Mini Sessions. All you need is your phone, a strong WIFI or Cell connection, an outfit, and a great attitude! A Virtual Photoshoot is a beautiful way to create one-of-a-kind fine art portraits AND practice social distancing. Each image is crafted to create a custom work of art. All images in this post were inspired and built from a mellBella Virtual Photo Session.
Our Virtual Art Package is $300 and includes:
- 30 min virtual session
- Three 4×6 Torchon Fine Art Prints (including these three digital files)
- 30 min online photo reveal and ordering session
It’s so hard to convey digitally how these look in person as seen below. OMG they are gorgeous!!! They are printed on Torchon by Hahnemühle, which is a watercolor paper with a distinct textured surface. It’s one of the highest quality of fine art paper.
At your photo reveal appointment, you’ll have 10-15 portraits to review and pick your favorites. Additional products or fine art prints are available for purchase. Again, each of these images will be personally photographed and edited by Mell Bell (me!) Results will vary.
Figuring out how to prepare for your boudoir session may seem overwhelming, but I’m going to let you in on a little secret:
At mellBella Photography, boudoir prep is EASY! All you have to do is take a deep breath and check out the following tips…
Determine Your Desired Look
Do you want your shoot to be full-on sexy or sort of sweet? Do you want to go Over the-top glamorous or more natural? Do you want to go nude, partially nude, wear lingerie, a favorite t-shirt, or pjs? Your desired look for the session will help us pick the best sets/lighting. details, wardrobe, and props for your photo shoot. And it’s totally fine if you don’t know. Just pick one outfit you like, and we’ll take it from there.
Find a Specialist
Boudoir portraiture is a niche art form, so you must be very discerning when choosing a photographer. It’s crucial to do your research—browse their portfolios and read client testimonials. Since boudoir is such an intimate and vulnerable experience, it’s essential you find someone whom you trust and feel comfortable around. We’ve been boudoir photographers since 2010 and have photographed hundreds of clients, and we love giving our Bellas the best experience! But don’t just take our word for it… check out our reviews on Google and The Knot. We’re currently in the process of updating our website, but be sure to check out our Instagram and Facebook pages and stories to see what we’re up to now.
Start by shopping your closet for the items you instinctively select when you want to feel (and look) your absolute best. Don’t stress over this. If you feel lost, just bring one bra/panty set, one bodysuit, and one wildcard (like something from our mellBella Closet or your birthday suit). Have fun with it! Be sure to check out our What to Wear section on our website. And if you still have questions, please contact us. We’ll help style you.
Prep Mind, Body, and Skin
Drink LOTS of water. Lower your salt intake and abstain from alcohol for a few days before your shoot to avoid water retention. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi, if you like. Bathe, shower, and moisturize. Enjoy a quiet evening and get a full night’s sleep before the day of your session. (Or at least try to!) It’s a good idea to do some stretches the day before as well.
Take a deep breath and relax. It’s completely normal to feel nervous before your shoot. We promise, it will be a fun, stress-free day that’s all about YOU. We’ll guide you through every step, and you won’t have to worry about what to do with your hands. Trust us, you’ll be coming back for more!
If you would like more information on booking a session with mellBella Photography for the best boudoir experience, CONTACT US.
Like many other small businesses, this time has been rough and scary … so we wanted to bring you something happy and make some lemonade out of these lemons.
So, welcome to our Support Small Business Contest! We’re teaming up with
Bits of Lace and Sipango Restaurant to bring you some awesome prizes.
Winners will be chosen on May 1st!
You can enter on Instagram or Facebook. Here’s how to enter….⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
1. Post a photo on your profile that we’ve taken or you OR a selfie ⠀⠀⠀
2. Follow and tag each of us
@mellbella @bitsoflacefinelingerie @sipangochs
mellBella Boudoir & Pinup Photography, Bits of Lace, and Sipango Restaurant
3. Be sure to include these hashtags on your post for your entry. #supportsmallbusiness and #socialdistancingissexy⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
***Note if your profile/posts are set to private, we won’t be able to see your entry. You may post up to two times a day which will give you 2 entries per day.
You could win one of these prizes…
1. A FREE session with us, including professional hair & makeup styling
2. A $50 gift card to Bits of Lace
3. A $50 gift card to Sipango Restaurant
And because we have the BEST clients ever, we have a special prized just for our previous Bellas who could win our gorgeous new product, the Legacy Box (pictured below), with 10 matted images from your last photo shoot with us.
It’s time for another What To Wear Wednesday! So what’s good option that you can wear right now and/or for a photo shoot? Comfy tank tops, of course. (Bra optional). I’ve been living in comfy tank tops lately too. They’re convenient, inexpensive, and cool for those warm summers days. Plus, if you’re working from home and you’re not on a video conference, no one knows what you’re wearing anyways.
It’s a scary time to be a human. As we face the uncertain future of how great the effects of COVID-19 will be on our lives, the planet, and every aspect of it. We all feel helpless, overwhelmed, and scared. We are all affected by this pandemic… literally every single person.
My 2020 favorite quotes come from Frozen 2. Right after they had to leave the town, Olaf says, “We’re calling this ‘controlling what you can when things feel out of control.” Later on, when Anna is alone in the cave, she sings ‘The Next Right Thing’– ”
“So I’ll walk through this night
Stumbling blindly toward the light
And do the next right thing “
So, what can you control? What is the next right thing? What can you do?
You could also try starting/joining your neighborhood pod.
- Get to know and share contact info with your neighbors from the recommended distance, of course.
- Create a Facebook Group or something similar to stay in communication.
- Share needs and/or supplies. The only way we get through this is by looking out for each other.
Keep in touch with family and friends.
- Check in frequently during the week, especially with grandparents and the front line workers like health care employees, grocery and gas station employees, sanitation staff, etc.
- You can Text, Call, Video Chat, Email, etc. My personal favorite is sending images of babies, animals, or gifs.
- Support local businesses.
Remember to take care of yourself physically and mentally.
- Follow Changes Counseling Center on Facebook for some helpful tools for yourself and families.
- Try to go outside at least once a day. Take a walk, ride your bike, stretch, read a book, just breathe, etc.
- Try not to eat all those emergency cookies at one time.
- Sometimes just surviving is all you need to do.
Hang in there everyone! Sending much love, prayers, healing vibes, peace, and hope to you. Do what you can.
This One Image Wednesday — Grab that off the shoulder sweater and SHOW OFF those shoulders! OR take a sweater that is a few sizes too big for a similar look. Neutral colors like gray are great, but don’t be afraid of a pop of color. Plus, you’ll be so comfy too. Just wear it.