Decorating with Portraits with Leilani Rogers Photography

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Hello!  My name is Leilani Rogers and I’m a photographer.  I live in Austin, TX with my hubby of 13 years and my 4 children.  I’m excited that Kristen has asked me to contribute some ideas to her fun series this month!  Love that girl. 🙂

photo courtesy of [b]ecker

Like most photographers, I love pictures.  And my home reflects that.  We have the usual displays of snapshots throughout the house…

Seriously, virtually every surface is covered…

But today I want to focus on displaying ancestral photographs.  I am fortunate to have many, many photographs of my ancestors.  And I love having them up on the walls and shelves of my home.  I like to think they are smiling down on my family.  I also like to think that having them on display helps give my children a sense of their roots and the feeling that they come from a long line of awesome people that love them!!!

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One idea I have for displaying photographs of ancestors is an “ancestry wall”.  We have this enormous niche at the top of the stairs that is filled with pictures of mine and my husband’s ancestors.

I love it.  My children pass by it every morning when they come downstairs to face their day.:)

Here’s another idea.  I stumbled upon this recently at a friend’s house.  And have since then noticed it on a few blogs as well.  She had all these mason jars lined up with photographs tucked inside, peeking through the front of the glass.  I loved the idea and came home and adapted it to my taste:

{That’s a picture of my great aunt and grandmother when they were teenagers.}

It’s a great centerpiece for my kitchen table.  And P.S. – Kristen took the family pictures I have up in the background.  Here’s a close up:

This past week I created something special to share with you guys, though.  Just for you!!!  I’ve had these bookends for years now:
I {heart} them so much.  They are beautiful and match my living room perfectly.  But until now they were kept in my secretary with some of my oldest, most treasured novels.  And you could hardly see them in there.  So I wanted to figure out a nonconventional way to use them and really show them off.  With my abundance of ancestry photos, I started playing around with the idea of decoupaging them to the flat side of these bookends.  And if I had duplicates of these photos, that is totally what I would have done, because I love that look.  But I don’t have duplicates, so I compromised and did this instead:
Just used a few adhesive photo corners, and I intend to cut up a page protector or something to protect the front of the photographs from dust and fingerprint.
The bookends now sit on either end of my piano:
The significance to these pictures is that the first one is of my great, great grandfather, to whom this very piano originally belonged, and the second one is of my great uncle, who funded most of my musical education growing up and into college.  Music is a huge part of my life, as a result of these 2 individuals.  You can find pictures of other ancestors who were very musical in my home, too.  I love that I have a history rich in something that means so much to me.

Pictures are essential to home decor, in my opinion.  I love going to someone else’s house that has a bunch of pictures up.  Especially if it is someone you are still getting to know… it is fun to see them from different angles and in different settings!  Pictures tell a story that might not otherwise be told!

And while I’m on this soap box, do me a favor and make sure you have a picture of yourself on your wall!  {Look up a few pics and you’ll see I’ve got one of me and my husband on my wall!} I tend to see pictures of children and other family members more than I do of moms – who are the reason their family exists!  Don’t be afraid to get your picture taken once in a while.  Especially if you are lookin’ good!  {Speaking for myself, that doesn’t happen all too often.  Lol!}  I always encourage moms to let me take a “pretty” picture of them during my sessions.  And usually they are glad they did. 🙂

It was fun to be here today!  Thanks for having me, Kristen.  I’d love it if you guys would stop by my photography blog sometime and say “hey”!  You can also find me on Facebook.