Daniella Petkoff Photography: Blog https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog en-us (C) Daniella Petkoff Photography (Daniella Petkoff Photography) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:31:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:31:00 GMT https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/img/s/v-12/u673314558-o1024986650-50.jpg Daniella Petkoff Photography: Blog https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog 120 68 5 Exquisite Wedding and Corporate Venues in London https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2019/11/5-exquisite-wedding-and-corporate-venues-in-london  

London is one of the several cities in the world in which almost every company has an office.

In such an environment, leaving a proper impression is a must in every business and social occasion.

In line with that, when people from these circles organise their wedding ceremonies, they sometimes want to add a touch of corporate to it.

That’s why some C-level bridal couples decide to organise their wedding at venues that can give a business feeling.

From the City to lavish suburbs, London offers dozens of exquisite venues.

In this article, we’re going to present seven top picks from our point of view.

 

1)London Eye

 

Situated between Hungerford Bridge and Westminster Bridge, the London Eye is the most popular Ferris wheel in the world.

Visited by millions of people every year, it doesn’t offer only beautiful views of the entire London.

It’s also one of the most wanted event venues in the capital of Great Britain.

If you’re still not sure where to arrange your wedding lunch, consider this place.

Its greatest advantage is that you can rent a private capsule for your crew.

However, bear in mind that it can accommodate up to 25 people at once. So, you can’t host a full-range wedding reception there but it’s a perfect spot for a pre-wedding dinner for the bride, the groom, and their parents.

The only drawback is that it’s high so some guests might not feel comfortable up there, above the Thames.

 

2)Heeltap

 

The City is probably the most important business hub in the world after Manhattan.

Since many bridal couples are closely attached to this part of London, they might aim at a more central venue.

If you belong to that group of couples, think about Heeltap. It’s located on the south bank of the Thames, right across the City.

It has two different parts – a modern hall inside and a beautiful exterior part – which can accommodate all sorts of weddingparties

The courtyard is perfect for afternoon cocktails in the open or night parties in summer.

The interior part, on the other hand, is a perfect spot for wedding ceremonies held in winter or autumn.

3)Devonport House

 

Some business professionals who are about to get married might opt for a quieter and more secluded location.

Making such a choice makes sense when you want to organize a relaxing and tranquil event.

Let’s say that you’ve got enough of the rush and noise in the center. What’s more, you want your colleagues and business associates to feel something different at your wedding.

So, you decide to organize your business event away from the city center.

If you’re planning to do that in London, think about Devonport House in Greenwich.

Located close to Greenwich Park, it’s an oasis of peace and greenery in urban surroundings.

It offers a variety of meetings rooms and splendid outdoor areas. In the case of a bigger wedding reception, you can use the entire space, which might be of vital importance for some couples.

Furthermore, some bridal couples might want to organize their ceremony in a tranquil place overseas.

In that case, the exclusive wedding venue in College Station, Texas combines intact nature with marvelous service.

 

4)Ice Bar London

 

Those businesspeople who want to get married in a modern conceptual space should think about Ice Bar in London.

At -5° C, all the guests are guaranteed to have some cool time inside this bar made of ice.

The brainchild of a group of designers, artists, and enthusiasts, Ice Bar can host various events, from smaller wedding receptions to corporate events.

But if you’re planning to organize a wedding ceremony or dinner here, inform your guests beforehand.

If would be bad if any of them appeared there in summer clothes.

Also, due to the specific nature of this place, it would be wise to find out more about options for music in advance.

No matter if you’re planning to throw a wedding party of a corporate event at Ice Bar, bear in mind the importance of proper photography. This unique environment will make for beautiful photos so plan your photo session on time, as well. 

To make it stress free contact us for personalised experience. 

5)Hampton Court Palace

 

Placed in the lush surroundings of Bushy Park, Hampton Court Palace is a classy setting for a wedding reception.

Once a royal palace, it’s situated in the London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames.

So, if you want to run away from urban venues and modern interiors, this is a perfect option.

Its Tudor architecture and park around it make a perfect match for a wedding ceremony.

Your guests will not only be able to walk around the royal park but they will get the chance to feel what it looked like to be part of theBritish aristocracy.

In a nutshell, Hampton Court Palace combines the British tradition with contemporary design trends in a subtle way. Therefore, it’s a perfect choice for a bridal couple who wants for a conventional wedding with a touch of modernity.

 

Conclusion

 

Giving a wedding reception a corporate note isn’t an unusual thing to do these days.

If you’re already planning to have such a wedding, London is one of the top picks on a global level.

You can choose from traditional venues around the City to secluded, fancy places on the outskirts of London.

Of course, if you want to go the extra mile, you can throw your corporate-like wedding overseas, as well.

We hope that our guide will give you some new ideas regarding your wedding.

So, close your eyes, visualize your guest list, and try to imagine which of these places would be the best choice for you and them.

 

AuthorBio: James Barnes is an experienced wedding organizer and blogger at theannexevents.com. He specialized in organizing outdoor wedding events.When he isn’t writing about weddings and marital life, David usually goes swimming or playing squash.

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) Ice Bar London wedding Devonport House corporate event photography Devonport House wedding Hampton Court Palace corporate event photography Hampton Court Palace wedding Heeltap corporate event photography Heeltap wedding Ice Bar London corporate event photography london eye corporate event photography london eye wedding https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2019/11/5-exquisite-wedding-and-corporate-venues-in-london Fri, 29 Nov 2019 08:27:28 GMT
12 strategies for successful use of your event photographs https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2019/2/12-strategies-for-successful-use-of-your-event-photographs The biggest marketing trend now is image centred rather than traditional text marketing. You need good corporate event photos and the right use of the images so that your media campaign will succeed. 

The goal is to get as many people as possible to attend, right? 

Below I share 12 easy to follow and low cost media strategies of how to use your past corporate event images to promote you brand and future events.

  • On your website – good quality corporate images are essential in brand presentation. 
  • Advertising future events on Facebook – use eye catching image to create an event and promote it on your business page cover. Easy for people to share and see immediately if landing on your page.
  • Creating short video with images from previous events on your social media accounts and website. Easy to make with free software available too. Highlights from last year’s event will tell people what to expect from your event.
  • Twitter – use photos to send positive visual message of previous events. Add your company’s logo and the event name to the image and tweet the photo to encourage new participants to participate
  • Giveaways - use fun catchy images to create giveaway for free event registration to a randomly selected person who shares your image and tags a friend. Who wouldn’t love a free attendance of a highly sought-after event.

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  • Compliment your corporate presentations.
  • When featuring speakers. Use images featuring your speakers to share with your network. Include key event info and achievements of your speaker to shine spotlight on him. He will probably share with his network too.
  • Create visual proof of your brand success. You’ve build it up and helped the society. Tell this story.
  • When designing printable media. Whether it is a goal checklist, brochure, corporate invitation or event programme, good photos will help you create much more appealing paper.
  • Match with your testimonials. Images help people feel more connected with the story and emotionally involved.
  • Evoke reactions - Images cause immediate reaction, words takes longer.
  • Use in adverts for your mail list subscription.

There are all sorts of possible highly effective use of past event images. One thing is certain, our brain focuses and remember things better when they are visual.

Check here to see event photos from Daniella Petkoff Photography. Head over to our contact page to book a photographer for your event click.

We book for congresses, launches, workshops, conferences, brand presentation, corporate events and any business focuses events

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) brand presentation brand success brochure checklist corporate event images corporate event photos corporate invitation corporate presentation create video from images design event images event programme eye catching image featured speaker low cost media strategies marketing trend positive visual message printable media printable" promote you brand quality corporate images sought-after event strategies for success successful media campaign use of event images use of event photographs visual proof https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2019/2/12-strategies-for-successful-use-of-your-event-photographs Fri, 08 Feb 2019 13:21:55 GMT
When we begin to value our family photos? https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2019/1/when-we-begin-to-value-our-family-photos When we begin to value our family photos? When we don't have anything else.
 

Everybody thinks he has time to do this and that. But time is not something we can hold back neither buy more if we need to. 

The only way is to use it very wise and treasure it. I am writing with me heart pounding as I am a true believer that we create our own happiness, enemies, fears, peace and memories from the past.

A mum told me recently, she lost her husband in an accident and they didn't have a good family photo together for the last 4 years. She was blaming herself of not taking photos every moment she could grab her phone or little camera. I was upset myself for her and felt her pain. To all honesty I have missed some moments too and we can’t be snapping 24/7 but the more the better. That way there is less chance of missing something special and totally forget in in 5 months’ time.

Family Portrait Photography and Fine ArtFamily Portrait Photography and Fine ArtFamily Portrait

This morning I was doing some yoga with my daughter. My youngest who is now 3 typically climbs on my back and plays around, but today he decided to join us and started doing the moved so nicely. Loved to watch him for the 3 minutes before he got bored of it. Missed the chance to take a photo and this will bug my whole Monday.

In today's world we have this image capturing devices everywhere and just a touch of a button will take a memory for us. The usual excuses like "I am cooking dinner now" or "Let me finish this and I'll join you" or "We'll come again another time" and on and on. 

No, this next time may never happen. Not all photos you possess have to be professional family portraits. Take a photo anyway. Even a little blurred or clothing stained or whatever you can still evoke the feeling of this moment in many years’ time. 

The truth is that this moments may not seem so precious now, but in 5, 10, 20 years’ time you will be digging in to find them. 

Family Portrait Photography and Fine ArtFamily Portrait Photography and Fine ArtFamily Portrait

Your kids will be asking to see your family images. This will be the only way they can recreate the past and keep the memory of missing people alive. Because let’s face it. None of us will be here forever. Some go sooner some later and we never know what is behind the corner. I wish everyone the best, long and healthy life but we need not to leave our family photo memories to the chance. We must create and store and love them. Like the mum I started with. She missed so many moments of fun together with dad and kids now don’t have much to see and hear him laughing again. Now she is a devoted image treasurer.

It is important for young and old to fuel the life with love and warmth from past experiences. It only takes a glance at an old family photo to bring everything back alive.

A family portrait is like a gem, it holds magic and the shine of people who gave us love and strength.

If you are still not convinced of the value in a family image, wait till it’s the only thing you have left.

 

#check out some family outdoor or studio portraits 

 

#ask me for available family photo session dates

 

 

 

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) family photo family image family outdoor family photo memories family portrait family studio portrait image treasurer memories from the past professional family portraits recreate the past take a photo taking photos value family photos https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2019/1/when-we-begin-to-value-our-family-photos Mon, 28 Jan 2019 12:35:54 GMT
The importance of family photography https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/12/the-importance-of-family-photography Cuddle, love, kiss, play, you name it. Frankly be present in your child’s life.

You’ve heard this advice as a parent that we must be actively involved in listening, answering and participating in our kids’ lives and many of us truly try to utilise this advice. Most of us have thought about booking a family portrait photo session but it just hasn’t happened yet.     I am too busy, I need to lose 10 more pounds, I need to have my hair done and it is hard to get everyone together or “I don’t look good on photos”.……I’ve heard these many times.

If you have been thinking about having your family photo taken, do it. Do it for your kids. They will not notice the roots in your hair or the few extra pounds. They will only see your smile and remember the tight hugs and kisses. I assure you they will be disappointed if one day there is not enough photos to show their own kids. 

People move, children grow, families are separated for various reasons. Why I am presenting you with such a personal message? Because most of us realise the importance of photos when it is too late. Many of us start looking for photos of someone dear when he is gone. It is only natural, and we want to remember. Sometimes we laugh and are grateful for having these photos taken and sometimes with frustration as most photos you have are quick mobile snaps, very often blurry or low quality. And because I want you to stop and think of the importance of visual memories and the moments that are lost forever because there is never time. Life goes for good but the quiet pitter-patter of tiny feet concurring the stairs, or the big smile with the first tooth fallen out will be gone if you don’t capture this moment.

Winter funWinter fun

I don't remember much of my grandmother apart from her being always nice to us and trying to buy the entire range from the coffee shop’s morning range as she didn't know what we will like for breakfast. She was this sweet. But I do remember vividly one moment. Grandma was sitting tired in the shadow of the front porch and our dog was sleeping in her feet. I went to kiss her and cuddled in. This minute spend with her about 30 year ago is still alive in my memory only because my sister took a photo there and then. Many other moments are gone, and I try tricks to make my memories come back but they don't. When I see this photograph though everything comes alive. I can almost feel her smell and the summer breeze. Most of the memories of my childhoods are gone as photography gear and opportunities were not as many then as they are today, and I was too little to remember. If I had more photos like the one with my granny and doggy, I could’ve revived this memories and my past experiences, emotions, fears…. everything. I know how almost physically hurt I feel when I can’t revive a memory and I so want you not to experience the same in some years along the way.

Take photos yourself, book photo sessions, make selfies, anything to capture this second that will bring tears to your eyes later. Don't let a moment slip on unrecorded.

Baby holding onto his mum's feetBaby holding onto his mum's feetBaby holding onto his mum's feet Every moment you share with your loved once you believe you will never forget. But you will forget, and you kids will too. Especially when they grow up. They will fly off the nest and get on with their own lives. There is a cure for this and it is called family legacy. The family memory that lives along with generations and retells them the story of their existence.

It is amazing how good and proud we feel when we see our family portrait. It tells a story about creating this fabulous humans, about overcoming fears and arguments and stick together. The visual story of moments we shared. It teaches us to treasure more the present and not focus only on creating the future

The importance of family portrait to children self-esteem is enormous too. They become connected to their ancestors, to the beginning of their story and get to know themselves since they were growing in mummy’s belly.  They feel loved, celebrated and they know their belonging. They will remember all the emotion in a way words cannot express.

Do not pass on this without acting today. I urge you to print your family photos and hang them on the walls. Enlarge a professional photograph to document those emotions and stages of life on a regular basis as kids grow. Take photos and book professional family photo sessions regularly. And print.

Don’t excuse yourself with “I don’t look good on photos”. Everyone does look fabulous when they smile with their heart and enjoy the moment.  Get your extended family involved too. Great reason to get them all together.

Check out some of the families who have recently had their family portraits taken in Greenwich park and Eltham in South East London.

Read more about our outdoor family photo sessions in Greenwich and Eltham and book you own today.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) book photo session be present in your child's life capture this moment children self-esteem document emotions enlarge photograph family legacy family memory family photo family photo session family photography family portrait family portraits eltham family portraits in greenwich park i don't look good on photos importance of photos importance of visual memories outdoor family photo session print family photos professional family photo session revive memories visual story https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/12/the-importance-of-family-photography Tue, 04 Dec 2018 14:52:42 GMT
The importance of headshot and why hire a professional photographer https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/10/the-importance-of-headshot-and-why-hire-a-professional-photographer You have only one chance for first impression. In person you can use your language and smiles to improve the first sight effect but in the online world you have only one single option - your profile headshot.

Would you be careful about any spelling or grammar mistakes in your cover letter? To portray the right image of you as a person, you need to carefully thought out your profile portrait too. It is vital in the world of business and professional networks. 

There are only 2 reasons people may look into your profile. If they are interested in the company/service, you represent or second is your photo.  And they will come to all sort of conclusions about you within the first seconds of seeing your picture. You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression so make sure your one-shot counts! 

Professional PortraitProfessional PortraitProfessional Portrait

Right, you got the message. But why hire a professional photographer and not really get your friend to do so for free. You are frankly your own brand and your portrait is your logo. You put enormous efforts creating this brand and evoking trust in your clients and partners. You don't do this with a selfie or a chef friend taking a photo of you with his camera. You had an injury and you need a physiotherapy to get back on your feet. Would you look out for a therapist or call your friend who is attending the gym every day? You are buying a home. Would you hire a surveyor or ask your teacher friend who happen to have a house for advice?

The reason to hire a professional photographer (like me) is ever so simple. We know our lighting, posing, composition, editing and so on to create the best image of you. Professionals seek other professionals because they are good at it and know all aspects of their job. And because as The LAB guys say: “A portrait is shaped more by the person behind the camera than by what is in front of it”. And you want this shaped perfectly.  So, don't underestimate the impact of your headshot photo and cut yourself short.

Man Headshot portraitMan Headshot portraitMan Headshot portrait

LinkedIn's own research found that having a profile picture makes your profile 18 times more likely to be viewed by other professionals. So, what do you do apart from hiring a photographer? The important things to bear in mind when you plan your professional portraits photo session:

* SIMPLE - Less is more. Keep everything simple unless you are an artist and need a specific character portrait

* BACKGROUND - clean and non-distractive. You need the focus on yourself

* SLEEP - get a good sleep the night before your session 

* HAIR - get a haircut or style it to represent your best. Don't overdo with fancy hairdos. 

* OUTFIT - consider the industry you are representing, choose flattering clothing and If you are comfortable to go to an interview in this attire than go for it. 

* PERSONALITY - smile is fantastic but if you can't do this make yourself look approachable and friendly

* MAKE UP - book an artist to do a professional make up. They can accentuate your best features and hide flaws. (I work with a specialist too)

* DISCUSS with your photographer all details and what message would you like to convey with your portrait.

 

There are over 500 million users on LinkedIn alone. People are making deals and get hired through the network and it all begins with your own picture that creates great first impression and paves the path to achieve your goals.

I’ve had the opportunity and pleasure to work with fabulous people trusting me to deliver their best virtual self. Get in touch now to book yours and shine bright.

To book you headshot session contact me here

 

 


 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) character portrait cover letter first impression headshot person behind the camera portrait professional headshot professional make up professional photographer professional portraits photo session profile photo profile portrait selfie https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/10/the-importance-of-headshot-and-why-hire-a-professional-photographer Wed, 10 Oct 2018 17:30:02 GMT
What is a Fine Art Portrait for babies, children and adults? https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/10/what-is-a-fine-art-portraits-for-babies-children-and-adults There is no specific definition or meaning of fine art photography or also knows as "photographic art", "artistic photography" and so on.

But if you have enjoyed luxury portraiture popular last few years you may well be interested in the newer elevated fine art photography form. 

Fine art is practically an art form created of a concept or idea. It is a visual piece solely appreciated for its aesthetic and imaginative content. It broadly depends on the creative vision of the photographer. Fine art photos are usually meant to be a wall display and are not representing the typical scene or subject. I.e they are not documentary style photographs but rather arty statement pieces representing the style and skills of the artist and the special concept applied.

Not cheap service but highly demanded and very unique to each separate piece. It also requires highly skilled and knowledgeable professional to make it well. In fact it is much cheaper than a private painting order but equally astonishing and beautiful on the wall. 

 You can see more Fine Art Portraits here.

Black and white fine art is always a classic. Colour version art piece is outstanding. Anything is possible.

If you are interested to order your very own unique portrait email Daniella Petkoff Photography on [email protected] or contact me here 

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) artistic photography arty statement black and white fine art colour art piece creative vision daniella petkoff photography documentary style photographs fine art photography fine art portraits luxury portraiture photographic art wall display https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/10/what-is-a-fine-art-portraits-for-babies-children-and-adults Wed, 03 Oct 2018 13:36:10 GMT
The prons and cons of older babies photography https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/9/the-prons-and-cons-of-older-babies-photography Newborn photography is typically done withing first 2 weeks maximum. There are a few very good reasons for that.

The baby is easy to curl up in the womb shape and pretty much any shape

Baby sleeps long periods

Colics haven't flared up yet

Baby acne is not yet around

Baby hasn't discovered stretching yet

All of the above turns the other way around with older babies photos and respectively it gets almost impossible to achieve the sweet curly poses. Not all is lost though as here comes the opportunity for a lifestyle photo session where baby is frankly left to do how they feel and I am capturing the best faces and poses I can get. An example below.

I am sharing here a beautiful photo collage of a young 4 weeks old lady who was a nightmare to put to sleep and I could only change her in 2 set ups with small variations in the baby outfit but look at that smiles.  Mum and dad just asked me to print these baby photos in 60x40" for their bedroom.

The cons are big but often I get expressions which are only existing for a brink of an eye.

Newborn photo sessions are held in my home studio in New Eltham, Gleenwich London. For lifestyle session please contact me to arrange

 

What are your pros and cons photographing newborn and older babies?

 

Please like, comment and share with friends who think they have lost the newborn photos window.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) lifestyle photo session 4 weeks old baby 60x40 print baby acne baby outfil baby sleeps curly poses greenwich photographer New Eltham photographer newborn photo sessions newborn photography older babies photos photo collage pros and cons of older babies photography womb shape https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/9/the-prons-and-cons-of-older-babies-photography Fri, 28 Sep 2018 20:51:48 GMT
15 ways to relax and the benefits of self care for new mums https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/9/15-ways-to-relax-and-the-benefits-of-self-care-for-new-mums “Maintaining the basic day-to-day with no extraordinary circumstances, keeping all those balls in the air, is a really demanding endeavour, and it leaves very little time for mums to be able to have fun, relax, rest and have downtime,” says Aimee Danielson, director of the Women’s Mental Health Program.

Relax. This is an advice every mum hear a few million times during raising her kids. It is however easier said than done. I have 3 kids on my own and relaxing is hard most of the times, but I’ve learned the importance of it and now sticking too few restful routines daily. 
To be ready for our children and family demands all the times can quickly burn us out and everything we should enjoy becomes a chore. That is why it is essential to plan times off parent duty. At end of the day a relaxed mum is an example of how to handle situations, how to enjoy life no matter what and how to give and receive love. 

Some quick examples of the benefits of rest and relax:

  • relaxed mum is happy, content and healthy
  • kids are prone to share more with a relaxed parent
  • children grow up feeling happy, secure and loved
  • children raised in relaxed atmosphere are less likely to have ADHD or anxiety 
  • relaxed mum raises children better settled in routine and having less tantrums 

It is often so easy to overlook your own wellbeing and you just can’t get around doing it. So what can you do.

Mother with baby sleeping on her chestMother with baby sleeping on her chestMother with baby sleeping on her chest

I’ve made a brief list of things which are achievable and should be fairly easy to implement in your family life.

  • SLEEP – a hard one, especially with a new baby or a toddler waking up a few times at night. Solution – don’t stay late at night. Leave the house as is and don’t bother too much. Snuggle with a book or a favourite magazine for a few minutes if you wish and go to sleep. Set up a reminder to push you out of the kitchen and go to bed.
  • HELP – surely someone had offered to help you out at certain times, but you refused right? “I am fine” is the typical answer. Be glad you have people caring for you and don’t refuse help 
  • MUSIC – if you love music don’t stop listening just because you are a mum and time is scarce. Put headphone and dance while cooking, lay in the park and connect with the ground and music at same time. 10 minutes should be enough. By the way if kids see you dancing they will jump with joy 
  • BATH – put kids to bed and ask you partner to prepare the bath for you. Than get a book and jump right into it. 
  • SCHEDULE DAYS OFF – once a month is not enough but is something. Talk to you partner to agree on a day when he can take care of kids for the entire day. Or another family member, mum, granny, auntie or just drop them to a friend. Go drive out of town, get a pack of popcorn and go to watch a comedy, go to a galley, book a massage, go fishing. Whatever you used to do and enjoyed before the kids. Don’t skip these days off. 
  • COFFEE or TEA – make a fresh cup and get out in the garden. Look at the birds, observe the tree bending on the wind and the forms rain drops make on the ground. Again 10 minutes would do wonders. Caffeine is not good if used too much but if you love coffee one a day shouldn’t hurt. 
  • VITAMINS – take vitamin supplements and introduce lots of fruits and veggies into your family diet. More energy and less sugar for everyone
  • EXERCISE – start with a few simple yoga poses for a couple of minutes and gradually increase. No need to spend long time or go to the gym. Just do it at home in your pyjamas for as long as you wish. You can also jog with a pram if your baby is little or simply take a long walk and try to spot details around you haven’t paid attention to before. If you set a goal here, you’ll something to work on for and be more motivated. 
  • DATES – meet with your partner for lunch and enjoy being just 2 of you for a short while again. If you can, schedule a weekend break
  • AVOID people that stress you out. It is contagious to be around stressed negative influence. 
  • LAUGH - Laughing releases endorphins to fight that stress and help you relax.
  • PLAN your day by priorities. If time runs out at least you do your most important things first
  • BREATH – take deep breaths regularly throughout the day. Inhale through your nose and exhale through mouth. Slowly and deeply. Make it 10 times
  • HOBBY – if you have one, don’t neglect it. If you don’t start one. I joined a knitting group every Thursday. Sewing, Karate, Cooking, Puppets making and so on.
  • SAY NO to things that drain you out. You don’t have to volunteer at every school activity.   

Breastfeeding new  motherBreastfeeding new motherA mother breastfeeding her new baby

Danielson says : “The question I ask mums is, ‘If you were choosing a child-care provider, and you had a choice between someone who seemed stressed, tired and overwhelmed versus someone who seemed rested, contented, happy and healthy, who would you want for your kids?’ ” and also “If you can’t do it for yourself, do it for your kids.”

A relaxed mum is the BEST MUM. Mum kids want to see, friends want to visit, and everyone will love to be around you. 

You’ve got to-dos to do, I have mine too. But let’s see how much fun you had today, what memories you made and leave the house to clean on its own.
Take care mums and dads if you read. Your kids need it, and you need it. The world needs happy kids, happy parents.

Enjoy great weekend and please pin and share this post if you think a friend might enjoy it!

 

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) best mum days off happy kids have fun new mum relaxed mum relaxed parent say no ways to relax https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/9/15-ways-to-relax-and-the-benefits-of-self-care-for-new-mums Fri, 21 Sep 2018 21:01:55 GMT
Why should I have maternity photos taken? https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/9/outdoor-maternity-photography-session-greenwich-park-london Feeling huge, puffed and bloated is almost a must in pregnancy right? Every mum to be I've met so far has been conscious more or less about her looks.

That is a big reason for many to completely forbid anyone with a camera to get close. I was the same with my first child.

Pretty much every woman has had these feelings even only for a short period of time. 

So why on Earth should you have maternity photo session at all?

Let me give you a few reasons before time runs out. 

You may never feel like that again.

You may never look that again.

You may never see that baby belly again.

Your child would LOVE to see itself in your belly. Kids fell in awe here.

You will crave you pregnancy time and will come back to these photos and all memories with flood again.

Your partner would love your maternity photos of that time. 

mum to be outdoor photo session

 

You may joke with him in a few years time how puffy you looked and how you walked toddling around like a duck but these will be sweet and bonding memories for the whole family. This is the time you became parents and created a human being. This is huge. You can not ever regret having pregnancy photos taken. 

Even if you change like 30 kilos and are almost unrecognisable this is what life is. This is what you went through to have this baby. We change all the time, we move ahead and live and carry our memories with us. Our children look at us for example and they must see proud, loving people with no regrets. 

For maternity photo sessions in Greenwich area, South East London,  please email me.

Images from an outdoor maternity photography session, Greenwich park, London

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) baby belly become parents Greenwich park photos maternity photo session maternity photography session Greenwich photo sessions Greenwich pregnancy photos South East London https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/9/outdoor-maternity-photography-session-greenwich-park-london Mon, 10 Sep 2018 13:35:37 GMT
Newborn photography, is it worth it? https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/8/newborn-photography-is-it-worth-it When it comes to newborn photography I often come across discussion on various forums about the value of it and is it worth it.

My impression is all end up with same conclusion, it is beautiful, cannot be compared to snaps taken from family and are priceless. 

The argument though always rotates around the style of photos where some people love the squishy staged newborn poses and others prefer more lifestyle natural looking newborn images with the gorgeous professional finishing. 

This however is very easy to resolve just by discussing the look you prefer for your end product or browse and find a photographer which style fit you well. All reputable baby photographers near you will be able to offer various styles and even try new approaches to make family happy. 

baby girl wrapped in white sleeping on a pink blush blanketbaby girl wrapped in white sleeping on a pink blush blanketbaby girl wrapped in white sleeping on a pink blush blanket

This is what some mums reply on the question Is Newborn Photography Worth It?

Chloe - I didn't do it with DD and really regretted it as the photos you take yourself just don't compare

Titus - I had a session for my twins when they were just over a week old, and I'm really glad I did. She came to my house and the photos were very natural: natural light, both babies cuddled up asleep with a blanket draped over them.

Havetothink - Not worth it to me, use a decent camera, make sure it's in focus and your pictures will be worth as much to you as any professional's. I don't like the staging, just take a picture when the baby is fed and content. Lay them on a nice blanket or bean bag if you want a bit of extra colour/texture.

Kimberley - I did it for both my boys and plan to do it again with pumpkin.  Luckily my husband didn't need any convincing.  Pictures are the one thing that he will let me spend a little more on vs clothing, toys, ect.  Pictures will last for ever but all the other things we buy for baby will be used and outgrown before you know it.  

Carcas - God yes, a million times over. I've seen a few moms opt to do it themselves and none of them have impressed me. They jus look like a regular photo with failed attempts to awkwardly pose the baby. There's a lot to be said for someone that not only has a quality camera, but also knows posing, props, and photoshop.

Sugar - I have gotten them done for my first 2 and will again this time. It is expensive and if you're struggling financially, maybe try doing your own pics at home but I have never regretted getting them done. I love the photos so much and still look at them all the time and they look amazing on my photo wall.

Rachel - Having professional photos done properly is definitely not the same as having photos on your phone, I seriously doubt you would ever regret having them done :)

Kristen - Lord so worth it! I look at our dd’s photos and swoon over them all the time.

baby in mum's handbaby in mum's handnew born baby in mum's hand

It is overwhelming how many mums value the baby photos and had never regretted. Surely there will be always people who doesn't see the value and will attempt to do it themselves. Still good but not the best result possible. 

So why is it worth than...

It is timeless. The more time passes the more you realise how much more often you look back at these photos and want to remind yourself of every little detail. It is your masterpiece creation and your brain will start to fade out the memories of older days. There your photo memories will come in place.

Your toddler would love to see himself on the wall and will be pointing out on the portrait for years. This is your statement for him that you love, cherish and treasure his place in your life. It comes to show him what a special part he is of that family and assert the understanding he belongs there.

You hire a professional photographer for all your big days. Weddings, Anniversaries, Graduations etc. How can you miss the birth or first few days of new baby’s life? The use of light is essential skill. Don't ever trust a photographer using flash. This is dangerous for your infant eye sight. The baby must be handled with care, knowledge and precision in order to take the best shot of little details and so cute face expressions. New parents with no experience may sometimes unintentionally damage baby trying to make some poses or just taking a simple baby photo. Most people for example will just place their camera on auto and point and shoot. BEWARE your flash may damage badly baby eyes.

A professional is such for a reason. They know what and how to do it to follow the baby lead and make sure baby safety is paramount. Whatever your thoughts, talk to your baby photographer. She will be able to advice and guide you and also discuss the style of photos you are after. If you want to chat with me about it click here.

Price is another reason for many people to skip the newborn portraits. In that case you may just ask for payment plan. Many photographers offer such for a greater flexibility and not to stretch family budgets too much. I will discuss the pricing in detail in a separate blog post.

I am excited to hear all your thoughts on the subject and will try to answer all questions below.

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) baby photographer baby photographers near baby photography lifestyle newborn images newborn photography Newborn photography worth Staged newborn poses https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/8/newborn-photography-is-it-worth-it Thu, 30 Aug 2018 14:37:35 GMT
When to book and what to wear for maternity photo session https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/3/when-to-book-and-what-to-wear-for-maternity-photo-session

When is the best time to have pregnancy photoshoot taken?” As a Maternity/Newborn Photographer I hear this question over and over again. After having three children of my own, I know that the body changes often from one child to the next. To help you out feeling more comfortable with scheduling your session, I would advise to plan your pregnancy photos taken between 28 to 36 weeks. If your body shape is defined and your belly is nicely rounded around 23 weeks you don’t necessarily need to wait till you reach 28-36 period. Most importantly you’ll need to know your body has transformed into a cosy home for a new human being. It is magnificent to watch and experience at any stage.

You’ll need to book your maternity photo session as soon as you had your first scan around 13 - 16 weeks to secure your photographer’s availability. Good professional photographers usually don’t do more than a session or 2 per day and are typically booked months ahead.

What to wear? Relax and plan ahead. Your photographer should be able to guide you through the process for your Mum To Be photo session stress free. The last thing you need to worry about is a pregnancy photoshoot.

Lighter colour garments accentuate better the idea of new life, magic and purity. Your clothing choice will depend on the type of maternity photo session you’ve booked. If it is an outdoor in the nature session you may choose more pastel neutral colours and casual style. If the session is outdoor but urban style than brighter yet light colours and boots will add some charm to the photos. If pregnancy photoshoot is in a studio consider adding fun shoes because once you have the baby, fashion might not be priority on the agenda.  This is also a wonderful time to accessorize with jewellery, scarves and head pieces. Stretchy fabrics are ideal to emphasize the shape of your belly or dresses belted under your bust. It highlights the smallest part of your body and creates beautiful curve to the figure.

Whatever you choose don’t hide the bump…we need to see it, that’s the point! You will most likely have the option of one change but bring more clothes with you. Your photographer will help you pick. Comfort is key when it comes taking a good picture. Even if you’re the most photogenic person in the world, wearing clothes you don’t feel good in will read in your pictures. Yet bump is the main subject here. 

Your underwear matters. Seamless panties are good option and make sure your bra fits well. You don’t want an overflow on your images.

Maternity portraitMaternity portraitHigh key maternity portrait

A couple of hours before your maternity session apply good moisturiser on your skin. This will reduce some itchiness which is common during the stretchy period and will make the skin glow gently for the photoshoot. Avoid greasy, oily creams.

Use of props. Many mums to be like to have a photo with cute baby shoes or some other props. Beware the use of props is fine but have a talk with your photographer about the details before the shoot. There is a delicate difference between something cute and something cheesy.

And finally, but very important, you may find yourself not exactly comfortably in the shape of your changing body. So why bother even considering maternity photoshoot? You’ll notice your skin starts to glow and everyone will tell you, you are radiant. Well, that is true. You have a hormonal battle going inside and may not realise this, but you are truly beautiful. Your body works the most magnificent wonder in the world to be a home for a new person. You want to leave this legacy behind. One day you will be grateful you did this pregnancy photoshoot  and your child will be too.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) belly bump maternity photo session maternity photoshoot mum to be photo session pregnancy photos pregnancy photoshoot https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/3/when-to-book-and-what-to-wear-for-maternity-photo-session Tue, 27 Mar 2018 12:49:47 GMT
Black and white smash the cake celebration https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/1/black-and-white-smash-the-cake-celebration One can never have enough cakes and parties. I doubt anyone will argue but just to prove my point here is a lovely little cherub fabulously enjoying his cake smash experience. 

I coudn't resist the temptation to present these in black and white. It's just so pure gorgeousness. You can see the colour versions in the main Smash The Cake gallery or on my FB page

When you photograph people in colour, you photograph their clothes.
When you photograph people in black and white, you photograph their souls!
-Ted Grant

Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake Smash the CakeSmash the CakeSmash the Cake

 

 

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) a baby boy baby photo cake smash first birthday photo one year photos smash the cake photos https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2018/1/black-and-white-smash-the-cake-celebration Mon, 22 Jan 2018 14:06:46 GMT
Routine, need you mommy and cosleep https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2017/11/routine-need-you-mommy-and-cosleep A mum told me recently - Does it have an end? I am exhausted, on the verge of a breakdown. This sleep deprivation... How can I train him. I will not cope for longer.

I remembered myself as a new mum with my first boy. I was so excited to have him. I use to wake up on my own a million times every night to check if he is breathing, is he hot, cold, are there any insects I didn't notice earlier. You name it. Not sure I've slept at all. The second one came rather quick. Just 17 months after my son. Here it began to get really frustrating. My daughter was a terrible sleeper, suffering severe colics. She would nurse very little, fall asleep for 15 minutes, than her belly starts hurting and she is awake again. The only way to settle her was breastfeed again. And so on. Day and night. Honestly this became quickly unbearable. One breast constantly out, demanding toddler, screaming baby and a total mess in the whole house. I wanted to sleep, sleep, sleep. I wanted to get my baby in bed with me but I though it is vital to stick to a strict routine and be persistent. I believed if I take her with me at night will spoil her and revert everything achieved. Toddler was rather good and settled well in his sleep but my little girl was different story. I wish I could turn the clock back. It gave results eventually after good year and a half but at the price of my sanity and my baby needs. I wish I trusted my instincts more than all those books, talks and advices. I know no one meant harm but this is what a strict routine does. More harm than good.

However I must admit experience changes such situation a lot. As new mum I had this awful worries that my baby may suffocate, or get too hot, or catch a virus, of fall from the bed, or eat something nasty from the floor. I was constantly sterilising, cleaning, washing, checking. This is more exhausting that looking after the baby itself. Trying to be perfect in everything. But I was doing it for my babies, the love of my life and everything has to be the best of the best. With 2 in my hands I must have been on autopilot most of the time. I wanted them to grow, have teeth, start walking, talking, read. Where did I rush to. No, it doesn't need to be like that. It all comes when they are ready. The precious moments must be noticed, remembered, enjoyed, seen. I am only grateful we took tons and tons of photos to go back to now. At least I can enjoy moments overlooked than. Wouldn't believe I will be this mum today if someone have told me than. 

My second son, baby number 3 came 7 years after number 2. What a huge difference. I knew then that I won't suffocate my child if he sleeps by my side. I knew it is not so bad for him to crawl on the floor and meet some bacteria. I knew that fussy eater now he will eat everything in few months time. Seems like my husband realised the same. He was much more laid back dad and we actually enjoyed having a baby. With the first 2 we were so worried and respectively tired constantly. Didn't had time to relax and just be parents and love the time we have when they are so little. How fast they grow, wow.

Now I sit and watch him be, and cuddle him at night and let him drink as much milk as he wants as often as he please. Cosleeping is not the end of the world. Than the energy I need comes from just loving my time with him. Not dreading the moment he wakes up. I don't need to look at his chubby cheeks to get going again. The feeling in my heart, the knowing he needs me most, not the polished bathroom. This is what drives me ahead. If I only knew all this 11 years ago. 

Have to give some credit to this fabulous read by L.R.Knost http://www.littleheartsbooks.com/2011/11/20/10-steps-to-surviving-the-first-three-months-with-a-newborn/. She is so right.

So mums don't get over worried and overstressed. Listen to your guts and your baby needs. They won't sleep in your bed forever. Go easy on yourself and love the baby moments no matter how messy it gets. It DOES end, but I don't want it to now.

Breastfeeding new  motherBreastfeeding new motherA mother breastfeeding her new baby

A baby boy

A baby boy was created

by the hand of God above

to give the world the sweetest touch

of tenderness and love.

With the softness of a whisper,

God made a baby's skin

and then designed two trusting eyes

to put the starlight in.

With giggles from a waterfall

and breezes passing by,

God made a baby's laughter

and a tiny, sleepy sigh.

God made the world a precious gift

more dear and pure than gold,

with little toes to play with 

and tiny hands to hold

then brought into the sunshine

a precious baby boy

All wrapped up in a rainbow

of wonder, hope, and joy.

-unknown author

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) baby poems a baby boy baby moments baby photo baby needs breastfeeding cosleeping demanding toddler fussy eater precious moments screaming baby sleep deprivation strict routine suffering severe colics terrible sleeper tiny feet https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2017/11/routine-need-you-mommy-and-cosleep Wed, 15 Nov 2017 18:21:39 GMT
Newborn photography SEO practices https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2017/11/newborn-photography-seo-practices If you are anything like me you hate SEO, rankings, social media self-promotion and all the fuss around marketing and networking.

Yes, I know, you are an artist not a market guru right? Just like me. I'd rather work on my baby photos and digital backdrops than plan Twitter strategy for 6 months ahead. But hey this is what the modern business requires. So to spare the troubles myself, I decided to hire a specialist to work this out for me. She wrote a detailed review of my website and to no one surprise there were some refinements to be done. To clarify for the reader when I started my new born photography business most of everything I had to do myself including my website. Thus the fine tuning was not existent. Long story short. All fixed with my web consultant help now. 

I want to share with you one of her articles which I found quite useful. It is written in a language I understand and not at all complicated or confusing. I've managed to implement her advices on my newborn and babies photography business website but certainly they can improve any niche business presence. And if I can do this on my own sure you all can do it too. Check it out here and get help if marketing is not your cup of tea. 

Baby boy smiling in his dreams. Great content deserves great rankingBaby boy smiling in his dreamsBaby boy smiling in his dreams

 

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) baby photography seo fine art baby photography seo newborn photography seo practices https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2017/11/newborn-photography-seo-practices Thu, 02 Nov 2017 21:38:25 GMT
Black Sea Rama - Bulgaria - wedding photography https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2017/3/black-sea-rama-bulgaria-wedding  

Shooting only a few weddings a year I have the pleasure to engage with my couples and get to like each other prior to the big day. On that particular occasion we didn't meet in advance (they live in US) but we spend 3 beautiful days together. They were wonderfully relaxed and laid back people. i wish I was so cool on my wedding day. It was a real fairy tale wedding experience from the welcome reception the day before to the pool party the day after. Wedding photography is not always fun because it is a demanding job with fast pace. This wedding though was my favourite so far to photograph. 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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) elegant wedding luxury wedding photography posh wedding south east london wedding photography wedding photo winner wedding photography golf course https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2017/3/black-sea-rama-bulgaria-wedding Sun, 19 Mar 2017 15:30:00 GMT
Japanese wedding at St. Bartholomew The Great - London https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2016/11/japanese-wedding-at-st-bartholomew-the-great---london Seems like this magical church St.Bartholomew The Great in London is a big favorite of Japanese couples for wedding photos.
I'll let the photos tell the story of this beautiful young people.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2016/11/japanese-wedding-at-st-bartholomew-the-great---london Fri, 25 Nov 2016 14:45:00 GMT
How to smash the cake - first birthday photo session https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2016/6/how-to-smash-the-cake---first-birthday-photo-session Smash the cake is one of the funniest experiences you can have as a photographer.
You'll need a pretty cake (professional look better), some subtle decoration and a gorgeous one year old eager to explore. Photographer with sense of humor is a must.
To be honest I didn't sleep well for a few days prior to my first Smash The Cake session. When you expect a carnage you are not quite sure how the situation is going to collaborate with your professional  perfectionism to photograph same pose over and over till you get the perfect shot. In cake cases you'll need to be pretty quick.
From personal experience I've learned:

  • Prepare a bath for the end
  • Dress baby in diaper cover or plain dress. You want the attention on the baby face expressions, hands and feet right
  • Avoid chocolate cakes. Can provoke wrong associations when messed up
  • Take some detail shots before putting the baby in
  • Don't overdo with backgrounds or decorations
  • Tell mum to give the baby cake at least once a few days prior to session. This is an important part and will give mum a hint if her baby has any allergies or reactions. Some babies don't like the texture of icing or cream believe it or not and may get very upset as it sticks to little hands. Others are seriously impressed and explore the cake thoroughly.
  • Have a spoon handy in case the baby needs some help to smash the cake and gets it messy
  • Keep some water for the baby at hand
  • Let the baby be fed at least 30 minutes before the session. He wouldn't be hungry or grumpy when you meet him with the cake
  • Have absolutely everything ready before you put the baby in
  • Move around to get different angles
  • It's usually very short. Unless you have 2 cakes
  • Have fun

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) a baby boy baby photo cake smash first birthday photo one year photos smash the cake photos https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2016/6/how-to-smash-the-cake---first-birthday-photo-session Wed, 15 Jun 2016 14:30:00 GMT
Gay Wedding at Mayfair Library and Hollywood Arms https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/8/gay-wedding-at-mayfair-library-and-hollywood-arms Shooting a wedding is stressful enough on its own. When I was asked to photograph a gay wedding for a first time I was initially very glad and truly excited. I've worked with gay people in the past (not as a photographer though) and had only good memories of funny, caring and gentle boys. 
However I've also heard stories of such events going terribly wrong and after the initial excitement I got cold feet. Was I prepared enough, did I had experience working in such intimate private matter with gay people? Well honestly no. 
I can now admit that I was nervous and had doubts but I shouldn't have.
Apologies Gabo & Carlitos. You are both great people and I wish I had no worries before your big day. It may have been hormonal due to my late pregnancy though. Anyway it only lasted till I got to the small garden behind the Mayfair Registry Office and met you two. Both dressed perfectly balanced with every little detail well considered. 
I can now gladly confirm these boys were prepared and capable of organizing a fantastic day, sure better than many fashionista brides. The entire event was very well planed and all guests delighted with the little surprises throughout the day. From the get together the day before, the champagne outdoor reception in glass flutes, the old red double Decker to drive guests through city, white and purple bags of sweets, personalized water bottle labels all the way from Mexico and the chance to take a selfie in the photo corners all the way to the fabulous cake.  All brilliant ideas and execution. 
Have a fantastic life together Gabo and Carlitos and thank you.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/8/gay-wedding-at-mayfair-library-and-hollywood-arms Sun, 02 Aug 2015 14:30:00 GMT
Civil Marriage Ceremony - wedding photography - Maria & Anton https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/6/civil-marriage-ceremony---wedding-photography---maria-anton This very private couple didn't want to go public, so be it....I respect all my clients feelings.

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/6/civil-marriage-ceremony---wedding-photography---maria-anton Sat, 06 Jun 2015 17:00:00 GMT
Editorail imagery by Daniella Petkoff https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/6/editorail-imagery-by-daniella-petkoff

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/6/editorail-imagery-by-daniella-petkoff Mon, 01 Jun 2015 18:15:00 GMT
How to choose your wedding planner – guest post by Gilly Keat (Amore Star Events) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/3/how-to-choose-your-wedding-planner-guest-post-by-gilly-keat-amore-star-events A while ago I met a passionate young woman, very enthusiastic for her business and full of ideas. We've had an inspiring conversation and I thought why not use the fum of social media and web presents and share her spirit with everyone....
Out meeting kicked off the start of a new friendship. Gilly is here today sharing her knowledge and expertise on how to choose your wedding planner.  Gilly is truly a "professional" and you'll understand more about her as she takes you through each step to creating the perfect wedding. Enjoy.

* * *

You might be the kind of person who has been dreaming of this moment your entire life...you walked around with a pillow case on your head humming The Wedding March, borrowed your Mum’s jewelry, shoes and lipstick and had your pet cat reluctantly sitting still as your groom. No? Just me? Ok....maybe you haven’t ever given it much thought, but knew at some point you might entertain the idea of saying, “YES. I WILL MARRY YOU Prince Harry!” – Hey, a girl can dream right?!

So, you’ve said yes. You are officially getting married. You’re excited to be marrying your partner...BUT, there’s something worrying you.... All of a sudden all those people who are congratulating you also start asking you questions, and endless decisions have to be made. Best men, bridesmaids, venues, caterers, florists, dresses, photographer, suits, cakes, decorations. How do I plan a wedding?! Where on earth do I start?!

Worry not my friends, because I am here to help. Along with a little help from some wonderful industry peeps, this is a little helping hand so that you and your partner can make an informed decision when choosing your wedding planner, or it may even help you decipher whether a planner is right for you and your big day.

First off, did you know that there are different types of wedding planners? Nope, neither did I until I developed a love for the industry.

A wedding planner will typically work with you to create your vision and make it become a reality. They will manage all the details of your entire wedding from the initial consultation and design process, all the way through to the ‘I do’ and post wedding clear down. They will make sure you have a fabulous team of suppliers and professionals on board (including a fabulous photographer like my host today) and will be the main point of contact for all those involved, leaving you free to enjoy your day. In the long run, a full service can save the most amount of time and money for a couple. Most wedding planners will also offer ‘on the day’ coordination.

A wedding coordinator is usually picked out when the couple want to be more involved in their big day but just need that extra helping hand to schedule the events of the day and ensure everything runs to time.

A wedding stylist is predominantly brought in to ensure the styling of the wedding is taken to another level, one that is perhaps even more beautiful than the bride could imagine or create herself.

You may well be thinking....I don’t need ALL that. My Aunts, Cousins and Uncle Bob from Timbuktu all want to help with my big day. And that’s great! But as Laura Guerrie points out on Offbeat Bride “No matter how well things are planned and confirmed, something will go wonky on the wedding day. An experienced professional will handle any hiccups in such a way that you and your guests will never know anything unusual happened.”  http://offbeatbride.com/2010/06/do-you-need-a-wedding-planner
If you are under no illusion that you absolutely want and need a type of wedding planner, then your first stop should be The UK Alliance of Wedding Planners (UKAWP) http://www.ukawp.com.  Through membership, mentoring, training courses and specialised events, the UKAWP promote professionalism in wedding planning. All the members are wedding planners that have undergone training, and have been “vetted through their entrance requirements for their honesty, professionalism and experience”. They also abide by the UKAWP’s code of business practice which demonstrates just how seriously they take the industry. I underwent an intensive training course with the UKAWP and have been fortunate enough to work alongside some of their fabulous members. 

Next step would be to check out some of these planners in your local area via search engines, social media, magazines, local press etc. This might throw up a few other alternatives who perhaps aren't members of the UKAWP. Regardless of how you find your planners, ensure that you read each of their websites first and check out any of their social media pages to fully understand how each planner works and their type of style. You should be able to see a portfolio of their previous work and experience and usually testimonials from their past clients too.

Once you have done a bit of research, and before you start interviewing planners, you and your partner should have a good idea of your budget, guest numbers, preferred date and your vision for your day.

As a planner myself I would love it if all the couples that came to see me, came knowing how much I adore the industry, how passionate I am about ensuring that each couple has their perfect wedding day that truly reflects their personality, and how hard I work to eradicate any stress and iron out any issues that arise on the day.  It’s more than likely that my potential clients don’t know any of these facts about me, so it’s my job to deliver these messages to each and every person I meet in a way which resonates with them. I also need to really understand what it is that you’re looking for, how I can help you, and what your dream is to enable me to put together an amazing proposal that sets me apart from all the other wonderful planners out there competing for the same business.

After meeting your potential planners, ask yourself:

- Did my planner really understand what it is that I’m looking for, my dreams, my vision, my hopes for the big day and expand on those ideas?

- Will this planner help me stick to my budget?

- Did this planner make me feel relaxed, and safe in the knowledge that the biggest day of my life will go well under their control?

- Have I seen this planner’s contract, and do I agree with the terms and conditions?

- What exactly will my planner be dealing with, and what’s left for me to do?

- What is the payment policy? Are there any fees that I should be aware of?

- Was there a good rapport between us? Could we work well together?

- Does this planner have public liability insurance?

- Does this planner have some positive reviews or testimonials of previous work?

Once you have (hopefully) picked little old me, then the fun really starts. Depending on your needs and budget, you may just need me to help source a few suppliers (maybe a fabulous photographer like Daniella! Or perhaps organize or schedule and coordinate your day, or even take you step by step through your wedding day dream, designing and planning a day that you will remember for all the right reasons.

If you are the type of person that knows that no one can organize as well as you, you’re on a very tight budget, have an army of helpers willing to help but believe ‘too many cooks spoil the broth’ then perhaps you are your own wedding planner. We don’t suit everybody’s needs, and there happens to be a huge wide world out there jam packed with wedding help. Google the word ‘wedding’. Go on, I dare ya! There are hundreds, upon thousands of articles, images and websites dedicated to helping YOU!

Apart from calling me....obviously...do make sure that you take a step back and record exactly what it is that you and your partner want. One bit of advice that I offer to every single couple I know and work with that gets engaged, is that your wedding day is exactly that. YOUR day. Nobody else. I see too many people having a wedding day perfect for their family, too concerned of what others may think, too concerned with having a ‘Pinterest-Perfect’ wedding day. You know what you want, and I can help, so let’s make it happen.

Sources:

www.ukawp.com
http://offbeatbride.com/
http://blackhillsbride.com/blog/2011/10/mid-engagement-crisis-black-hill-bride-can-help/
http://wedding.theknot.com/wedding-planning/planning-a-wedding/articles/13-questions-to-ask-wedding-planners.aspx?MsdVisit=1

Company Information – Gilly Keat and Amore Star Events

My name is Gilly Keat and Amore Star Events is my little passion that is growing steadily. My background is predominantly media based but with a slight obsession for the wedding and event industry. Partnered with an (some might say) unhealthy addiction to organizing and attention to detail, turning my event planning hobby into a reality was the perfect choice.

I get the best of both worlds, I still work during the week within advertising, but spend my spare time in wedding and event heaven. I've been assisting other wedding planners since 2011 and have worked on a variety of events over the years. I have undergone intensive training with the UKAWP and abide by their Codes of Business Practice.

I offer a friendly and highly personalized, meticulous, quality service to all of the wonderful people that I've been lucky enough to work with. I am based in London and focus on planning events in London and the surrounding areas, however I have also planned events further afield.

I'm passionate about challenging the stereotypical event traditions and love including quirky and unusual elements in each celebration that truly reflect the personality of my clients.

You have a dream, ideas and a vision of what you would like your event to look and feel like. I'll strive to make those become your reality.

www.amorestarevents.co.uk
[email protected]
 07756 919598

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/3/how-to-choose-your-wedding-planner-guest-post-by-gilly-keat-amore-star-events Wed, 11 Mar 2015 14:30:00 GMT
12 Tips of How to Pose Children and Families for a fun Photo session https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/2/12-tips-of-how-to-pose-children-and-families-for-a-fun-photo-session Photographing the kids is not exactly a job you can easily do. Often kids are a bit reluctant at first when they see a photographer with a big camera and a huge speed light on top. You try to tell them what to do and they will do the opposite right away.  You have a plan, a great game or story in mind but they hate it and are grumpy as Grouchy Smurf. For kids it is actually quite a fun to run away or look on the opposite direction. At the end of the day they just want to run around and posing for you is not their idea of fun.
You could either give up this job or actually go with the flow and enjoy. It is rather amusing believe me, you just need a few tips and a great deal of patience.
If you try to pose a child as an adult they will hate you and it will be the most boring experience in the world. Lets make it enjoyable, something kids will look forward to. Is that possible? It sure is.
What are you trying to capture. Do you want a stiff looking child in a perfect pose or you want to see their personality, smiles or even naughty faces. This is what they are and this is what will make mum and dad love this images.
Not everything will work with every family or  children. Move ahead quickly and see what will work for you this time.
1. KEEP EVERYONE CLOSE TO EACH OTHER - this will provoke some interactions and often result in surprisingly  emotional images. Ask them to touch heads and snuggle close or squish cheeks together.
2. HOLDING HANDS - ask everyone to hold hands and swing them around. This is usually a sure smile and fun and kids don't get freaked out of being close together for too long. They can even jump for even fun. Be prepared for the jump though.
3. PLAY A COPYCAT - ask everyone to copy you even parents while you do a few funny poses. This will get all involved and kids love to see mum and dad with awkward faces. Praise the kids and ask them to make a pose you like to shoot.
4. RUN - ask kids to run away from mum and dad and ask parent to try to hold/snatch kids still. Or move kids at front and ask them to tur around and run to mum and dad. Opposite will do too. This is a tricky one but with practice you can master it and get a real treasure shots.
5. FUNNY FACES - tell everyone to make an angry face, wondering face, crazy face, sad face, funny face, smiley face
6. DANCE/WIGGLE - if you ask the group to wiggle bumps and dance you'll have a huge laugh and a few great shots
7. CHANGE POSITIONS - standing, sitting, laying down. Have chars or suitable for sitting props
8. TICKLE - tell them to tickle each other and watch the fun.
9. QUESTIONS - have a word with mum and dad beforehand what kids like, dislike like favorite funny characters, movies, games etc. Ask them questions what was the funniest thing happening in this movie or book and let them tell you.
10. JOKES - learn a few good old jokes. It is useful to check for appropriate k=jokes according to kids age as they tend to change with age.
11.GET YOURSELF CLOSE - do some close ups of faces, hands or details.
12. IMPROVISE - try variations, think out of the box, keep a whistle, balloons and small treats handy.

For me it is really a good mix of everything and sensing what the mood is and going with the flow. It is very important to have your exposure  checked in advance and just move around shooting and have fun yourself. If you stop every few minutes to get your images checked or change camera settings everyone will get bored quickly and you will struggle.

See the images below. This family came all wet down from the pouring rain outside. Mum and dad din't mind carrying on with the session and here is what we ended up. Messy wet hair and the cutest little sister ever, quite determined to cuddle and kiss her brother. He was a bit older though and not in a mood of kissing but with a little encouragement and tricks we ended up with these. Love them

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/2/12-tips-of-how-to-pose-children-and-families-for-a-fun-photo-session Fri, 13 Feb 2015 14:15:00 GMT
Newborn baby portraits and photography - how valuable they really are? https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/newborn-baby-portraits-and-photography---how-valuable-they-really-are We see lots of beautiful and pretty things in live but there is nothing as pure and magical as a newborn baby, is there? Probably only a parent can understand that statement :)
I love babies since my teenage years and thought I know what it is all about....how overbold. I only understood how deep that love and tenderness are after giving birth myself. It feels like it comes from the deepest deep of the Earth's womb, through my feet and up my body straight into my heart. Embedded there forever. 
I believe I speak on behalf of all mothers. Dad's please, no offence. Tell me in the comments below how it is for you. I would love to hear. I am only a mum and can speak from mother's experience.
Well, are baby portraits so valuable?
They are not just valuable, they are priceless! One can style pretty much everything else but this first days of life. In few years you won't remember all this magnificent moments, the way your baby can fit in your palm, the sweetest pouts, the mini size of their living feet and hands, the way they curl up. Their faces and expressions change every day.
The only way to perpetuate this flashes of splendor in time is to capture them in images.
They will always evoke the emotions you felt when you first met your baby and will melt your heart. These images will be your treasure for ever.
What is your experience? Share at the bottom.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/newborn-baby-portraits-and-photography---how-valuable-they-really-are Fri, 30 Jan 2015 14:15:00 GMT
Wedding and Engagement Rings Images https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/wedding-and-engagement-rings-images One of my favourite parts in each wedding is to take a few quiet minutes away from party and arrange the photos of the most representative attribute of you social status change - The Wedding Rings

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/wedding-and-engagement-rings-images Sun, 18 Jan 2015 14:15:00 GMT
Civil Marriage Ceremony - wedding photography https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/civil-marriage-ceremony---wedding-photography The first time I spoke with the bride Vera she was so excited and nice that she got me hooked right away. Often the first impression in any business is crucial of how the things are going to go. Vera was her true self, slightly nervous about the big day but at the same time all smiles and she sounded like no matter what may happens she won't let anything shade on her happiness. This was such a good vibe to begin our work together with. For me personally the radiation of happiness establishes an emotional connection with the couple which makes my job so much fun. An ideal bride attitude relaxed and smiling, only caring about the moment and sharing the best with her closest friends. That is what a wedding day should be all about. I wish all brides forget about creating the perfect day for everyone else rather than focus on themselves and enjoying it in full. 
I didn't met Dan before the wedding day and he was a bit stiff to begin with but look at him later in the day....right to the cigarette at the end.  Looked like he only waited to grab his new bride and dive down into the sentiment.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/civil-marriage-ceremony---wedding-photography Tue, 06 Jan 2015 14:00:00 GMT
Wedding at St. Bartholomew Church and The Grosvenor Hotel London https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/wedding-at-st-bartholomew-church-and-the-grosvenor-hotel-london This lovely couple had a pretty busy day taking formal images on various locations in Central London and we had to travel frantically rushing the clock and traffic.  The day began at around 9.30 at The Grosvenor Hotel with bridal preparation and a few images in the lobby.  Next was the Ceremony at St. Bartolomew Church and as usual flashes were not allowed. However the church got such a beauty and atmosphere that even low light didn't bother me much. Fabulous dress, beautiful bride, magnificent church - what else could a photographer wish for :) Well the wedding planner was a bit harsh on me in regards to the flash but I've followed the rules.  A cute little red Mini Cooper was waiting outside for a short ride around the church before heading to the Tower Bridge, than opposite the Parliament and Parliament square, finishing off with the Mini Cooper again  and the famous London Bus and red telephone boot .  Final stop before party back to The Grosvenor Hotel. What a spin. The couple was well exhausted after all above and a few hair piece changes but very happy. Flawless day with astounding memories.
Edited in a bit of dreamy vintage finishing. Happy viewing

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2015/1/wedding-at-st-bartholomew-church-and-the-grosvenor-hotel-london Thu, 01 Jan 2015 18:30:00 GMT
Birthday Pottery Party https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/9/birthday-pottery-party Really noisy environment though :):) but all kids were very creative and seem to have enjoyed the Dragon making a lot. Actually they are usually happy given the chance to get as dirty as they please and be praised for that.

At cake time all hungry and hands sticky with clay. Well done everyone, I can't wait to hand out your ready, glazed and fired monsters in 3 weeks time. It will be a long wait. 
Mum made
Toothless cake and despite its imperfections my son was trilled with my achievement, so was I. Happy Birthday my boy.

 

 

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/9/birthday-pottery-party Mon, 29 Sep 2014 17:00:00 GMT
Baby Hussain 3 weeks old https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/9/baby-hussain-3-weeks-old
In some rear occasions when baby comes to the world it is not just the happiest moment in life but could be most tense and frightening and probably the moment when we all turn to God. Everything was just fine till the water of his mum broke and she was kept in waiting for more than 10 hours?!? The outcome - beautiful baby Hussain but suffering serious inflammation as a result of the negligence. He had to spent 2 weeks in hospital on antibiotics and under constant doctor's supervision. I can only feel for his mother and the hundreds of prayer she told God during that time.
Please meet baby Hussain, now 3 weeks old, fully recovered, nice and cosy at home with his family.....

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/9/baby-hussain-3-weeks-old Thu, 25 Sep 2014 16:45:00 GMT
St. Katharine Docks wedding photography - The Dickens Inn - Egle @ Georgi https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/8/st-katharine-docks-wedding-photography---the-dickens-inn---egle-georgi Thank you Egle and Georgi for the wonderful time I had photographing your wedding. I wish you to hold on the magic of loving heart and have millions of reasons for these candid smiles again. I'll see you again for your first annyversary and when baby number one is born.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/8/st-katharine-docks-wedding-photography---the-dickens-inn---egle-georgi Tue, 05 Aug 2014 16:45:00 GMT
Wedding at St. Bartholomew Church. London https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/8/wedding-at-st-bartholomew-church-london Different experience with this lovely couple and their wedding coordinator. I was a bit worried before going to photograph this lavish wedding in St.Bartholomew Church in London as I was told the administration is very tough and strict and it will be hard to take decent images. Not that I usually listen but I can't spoil clients event so I sneaked back to the pianist and asked him if I can pop up on a chair :) Naughty isn't it.

He was such a nice gay and let me step up on the chair. Phuh, easy,  what better angle I've got from there and on contrary of all my expectations the wed coordinator jumped out and told me off angrily. ???. The priest doesn't seem to mind but this furious lady never looked at me again. 

I did of course explain that I've asked before stepping up but she really didn't bother to listen. I keep asking myself what is it with people waking up facing the pillow (an awkward saying for a grumpy someone in a bad day :) ) 

Well, I've got my revenge at the end as she actually loved the images :):):). No hard feelings. Gooorgeous couple, magnificent dress and such a beautiful bride. I've had great time and I am happy everyone is delighted with the photos. I love my work :)

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/8/wedding-at-st-bartholomew-church-london Mon, 04 Aug 2014 16:15:00 GMT
Mum to be and older sister :) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/6/mum-to-be-and-older-sister Such a serenity and joy in this little girl eyes expecting her sibling for 6 years. I had a delightful time spending 2 hours with this amazing mum and daughter. The mum was due in a month but in fact the baby was born only a few days after the session. Read the story in pictures below:)

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/6/mum-to-be-and-older-sister Wed, 04 Jun 2014 16:15:00 GMT
Syd's Vintage dressing up during Forest Hill Fashion Week https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/syds-vintage-dressing-up-during-forest-hill-fashion-week How a pair of gorgeous red heels can make you happy :)

 

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/syds-vintage-dressing-up-during-forest-hill-fashion-week Tue, 25 Mar 2014 16:00:00 GMT
Bracelet making workshop during Forest Hill Fashion Week https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/bracelet-making-workshop-during-forest-hill-fashion-week How much fun can you make out of a tin full of buttons and beads :) It was a pure delight to take photos at this event where everybody seems to become a joyful child again. Life is simple and we usually don't need much to feel happy and enjoy such an activity

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/bracelet-making-workshop-during-forest-hill-fashion-week Tue, 25 Mar 2014 15:00:00 GMT
Kids on the Catwalk https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/kids-on-the-catwalk I love working with adults but don't get me wrong...working with children is an unforgettable journey in Wonderland. Their true believe we live in a magical place where everything is simple and real is so fascinating. I spent wonderful 2 hours with these beautiful primary school children and loved every minute of it.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/kids-on-the-catwalk Sun, 23 Mar 2014 16:00:00 GMT
Pop-up shops benefits workshop during Forest Hill Fashion Week https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/pop-up-shops-benefits-workshop-during-forest-hill-fashion-week I've had the change to shoot this incredible Pop-up shops workshop during Forest Hill Fashion Week. I've heard very encouraging stories and I am glad I had the chance to meet so inspirational people.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/pop-up-shops-benefits-workshop-during-forest-hill-fashion-week Mon, 17 Mar 2014 14:45:00 GMT
African Plaited Necklace Workshop (Forest Hill Fashion Week) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/african-plaited-necklace-workshop-forest-hill-fashion-week Feeling grateful for the ideas I managed to pick up while photographing this event. Looks like all participants really enjoyed making their own handmade necklaces. It’s a great experience to wear proudly something you made yourself :). Well done girl.

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/african-plaited-necklace-workshop-forest-hill-fashion-week Mon, 03 Mar 2014 14:30:00 GMT
All you knit is Love Workshop(Forest Hill Fashion Week) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/all-you-knit-is-love-workshop-forest-hill-fashion-week I have really enjoyed taking photos of this lovely knitting workshop during Forest Hill Fashion Week. I use to love knitting and I still do, just lacking time. Reminded me of my teenage years making my own jumpers :) How proud I was...

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(Daniella Petkoff Photography) https://www.daniellapetkoffphotography.com/blog/2014/3/all-you-knit-is-love-workshop-forest-hill-fashion-week Mon, 03 Mar 2014 09:30:00 GMT