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Behind the Scenes at a Photo Shoot for Better Homes & Gardens

So if you tuned in last week, I wrote a post which will be a perfect piece of evidence should I ever be on trial for being neurotic and weird: how I prepared for the BH&G photo shoot.

I shared a few behind-the-scenes photos of how the day went already on Facebook and Twitter, but I wanted to fill ya in on the rest. It was basically the best thing that ever happened, approximately.

At around 8:15 a.m., Annette Joseph, Stylist Extraordinaire and her assistant, also-stylist-extraordinaire Katie showed up with coffee in hand! They went straight to the laundry room to scope out the situation, then Annette asked to see my wardrobe.

Now, don’t forget: I had spent excessive amounts of time obsessing over having Enough Options. I knew they wanted summery/springy clothes, and considering I had been a million months pregnant last spring, I didn’t have any existing clothes like that in my wardrobe. Before I went shopping, I had a closet full of either:
1. Winter clothes
2. Maternity clothes that I haven’t taken out yet
3. Old magazines, piles of shoes and one mystery slipper.

I needed to go shopping. I had gathered every soft blazer-to-replace cardigan within a 20-mile radius, and had multiple tanks and skinny jeans/capris all hanging on my little clothes rack awaiting the blessing of the fabulous Annette.
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Me: (Gesturing proudly to rack of clothes) “Here it is!”
Annette: “Oh, not looking for blazers. What else do you have?”
Planet Earth: (Stops spinning momentarily.)
Me: (Scrapes self off ceiling.) (Panics.) (Walks calmly to closet and stares at Mystery Slipper in despair.) “Ummmmm.”
Annette: We want you to wear something that looks comfortable, like something you’d reasonably wear to do laundry.
Me: Oh now you’re talking! If you want realistic, how ’bout this holey sweatshirt and mismatched flannel pajama pants? THAT’s what I wear to do laundry.
Annette: Pics out an old boyfriend cardigan I never wear because I can’t decide what it goes with, an old OLD t-shirt (I think from high school) and a chunky yellow necklace. The colors are springy and work perfectly with the laundry room. It takes her five seconds.
Planet Earth: (Resumes regular activities.)
Annette: “We just want you to be beautiful and comfortable. This ‘I Did It’ feature page is one of the most well-read pages in every issue. It’s very important.”
Me: One of the most WHAT?! (Feels so-not-worthy.)

This is Katie (left), Annette (right) and me in The Outfit That Came From Nowhere. Also, you can’t see it here, but I was wearing some freakin’ fabulous pink and orange ballet flats, pictured above on The Clothes Rack That Served No Purpose After All.
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Just then, Dulce, the makeup artist, arrived. This will be a total shocker, I know, but hear this: this is not my normal life.
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This was the scene the whole time Dulce was doing my makeup. Weston hovered over her giant thing (caboodle?) of makeup, not touching them but DYING to touch them, talking nonstop.
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“What’s that? What are you doing? Mom, why do you need makeup? Miss Dulce, how old are your kids? I’m THWEE! I had a birthday! I poopoo in the potty because I’m THWEE! Can I touch this? Can I touch THAT?

Five stars to Dulce for unending patience! She is fab-u-lous. I don’t know what my left hand is doing in this photo of me with her. Presumably the air guitar.
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Dulce even left me with a fun stash of Chanel makeup, so lately when I do my makeup, I feel super luxe like I’m just covering my face in liquid money and it confirms for me that a little pampering does a girl good. I fell in love with the lipstick color she used (Chanel Mademoiselle) so I had to go pick up my own. Don’t even TRY to ruin my day when I’m wearing it. It’s impossible.

While Dulce, Weston and I were doing makeup, Lauren, the amazing photographer, and her assistant – Scott? I think! I’m so sorry about forgetting your name, maybe-Scott – arrived. Andy showed them to the laundry room and they started setting up equipment. I mean serious photography equipment. Weston helped investigate.
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Lauren was SO gracious, kind and professional, but I just know she must’ve freaked out a little bit at the situation she was given. The laundry room opens into a tiny hallway, so there is NO. SPACE. to step back and get the whole laundry room in one photo. In this photo, Lauren and Annette are looking into the laundry room. Lauren is standing inside my linen closet to get just a couple extra inches of space. That’s Katie on the left and Scott on the right.
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This is the view from inside the laundry room. The amazing and SUPER fun Lauren, crammed into my linen closet: the FEW square inches of my house that I did not organize in preparation for this day.
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Weston’s room is at the end of that hallway, and in that room, Katie and Annette had laid out all the amazing styling props they brought. (I’m SO SORRY about these horrible photos, you guys!)
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They cleared the shelves and styled the daylights out of my laundry room. It looked amazing! (And you’ll just have to wait and see-eee!)

After everything was set up and I was as beautified as can be done on this earth, the shooting began! I will tell you that I am the least photogenic person I know. I AM NOT BEING FAKE-HUMBLE OR LOOKING FOR COMPLIMENTS. This is a REAL physical condition in which the presence of a camera causes my face to distort. Andy even laughs at how unphotogenic I am. It’s just fact, guys. I’m cool with it.

BUT. Lemme tell ya. Lauren and Annette made me feel like a supaSTAH! They were oohing and ahhing and saying very nice things which I’m certain they say to everyone because it makes you smile for real.

The photo shoot went like this: Me standing in front of washing machine, one snap of camera, Annette steps in and fixes my hair, two more photos. I stand in front of dryer, two snaps of camera, Annette tames the hair. I stand in front of dryer with toe in slightly different position. Annette fixes my hair. I lean slightly forward in front of dryer, two more photos. Hair adjustment. I stand in front of dryer holding towels (that are way too beautifully folded to be something you might actually find in my house), Annette fixes my hair, Lauren snaps photos. I sit on dryer. Photos. Hair fix. I lean forward while sitting on dryer. Hair fix. Photos. I sit indian-style on dryer. Hair fix. Hair fix. Hair fix. Photo. I lean sideways while sitting on dryer. Hair. Hair. Photo.

Annette said my hair “is a person.” (Totally. A very needy person. I think it needs its own stylist to follow it around making it stay out of my eyes.)

The way I just described the process sounds really robotic, but I had the BEST time. We were all laughing and joking and it was very comfortable and natural. I only got a couple quick glances at the photos from far away, but from what I could tell, Lauren is a MASTER. (Sorry, can’t share photos of me in the room just yet!) They were done with the photos very quickly because Annette and Lauren are JUST THAT GOOD. And before I knew it, the shoot was in the books. I said bye to the fabulous crew – here with Katie and Scott –
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– and I was left to relish in it. Oh yeah – and they left all the styling props! I have a lifetime supply of cleaning wipes and laundry detergent! #Win. Andy still had the day off, so we went off to Jason’s Deli for lunch: Andy, the kids, me and Chanel Mademoiselle.

I don’t know yet what issue it’ll be in, but it’ll probably be later in the summer. Don’t worry: I won’t let you miss it. I’ll be completely annoying when it comes out, for sure. I will assault unsuspecting people in grocery store checkout lines and make them buy the magazine.

Overall: total dream come true. I was pinching myself and thanking Jesus the whole time.

We got started on a new project this weekend which I can’t wait to tell you about! How was your weekend?

Let's connect


  1. You look gorgeous and it sounds like it was so much fun. I’ll be so excited to turn to that last page in the magazine sometime soon (hopefully soon!) and see you standing there!

  2. Oh my goodness! What fun 😉 Love that you said you feel like you are covering your face in liquid money, LOL. Can’t wait to see it in print. Congrats! xo Kristin

  3. SOOOOOO exciting and you are gorgeous!! the end.

  4. SO COOL! I cant believe the part about them not using any of the new clothes. Hahaha Cant wait to see the magazine pictures.

  5. I think you look goorgeous! Hmmmm, I’ll have to look at the lipstick next time I shop looks great on you! What a fun day you had!

  6. Haha I laughed out loud at the “no blazers” and “earth stood still” comments. So funny. This sounds like so much fun!

  7. Can’t wait to see the photos in the magazine! How exciting! 🙂

  8. What a fantastic experience! Can’t wait to see you in the mag. 🙂

  9. I am just GIDDY for you. Really. So, so very happy for you!!!!!!! And you look amazing, and they left you MAKE UP?! And STYLING PROPS?! You go girl.

  10. Hilarious! And amazing- congrats! Love the one untouched closet is the only thing they opened. Ha! Best laid plans… 🙂

  11. Eeee!!! So glad it went well. And I love the cardigan!

  12. So cool and so exciting! Cannot wait to see!!!

  13. Sounds like a great experience…thanks for sharing all the behind-the-scenes happenings! Can’t wait to see the feature!

  14. What a great outfit! I would not have thought to put those items together, either! I can’t wait to see this feature when it comes out!

  15. You rocked it girl! Congrats again!! It sounds like a perfect day!! 🙂

  16. Loved this post! It’s so wonderful to see a fellow “mommy” with a sense of humor on her blog…instead of the usual “here is what I did and here is where I purchased it…blah blah blah….Thanks for sharing and your wonderful sense of humor! Keep it real! You did look great BTW…

  17. I have so many comments to leave….
    First, you just crack me up. I laugh every time you post.
    Thank you for answering what my question would of been about the linen closet.
    I am in so much trouble if someone wants to pick from my closet, I would need that body double, nothing in it fits me.
    High five Weston and tell him I’m proud of him.
    I’m just a bit disappointed there will be no BH&G photos of Andy in his tighty whites doing his very best Beckham pose.

  18. You look beautiful and can’t wait to see the magazine!

  19. You look fabulous! Love that Chanel lipstick and now you know what to wear that adorable cardigan with! Can’t wait to see your feature in BHG! Congratulations! Wow–that is a lot of exclamation points—sorry!!

  20. You are SO CUTE! And it’s been so fun to live vicariously through you. I mean, it almost feels as if my OWN laundry room is going to be featured!

  21. You look beautiful! So exciting! I had to laugh with you about not being photogenic…I am so uncomfortable in front of the camera. Can’t wait to see the mag!

  22. ooh, I was hanging on every word–sounds so fun! And you got free stuff! yay!

  23. Ah! It’s like a dream come true just to get to watch your experience! And by the way, and I cannot stress just how sincere this is….you look gorgeous. Just gorgeous. Luv ya!

  24. GAH! This is awesome! I can’t wait to see the shoot for reals in the magazine! And, that sweater? You should wear it more often – super cute 🙂

  25. Oh, I hope my subscription doesn’t run out before this feature is published. I don’t want to have to “fight” for a copy at the store !! I’m so happy for you. You and your hubby put a lot of work into your beautiful home and the accolades are all deserved. Enjoy your fame.

  26. Looks like so much fun and excitement! Can’t wait to see your big magazine debut! Love that you got to keep all the props- that’s a huge bonus!

  27. So the lesson is if one is asked to be in a magazine don’t go with blazers? Noted.

    AHHH! I can’t wait for the issue to come out. I’m going to go up to strangers in the store, show them the page, and be all, “I KNOW her!”

  28. I am so excited for you. I have been stalking your website for this update. I love all the details you shared. I can’t believe how much styling product they brought along. That is awesome that you got to keep it. Lol at your hair being its own person 😉 Awesome. And btw you are not the most unphotogenic – I proudly hold that title thankyouverymuch 😉
    Great report! Thanks!!

  29. So fun! I can’t wait to see the magazine!

  30. I can’t wait to see it!! Maybe it will be out just in time for Haven 🙂

  31. The whole experience sounds like so much fun! The outfit they chose looks great along with the lipstick Dulce picked. Can’t wait for the issue to come out!

  32. You are so stinkin cute! What a fabulous experience!! Congratulations!!!

  33. Awesome experience, so proud of you! Your laundry room is amazing and so is your blog. Great work girl! 🙂

  34. So exciting! I would be freaking out too (with excitement!!). I can’t wait to see it!!

  35. Love the air guitar bit. I’m glad to hear it all went fabulously well! I’ll keep an eye out for that issue.

  36. Sounds fantastic! I’m seriously considering convincing my hubby (somehow!) to let me renew my BH&G subscription! Congratulations again, Kelly! 🙂

  37. I feel like I should know you in real life. I love a gal who can make me laugh out loud. This post did that- I hope you’re not offended by that. You’re just a funny gal- with hair that is a person. Love it. Congrats on the successful photo shoot. So happy for you! Now relax.

  38. Ahhh! I am jumping around the room in excitement FOR you! What a fun experience! And you look absolutely gorgeous, as I’m sure you will in the magazine. Can’t wait to see it! Happy Monday!

    ~Abby =)

  39. I will be waiting by my mailbox until that issue arrives. It’s cool knowing famous people!!

  40. It sounds like so much fun! Kuddos to you for not throwing up – I would have totally lost my breakfast when they said no to the clothes. I would really like someone to follow me around all day and fix my hair though….
    Can’t wait to see it in print. So happy for you!

  41. gahhh you are hilarious. and you look adorable in the thrown together out of nowhere outfit too. cn they come to my house and style me and my laundry room nowww

  42. Somebody else already admitted “stalking” your blog for this photo shoot update … can’t believe there are 41 comments here since I also checked for your update! For a time my wife and I worked as “atmosphere” (or extras) in a couple of movies that probably were seen by way fewer people than your BH&G feature page. The type of experiences that you have so well described can be some fun times.

    Oh and leaving the linen closet unorganized adjacent to THE laundry room — no worries. Remember the floor underneath the sofa? Confirmed spotless


  43. Okay I am dying of happiness for you because that experience is just so cool!!! -and you deserve to have your awesomeness recognized! You are famous!!!!!

  44. I am so thrilled for you! My biggest laundry room shot fear (for me, not you) would be the one from behind! The loading and the unloading involves full posterior exposure!!!!!!

    Can’t wait to see the magic in print!

    🙂 Linda

  45. Congrats! So exciting. Look forward to seeing the feature!

  46. Oh my god you had MAKEUP PEOPLE?!? And people zhushing your HAIR?! AND PICKING OUT YOUR CLOTHES?! Man, I am so so jealous. Like for reals. Sounds amazing and so cool and I’m SO EXCITED for you!!! Totally and utterly well deserved and you better scan copies because I can’t get BH&G in the UK!! In Mary Catherine Gallagher style: SUPAHSTAR!!! xxx

  47. Oh my fun fun fun fun fun!!!! That’s all I have to say after reading that!! I can only imagine and dream! 😉
    I can’t wait to see the issue…and I will be assaulting everyone in the checkout line too…look, look, my bloggy friend is in THIS magazine!
    I know her !! 😉
    Congrats again!

  48. I am doing my laundry with a blazer on now. Note to self, do not do laundry in a blazer. Thank you.

    • AHAHAHAAA! I love this comment so much. Clearly, that is highly frowned-upon by “the industry.” Also, do not do laundry without full makeup and hair. See also: reasons why I never do laundry.

  49. You are hilarious. I don’t know how else to say it.

    Hi….lar….ious. 🙂

    When I get the magazine I’m bringing it to Haven for your autograph. 🙂

    Have a great day rock star!

  50. I am so excited about this it’s not normal. And that outfit is totally perfect!! Can’t wait to see you in print!

  51. aaackkk, so amazing, Kelly! So excited for you!! Can’t wait to see your article! LOVE reading and seeing all the behind-the-scenes stuff!

  52. Yay for you! Your laundry room is what brought me to your site in the first place. Way to go! You have got a talent for words as well. So fun to read. Heidi

  53. At least you have new clothes!! 🙂 And that outfit is adorable. I always flip to the back page first when I get the mag in the mail. What an AMAZING experience!!

  54. You look absolutely adorable! (I can hardly wait until the magazine issue is out.) Such an exciting experience!

  55. I lol-ed that you, Andy, the kids, and your lipstick were going out to lunch. That made my day.

    And she picked out your clothes *like that*? Can she come to my house next? Just for five minutes?

    I’m so excited to see you in the magazine! It is the one article I always, always read.

    And if they ever want to come do a shoot at my house, I need a three month heads up to clean.

  56. Yea! Loved hearing the back stage story of the photo shoot day! Congrats again and can’t wait to see it in the mag!

  57. Ahhhh!!!! Sooo exciting! I can’t wait to see the final product! And I’m the same way with pics– cameras HATE me- especially cameras on phones for some reason. But I don’t believe it about you- you look a-mah-zing in all the pics on your blog! And I’d die for your hair, seriously. Mine is just…here. So boring! Congrats on.having a dream come true! You totally deserve it!

  58. Congratulations, Kelly! I am so happy for you. It’s awesome when amazing things happen to genuinely amazing people. I cannot wait to see the article.

  59. OMG! Sounds like such a fun experience!! I can’t wait to see the magazine.
    I can only imagine how you felt about the clothes…no blazers?! I would have died!

  60. I LOVE what they put together for you. It just goes to show that sometimes it takes a fresh pairs of eyes to see potential in some of our old standards or reject pieces. Or maybe it just takes a professional stylist! And I’m itchin’ to see the pics they snapped. Summer won’t come soon enough.

    So happy that you had this incredible opportunity. God’s blessings abound!

  61. Girl, this is BIG TIME! Congratulations!!!

  62. Oh my goodness, you look fab! And of course you didn’t think to organize your linen closet and that is exactly the space they would need. Dang Murphy’s Law! 😉
    I can’t wait to see your spread in BHG!! Yay for you!

  63. How exciting! Better Homes and Gardens is such an honor! I love the behind the scenes pictures and process. I bet you were a little nervous. What issue will it be in? Do you know yet? I will definitely buy that one!

  64. Just stumbled over your blog. I have to say you are gifted in the DIY arena; but I would argue that stand up comedy might be a worthy profession to VERYconsider. I have a perma-smile and my cheeks hurt. You are hysterical. I really enjoyed reading your blog…and I am not a blogger. I would have reacted the same way upon learning of the HGTV shoot. In fact, last summer I painted horizontal. Stripes in my master bath. The most recent HGTV Dream home in SC not only has the same technique in their guest bedroom but get this…drum roll…in the very same paint color SW watery!!. I sooo empathize with giddy.. . You would have thought I was just named the named the next design star.

  65. I’m finally getting caught up on my blogs. This is so awesome!! I wish I could’ve been a fly on the wall for this whole thing – how fun!! You looked absolutely stunning! Can’t wait to see the final results!!

  66. Susan Brown says:

    WOW….what can I say? First, you have an amazing talent with words and you are just too naturally funny! Second I WANT THAT STYLIST – to have someone follow me around twitching and poking my hair all day is just the ants pants and I so want it! Please, please be sure to scan the article and pics into your blog as I can’t be sure of catching the right issue as I live in Australia and as everyone knows IT IS THE END OF THE WORLD. In conclusion I must reiterate what everyone else says: you are totally GORGEOUS and I would KILL to have your hair – even if it is a person. My hair is a person too, but one of unknown ancestry.


  1. […] so much for your sweet comments on my post about the behind the scenes photo shoot with Better Homes & Gardens. That whole day would’ve been approximately 87 percent less fun if I’d gone through it […]

  2. […] First, oops! I keep forgetting to tell you that the Better Homes & Gardens mag with my laundry room will be the NEXT issue, technically June but it comes out within a week or two, I think. If you see it, let me know! Look for silly little me on the very back page, wondering what I’m doing there. […]

  3. […] can read about how I prepped for this shoot here, and all the behind-the-scenes moments right here, including the moment the entire planet stopped […]

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