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  • Writer's pictureDani Sauter


Last week I turned 34 and celebrated with the most amazing bubble gum photoshoot I've ever done with Arielle Lewis. This week, I'm sharing more photos and the details behind the shoot- specifically all the glam, thanks to my loves at Illusions of Georgetown!

I'm going to jump right in, so here it goes.....

The Background: I had been working with Illusions and Arielle Lewis on a shoot, inspired by the Met Gala. For whatever reason nothing was working out. Every location I approached about shooting either said no or ghosted me, and the multiple dresses I ordered were an absolute no-go. I felt defeated. In a moment of inspo after leaving Illusions and having my hair styled by Josh, I met with Arielle and showed her some images I had saved awhile ago from Pinterest, and we started planning instantly. It clicked for both of us, and we planned the entire shoot in less than a week (Literally! This all went down on a Saturday and the following Friday we were shooting!)

The location: Arielle rents an office at MAKE Offices in DC. Thanks to her, we were able to reserve an unleased portion of one of the floors for the shoot, after-hours. We shot on a Friday night and had all the props, lights, and backdrops set up in the space. The props and backdrops were all ordered from Amazon the week-of and arrived literally in just enough time (the pink and blue metallic streamers arrived just a few hours before the shoot, and we were freaking out! LOL).

The Dresses: I had recently signed up for Rent the Runway Unlimited, which happened to be in perfect timing with the shoot. Luckily I had ordered some extra AF dresses and so I was able to use them for the shoot! It couldn't have been more perfect if I tried.

The GLAM: One of the most important parts of the shoot! I went to Illusions late Friday afternoon after work, and let the team work their magic. We started with hair first, after a quick consultation with my stylist, Josh. I showed Josh some inspo pics and the dresses, and he created a look that would specifically fit my hair type. The original photo I showed had one braid, but with my hair texture, he advised that two braids would look better, so I told him to do whatever was best! Josh is so great at modifying styles I see in magazines or online so that they will fit my specific hair type and hold for a long time. I was able to wear this hair style all night and the entire next day for the Pride parade, too!

After Josh finished with the style, we decided to top the braid with glitter I happened to thrown in my bag before I left home. The glitter was by NYX and Josh added it to my hair with a holding paste! Yvette then did my makeup, using Jane Iredale products which are carried at Illusions. She went for a glowy look, and she made my skin look incredible with the Jane Iredale products! Illusions exclusively uses Jane Iredale in the salon, and they specialize in event and bridal makeup! Illusions has turned me onto Jane Iredale as they are all natural and great for skin- I'm currently using the foundation again (I also used it last summer!) as its perfect for summer.

(Note- we both wanted my lipstick to be super extra, so we used my personal Kylie Cosmetics LipKit in Say No More for the bubble gum pink pout!).

The Props: Loving everything pink, blue, neon, and extra, these are the props I ordered for the shoot!

The balloons were purchased the day before the shoot at Party Depot.


Blonde in the District


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