There is something about walking in a home & seeing photos around. It just makes it feel so cozy & inviting. When we moved into our home, one of the first things we did was we started to get all the photos & memorabilia together that I wanted to hang up. Once i had it all together, I started to create a wall gallery to showcase my clan along with some architecture elements added.
I find what makes a statement is adding large frames to showcase your photos. I personally like 5x7 frames up to 16x20. I add a mixture of sizes & in between I add some memorabilia. It can be a art piece or an antique that you love. Display what brings you joy! If you don't like what you see, that's ok. Take a few days to ponder about it & rework it til' your heart is content.
How I got my wall gallery started was by starting with the focal point. This is where I add a large photo of my clan. From there, you place the photos and/or memorabilia around that focal point. Spread out to your desire length & width. I chose to go beyond the length of my couch. Then add around the top & bottom.
Note: too many small frames can make it look cluttered. What I recommend if you want to add smaller frames, limit to a few.
Some people have also done the layout method. You find examples o Pinterest. Lay the photos on the floor how you would like to see it placed on the walls. I have done several wall galleries in my time that just adding them to the wall was easy for me. I had a vision how I wanted it to look & achieved it.
For the mounting hardware...
Depending on the type of wall you want your gallery all depends on what hardware you need to use. Our 135 year-old house have the original stone walls. This can make it tricky to hang frames, especially heavy ones. We had to use masonry screws. For lighter frames & art we also used velcro command strips. Although, I do not recommend using any kind of command strips over your bed. Here's a trick to keep your frames straight! Add alittle sticky tack to the bottom of the frame. Before you tackle a wall gallery project, check to make sure what type of hardware you need first for your wall type.
Command strips (optional)
Feeling inspired? Check out Pinterest for some amazing wall galleries!
Have fun creating!
Xo, Debra (aka Dusty)
Growing up, my parents & grandparents always cooked on cast iron. I never really appreciated cooking in cast iron until I was married for a few years. I had bought a few skillets that came as a set. I remember trying to figure out the process of caring & seasoning. I just couldn't figure it out & I gave up on them for a long time.
Several years later my sister & I were chatting about the cast iron she had gotten from our grandparents & I told her I would love to start cooking in cast iron. She cooked on them all the time & made the best fried chicken & cornbread. She told me that she will give me some of our grandparents cast iron that she had acquired from them.. I was so excited that I would be using the very same cast iron that my grandmother & grandfather cooked in daily. Then my dad gave me a chicken fryer that he & mom cooked in. Then before you know it, I was addicted to cooking in them. I purchased some more from our local stores. Two large skillets were added to my collection. Then along came the Dutch oven & a few other pieces. I was hooked!
We cook in them daily. I even bake in them too. The baking is a little tricky but I am still learning. I am always searching online for tips & tricks. So for the last couple of years, we only cook in cast iron & we haven't looked back! We even got rid of our old frying pans.
I was constantly researching & learning how to care for them. I even found a group on Facebook dedicated to cast iron that had people who are experts in caring for and cooking in cast iron. Not to mention all the yummy food post too :)
The more I used cast iron to cook in the more I fell in love with it. It became second nature to use. My husband & kids were on board too. Oh & the food tastes SO much better!
e key to caring for cast iron is to keep them well seasoned. There are a lot of debates on what oil to use but for me I use crisco shortening. Just a little goes a long way to season your cast iron. Make sure your skillets are completely dry. I dry my skillets on the stove... once dried, I add a dab of Crisco shortening on a (lint free) tea towel (you can use a paper towel if you like) & rub it all over the skillet including the handle & bottom. Do not leave the oil caked on or will get rancid. Wipe it til all the oil spread evenly. Your skillet is now ready for the next time you cook.
Fyi: You will hear not to use dish soap to clean but it is safe to use.
If you are interested in giving cast iron a whirl, I recommend checking out YouTube videos. There are several tutorials on how to care & season your cast iron. Once you start, you won't look back. :)
If you have any questions or would like to learn more about cast iron, leave a comment below & I would be happy to help in anyway I can :)
Take care & have a amazing day :)
Debra (aka: Dusty)
I am excited to introduce Chris Stroup, the talented owner & DJ of 911 Sound Pros. Not only is he a DJ but a police officer here in the Southeastern area of Pennsylvania and I'm excited to have him here to tell me about a little bit about his business.
I had the pleasure of chatting with Chris. He was such a delight and gave me some insight on his business.
911 Sound Pros was opened in 2003 by Chris and since then has provided clients with excellent service and positive experiences. Not only does he provide services for Weddings & events but he also provides services for charity! Oh let's not forget he also has photo booths in his packages. Now that's a bonus! I am also excited to share a little bit about the business with you guys, as well!
"I have been fortunate enough to bring the skill sets acquired as a police officer into my personal passion for music by serving as a professional emcee, or as some prefer to call us, a DJ. Music can bring to light all types of emotions. The feeling I get when I see a couple dancing for the first time, hearing the words of their special song, seeing the emotion pour out of others, simply makes my soul happy. After much internal deliberation, I decided to pursue my passion for music and continue to serve others and so, 911 Sound Pros was born."
Want to read more of his story? You will have to check it out here! Very Impressive!
I was really impressed and not only did book his services, I will be recommending Chris' services to others!
911 Sounds Pros, LLC
Based in Southeastern PA
Or visit them online at https://911soundpros.com/
On to the pictures!
*Images & Consent provided by Chris Stroup. I do not own the copyright of these images.
Have a small business you want to share? Send me a message so we can chat! :)
I look forward to hearing from you :)
Xo, Debra (aka Dusty)
I love taking photos, always have! I remember the point & shoot camera my Mommom had & I used to take pictures all the time... I remember how much I enjoyed it. I never thought in a million years that I would pursue photography in my adulthood. I started with film then eventually went to digital. It was like second nature to me. Learning the craft satisfied my craving for art. Whether it be editing images or learning new techniques. It also helps when I get capture some beautiful people too. Bonus is when I also get new friendships out of it too. :)
I think about all the people I have had the pleasure of capturing. That moment with them that is captured will never happen again. Think about that! I had the privilege & honor to capture memories for them. For that I am forever grateful!
I was going through my own family images & organizing them & I couldn't help but reminisce. Not only do I reminisce about that moment but what was happening around us. There were also moments that I totally forgot about. How about that, a moment captured & we will forever have those images to remind us.
With non-essential businesses closed due to Covid-19 , photography being one of many doesn't mean we can't take photos around us. Go out & capture some beauty that's around you. Whether it be your loved ones that you are staying at home with or flowers in your backyard. You don't have to be a professional photographer to take photos. Take a stroll through your town & whip out your cell phone & take pictures. Ten years from now, you will look back & be glad you did!
Have fun & keep smiling :)
xo, Debra (aka Dusty)
This has been a whirlwind of changes for us that's for sure! I am naturally a homebody already but knowing I can not go out without a face mask or just visit my family & friends is getting to me. I am sure it is for y'all too. I miss seeing my clients & getting behind the lens. This is usually the time where I should be planning out my Spring sessions & here we are...at home! I have been slacking with posting on social media but I just haven't been feeling it.
Once I can get back out there shooting again, I am going to offer some amazing specials to make it worth your wild. Stay tuned!
So in the mean time while there is a stay at home order, I am trying to keep busy. I have been editing & organizing my family photos. I usually just take pictures, upload & store them on my hard drive until I have some time between clients to edit & order them. Oh, not to mention all the house projects, cleaning (more than usual) & reorganizing I have been doing in my home. I am pretty well organized gal as it is but then my brain gets going on new ideas & then I start purging & rearranging furniture. I think my clan has about had it lol. But they know once I get an idea, there is no letting it go until I accomplish it. :)
I will say that we are blessed to be healthy. I know it could be worst & I thank God that the virus has not hit us. My heart hurts for those who are suffering & who has lost their battle to the corona virus. To all the families who were affected by the virus, y'all are in my prayers.
What have y'all been doing to keep busy? Please share in the comments!
Stay well & stay home!
Xo, Debra (Dusty)
Alittle about me ♥
Photography has always been second nature to me...I love knowing that I can freeze a moment that would be easily forgotten until you have it captured to never forget!