• / / Welcome to Arrowood Photography / /

    Please bear with the website as it is under construction. Thanks for visiting! I am a wedding and portrait photographer based in Northern Virginia. I love creating, beautiful & inspiring images that evoke real emotion and tell a story. I'd describe my work as a combination of artistic portraiture and photo-journalism. Welcome!

Three years ago we moved into a late 1970’s built colonial style, suburban home. It has GREAT bones, the price was spot on and we knew we could fix it up nicely.

Long story short, we’ve been in it for almost three years come this July and we’re still in fixer upper mode. We’ve done A LOT to the first floor. And when I say we I mean the “royal we”. My husband and mostly my father-in-law and a few other helps have done all the work, otherwise, not sure we could have afforded all that we’ve done! Here’s a few before/afters. These are ALL iPhone shots. I’ll eventually get some better after shots with my big girl camera. I tried my best to take the current shot standing in the same location.

BEFORE

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AFTER

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AFTER

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AFTER

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IMG_8756Our biggest challenges with the first floor was what walls to knock down, changing our plans once we opened up walls, and figuring out our existing furniture placement. It’s been fun and challenging to see this place transform. I’m especially excited now that I’ve honed in on the style and look that I’m hoping to go for. But, after all this renovation I’ve been left feeling like the furniture and art still didn’t and doesn’t reflect the look and feel I want it to feel! Does that make sense? Enter Emily Henderson. Interior decorator & instagram story guru.

Emily Henderson’s book has really helped me hone in on where I want to go. I feel like it was JUST what I needed to read at this moment. We moved from a townhouse where I purchased furniture to fit that space, and artwork to fit my style then…but now, we’re in a new space, and guess what?! My style has changed a bit. In her book she has a style quiz and it hit the mark for me. The style I’m drawn to is a mixture of traditional and mid-century modern. Just knowing this, putting a name on the styles gives me a great starting off point. I feel like I was kinda all over the place getting confused with all the pretty pinterest images I saw.  In her book she also touches on  how to go through the things you already own and figure out what stays and goes. I literally have a whole basement of stuff that needs to GO. (sale coming soon!) LOL. OH! and shout out to instagram stories for helping me sell my dining set when I was talking about my dining situation!!!! She picked it up yesterday!

To go along with purging the things we own and no longer love, Marie Kondo’s book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying she talks about only having things in your home that “spark joy”. More or less saying if you can’t live without it type of deal. I want to implement this idea into my decor as well….if you’re trying to minimize I highly recommend it on audible!  And let me just say, I’ve got a TON of purging to do yet. Baby steps though!

Next on our to-do list is our stairs! We’re putting in wood stairs and ripping out the old builder-grade cream carpet. Here’s my inspiration photos- thanks Pinterest!

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I still need to pick out a runner and a wall sconce-(thinking brass) for the bottom of the steps. But I’m SO excited for the trim work. I love the boxed out trim work on a big empty wall space. It’s gonna be purty. It will look more like the left photo shown above-plus brass sconce at bottom of steps + pretty runner!

I also found on instagram the #oneroomchallenge and people are going room by room and redecorating and styling their home. I mean, that’s no new concept, but it does help ME personally focus on one room at a time instead of being scatter brained when I see things that would work. Personally it helps me focus. Right now, for us, it’s the dining room. Then office, then living room!

We’ve remodeled the laundry room and also powder room on the first floor as well,  but I’m planning on doing full, detailed blog postings about each room, but here’s before/afters of those!

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BEFORE + baby Mochi:)

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AFTER

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We still need to work on the laundry room a bit- like under the shelf and what not. Dana’s building a false wall to hide the plumbing–but i might just do some jars and baskets, which would solve the problem nicely- maybe paint the plumbing??? We’ll see….

I’m a firm believer that we should absolutely LOVE our space. I’m a stay at home, working mom so this is where we spend 90% of our time. If I stay frustrated with how things look or feel, then it’s not healthy…I want to get to a place with our home that when I walk into it I want to think…”Oh, I LOVE it here” instead of “I can’t wait to change this or that”….

I know this will take TIME. We don’t grow money on our trees people, and Mama ain’t no fool. BUT, these are goals to be working towards, and that makes me excited for our future.

ALSO….goals and aspirations are GOOD. Whether it’s for transforming your body, finances, home, WHATEVER….GOALS ARE GOOD.

They give me, personally, hope, and something to look forward to. Hope is good. Hope in Jesus is best…Hope to live the abundant life we dream of that glorifies Him.