How my Mudroom Makeover ended up as a Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature! And the behind the scenes details.
First, a little history on my Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature. I actually converted the cabinets into a Mudroom in early 2015. Then I blogged the mudroom makeover tutorial for it in mid-2017. I’ve been kinda tweaking the room and design since then.
In the last year, I’ve been focusing more on room design as a whole, instead of just doing a bunch of individual projects. You can see the reveal on the Boys Bedroom Makeover, the whole Laundry Room, or the Powder Room to see what I mean. I’m currently working on a huge Living Room Makeover full of pretty, budget-friendly DIY projects. Stay-tuned during October to see all of the projects and the big reveal in early-November. 🙂
But, back to BHG. I am just guessing, but I think the editor found me through an Instagram post that I used #BHGIDidIt on. I had only used the hashtag a few times at that point. But I’m pretty sure 1 of them was my mudroom. If you want one of your projects featured, that is how she suggests submitting a project.
One more guess, I think they try to feature something that they haven’t seen before, or something that’s starting to trend, or a unique design. So, if you want to submit something. Try to make it something that might catch her eye as a ‘new’ DIY. Include a before picture and be sure to write a good description on your IG post too. Sometimes it’s easier to understand the DIY with details about how you did it. Good luck, guys!
Now, All About My Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature!
How it Started
I got the email from Kit Selzer one night, in early June. It was short and to the point. She said she was an editor at Better Homes and Gardens and wanted to possibly feature my mudroom in the ‘I Did It’ section of the magazine. So, of course, my instant reaction is excitement and disbelief. I was more than kinda afraid it was a fake email. 😉
After a quick Google search, I found out Kit was definitely the real deal. Eek! I showed my husband the email, excitedly. Then realized I had to explain to him how cool this was because he’s English and didn’t grow up reading Better Homes and Gardens, like I did. LOL, I have to do this for a lot of things, being married to a non-American.
I mean, he has no idea about some very American things from my childhood. Commercial jingles that are forever stuck in my head, 80’s and 90’s TV Sitcoms, the cartoons I grew up with, Pretty in Pink… Pretty in Pink, guys. In fact, every John Hughes film is basically a new thing to him. What!!
After explaining how cool this was to my husband, I said I was going to wait until the next day to reply to the email. I was worried that a quick reply to a BHG editor might be like a quick reply to an email from a guy you like. I didn’t want to seem too anxious and scare her off. My husband basically told me to stop being crazy and reply already. 🙂
After a week of emails with Kit, we had set up a photo shoot date and gone over the details about the day and shoot. They’d be coming in early July. Yea!!
Getting Ready for the Photo Shoot
During that month of waiting for the shoot, a lot was going on. I sent a few test shots from different angles in the room. A few included me in the shot so that Kit could get a good idea of the scale and where she wanted the picture taken. They were busy scheduling a photographer and stylist from my area too.
Kit also had me answer a bunch of questions about the Mudroom DIY, other DIY info, and some facts about myself. She asked a lot of questions, then picked a handful of answers that her team thought would be good in the story.
Meanwhile, I’m in full on ‘my house isn’t ready’ mode. In the month before the photo shoot, I finished a bunch of projects I had on my to-do list. I was in overdrive, guys. Here’s what I did before the photo shoot for the Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature.
- Built a new, prettier version of my DIY Laundry Table
- Painted the lower Laundry Room Cabinets Teal
- Added Plywood Liners to the boring open coat cabinet
- Finished the last shoe storage box and shelf
- Added a new decorative shelf in our Powder Room
- Plus, finishing up a change to my DIY Teal Console with Drawers (that I haven’t written a tutorial for, yet)
- AND almost wallpapered our Powder Room. But I ran out of time and did it after they left. It’s so pretty!
While all of that was happening, I also had to clean my whole house. You know how it is when you have little kids. 😉 AND, I needed to find something to wear for the photo shoot. They suggested long-sleeves and slightly fitted. You know, the camera always adds 10 pounds…even in the arms. 😉
I ended up picking up a few things and took pictures of the shirts in the Laundry Room. This helped me pick a favorite and I had photos ready to send the stylist when she contacted me. I was finally ready, with just 24 hours to spare.
Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature – The Photo Shoot
The day before the photo shoot the stylist came by with loads of potential props to use in the magazine. They like to add color and fun objects to the scene to make it look more homey and lived in. You can see in my pictures how I normally have it and how they ended up staging it for the picture. Everything just looks a bit fuller in their picture. But you can picture a family living there.
The stylist was only at my house for about 30 minutes. She quickly tried a few props to get an idea of what they might use. I asked her about what to wear and recommendations for hair and makeup and that was it. She felt like they were ready for the next day. I was totally excited and ready too.
The photographer, her assistant, and the stylist came back around 9 the next morning. Better Homes and Gardens had already sent them a shot list for the article. They knew exactly where to set up the camera for the day. I showed them where everything was and got out of their way while they worked. The Midwestern in me wouldn’t want to get in the way of people hard at work. 😉
They spent about 3 hours setting up their equipment, the room, and the props. Lots of pictures were being sent to the Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature editors and evaluated by what sounded like a team. They’d call back with suggestions to move a prop, or change colors on something. It was pretty cool to see in action. When they finally thought they had the room ready, they added me to the picture.
The BHG team made suggestions about where I should stand and sit, the position of my hands, etc. Luckily for me, that only took about 20 minutes of awkward poses and weird smiles. I tend to hide from cameras, IRL. Once BHG gave the green light, the photographer took a ton of photos in a few minutes and saw enough she was happy with. So, we headed outside for another shot.
This time she just held the camera for a quick shot outside. Then they spent another hour or so grabbing the detail shots of the mudroom (on the 2nd page of the article). That’s pretty much it.
The BHG editorial team was happy with what they had. The photography team and the stylist packed up all those props and headed home around 2 PM. Now I just had to wait a couple months for the magazine to be published. It’s all been pretty exciting and I’m so thankful for this great opportunity. You know I’ll be telling my grandchildren this story, their whole lives. 😉
That’s it! So glad you stopped by to find out all the behind the scene details about my Better Homes and Gardens DIY Feature. Be sure to check back over the next couple of months, while I am doing some fun, low cost DIY’s to totally makeover my Living Room. See sneak peeks and extra pictures on Instagram.
Looking for a a pretty DIY Laundry Table to organize your Laundry Room?
Or this beautiful DIY Chunky Leg Farmhouse Bench for inside your house.
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