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New Years Letter 2018

January 1, 2019

If I’m being honest, 2019 is hitting me like a freight train. I feel as though yesterday was January 1, 2018, and I was planning the fantastic year that just happened. While I wish it would have went just a little slower, it all added up to way too much fun, a list full of new and returning clients that my heart is bursting over, and the start of many new personal and business ventures that I can’t wait to share with you all throughout the new year.

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A QUICK NOTE.
As always, I have to start off with a THANK YOU, and not just out of habit. It’s been a long time dream of mine to run a creative business, and the fact I have such a strong support system through clients, community, friends and family is something to obsess over. So thank you. Every year. Every month. Every day for your business and support. It’s all of you who help to make small businesses successful.

ON THE HOME FRONT.
The beginning of the year started off like a whirlwind. My sister tied the knot to the love of her life in January. During which, for the first (and hopefully only) time, I took on the challenge of shooting and participating in a wedding at the same time! Let me tell you folks – it’s was as wild as it sounds. But their day was absolutely beautiful, and it pumped me full of steam for the rest of the year.

As some may know, this was a huge year of learning for me after being diagnosed fructose intolerant at the end of 2017.  I can’t begin to explain how this flipped my life upside down. But to give you an idea – fructose is in everything. Literally. It’s been a long, emotional, and continuing process, but I’m finally getting the hang of what to do to feel better – and I am so thankful!

My sweet other half, Shayne, and I celebrated 3 years in October, and we finally had an opportunity to move closer to our careers. We are still on the hunt for a home to purchase and call our own, but for the time being we are pretty tickled to be closer to our work community, and friends! (PS. If anyone is selling 10 acres of property, or a rural home, outside of Hebron we’d LOVE to chat. 😉 )

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WHAT’S COMING FOR NOEL P&D.
After a crazy year of portraits and projects I am so excited to have re-structured my collections for 2019, and re-designed a lot of the website (still in progress.) (www.noelportfolio.com) All in hopes to better the experience of each client.

In a nutshell, clients will know exactly what to expect from each session, and have a range of creative and time-length options to choose from. As a huge added bonus to this re-structure, the turn around and delivery should also become lighting fast! As part of my new collections, most session images will now be delivered in an online gallery which can be downloaded instantly to your devices. Talk about easy!

*(There are a lot of details with each session type, so be sure to check them out online, or contact the studio for questions!)

HERE COMES THE NEW YEAR.
Thank you all once again for making me your creative of choice. I pray 2019 will be full of blessings for you all, and I look forward to seeing you again soon. Wishing everyone a (belated) Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

XO- Jen, Noel Photography and Design

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Ivy & Ellis Celebrate 1 Year! | Nebraska Portrait Photography

June 26, 2018

I’ll never forget when Kelcey and Alan asked if I’d capture their twins as they grew through their first year. I was so tickled that not only would I get to play a part in their little story, but TWINS! Double the trouble, double the giggles, double the fun, and most important, double the BLESSINGS.

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The months have seemed to fly by, and in just a blink of an eye, these cuties were sitting up, standing and jabbering away. Their personalities began to shine, and it became obvious just how unique they each are! Just take a look for yourselves…

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Sweet Ivy never had a smile she didn’t REALLY make me work for, but an arsenal of spunky expressions were in large supply. This little girl is so full of spark, I just can’t wait to see where it takes her!

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Meanwhile, Ellis is always busy being a flirt, laughing it up through our sessions together. A happy-go-lucky fella, who is always down for a snuggle with mom and dad. (Let’s hope he stays that way right, mama!?) This full-hearted guy is 1-years-old and taking on the world! Now taking on cake is another story. 😉

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Be sure to wish these two a happy birthday by leaving your comments and throwing them some likes! Thank you to this sweet family for spending an AMAZING year with me. Until next time folks, remember to follow me here on WordPress by blog or email, and hit that FOLLOW button on Facebook & Instagram!

Happy Creating!

Noel

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Bryce & Traci “Say I Do!” | Nebraska Wedding Photography

May 23, 2018

May is one of my favorite months for weddings. Foliage is blooming, grass is greening and everyone is so full of life and love – especially a new bride and groom!

Bryce and Traci began their wedding day at the beautiful Catholic church in Geneva, NE. The couple spent the morning and early afternoon preparing for the moment they could finally be united as husband and wife.

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One of my favorite things about their day were the little details they poured themselves into, from thoughtful additions to the ceremony to unique pieces as the reception. Including Bryce’s Grandfather’s Bible, which their ring-bearer carried down the aisle.

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By the end of getting dressed, there was no doubt the couple was ready to have a breather and some alone time. The church courtyard provided a quiet outdoor space for Bryce and Traci’s first look. And a perfect first look, it was!

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The couple was married in a small, intimate ceremony that allowed everyone to revel in the joyous occasion that a marriage is. Their friends and family looked on as they said their memorized vows, lit their unity candle and were finally announced man and wife!

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Following their union was a gorgeous celebration in Bryce’s hometown of Shickley, NE. As guests and I arrived, it was again obvious how much love and care the two of them, and their families, put into each little part of their decor.

Their red velvet cake was so pretty, featuring white frosting and elegant plum accents. It must have made them decided to keep their cake cutting pretty civil. 😉

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The new Mr. & Mrs. shared their first dance to Kane Brown’s “Heaven,” and after, the wedding party was more than ready to get down on the dance floor! As my night came to a close with them, I was able to steal one last shot with the bride and groom – and frankly, I think it’s to die for.

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Thank you for joining in my blog celebration of Bryce and Traci’s special day! Be sure to leave your best wishes for the couple in the comments.

Remember to follow Noel P&D here on WordPress by blog or email, and give the Facebook and Instagram pages a LIKE\Follow to keep up with a regular newsfeed!

Happy Creating!

Noel

 

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The New Mr. & Mrs. Scheidel | Nebraska Wedding Photography

May 9, 2018

“It’s good luck,” they say, when it rains on your wedding day. Well Dennis and Emily’s day was no exception – it was rainy and absolutely stunning.

The couple chose the beautiful, Spring Creek Audubon Center near Lincoln, NE for their venue. A stormy blue sky and tall golden prairie grass made the perfect setting for their theme of golds and blues.

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Dennis and Emily arrived at the reserve to dress and put on their finishing touches. As I took time to be one-on-one with each before the big reveal, I couldn’t help but “ooo and ahh” over the little details they poured themselves into. Plus, I completely LOVED capturing everyone doting on the beautiful bride. ❤

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Finally, the dress was on and the ties were tied. The weather let up now and then to take advantage of the scenery around us for some outdoor shots, and the first look…and the first look NEVER disappoints.

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In just a heartbeat it was time to hide the bride and prepare for “I do!” The chilly weather moved us indoors to a quaint, little rustic room of the venue. Here the couple shared an intimate ceremony with friends and family.

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After the ceremony, I was so blessed the bride and groom let me “steal them” for just a bit, before rushing off to the reception! This is always one of my favorite moments. Spending a little quiet time with the newly wedded couple, so we all can just take a breath…and have some fun with the crazy wedding party – of course!

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My evening with this sweet couple came to a close shortly after the reception began. But not before they had their ridiculously adorable first dance as husband and wife, and shared in a little cake smashing. 😉

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My absolute best wishes to Dennis and Emily as they begin this new season of life. If you have some of your own thoughts on this gorgeous day, feel free to drop them in the comments!

Remember to follow me here on WordPress by blog or email, and give the Facebook page a “LIKE” to keep up with the daily feed.

Happy Creating!

Noel

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Welcome to the World : Baby Drake

March 30, 2018

Cold, rainy days make me want to stay inside and snuggle up. So when weather hit the day I got to meet baby Drake, and his family, at their home – I couldn’t have been happier!

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Home sessions are not something I do often, but they certainly add a quaint, candid feel to photos I can’t help but love. Not to mention, there’s such a short while that new parents get to make a space for someone so little.

Baby Drake’s room was perfectly fit for the rambunctious little boy they’ll soon have. Complete with antlers, bears, and a cozy crib that soothed him so asleep his little lip just refused to stay out without a “pasi!”

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The natural light in the Sandall’s home was to die for, and their cute pup had to make sure his new best friend was in good hands at all times. With some reassurance from Mom and Dad, and a few “welcome” licks, he could finally take some to relax. 😉

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But to really make the session complete, I had to capture the special bond between mom and son and father and son.. (and, of course, every baby needs a cute hat or two.) What we got, in this photographer’s opinion, is so full of love that the emotion simply speaks for itself!

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Thank you all for checking out this gorgeous newborn session! Be sure to leave your comments to help welcome baby Drake to the world.

Remember to also follow along here on WordPress by blog or email. Plus, give that Facebook page a “LIKE” for a daily feed!

Until next time….

Happy Creating!

Noel

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How Much Do I Budget for Wedding Invitations?

March 12, 2018

Weddings all come down to budget and where to spend it. Invitations are a tricky one to estimate for, because they can vary so widely in cost, based on their style and where they’re from.

After some research I find my services tend to land in between popular invitation sites (ie. Minted, Etsy and etc) and commercial print shops (ie. Vista Print, Kinkos and etc), which is where I love to be! I’m a one-stop-shop, with design, print and accessories, so couples get everything they need easily and moderately priced. Today, I have made a breakdown of the average cost of most popular invitation set ups.

1) We will be basing cost on the average wedding size of 150 guests.
2) Remember, totals below are averages and not exact costs for any client.
3) Design service, taxes and shipping are not included in these averages.
4) Most all the set ups have cost efficient alternatives.

Let’s get started with the most sought-after styles:

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1) FLAT INVITATIONS WITH MATS, BELLY BANDS, MONOGRAM & COLORED ENVELOPES.

It’s understandable why this look is so loved. The little details make the invitations “pop,” and give all the little pieces some organization.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS LOOK:
– Printed Invitation
– Printed RSVP
– Printed Monogram
– Mats
– Belly Bands
– Mailing Envelopes
– RSVP Envelopes
– Monogram Mats

Average Cost: $330.00
Add-on: Single, Printed Details Card ($70.00). Creative Edge Invitations ($105.00)
Budget friendly comparison: Remove invitation mats, monogram mats and\or monograms to help cut out some costs, while still getting the over all function & look.

 

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2) DOUBLE-SIDED FLAT INVITATION WITH COLORED ENVELOPES

Next on the popularity scale, is a more simplistic version of that above. This set up gives some added accents with colored envelopes, but certainly takes out the additional costs of extra accessories.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS LOOK:
– Printed Double-Sided Invitation
– Colored Envelopes

Average Cost: $140.00
Add-on: Printed RSVP Card ($47.00). RSVP Envelopes ($32.00). Creative Edge Invitations ($85.00)
Budget friendly comparison: Switch to a standard, white envelope, or if your info can be summarized, switch to a one-sided invitation.

 

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3) TRI-FOLD POCKET INVITATIONS AND ACCESSORIES

Pockets are a more traditional style. Despite their formal and orderly look, they are not seen as often anymore. Along with couples moving to a more modern feel, pocket envelopes can be quite costly when compared to other set ups. However, when couples budget for them, they really love their organization and stunning appearance!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS LOOK:
– Printed Invitations
– Printed RSVP’s
– One, Printed Detail Cards
– Printed Monogram
– Colored Pocket Envelopes (Laser Design included in the average here, but optional.)
– Colored Mailing Envelopes
– Colored RSVP Envelopes
– Belly Bands
– Monogram Mats

Average Cost: $1,095.00
Add-on: Invitation Mats ($50.00). Creative Edge Invitations ($105.00)
Budget friendly comparison: Choose a simple laser design or plain edge for pockets. Remove monogram mats and\or monograms. Remove belly bands.

 

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4) FOLDING INVITATIONS AND COLORED ENVELOPES

One of the more modern looks is a folding invitation. Perfect for adding photos and simplifying your stationary by having all your info on one printed piece.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS LOOK:

– Printed Folding Invitations
– Colored Mailing Envelopes (no color liner included in the average.)

Average Cost: $289.00
Add-on: Belly Bands ($25.00). Color Lined envelopes, like pictured above ($96.00). Monogram ($33.00). Monogram Mats ($20.00)
Budget friendly comparison: N\A, Since there is only one piece to the actual invitation, other than avoiding accessories, these invitations are at their base cost.

 

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

Clients should also keep in mind how much time they want to put into their stationary. While all invitations require some “assembly,” some set ups will take longer than others. For example…

Option 1, will require attaching the invitation to a mat, wrapping belly bands around the whole set and securing. Plus, attaching monograms and monogram mats to the belly band. Ending with stuffing and addressing envelopes. On the other hand, Option 2 will be a very simple process of slipping 1, 5×7″ invitation (and options RSVP sets) into the envelope and addressing them.

While no assembly is complicated, clients may want to decide if they have time to do some of the required additional steps that accessories bring.


Did your favorite style cost what you’d expect, or did you find something better for your budget? Leave your comments and questions below! CONTACT ME if you need additional info or a specific quote for your invitation service!

Until next time, be sure to follow me here on WordPress by blog or email, and hit that “LIKE” button on the Facebook page for a daily feed!

Happy Creating!

Noel

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Find Your Perfect Wedding Invitation Style!

March 7, 2018

The date is set, the plans are in motion, and now it’s time to get your guests there. But what kind of invitation do I want? Need? Works best for my budget? Best for my event? The questions go on and on when you’re searching for the right invitations and the right company to make them.

Today, I’m going to break down my invitation styles to get you on the right track to your dream invitations!

To simplify it the best, there are really only TWO general types of invitations: Flat and Folding. From there, it’s just a matter of how you accessorize.

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FOLDING INVITATIONS
Let’s start with the easier of the two: Folding invitations. There’s 4 big reason couple’s love these:

1) Folding invites are great for those who want to do online or phone RSVP’s.
2) They allow ALL of your wedding info to fit on one stationary piece. There’s no need to print additional info cards of any kind!
3) There’s plenty of space to add photos. {Perfect for your engagement session or love story timeline.}
4) They make stuffing envelopes a breeze!

General details: Folding invitations are around 5×5″ – 5×7″ when folded. They are available as a top or side trifold (5×5″), or a gate fold (5×7″).

Accessories: Since there is only one stationary piece to these invites, the accessories list for them will be a bit shorter compared to flat invitations.

• 6×6″ Colored Envelopes (Lined or un-lined.)
• Belly Bands and Monogram Squares

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Side Fold Invitations Sample, with Lined Envelopes.

 

FLAT INVITATIONS
Here’s where things can get crazy! There are ENDLESS ways to “dress up” and accessorize a flat invitation. But first, it’s best to choose size and shape.

General Details: Flat stationary can be 5×5″ or 5×7″ with squared off or creative edges. Below is just a few of the options I have available!

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Once we’ve determined a base, we can then build on the accessories to really take your invitation to the next level.

Accessories:
• Colored Envelopes
• Invitation Mats
• Pocket Envelopes
• Belly Bands & Monograms

The most popular style today is a standard 5×7″ invite with RSVP and colored envelopes. Many couples flock to this because they are the most cost efficient, and very easy to stuff into envelopes. Now-a-days, some couples are even skipping the RSVP!

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The next step up from a 5×7″ invite with no accessories is to add mats and belly bands. This is a semi-formal way of keeping all your stationary items grouped within your envelope. It’s a great way to add some layers and accent your invite:

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Last, but certainly far from least, are pocket invitations. On top of being the most formal, these are also the most organized! The center is reserved for the invitation, which can be placed with or without a mat. A side pocket allows for multiple pieces of stationary like RSVP’s and info cards. Couples can also choose from standard straight cuts or laser designs, like the leaves pattern below. While pocket invitations tend to be on the more costly side, couples choose them for the amazing functionality they give guests, as well as their classy looks.

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The most important thing to remember with custom invitations is they are just that – custom. They are built for you, so it’s easy to add or subtract little details to make them fit your needs. What’s your favorite invitation style? Leave your thoughts in the comments or contact me for a custom quote!

Be sure to follow me here on WordPress by blog or email. Plus, give the Facebook page a “LIKE” for a daily newsfeed of everything creative.

Happy Creating!

Noel

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