Hello LOVES! I am SO excited to share with all of you one of the most empowering experiences of my life, a boudoir shoot. I am someone that typically doesn’t like to publically sexualize my body – always trying to hide my chest especially, so I was skeptical about a boudoir shoot. I was invited to get a little taste of what Highline Boudoir & Erotica, a small women-owned business run by Kelsa Blaine, is all about at one of their workshops. Kelsa’s publicist, Taylor Fowler, reached out to me to join the workshop to learn about Kelsa’s business, meet other women in the industry, take part in a sound bath led by @gypsysoul_nicole, and get the opportunity to have a mini white sheet boudoir session. The morning was TRULY perfect. I had such an incredible time that I decided to book a full boudoir session for my 27th birthday!
Now let’s dive into the studio space. Located next to Gabriella’s at the Highline, Kelsa’s studio space is STUNNING. When you arrive at Highline Boudoir & Erotica, you’ll walk up the stairs and find yourself in a little kitchen area. This is where Kelsa will have a little brunch table set up with munchies and some cocktail fix-ins while you are getting glammed up. I had some berries, charcuterie, and muffins along with a mimosa and espresso martini (for variety ya know 😉). I had a chat with Kelsa while enjoying the bites and drinks about my vision for the shoot. She asked me if I could describe my vision for the shoot in one word that wasn’t a body describing word, what would it be? I said either sensual or seductive. I wanted my photos to give off a steamy vibe of wanting more. This helped Kelsa pick out some outfits from her client closet that she felt would help achieve that look! I’ll chat more specifics on the client closet further down the article.
Back to the studio space! On the same floor as the kitchen, you’ll find the cutest room with accent chairs and couches, adorable decor, inspiration for posing found in photos on the wall and boudoir books, and the perfect little glam area! With each boudoir session, you get hair and makeup included that takes place in the glam area. As I was sipping on my cocktails, I had my makeup done by @miss_mua_herself and she SLAYED. My brows were fierce and my eyes were the perfect level of intensity for all of the direct eye contact shots Kelsa would get of me. You honestly feel empowered before the shoot even starts just by being around the awesome ladies who hype you up while doing your hair and makeup! The vibes are so open and inviting – exactly what you want when prepping for the shoot.
After you are all glammed up, you’ll head upstairs to the photoshoot area and client closet. Kelsa will show you some of the outfits she picked out for you to try on, along with some fun accessories! There are SO many different looks Kelsa has in her client closet so let the world be your oyster! If you have something specific in your wardrobe at home that you want to bring along, bring it! Kelsa wants you to feel like your best self! You can choose a variety of items you brought and items from the client closet, or one or the other. I went with 3 outfits Kelsa had selected for me from the client closet – a burnt orange leather bodysuit, a lacy black bodysuit, and a sparkle mesh bodysuit. Each outfit had its own vibe and Kelsa paired them with different sections of her photography studio so they would look awesome with the background, seriously she knows exactly what she is doing.
I got situated in my first outfit, the black lacy body suit, and headed to the main shoot room. The way that Kelsa runs the shoot is the perfect combo of feelin yourself and style direction. If you’ve never done a boudoir shoot before, it can be intimidating. Thinking “am I going to look sexy” or “what if I don’t like the way my body looks” is TOTALLY NORMAL. I was SO nervous that I was going to look weird or awkward, but with Kelsa’s direction, you will slay the shoot. She is a professional photographer so she knows the angles to capture and has done hundreds of boudoir shoots so she knows how to naturally accentuate the sexy parts of the body. At first, I was very shy with my body and expressions, but as the shoot continued, I started feeling more comfortable and leaned into it to make it my moment. Kelsa lead me by telling me when to turn my head a certain way, how to arch my back, when to look into the distance vs. directly at the camera, and it helped me relax knowing that she had my back. As I mentioned, it is the perfect combo of feeling yourself and Kelsa’s direction.
After a couple of outfit changes and vibe resets, the shoot was finished! I left feeling so empowered. Kelsa helped me feel beautiful and sexy in my body which often doesn’t feel that way. She hyped me up every second of the shoot and made me truly feel like a model. My shoot was on a Sunday so the reveal of photos was on Tuesday. It honestly was crazy how quick of a turnaround time it was. On Tuesday, I met with Kelsa in the studio and we went through all of my images and chose a package. The reveal of the photos was honestly so incredible because it took me back to a few days earlier when I was in the moment. Seeing how I felt during the shoot being captured in these images made me feel empowered all over again. With the package I chose, I received all of my images in a digital file and then a custom book with 20 of my favorite images. The book cover is customizable which was so cool. You can have a photo on the cover or a plain cover (like I chose), you choose the color, and you choose the fabric/material the cover is made up of. After looking at all of the samples, I decided on a velvet alligator print in the color Bordeaux. After that was all decided, I had 48 hours to go through all of the images on my own and select which 20 were my favorite for the book. I sent over my favorites to Kelsa and within a few weeks, she arrived! The book is now displayed in my room among other books on my little shelf.
If you’re someone on the fence about deciding if you want to do a boudoir shoot, I say 100% go for it. You don’t need a special occasion or a significant other to have one done. As Moira Rose said, “Then allow me to offer you some advice: Take a thousand, naked pictures of yourself now. You may currently think, “Oh, I’m too spooky.” Or, “Nobody wants to see these tiny boobies.” But, believe me, one day you will look at those photos with much kinder eyes and say, “Dear God, I was a beautiful thing!” This quote is something to live by!! I will have these photos forever. To learn more about Kelsa’s offerings which include boudoir, erotica, and empowerment workshops, check out her website. For any special projects like her zodiac shoots, minis, cityscape shoots, and more, check out her Instagram page @kelsablaine. Stay fierce 🔥