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Behind the Scenes at the Better Homes and Gardens Photo Shoot with Amy Graham Stigler

Smock designer, Amy Graham Stigler, was thrilled to be whisked off to New York City this fall for a photo shoot with Better Homes and Gardens. The photo spread can be found in the December issue of the magazine, where she he talks about her design inspiration and her love for stationery. Today she’s sharing her behind the scenes take of what the experience was like in front of the camera.

The day was such a whirlwind. Since it was the first week back to school for my kids the trip was condensed – I flew out to NYC Thursday afternoon and flew back Friday evening. The shoot was all day Friday in Chelsea. The space was a beautiful loft overlooking the Hudson. As I arrived a few minutes early I snuck out on this little side porch, sipped coffee and enjoyed the spectacular view. It was heavenly. After my little moment of peace in the morning the rest of the day was a flurry of activity and commotion. Racks and racks (and racks) of clothes were rolled in. Shoes and jewelry and make up was set out and organized. The set was built from ground up; painting and all. The photographers, the art directors, the prop stylists (etc etc)…all did their thing.

Amy Graham Stigler - Better Homes and Gardens Photo Shoot in NYC

Amy Graham Stigler - Better Homes and Gardens Photo Shoot in NYC

My main liason’s were Jonny Lichtenstein, the fashion stylist, and Better Homes and Gardens Editor Kelly Phillips, and they were both really special talented people. And they were very encouraging…since I really had no idea what I was doing, especially when it came to “modeling.” Probably the most notable thing about my day was just that there were so many people buzzing around, attending to me. At one point I was being interviewed, make up was being applied, my clothes were being adjusted, shoes were being put on and earrings were being clipped…simultaneously. It just struck me as so unique really since, with three kids, I am usually the one attending rather than being attended to. The actual photography-taking turned out to be quite fun (and a bit silly – with a wind machine and all!)…despite the fact that I really (really) don’t love having my photograph taken.

Amy Graham Stigler - Better Homes and Gardens Photo Shoot in NYC

Like my three year old daughter, I actually love to play dress up. I love clothes and shoes and I absolutely adore jewelry and accessories. I am a vintage girl so I usually play with old stuff but it was fun to see what is out there right now. I am generally not a big trend watcher but I definitely got a glimpse of what is going on in fashion right now by being a part of the shoot. Thankfully, tights are in because I am such a fan. And I live in Wisconsin where they are essential this time of year.

Amy Graham Stigler - Better Homes and Gardens Photo Shoot in NYC

What was your favorite part about your experience with BHG?

Definitely the process. It was such a unique experience…so different from my usual workday – FAR more social. The people I met were sooo kind and fun. And I love NYC.

BHG asked you a little bit about your design inspiration – can you share what’s inspiring you now as we head into 2010?

I am invoking Milton Avery, one of my favorite favorite painters. Think graphic and strong and colorful.

Amy Graham Stigler - Better Homes and Gardens Photo Shoot in NYC

For all of the fun, check out the December issue of Better Homes and Gardens and Happy New Year from all of your friends at Smock!