Baby Bijou Designs

Hi everyone! My name is Caitlyn and I’m a West MI mommy creating unique baby clothes and nursery decor for my company, Baby Bijou Designs. I am super excited for the opportunity to guest post here for Kara and share a little bit about what starting my business has been like so far.

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Several months ago I started thinking seriously about opening my own business. I was working part time at Starbucks, and the rest of the time I was hanging out with my super sweet one year old daughter Lillian (and you know, working at home!). I mentioned to Kara my thoughts on opening a shop that featured baby clothing and accessories, as well as nursery decor. Being the supportive and knowledgeable person she is, Kara immediately started asking me about branding, my logo and more. She even offered to help me figure out how to get started with my business – something that was starting to seem like an overwhelming task!collage2

As Kara and I talked more and more, I decided to quit Starbucks so I could have more time to pursue my business. I chose to name my business after my daughter’s nickname: Baby Bijou (you can read all about the story behind that nickname here!) Before long with lots of work, research and also some great advice from Kara, I was ready to launch my business. I was able to work with a really talented photographer and get beautiful pictures of some of the onesies I had designed (can you guess who that photographer is?), and after a few weeks I got my very first sale!

As I’m just starting out, the tasks I have yet to do with growing my business can sometimes seem insurmountable, but by setting goals and making lots (and lots!) of lists, I know I will get to where I want to go. It also helps to have a huge support network. I learned from Kara that family and friends are important to encourage you to achieve your goals, but also the community at large. Because of her, I am beginning to learn how to connect with other people and businesses, and Baby Bijou Designs is starting to feel like a part of me and a passion rather than just some business venture.

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I am so excited to learn more and more as I expand my shop and continue to work with Kara and other great entrepreneurs. I’d love for you to join me on my journey with Baby Bijou Designs and read about other fun stuff like craft projects, travel, dinner parties and more on my blog, my Instagram, or my Facebook page. I’d also love to hear about your experiences with starting a business. What parts of starting your business have been the hardest or the most rewarding? Do you have any good advice?

Thank you so much for letting me share about starting my business with you today!

xx Caitlyn

P.S. Enjoy 10% anything in the Baby Bijou Designs shop with the code BIJOUTHANKSYOU before June 30th, 2017!


Want to book a session with Kara? Inquire for pricing by filling out the contact form here

Hudson VandenBerg

One of my most favorite things to photograph are newborn babies. This past week I met 4 day old Hudson. Both Hudson’s mom and I go way back. Her and I are both Grandville Alumni (Go Bulldogs!) and recently worked together for a year. When I found out she was pregnant with their second child I was beyond excited (mostly because they have one other fun, adorable boy already).

Dave and Emile VandenBerg along with their son, Welsey welcomed baby boy , Hudson John VandenBerg on April 10th 2017 at 10:55am weighing 6lbs 4oz. with a length of  19.5in. When Emile told me that her favorite thing Hudson did was make faces I knew exactly why in just minutes. This little guys has some adorable expressions. I’d love for you to take a peek and see more from last week’s session.

More photos at www.karahanesphotography.com Feel free to check them out.

Want to see more from Kara Hanes Photography? Join my e-mail list

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Emily Jo Mascarenas : Newborn Session

Newborns are some of my favorite sessions. They are so little, fragile and snuggly. This little gal was probably one of my best sessions yet (don’t get me wrong, all of my sessions this year have been amazing). I don’t think she made a peep the entire time. We also made a KHP record for the quickest newborn session. Some may not know but a newborn session can last anywhere between 1-2 hours. Most of this time is spent feeding, consoling and then getting them comfortable in a new position. With Emily we were done in as little as 40 minutes!


Meet Emily! Only 8 days old. Born at Metro Health Hospital in Wyoming on March 23rd at 9:36 pm weighing 6 lbs 12 oz 19-1/2 inches long. This little one is loved by so many but mostly by her parents David and Dianna and big brothers Nathan and Daniel. Mom’s favorite thing to do is watch her eyes explore the world and take it all in. I’d love for you to play the slideshow and take a look at some of the beautiful photos of little miss Emily. Enjoy!


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Want to book a newborn session or know more about pricing. Feel free to fill out the contact form and a lovely little e-mail from me will arrive in your inbox with all my pricing guides. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Click Here to find out pricing and other information.

Organizing Your Photos

When I graduated high school my Grandma gave me an album full of childhood photographs she had kept. These were photos I hadn’t seen and she had hidden away until that moment. We all take for granted (myself included) the fact that we don’t have to print our photos anymore because for a lot of us, it’s right at our finger tips. The biggest thing I’m guilty of these days is taking photos but never printing them.

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(photos from the album my Grandmother gave me)

Yesterday I spent 20 minutes deleting 500 photos off of my phone that were duplicates, blurry, photos and selfies others did when I wasn’t looking. I had already uploaded my favorites to places like Facebook and Instagram. I had over 500 photos stored on my phone. That was just from the past 2 months. Crazy right? I’m pretty sure with social media outlets being a place to put photos it’s a huge reason why we never ever do anything with the photos on our phone. It’s just plain overwhelming. Can I just tell you something?

Less is more.

So if you are overwhelmed with all of your photos – remember that simple truth: less is more. You don’t have to document every tiny moment or every tiny thing. Just the highlights will do. Your kids, your spouse, and YOU will appreciate the gift of quality over quantity if you embrace this!

Here’s my sad truth

4 Years ago we had pushed our computer to it’s limits and it stopped working. You know, that computer that contained the PAST TWO YEARS OF OUR FAMILY PHOTOS saved on the hard drive. As any panicking person would do, I asked around if the hard drive could be recovered. My husband and I decided that we would try putting it in his parent’s computer to see if it would work for recovery. Well this didn’t happen quickly and we waited on it. During this time my In-laws sadly experienced a flood in their basement and the hard drive was destroyed. Now I don’t know what was on the hard drive entirely but I’m thankful that I had printed photos and kept them in albums for a while (until it got costly). Sadly I missed a couple months in there.

I’ve learned my lesson and it’s taught me one thing. BACK UP EVERYTHING!


Learn from me, I’m telling you my new secret

 How I organize our photos.

Step 1. Put a Computer File Folder System in Place (see images below)
Step 2. Gather ALL of your digital images and put them onto that external hard drive, in order by date and folder (I recommend storage with 2 Terabytes).
Step 4. Back them up

Take a peek at my File Folder Organization System

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As you can see, everything is organized by Year, then Month, My favorites, and raw (all the rest).

A few KEY tips for you to remember as you organize your digital photos:

  • Gather all images from all over the place (laptops, phones, computers, CD’s, USB’s, etc) and put them onto ONE harddrive: your new most prized possession!
  • It’s helpful to create the entire file folder system on the Harddrive first, then drag your images into the properly organized folders
  • You have to remember to also back those images up! I use SmugMug to back up my Favorite Images but you can use other platforms like Dropbox and google photos (plus they are free).

Happy Organizing My Friend!

Kara

Bo Koops : Newborn

Bo Thomas Koops made his debut at Hackley Hospital in Muskegon on February 10th at 8:07am weighing 7 pounds 2 ounces. First time Momma Kerry just loves the little noises he makes and when he snuggles up to fall asleep on her chest. This little honey came to see me this past week. He is such a little stud. Check out other sweet snuggly images of this little guy.

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Want to know more about KHP?  visit www.karahanesphotography.com and fill out a contact form. I can’t wait to hear from you. (it’s never too early to plan your session)

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Enter to win a free Spring Mini Session by clicking HERE

Winner of the contest will be announced March 16th. You may enter as many e-mails as you would like between March 2-14th.

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