Yesterday morning my alarm went off at 6:00 a.m. and I was up and in the shower within minutes! Washing, blow drying and styling my hair is an hour and a half ordeal, and even though I knew they were sending a hair stylist, I wanted to make sure my hair was in good shape for her when she arrived.
Kevin got up around 6:30, and made a bee line to the litter box. He wanted to remove the “gift” that our cat left us during the night. Kevin’s obsessed with keeping the litter box clean, and I have to admit, I am totally cool with his need for a good-smelling house. Of course it only took him about 45 minutes to get ready, so we were both good to go when Missy Crawford (wardrobe) and Cara Ramos (hair & makeup) knocked on our front door.
Missie currently lives in Birmingham, Alabama, but spent many years in New York before meeting her Memphis-based husband and moving to the South. She was a tiny, extremely fit woman and with a big, infectious personality. She made us all laugh and feel comfortable, and everybody loved her.
Since we’ll be featured in the Winter issue of The Nest, they sent a lot of big, cuddly sweaters and things that would layer together well. Missie called the sweaters “woobies”, and it made me smile every time she said it. There were lots of things to choose from, but she was dying to dig through our closets to see if we had anything that would work as well. I assured her she wouldn’t find anything in them that could compete with the designer labels and bags full of J.Crew clothing they had sent from New York. But I guess she really wanted to see for herself, because at one point while Kevin and I were being photographed in the Dining Room, she went ahead and looked through my closet anyway. I came in the bedroom when we were done shooting and she said, “I thought you said you didn’t have any clothes?!” She had a few of my tops and a couple pairs of my jeans laid out on our bed. She asked me to quickly try them on so she could see if they would work. Long story, short- at one point, (late in the day) David ended up shooting me in a shirt I bought at Walmart for $9.99! Meanwhile, the gorgeous, dangly earrings flown in from New York that I wore with it cost $136.
Anywho…after Missie and David agreed on what my first outfit for the day should be, Kara quickly ushered me onto her makeup stool and got to work on waking up my face. Kara was a super friendly, tall, beautiful Brazilian girl. She sported a tight John Deere green colored v-neck sweater, and had her long shiny black hair pulled through a matching John Deere baseball cap. Kara currently lives in Atlanta, but was born and raised in Connecticut. These days she’s mainly working as Lady Gaga’s makeup artist, but she’s worked for all kinds of celebs from Cindy Crawford to John Legend to Norah Jones. After about 60 seconds on her stool, I know why she’s so popular with the stars. I kid you not, Kara made it look like I had been awake for hours and hours. What she did with those brushes and make up of hers was extraordinary!
After they were done with me, they went to work on Kevin. Missie and David were so happy with how my outfit looked on me, they pretty much based Kevin’s entire first look on mine. I think he must have changed his clothes fifty times before they finally settled on a pair of dark blue J.Crew jeans, some navy-colored sneakers, and a sage-colored button down shirt layered on top of a t-shirt.
Then, before we were whisked off to our first set up, Kara evened out his skin tone by applying some bronzing powder to his face. She even darkened up his eyebrows a bit, just to make his eyes pop a little more. He said he felt like one of the “surrogates” in that new Bruce Willis movie.
Shooting was tedious and time-consuming because everything has to be just right at all times. Lighting, wardrobe, makeup, furniture, accessories- you name it. Everything was accounted for and every time David stopped shooting to review his images, two or three people swarmed around us to straighten things, reapply makeup and hairspray, and adjust our clothing. At one point, when I was starting to feel a little woozy from not eating enough breakfast, Missie even swooped in with a plate full of chopped up fruit the folks at Panera Bread had delivered. I hid the plate in one of the shots, so I’ll have to tell you where it is once our issue is out. It was a fascinating process, and our muscles and joints are definitely feeling sore today because of it!
While our cat spent the entire day in Kevin’s closet, our dog Maximus spent most of the day next door at our neighbors. David wanted him to be in a few shots though, so we brought him over and, surprisingly enough, he ended up having his own little personal photo shoot! We were so happy that he was calm and that he did so well. The crew joked that he was a little superstar. I really hope one of his shots makes it into the magazine. He’s such a huge part of our lives here at TLC, and it would be neat to have him immortalized on the pages of The Nest magazine!
We weren’t aware that a videographer from The Nest was coming to shoot footage of our day, so we were really surprised when a camera man named “Artem” came through our door. He explained that he would be shooting throughout the day, and that when we weren’t needed by the photographer, we’d be shooting scenes with him in various areas of the house. I’m almost glad they didn’t tell us he was coming, because it didn’t give me time to be nervous and over think what I was going to say! I believe the video will be shown on TheNest.com at some point, so if you’re interested in seeing the tour of our home and other behind-the-scenes footage, make sure to check out our video when it posts!
We didn’t have much downtime throughout our twelve and a half hour “work” day, because someone always seemed to need us for something, but we did snap some behind-the-scenes shots ourselves (of things that we are allowed to show), and we’ll be posting those here tomorrow so you can see too!
This morning the crew came back over and picked up all of their equipment, and we got to exchange good-byes. We’ll never forget our experience with David, Alistair, Don, Missie, Kara, Olivier, Christina and Artem. It was truly a dream come true!
We also want to thank Jason and Sarah for watching Max on day one, and Eric and Jessica for watching Max on day two. We also want to thank Keith for loaning us an expensive, much-needed accessory for the living room set up, Shannon at Capitol Filmworks for hurriedly printing us some black and white images for the frames in our guest bedroom, Josette for loaning us an ironing board, Mary for sending us the perfect oil-rubbed bronze handle set for our front door, and Dunn’s Florist for quickly special ordering the biggest bunch of hydrangea I’ve ever seen!
Last, but not least, thank you guys for rooting us on this past week. We definitely needed the encouragement, and your comments were comforting and inspiring as always. It was so much fun to be able to share our experience with you!
We never imagined anyone would make such a fuss over our little fixer upper, (especially in its current state!) and we feel so blessed that the folks at The Nest magazine are interested in sharing our story. We can hardly wait to get our issue in the mail in December!
For now, I’m off to bed to catch up on some much needed zzzz’s!
PS…Our issue will be released around December 28th.
Also, for those who have asked, “The Nest” is a subscription-only magazine, and is not available in stores or on newsstands. “The Nest” is a division of “The Knot” magazine. To order a subscription, visit this link!