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Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories :: Guest Blogger

I can’t say enough how much I love this woman’s tutus! I know that sounds funny, but its true! Not only are they amazing, luxurious, and fairytale-like- they are FUN to wear. When you put on the tutu something magical happens. You don’t walk…you float! Everyone girl and woman should put on a tutu once in their life. And have their photos taken if possible. She puts her heart into every piece she makes. I have gone back to her 3 times for tutus! And I’m sure it will not be the last. Everyone enjoy this beautiful and talented lady! Thanks for always delivering amazing work to me and many other photographers. -leaha

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Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_500

Megs Shearman

Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories

Couture Tutus, Wedding Accessories, Children’s Accessories, Photography Props

Erie, PA

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Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_501

[ Photo of Leaha of POPography.org ]

Being able to wear one of Bella Olivia’s tutu’s was magical!

Tell us something about yourself that has nothing to do with your business.

I’m a stay at home mom to a little (almost) four year old boy and wife to an amazing husband! In my downtime I love to be outdoors where anything goes! Two weeks ago I would’ve written that I’m a runner. But over the last few days I’ve gotten into biking and swimming, too… I just signed up for my first triathlon later this fall!

What or who inspired you to craft and make these beautiful pieces?

After a Matilda Jane Trunk show at my house, my (then) eight year old niece wanted a headband to match her new outfit. At a shopping trip to a local big name retailer, we finally found one! She then said to me, “Aunt Meggie, I bet you could make this!” So I did. J After posting photos a couple of my friends asked for some, too. Business was slow at first…it was more a hobby to create for friends. A couple months later, one of those friends had a craft show director contact me about an upcoming Christmas Fair. We (my hubby came to help represent me) sold out the first day and I stayed up all night making products for the second and final day of the craft show. I was floored at the reaction, but very, very happy to have done well. Fast forward to a couple months…my friend asked if I’d ever made a tutu before. To humor her I made one (after googling and watching a couple DIY videos)…the same thing happened, more and more people requested a custom tutu and business took off! I wasn’t happy with how some of them turned out based on the DIY videos, so I started my own version with a different type of knot and weaving of colors. Which brings me to today, working with you. Seeing my tutu on theknot.com (that’s from you, Leaha!!). Having my products in print in Babiekins Magazine. This fall I’ll be doing a collection for Child Model Magazine’s Fashion Parade 2014 in Atlanta, GA. Pretty neat stuff, right? I mean, who doesn’t want that kind of exposure?! But….there’s always a “but”, right? But, the most flattering and fulfilling photos are of a friend’s newborn with a simple tutu or bow tie. Or bringing joy to a friend’s wedding by providing her a headpiece. Making my niece something pretty to play in at home. *That* is what it’s all about for me. And that’s why I do what I do.Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_502

[ Photo by POPography ]

We LOVE your tutus! They are high quality and to die for! Tell us a little about how you discovered you were a “tutu extraordinaire”!

I wouldn’t call myself an “extraordinaire”! I just pay attention to the little details, triple check my work, and take extensive care to make the finished product “runway worthy”. If it’s not something I would wear, I don’t ship to my customers. They have to be perfect and solidly made with white gloves in a pristine (okay, okay, I *do* have a little one, so as clean as can possibly be!) studio to ensure nothing rips, tears, gets stained or marked in any way.

Who can wear your tutus?

Tutus can be worn by anyone!!! Brides, bridesmaids, bachelorettes, engagement photo sessions, 5K-Ultra Marathon runners (especially the Color Run races!), pregnant mamas, teens for prom and homecoming dances, baptisms, confirmations, themed birthday parties, dance recitals, smash cake sessions, newborns, puppies….the list goes on and on for me! And…I have had some men purchase as a gag gift for a stag ‘n drag!Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_504  When someone orders a tutu what should they consider?

You need to consider the event and the potential weather. If it’s going to be super-hot, a double layered poufy tutu may not be ideal. Talk about hot! You’d want to have a single layer to allow air flow. But you also have to consider modesty…I always recommend a nude slip under for the adult (or bike shorts/onesie/tights for the littles) to prevent any see through. The tutu silhouette (and how it hangs) is completely up to the customer, but I can help guide the recipient based on the event and their needs. For example, a lot of brides want a tutu that drags. But who wants to be pulling up on tulle to prevent tripping on your big day? In these cases I custom design one to be just above the floor in the front, with graduating layers that end up dragging in the back. No tripping! J Measurements are important for that reason. Not only the length but the waist, as well. But you don’t need to wear it tied around your waist…some prefer the “hipster” look and wear them low. Elastic is great! But not for me. I find after a couple wears its elasticity fades and the tutu will lose its shape. So not cool. With my tutus, they are made on a double sided satin ribbon. This allows the wearer to cinch it in tight or let it out, as needed. And a pretty bow is always awesome!  Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_503Do you work with photographers? What is the best way that a photographer can get in touch with you?

Any photographer may email me through any avenue! Email, FB, Etsy. I answer all emails within five hours. Sometimes sooner, unless I’m running a half marathon or something. ;) Even on vacation I try to be prompt and answer all correspondences.

Are your tutus’s pre-made or custom made to order?

You know, I started making a ton of tutus in sizes I thought were popular, but that didn’t go too well. Since everyone wants something different, I make everything to order based on color, size and layers desired.

Where is the craziest place you have seen your tutu show up online? That would be from your wedding shoot! On the horse!!!

10171922_856306707728962_7860247498937511246_nBella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_505

[ Photo by POPography ]

 What is the price range for a custom tutu?

Depends on the recipient. I offer discounts to photographers in exchange for a couple photos to share on my sites. My friends are all photographers (I seriously have 12 friends who are professionals) and I know how costly props can be. I try to help them out as best I can. They range from $15-80. The more outrageous and long, the more it will cost in materials and time. To be reasonable I usually waive the shipping costs to help customers catch a break.

What are your all time favorite photos of your products?Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_497

[ Photo by R Frank Photography ]   [ Photo by Kimberly Sprickman Photography ]

Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_499

[ Photo by Sarah Peach Photography ]

What are you most proud of professionally?

It’s not anything I’ve designed, it’s keeping the balance of family and work maintained. That is sacred to me. It’s so tough, though! When a major magazine asks you to do to a photo session for them, and you really, really want to do it, you need to take a step back and get your feet on the ground. Are you taking too much time away from your husband? Is your son really struggling for your attention? Saying “no” is important, no matter what the opportunity. That’s what makes me content and proud to do what I do.

What are your goals for the future?

Truly, I don’t have any! Just take things day by day and hope that people still need tutus and other photographer’s props tomorrow! Businesses come and go, and I’m not immune to the economy and what may come of that…all I can do is continue to put my family first and let things happen as they do. Bella Olivia Tutus & Accessories Photography Props for Photographers by POPography.org_506

[ Photo by POPography ]

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COUPON CODE [Use this code on Bella Olivia’s Etsy Store to receive 20% off your order]  —>  POPOGRAPHY

 

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Megs Shearman -

Thanks for the opportunity to work with you! You’re an inspiration and truly fun to collaborate with on shoots! <3