Welcome to our 3d edition of Picture This. Today we have a little cheating trick for giving your pictures that vintage look we all adore so much.
If you use Photoshop check out the link below for *free* Photoshop actions that will give your pictures that vintage look with just one click. 80 actions for a vintage look 40 vintage + retro Photoshop Actions
Just download, drag into Photoshop, got to Window and select Actions. The new pop-up will include the new actions you just added. Select the one you want to apply to your photo and click the play icon. Your image should now look fancy and new, or in this case vintage.
If you don't have Photoshop, check out Picnik and their selection of specialty filters.
"Once in your life, if you are very lucky, you will meet the person who divides it to the time before you met him/her and the time after."
My time happen when I was six years old. I was at a baseball game, sitting on the bench waiting for my turn to bat. I turned to the little boy next to me and said, "Hi, I heard you were home schooled, so am I." He looked at me and said, "Yeah... so?" From that day on that sarcastic little boy has been in my life and has grown to be the man that I hope to spend the rest of my life with. We went from the stage of "little boys and girls have cooties," to "oh, I guess you're not that bad to talk to," to best friends and then all of that turned into love.
In no way is our relationship perfect, but the imperfections of it is what keeps it fun. I'm with the guy that saw all my nerdy awkward teenage years and still wanted to be with me. It's amazing the way God maps out your life. If someone had told me that the little boy I said hi to when I was just 6 years old would be the guy I ended up with 15 years later, I never would have believed them. I'm living my own romance story, and I wouldn't change a thing.
See the first Love Stories entry here! If you would like to submit your story, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may attach up to 5 photos, and we welcome creativity! Please try to keep your stories to a 1200 word limit. You will receive an e-mail when your story is selected.
We have a serious girl crush on the bubbly and sweet Sydney of The Daybook. It was a total no brainer to fly her out to LA for a Ruche photo shoot in celebration of her 5,000 fans! We can tell you about all the fun we had, or you can just watch the video below.
Are you ready for the second installment of Picture This, our photography tips, tricks and cheats?
Today we're going to show you some basic tricks for brightening up a dull photo and fixing/enhancing color in Photoshop. If you don't have Photoshop, take a look at our list of free editing software (most interfaces will look similar to photoshop).
Let's get started!
Step 1: The 1st thing you want to do, after opening and saving your image, is create a new layer. A new layer is important because you want to preserve the original file in case of any mishaps. Name your layer whatever makes sense to you. We named ours original layer 1.
Step 3: For the next step, go back to the black and white icon from the previous step. Click and find "Curves".
A small new pop up will appear to the right of the image. Drag the curve line up or down to adjust your photo.
You can also go to the RGB drop down menu and select individual colors you wish to fix or enhance. For instance, if you photo appears a little too pink, you can adjust by selecting Red from the drop down menu and moving the curve line down and away from the middle.
Welcome to our newest series, Love Stories. Tell us your love story, submit your photos, and we'll share it here. We want to know how you met your significant other, how your puppy makes you smile, why your best friend is your best friend, and any other stories you have in your heart. Love is in the air. Let's embrace it. ♥
We're excited to share our first Love Letters submission today! Mai and Josh, the creators and owners of Ruche, share their story:
Mai's side of the story:
Josh and I officially met at a friend’s Halloween house party in 2002. I was a little vampire (a quick costume I found at the 99 cents store) and Josh was too cool to come dressed up. I was “trying” to play the guitar and this boy came and sat next to me and asked what I was playing. It was the intro to Led Zeppelin –“Stairway to Heaven”, the only song I really knew how to play. A bit of chit chatting and by the end of the night, he asked for my number. The journey started from there. Our first date: Starbucks & star gazing at the beach. 2nd date: Gina's Pizza across from our university. 3rd date: movie? I'm quite forgetful. I remember coming out of the first date thinking, “this guy is such a show off”…..later to find out that he was just a dork who was trying to impress me. I love dorks!
As our time together passed, Josh and I became inseparable. We studied together, hung out together, and as we both got our first jobs, we always tried to have lunch together and see each other after work. A lot of people have asked...how are you two always together…don’t you guys need some space apart? What can I say...we just love each others company! I guess it’s just that type of relationship. In 2004, we bought a puppy together and it was the most precious purchase we’ve ever made. Roji, our American eskimo remains our only “son”….for now. As we both settled into our full time jobs, it was time to think of our future together. In 2005, on a trip to Cancun, we were walking along an empty beach during sunset when Josh got down on one knee and proposed. There was no questions or doubt in my mind when I said "Yes".
We married in 2006 and now we are even more inseparable. Ruche developed in the midst of it all and Josh supported me in every way. While all his roommates were playing some game called “WoW”, Josh was busy shipping orders (Sorry Josh!). I’m sure he would rather have played games with the rest of his friends at that time, but he says it was worth it in the end. =) Ruche would not be the way it us today without both of us (you can read more on Ruche's store in our "About Us". As a husband and wife team, we live together, carpool together, and work together. People, do not attempt to try this at home unless you are skilled (lol)! As in any normal relationship, there is a bit of annoyance and bickering here and there but being together 24/7 (literally) has taught us so many things and have only made us stronger. Josh and I are as happy as ever because to us, we are the most lucky people in the world. =D
Josh's side of the story:
Mai and I officially met at a friend's Halloween house party in 2002. I initiated getting her number, but she instigated the conversation with her guitar playing vampire costume. I thought someone who could come up with that idea must be very intriguing, and I had to know more about her. We went on a few dates, but I most enjoyed visiting her at her job at a tea cafe nearby campus. Not only was there good tea, but Mai was also there. Our first year and a half flew by, by the time I graduated I had to decide whether or not I should move back to San Jose where there were plenty of jobs awaiting. I knew I wanted to stay, but I was broke...
Mai was very supportive while I finished school and searched for a job. In between job hunting I would bring our dog, Roji, to a park nearby her work and have lunch. I was fortunate to land a job close enough to meet up with Mai for lunch almost everyday. There were 2 highlights of everyday that I looked forward to, lunch time with Mai and going home. Mai and I and our sidekick Roji enjoyed our time together so much that I felt it would be cool to make it last forever, so I proposed on our first big trip to Cancun. Of course she said yes. ;)
Life after marriage has only gotten better, and the beginning of Ruche has only enhanced our relationship in a positive way. It hasn't always been easy as I sacrificed much by alienating myself from video games and golf while I focused on selling women's clothing online (haha). Believe me, that was a tough pill to swallow, but it was worth every bit of it. Having a wife as a coworker has its perks definitely. I'm the happiest guy in the world showing up to work everyday with Mai, and on occasion even showing up with Roji. Perhaps someday our family will grow to Josh + Mai + Roji +? sooner or later... keep checking back for that kids line ok? ;)
If you would like to submit your story, please send an e-mail to email@example.com. You may attach up to 5 photos, and we welcome creativity! Please try to keep your stories to a 1200 word limit. You will receive an e-mail when your story is selected.
Hello, world. Meet Laura, also known as Violet Bella. She's the talented indie designer who makes all of these pretties. ♥ Here's her story:
How did Violet Bella begin?
I think Violet Bella is something that was in the works of my soul for a lifetime really. I grew up with two very creative and talented parents, my mother, a jeweler, and my father, a carpenter. I have always highly respected that they both grew something amazing out of nothing by using their hearts and their hands.
What was life like before Violet Bella?
Before Violet Bella was created, I worked full time for my mom. She had a company called Broken China Jewelry for over 25 years, where she made beautiful jewelry from antique china plates. When my mom lost the battle of breast cancer in 2008, it was the most life changing event to ever happen to me. My mother was my best friend, greatest admirer, and simply my soul mate. My father and I decided to sell her business and move onto our own things. I had no idea what to do, so I waited tables for about a year or so. When I made Violet Bella a full time job, the first few months were very rocky and I thought several times I would have to stop living in this dream and go back to waiting tables. But I just kept going through the hard times, and every time I was just about to give up, something would come along to remind me to keep going. And just two years later, Violet Bella is more amazing than even I could ever have imagined. I feel so truly blessed. The only thing that could make it perfect would be to have my mother here to see it all, but I know she is up there helping me out along the way through this incredible journey.
What inspires your designs?
I am very inspired by nature. I love leaves, birds, aged textures, woodland creatures, feathers... I have always loved fashion and textiles, and I am very inspired by the bohemian vibe. Color palettes are also very inspiring to me. And music is something that carries me through. I always have my tunes on while designing, and I love to sing along! My biggest inspiration is probably just knowing that each day I sit down to create.
Do you have a design studio?
We just moved from a small rent house where my jewelry table behind our couch in the living room, our dining room was my office, and my sewing desk was a tiny fold up table in a corner. In our new house I have two whole rooms for the time being (until we have kids), plus an office! I have one room for my jewelry studio, one for my sewing studio, and I put my office in part of the main house so I can do most of my business still being near my hubby!
What's your daily routine?
Coffee as soon as I wake up! I love love love my coffee, probably my worst vice. Then I feed our animals, Bella, Violet and Nico. (Yes, my business name came from my cat and dog!) I’ve been spending my coffee time on the porch listening to the birds chirp. Then it’s off to check emails and my etsy shop. After all of my shipping is done, I either work on current wholesale orders or new stuff for the shop. I usually get excited right after designing new work; I photograph it and post that day if I can. If I’m in design mode, I have to remind myself to stop and eat, or takes little breaks. Evenings I usually spend with my husband and/or blogging. And just like everyone else, I of course have to squeeze in laundry, dishes, sweeping and taking care of the house daily, which I honestly enjoy most of the time. My husband and I just bought our first home, so I am in the exciting stage of decorating!
What inspires your wardrobe?
My style and wardrobe are simply inspired by prints and colors that I love and comfort. I love a mixture of bohemian textiles and accents mixed with long simple necklaces. I love to wear converse with dresses, a piece of my youth you just can’t take out of me. I’m pretty sure my style would be a lot more refined if I could spend a bit more money on it, but I love being creative with what I have!
Do you have a life motto?
I definitely believe that you get what you put out there, and it’s up to you to create the life you want. And to always come from a place of heart in who you are and what you do. We are all human, and we all stumble and make mistakes, but trying to come back to love at the end of every hard lesson, will pull you through. And to stay true to yourself in life, love and your work. I truly believe in the importance of family and friends. I love just about every quote written by Maya Angelou, go read them!
Thank you, Laura!
Want to read more about her? Be sure to stop by her blog for swoon worthy images and Violet Bella updates.
Just in case you haven't had enough contests and giveaways, we bring you our Polyvore contest. All you have to do is create a set using items from our Unending Love lookbook and you could win a $75 gift card. Don't hold back. Get creative! Browse our lookbook to get inspired. You have until Friday, May 20th, 11:59am PST to enter. We'll pick the most creative and inspiring set as the winner.
Because we know how much you all love our lookbooks and because a picture's worth a thousand words, we've decided to introduce a new weekly topic on this blog. Every Monday we'll be dishing on our favorite photography tips and tricks, giving you the inside scoop on making your photos look like the pro's.
First we'll start with some basics.
Best editing software to buy: Lightroom - Easy to use and helps keep your photos organized. Although it's meant as a companion to Photoshop, Lightroom is more than enough on it's own. Photoshop CS5 - The newest version of Photoshop is our favorite but any will do. Photoshop is ideal for those of you looking to do a little more than basic touch ups and color enhancements.
Our team packed our bags and headed out to South Carolina to shoot the breathtaking photos you saw in our previous lookbook. We stayed at a historical home in McClellanville, right by a lake. The view was spectacular!
This was taken in Cypress Gardens, the same location where they shot the lake scene in "The Notebook"! It was even more breathtaking in real life.