Prop Stylist Rebecca Donnelly Brings Color to 150-Year-Old Building
Rebecca Donnelly set the scene for Design*Sponge's recent feature, "Creating a New Home Inside a 150-year-old Building" – the building, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn; and the home-creators, Helen Dealtry and Dan Barry.
"We discovered Helen Dealtry's beautiful scarves last summer," explained Amy Azzarito in her Design*Sponge writeup. "Helen specializes in hand-painted patterns and prints for fashion and interior markets ... [she and Dan] found a completely raw space in Williamsburg and transformed it with the help of architects at Agencie Group. Their goal was to create a home that fit their modern lifestyle and love of entertaining but still respected the history of the 150-year-old building." However, Azzarito added, "all of the original details had been destroyed by previous renovations and a subsequent fire, so they tried to choose finishes that helped the balance of all the new with some old."
"There are many clean and simply designed, modern spaces, and there are also nooks and crannies that reflect that age of the house – like the guest room with exposed beams ... then, the bathroom is sleek and belongs in a fancy hotel," Donnelly concurred. "I liked that there were entirely different experiences in the same home." The prop stylist noted that most of the rooms relied on a neutral color palette, "so part of my talk with [Helen and Dan] was about how we could work in pops of color without compromising their personal taste … I brought in a lot of blue and citrusy colors, based on one of Helen's favorite textiles, and pulled props that reflected that color scheme and might be items the couple would own." Donnelly also asked Dealtry to provide some of her scarves to be used throughout the shoot.
"It was a great project," Donnelly remarked. "I loved the space's design and the objects in the home, so it wasn't too difficult – it was more inspiring."
Photographer: Tara Donne
Justin Hollar's Newest b.tempt'd Campaigns
Justin Hollar and b.tempt'd, Wacoal's younger line, continued their longtime collaboration with the brand's fall 2013 and spring 2014 campaigns. "It's important that b.tempt'd images feel different from Wacoal's," Hollar explained. "I try to highlight the flirty attitude of b.tempt'd, so it has its own voice."
b.tempt'd tends to pick pared-down locations for its shoots – the fall advertisements, for example, were photographed in a Brooklyn studio set up to resemble a loft apartment. For spring, he partnered with B&A prop stylist Rebecca Donnelly, who built kitchen and bathroom backdrops. "I make the raw spaces as bright and airy as possible, and ensure the model is comfortable in her surroundings," Hollar said. "I also focus on showing as much of the lingerie's details as possible."
Rebecca Donnelly's DIY Decor for Birchbox
Rebecca Donnelly brought do-it-yourself holiday cheer to Birchbox's Holiday 2013 Gift Guide. "Birchbox didn't want typical decorations," said the prop stylist. "The company wanted the scenes to be young, original, and – most importantly – believable, as in, normal girls would be able to pull this off. Birchbox's client is me or my friends ... we share the same age, style, and interests ... so I pretended it was my party and created items I would put on my own table."
Donnelly and the team decided to use a palette of turquoise and coral (instead of the traditional green and red), silver, and gold to play with geometric patterns. "I was inspired by this beautiful tissue paper – I set out to make sort of pom-poms to hang as lighting, but I thought it would be unexpected to turn them into garlands," Donnelly explained. "That was a huge hit on set."
Keeping with the "stylish yet realistic" mantra, Donnelly thought of embellishments that the men in her life could achieve: "I took a basket full of birch logs and clumped string lights in and around it. That idea proved popular, too."
Birchbox.com featured Donnelly's "5 Easy Holiday Decorating DIYs." Her favorite is "Step Up Your Table Settings: [...] Start by purchasing wooden shapes at a craft shop, then paint them using non-toxic tempera paint. Scatter across the table as a festive table setting, or use them to prop up your guests' place cards. If you're feeling super crafty, cut a notch in the middle of each shape with a lightweight hacksaw, says Donnelly. Stick the place card in the notch, and voilà."
Tom Corbett's 'Glam Slam'
Tom Corbett captured the holiday season's finishing touches for FITNESS's November/December issue.
"For the 'Glam Slams' spread, we wanted the images to pop and be close up, in order to detail both the featured accessories and the beauty tips – which focused on the eye, lip, and nails," said photo director Toby Kaufmann. "I've worked with Tom for many, many years and he was the perfect choice [for photographer] because I knew he could bring it all to life, and add another layer with his lighting techniques."
Kaufmann added that she and Corbett "discussed the pictures beforehand, so we went into the shoot knowing exactly what we needed to do" for each of the four looks: "You're Golden," "So Sophisticated," "The Bright Stuff," and "Walk on the Wild Side." The team finished at 5 p.m. and came away with photos that couldn't have made FITNESS merrier.
Beauty director: Heather Muir
Makeup: Keiko for Bryan Bantry Agency
Hair: Kozmo for Bryan Bantry Agency
Manicure: Fleury Rose for Illamasqua
Prop Stylist: Rebecca Donnelly
Model: Kathrin/ for Muse NYC
Rebecca Donnelly Makes Accessories Pop
Prop stylist Rebecca Donnelly brought a sense of whimsy to Refinery29's "5 Accessory Trends That POP!" shoot. "I had just been to MoMA before working on this, so I got a kick out of conjuring Dada collages and Man Ray's eye metronome," she said, adding, "The floating ear cracks me up!"
Donnelly and the R29 team created a set of images that feature next season's fashions: in-your-face sunnies, twinkle toes, head-spinning headgear, candy-colored crossbodies, and gum-drop rhinestones.
"Making a strong composition comes to me as I get my hands on the objects I will be styling," she explained. "I don't have a formula or think there are any specific rules, other than to put in the 'bones' first to get a foundation that feels right and then to fill in the trimmings."
Photographer: Joanna McClure
Stylist: Willow Lindley
Assistant Stylist: Rachel Besser