Prop Insanity

Prop Insanity



Who isn’t obsessed with the prop glory of STUDIOS!

I know I am… so I put together a fun, quick, list of my FAVORITE studios around.
You’re welcome….  :)


aimee pool


alexandria wilcox


ana brandt


andrea kinter




kath v


keri meyers


photorpahy by kiersten


sarah sundstrum

NOW, WHICH IS YOUR FAVORITE… and tell us why?!
I LOVE.LOVE.LOVE seeing other photographers studio spaces… props… and creative organization.  Hope you enjoyed this, and the studios above give you some crazy inspiration for your own!

xo TJ

Grace.e Collection – FEATURED VENDOR & Discount!

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1) What is the very first prop you made?
Give us some details… and looking back at it now…
The very first prop I had ever made was a tieback. Looking back on it now, I have made several thousand :) and still love it just as much than as I do now.


2) What got you into the photography prop vendor world?
I started as photographer in 2006 and as the market became overly saturated in the city I live in due to 2 photography schools in a town of 66000 people it was harder and harder to make new clients. I ran a successful photography business despite the fact for several years, After having 2 kids I needed to be home more. I recalled how much I loved purchasing photography props and thought is would give me the opportunity to stay home with my kiddos more, and a year later here I am.


3) Share some love… please name your top 3 professional photographers who you love working with…
Soulful Snapshots
Stephanie Ryan Photography
Inspired By Three Photography


4) Let’s have fun… any extraordinary talent, or obsession, that you’d like to share with us? IE: can you touch your tongue to your nose, or do you snowboard, maybe run marathons or like to mow the lawn in your bikini ? :)
lol, this question made me laugh. I have an obsession with rearranging my living room. There is something about a new space that just makes me gitty. Im pretty sure the hubby and kids get tired of it but I do this at least 3 times a year lol.


5) What are all of your shop links, so we can cyber stalk your goodies and shop often! ?
Instagram @graceecollection


6) Tell us about YOU… personally. Are you a wife, mother, sister friend. Do you enjoy sports, wine tasting, avid book reader. We’d love to get to know YOU better…
I am a mother of two beautiful kids, a wife to an amazing man, I am a sister smack in the middle of 3 siblings (that was fun), I am an auntie to 5 adorable littles, I absolutely love a challenge and am willing to bring most of my crazy ideas to life regardless the chances of failure. I love hanging out with family and friends and I am an avid volleyball player.


7) Favorite image… 


8) Do you have any other photography based adventures planned for the near future? For instance, collaborating with workshops?
I am currently expanding my business to offer a prop subscription you can check it out at this is an extension of Gracee Collection and we are in our 5th month. I have expanded from a tieback only prop shop to now offering, clothing, wraps, wooden props, a prop subscription, hats and tiebacks. I am working on collaborating with a few workshops but that is still in the works.


9) Any fabulous formative info you can “share” with fellow vendors who are just starting out? We could always use inspiration… so we’d love a “pep talk” !
Absolutely, this is an amazing industry to be involved in. Know your customer and what they want. I learned very quickly that most people are afraid of color and enjoy a more organic feel. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, like I said this is an amazing industry to be a part of. Be true to yourself and your own creative spark, while no one in this world solely owns an idea it is important to let your products be your creations. Go above and beyond for your customers, even if it ends up costing you a little bit of money, because a happy customer comes back an angry customer tells 10 friends. Last but not least, do this because you enjoy it and you are passionate about it. If moneys your motive than you might not being doing what you love and loving what you do is important.


10) How did you “name” your prop shop? We love to hear how all of these creative shop names came to be…
Gracee Collection came about based on my kids. My daughters name is Mylee Grace however we call her Grace most of the time My sons name is Ethan and he has taken on the nickname of “e” hence Grace e :)

Shop here: Website & Etsy
Code: SHOP25

Kimla Designs… be Whimsical, be Creative!



Why do I love photography?

I love the whimsy in it… the ability to create something thru my own vision.  Be different… be unique… and truly have fun in my art!

Thanks to KIMLA DESIGNS, they help make my own creative dreams, come alive.  With actions, overlays, textures and so much more… KIMLA DESIGNS has been on top of the graphic art world, and on the editing palette of so many artists thru the years.

Gorgeous designs… that are E.A.S.Y. to use… so easy, even dorky me can enjoy!


Some of my favorite items from KIMLA DESIGNS are their flower & butterfly overlays… I mean, honestly… check this out… leaves, butterflies, petals, bubbles & rainbows!  And only $49… use the 30% discount above… that price is even more amazing!





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Who wants a FREE SAMPLER? >>Click HERE<<

30% off Discount – (propinsanity)
valid till 22nd of July 2015
* how to use coupon code just in case


Ruffolo Photography – Featured PHOTOGRAPHER!

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1) What is your photography site, blog url , and any other sites you own that you’d like to share with us?

Main Site:


2) What sparked your interest in the photography world, and when did you start first professionally shooting clients? Plus, where are you located?
I’m located a cute little town just north of Chicago and south of Milwaukee nestled next to Lake Michigan by the name of Kenosha, WI. I’ve always had an appreciation and interest in Art and started my love of photography shortly after High School. My interest quickly became a passion after the birth of our first child in 2007 and quadrupled when I discovered the capability of manual mode and the purchase of my trusty D90 in 2009. I began professionally shooting clients in 2012. I took the leap and purchased a building and renovated (with the help of my hand hubby) it to become the studio of my dreams a few months ago on May 2015.


3) And we have to ask, our typical question…… WHAT DO YOU SHOT WITH, and what is your favorite lens?
I’m a Nikon girl through and through. I shoot with the Nikon D4s. My favorite lens for newborns and studio work is my Sigma Art 50 f/1.4 and my favorite outdoor and family lens is the 135 f/2.


4) Let’s have fun… any extraordinary talent, or obsession, that you’d like to share with us? IE: can you touch your tongue to your nose, or do you snowboard, maybe run marathons or like to mow the lawn in your bikini ? :)
My husband and I love scuba diving. We are certified advanced open water divers. In my braver years (ie: before kids) we dove with sharks on our honeymoon in Bora Bora. Armed with a trusty Canon point & shoot and underwater housing circa 2006, I was able to capture some amazing photos of large and gorgeous sharks! One in particular bumped right into my camera with it’s nose.


5) Now this will be fun, seeing that you have worked with so many amazing vendors that we love & adore as well… it will be a hard one for you, but do you think you can give us a TOP 5 list of prop shops that you love “GO TO”? Please share (and include url)… in no order:

1. Sew Darn Cute (
2. Lavender Gray (
3. Darn Fanciful (
4. Merrieknit (
5. Sew Whimsey (


6) Do you shoot on location, or do you have a studio that you work out of?
I love shooting outdoors an in natural light, but unfortunately in Wisconsin mother nature doesn’t allow for that as often as I’d like. I’m fortunate to have a gorgeous newly remodeled 1,200 sq/ft studio that works very well for my needs.


7) Do you use actions (have a favorite?), or do you process on your own? We’d love to hear about your #1 processing technique that you seem to use on every edit.
Of course I try to get it as close to perfect as possible SOOC, but I do love curves and levels! A little bump here and a little dip there. I tend to tweak it on every photo and just watch the photo and what it does as I play.


8) Share with us your ALL TIME #1 FAVORITE image in your portfolio (make sure to label this photo FAVORITE)?
Ahhh! So hard to choose! Every session ends up being my new favorite. My current favorite is from a twin session I literally just shot 2 days ago. They were just over 4lbs each and about the sweetest and daintiest angels you’ve ever seen. The boy is wearing a gorgeous romper pants set made by Sew Darn Cute.

9) Do you have any other photography based adventures planned for the near future? For instance, your mentoring.. w’ed LOVE to hear more!
Well my studio was an old Dentist office we converted into a studio. There’s still LOTS more to do inside (and outside). I’m working on rebranding a little and tweaking my logo and designing a sign ect. I’m going to be taking on distressing some wood, collecting pallet boards and building my own signature wood wall backdrop. Stay tuned!


10) Any fabulous formative info you can “share” with fellow photographers ? Just starting out or seasoned professionals… we could always use inspiration… so we’d love a “pep talk” !
I would tell them to practice, practice, practice. Read your manual and flip your camera out of auto as soon as you can. Join a few groups on Facebook and don’t be afraid to ask for feedback and help. I’ve learned so much by just practicing and figuring out what works and what doesn’t and following groups and asking questions.


Creative Artist SHOOT OUT!


First ever SHOOT OUT ! Yes, you read that right… a SHOOT OUT!

Saturday October 3rd, 2015

This fall, in NW Illinois, join the creative forces behind Twig & Olive, Cream N Cocoa and Tracy Joy, as they invite you to join a SHOOTOUT with them.  Lush NW Illinois fall foliage, with models stylized by each artist… you can shoot aside them, and let your own creativity blossom.

Join us IN PERSON as we gather together for our first SHOOT OUT, this fall…. in the gorgeous Chicago Autumn Forests!

With Creative Artist Allum…
Twig & Olive Photography,
Cream n Cocoa Photography
and Tracy Joy Photography.


Lush NW Illinois fall foliage, with models stylized by each artist… you can shoot aside them, and let your own creativity blossom.

In addition… attendees will be given the choice to also join a LIVE EDITING WEBINAR, on Thursday October 8th (add’l cost).  Learn the secrets behind their hand editing techniques, and favorite actions, used to create the finished piece of photographic art.
*Webinar is only open to shootout attendees*

11129898_10153354637848384_5171074610861102880_oSo what IS A SHOOT OUT?
It’s like a workshop, but without all of the technical details.
Each mentor will have models, and scenes… where they set up the shot for the attendees.  Then, one by one… each attendee gets to SHOOT that same image that the mentor/artist set up.  Pretty amazing… working side by side each mentor, and seeing how they handle their models, and surroundings.
Registration is open NOW, and seats are limited

PLUS…SHOOT OUT ATTENDEES will be first dibs to our EDITING WEBINAR, where we will each edit an image from the shoot out… LIVE.

Limited spots open for shoot out and even more limited for webinar… so hurry heart emoticon