What’s your Lingerie Personality?

Romantic or sassy, classic or barely there, lingerie is an empowering tool to make YOU feel sexy.  Everyone needs to own amazing pieces that make them feel incredible! 

Perhaps you are just starting to explore and define your taste in lingerie, or you might be looking for the perfect piece and fit for your boudoir session. Wardrobe styling at Althea’s Fine Lingerie is included with all of my boudoir sessions !  Althea is truly gifted at styling clients with lingerie that flatters their bodies and their personal tastes!

I created a fun quiz that will get you started down the path of self discovery and understanding what your very own personal lingerie style is! 

Take the quiz and you may get a special treat for playing. 

Behind the scenes with my handsome assistant

I recently started working with a vintage rental company so I’ll have new and amazing sets each month. The first piece is a divine blush pink tufted sofa. It. Is. Glorious. Any time I want to shoot a new set or concept, David and I do a test shoot first. I get to test poses and lighting and angles and create all new images. I have a basic shot list ready and David sits for me in the general pose I want while I get the settings how I want. Then we trade places to create the final test shots.

This also serves to give me the invaluable perspective of my clients. I can see how poses feel, and I can see how they look-is there anything making me feel self conscious or would I prefer my hair lay a different way, things like that. David is a great sport and we always have a wonderful time, even if his expression says otherwise in that one shot with the hat . . . . hahahaha. I mean, you can’t break out the blue steel for every single shot. Sometimes you are tired of playing model on your girlfriend’s vintage rental.

We figured it would be fun to show some of these shots side by side for your amusement. David is the most adorable and talented assistant I could ask for and I appreciate and love him so much. Keep scrolling to see the final set of images we came up with.

The last shot is one of my faves. As I tell my clients, I always love the laughing shots of myself. I feel alive, free and beautiful – and experiencing so much joy. I’ll have the couch through the end of January! Email me at melissa@studiomboudoir.com or call/text 414.467.8338 to book! Keep your eyes on my instagram @studiomboudoir for the next vintage piece, arriving in February!

2020 Year in Review

Eleven years ago today, I signed the lease for my first boudoir studio. It was a tiny little 500 square foot studio in the marketplace in Oak Creek, and it was gloriously ALL MINE. Wood floors, double french doors, natural light, and it’s own little office and bathroom. Looking at those keys in my hand is among the happiest moments in my life. Who knew eleven years later, I’d have photographed thousands of women and still be madly in love with this work?

Since looking at those keys in awe, I have grown so much as a person and an artist. I used to think boudoir was for brides, for anniversaries, for valentine’s day-for your partner. While it can definitely be fun for those things, now I understand it is so much more. It’s for breakups and divorces, for birthdays and for defining moments in our lives that call upon us to reinvent ourselves and reignite that fire that we somehow lost. It’s for documenting our bodies before we have major surgery, after we survive cancer, after we survive abuse. It’s about breaking out of molds we were told we need to fit in. It’s about finding our sexuality and proudly celebrating it – not depending on someone else to permissively validate it. To unapologetically OWN our bodies, our desires, our kinks and our magic. Boudoir is about being in touch with that fire.

I am so grateful to have seen it in all these amazing women that I photographed during the most tumultuous year of my career. I am so humbled and amazingly grateful for their trust and vulnerability in letting me capture their fire.

Here’s to a crazy 2020. Bring on eleven more years of empowering women. I’m here for it.

Frequently Asked Questions: Black Friday

Are you considering booking yourself a shoot for Black Friday?!

Are you ready to feel empowered and confident?  To unapologetically love yourself? Treat yourself to an amazing boudoir experience! Your $249 Black Friday Boudoir Session includes:  

  • Your Boudoir Session (wardrobe styling, professional hair and makeup before your shoot and same day viewing and ordering session)
  • $100 credit towards the collection of your choice.  View collections here and see info on my no fee payment plans below.  
  • $25 credit towards wall art 
  • $25 off $100 purchase at  Altheas Fine Lingerie
  • $25 off any service valued at $50 or more at Clean Slate Spa 
  • $25 deep conditioning treatment with purchase of cut with Natalie at Strand Salon
  • $25 exfoliant upgrade with purchase of a glow and go facial with Amy Aviles at Adorn 
  • $25 credit towards a massage while you wait for your images to be edited 

Here are all of the most frequently asked questions to help you! Still have questions? Call or text me at 4144678338 or email me at melissa@studiomboudoir.com.

I am not sure if boudoir is for me.  Can I do this?

YES!  Boudoir is for everyone. Women of all ages, all sizes, all shapes.  Women with curves, without curves, with stretch marks, Humans who are gender queer, transgender, non-binary, moms.  People who have disabilities, mastectomies, scars, and cellulite.  ALL OF YOU ARE BEAUTIUL and deserve an incredible experience of self love.  You can do this!   

Okay, so how does this work?

Once you have purchased your Black Friday Session, you’ll receive a confirmation email with info on how to schedule your shoot and how to redeem all the extra goodies that came with your shoot!  

I will help you every step of the way!!   I will answer any questions you have and be sure you have all the information you need to prepare for an amazing boudoir experience.

How are you handling covid?

I am taking covid very seriously by limiting the number of people in the studio and maintaining strict cleaning protocols.  There will only be 4 of us total in a room at one time, including you, me, the makeup artist and the hair stylist.  We will all be wearing masks, and you are definitely welcome to wear one to the extent possible, though it will not be possible while you are getting makeup done and being photographed.  If it is necessary to blow dry your hair, we will ask that you wear a mask.  If you would like to avoid this, please arrive with clean dry hair.  For the most part, I should be able to photograph you from 6 feet away, but for some of the shots, I will need to be closer for the short time it takes me to take my shot and to possibly adjust your hair or your outfit.  In addition, I will be changing linens and sanitizing all surfaces between clients (pillows, couches/chairs etc) and high touch surfaces will be cleaned frequently. 

So I book my shoot-then what happens?

Once you have booked a shoot, I will send you our step by step prep guide! I am available by text/email/phone or even in person if you’d like extra help getting ready for your shoot! 

When do I get to see the pictures?

THE SAME DAY as your shoot!  About an hour after we wrap up your shoot, we have a gallery reveal and ordering session! We sit down, view a slideshow of all your incredible, gorgeous jaw dropping images, and I help you finalize your order.

What if I need a payment plan?! How does that work?

I offer payment plans for collections for up to 6 months with no additional fees!  See my pricing for collections here!  You can either pay by PayPal credit if you need your order right away, or by an auto withdrawal from your credit or debit card.  This puts our collections at $27-67 a week! 

Do you accept PayPal credit?

Yes! This allows you to receive your order sooner! (subject to approval). 

When do I receive my order?

Between 2-6 weeks after it is paid in full (if you have a tight deadline let me know and I will do my absolute best to accommodate you).

Ready to take the leap? Click HERE to Get your Black Friday Session!!!

I want to do a boudoir shoot . . . but I’m terrified!

It’s scary.  It really is.  I have been photographed many times in my nearly 12 years of shooting boudoir.  And although it gets easier each time, it’s nerve wracking every single time!  Even for me!  

Questions that creep up . . . 

What will I wear?

What if I don’t know anything about hair and makeup?

What if I don’t know anything about lingerie?

What if I don’t know how to PUT MY OWN LINGERIE ON?

What if I can’t make my face look right?

What if I hate how I look?

I got you.  I promise.  I have nearly 12 years of experience shooting boudoir exclusively and have worked with every shape/size/age.  It is my passion to show everyone how beautiful they are.  Including you.  

Don’t know what to wear?  Shoots include wardrobe styling with Althea’s Fine Lingerie.  Althea and I work together to ensure that your lingerie will not only fit you perfectly, but will photograph beautifully.  

Never wear makeup?  No worries (me neither!).  The amazing artists I work with will help you – whether you want to keep things a little more on the natural side or if you want to take the leap and go for a dramatic look-we will check in with you throughout the process and adjust your look until you are happy with it before we start shooting.

Don’t know how to put on that garter belt you bought?  Neither do 95% of my clients.  For real!  I help almost everyone attach their garter belt to their stockings, tighten their corsets, adjust straps, etc.  Sometimes this stuff is complicated and we have to decipher where your head goes.  Haha.  

Worried about your face?  You know when you are nervous and your mouth won’t do what you want?   I have tricks for that.  Really.  

What if I hate how I look?  This just doesn’t happen.  Women are afraid this will happen and every.single.time we have a gallery reveal, women are absolutely amazed at how many pictures they absolutely love of themselves.  Narrowing down your images is the hardest part of a boudoir shoot.  Something no one believes until they are staring in awe at images of themselves saying “Is that really me!?!?”  

You can do this.  I believe in you.  

Black and White Bridal Boudoir

A boudoir shoot isn’t just the creation of beautiful images. It’s an experience in self love and confidence. One that lets you feel beautiful, empowered, sexy and alive. Creating this amazing mindset to share with your honey is a gift in and of itself-for both of you. The actual art you gift represents the giving of yourself in your relationship-your happiness, your vulnerabilities, your fears, your hopes, your love, your desire for them. The experience represents your commitment to love yourself-and better love your partner in the process.

This stunning bride visited me to create an all black and white album for her husband to be, because he loves black and white photography (as much as he loves her).

Mermaid Hair

I always say that my job is basically adult dress up. I work with an amazing team to create a look that you love so we can deliver amazing images that fit your vision. If boudoir is in part about fantasy, why not look like a mermaid during your shoot? Natalie (hair stylist extraordinaire) added pieces of crimped hair throughout her loose girls to make S’s look complete magic. Fitting, because S is obsessed with books and recently introduced me to The Night Circus-a completely magical read that I want to erase from my brain so I can read it again with fresh eyes for the first time. Anyone else like this? Anyway, here are some of the beautiful images we created together.

Now Booking Rooftop Shoots for September!

I am absolutely loving golden hour rooftop shoots. The light is amazing, and we get a whole different look than inside the studio. Ideal wardrobe for rooftop shoots is edgy, like this black lace strappy/cutout set, and things with movement-like the robe that catches the wind in all sorts of fun ways. Short skater skirts paired with bustiers would be amazing too! Faux fur, long coats-the possibilities are endless.

For rooftop shoots you have to sort of let go of a little bit of control-we are at the mercy of what the sky looks like that day, and how much the wind will blow your hair. But all the elements combine to make something pretty magical.

Transgender Day of Visibility 2020: A Guest Post by Alyssa Jean Miller

Alyssa is a beautiful human whom I consider lucky to call a friend. I asked her to write up some words for this year’s transgender day of visibility. Transgender visibility should happen every single day. Every day should be a human day of visibility. Where we are acknowledged and celebrated for our own unique beauty. Until then, women like Alyssa are lighting the way for others to live bravely, boldly and authentically. Thank you, Alyssa, for being you.

Alyssa speaking at RSA Conference about Deepfakes.

March 31 each year is marked as Transgender Day of Visibility. According to the Human Rights Campaign, it is a day to commemorate “the courage it takes to live openly and authentically”. For those that live in silence, hiding their authentic selves, the day can serve as motivation to share their true selves with the world, if only for that one day a year. For others it’s a day to publicly recognize their journey to authenticity and be bold in bringing awareness to the world that transgender people are human beings like everyone else.

As I look at my own situation, I am one of the fortunate ones that can say every day is a day of visibility for me. I have a supporting family, many supporting friends and a wonderfully open and supportive employer. I am also a very public face in my cyber security community. Daily, whether through social media, public speaking appearances, or other media appearances, I have the opportunity to add the human element to people’s perception of the transgender community.

As a result, when Transgender Day of Visibility comes around each year, I use it as a reminder that not everyone is as fortunate as I in that respect. I tend to reflect on the fact that there are so many in the trans community who are forced to live in secrecy, denial, and fear. In the last three years, after over a decade of improvements, it has become more accepted for that small minority of society to verbalize and act out their hatred toward transgender people. As a result, many who may have opened themselves to living authentically have instead kept themselves hidden way.

It’s for this reason that I choose to be open and public about my identity. The platform I’ve been given allows me to have a two-fold impact. First, as I mentioned previously, is giving the trans community a human face in the public space of society. Humanizing transgender people is one of the most effective ways to combat the hate in our world. Second, my daily visibility can serve as an example to others that they don’t need to live in fear. That it is possible to be successful, have a career, and be vocal and open about our identity. It’s not something we have to hide but rather something we can embrace, something that makes us powerful.

So, this year on Transgender Day of Visibility, I want to remind us all that being transgender isn’t a weakness. It’s a unique power that we possess, a vision of the world that few get to experience. We have access to a truly unique perspective that society needs us to share. We stand as clear examples that gender does not define one’s capabilities. We have the ability to transcend the prejudices that divide our civilization. We are the ones that demonstrate a better way to understand and appreciate the uniqueness that every human brings to the conversation. Sure, we experience significant hardships, we feel pain, we endure discrimination and hatred. However, it is in overcoming those challenges and contributing to the world around us that our strength truly shines.

While I truly wish that each of my transgender siblings could embrace this day and share themselves authentically, I also understand that some just are not ready for that yet. That is ok. Please know that those of us who do have the privilege of being visible in our daily lives are working hard to support you and make the world safer and more inclusive for all humans.

-Alyssa Jean Miller

Hopeless Romantic

I have always been a hopeless romantic. As a teenager I was obsessed with the poetic words of ee cummings (I carry your heart, I carry it in my heart). It didn’t stop there- add in lyrics to indie love songs (me and my girlfriend don’t wear no shoes, her nose is painted a pepper sunlight), romantic novels and movies (Lloyd Dobler anyone?) and you have a full blown hopeless romantic. Maybe that is part of why I love boudoir so much-the romance and beauty of it all.

When you are getting married, a boudoir shoot us such a beautiful way to celebrate your wedding. You get to take a few moments for yourself to get pampered, feel sexy and take a break from all the craziness of wedding planning. You walk out the door with an incredible sense of self love, feeling more confident than ever (good as hell, as Lizzo would say). THAT is a true gift to you and your partner. And if that isn’t enough, you and your partner can look back at your gorgeous album every year on your anniversary, for years to come.