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Hi everyone,

I’m fairly certain everyone knows but just in case …

The huge news for Moments That Shine? We’re closing up shop for a while as we relocate from Toronto to Vancouver! It’s a huge and scary step but it’s a family decision that I’m bursting with pride over.

Being a BC girl, this is a dream come true. My entire family is there and that is something I didn’t want my daughter growing up missing. I also want to share it with my husband. The past 13 years here have been something I wouldn’t change for anything but it’s time for me to teach, guide and give for a change.

I leave an incredibly long list of friends because of my venture here. JBSmith Photography was my very first vendor-to-vendor meeting and Jessica became an instant ally and friend. Pretty sure I have a thing for photogs as the lovely Jennifer at Live Laugh Photograph is one of my most recent hug-upon-sight friends.
My clients have been incredible and for some strange reason, many became truly dear to me and it has stayed that way (looking at you, Kelly!). I’m not going to mention any more names as it isn’t needed. You know who you are.

And this isn’t the end of the road! In a couple months, after settling, I’ll reevaluate things and perhaps set up shop in the west!

All the best to all I won’t be seeing before I leave. My home in BC will always be a welcome spot

~ Cheers, Susan

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Oops. Thought I was back into the swing of things where blogging was concerned. This page says otherwise! For your viewing pleasure …


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So thrilled to see bands like The Lumineers getting recognized now. And since their current hit is related to (the amazing) Oscar nominated Silver Linings Playbook, thought I’d borrow their words for my quote this week.
Stars From Our Eyes is a great font to make things look a bit more romantic and personal. Awesome for wedding invitations (hint, hint) or even a surprise note for a loved one. Hmmm … maybe that’s what I’ll do next!
Ho Hey - The Lumineers

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Check out my Pinterest boards. They’re kind of awesome. Seriously.


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All You Need Is Love by
Photo by JBSmith Photography

If you’re in Ontario, you likely didn’t go anywhere on Friday night. Apparently Mother Nature decided to finally throw some serious snow our way. I’m not complaining. Other than the fact that my daughter has a huge aversion to getting her hands “dirty” with the white stuff, no harm is being done (famous last words).

So since I didn’t leave the house, I got to thinking about Valentine’s Day. When I was wee, it was my favourite made up holiday. Now that I’m an adult, it can be a bit of a pain. I love my husband to death, romance rocks, beautiful feelings should be celebrated … but having *one* designated day a year for it is kind of forced. That’s the general consensus in my household anyhow. Years ago when my husband and I agreed about our feelings for February 14th, we decided to do something about it. Yes, we’d celebrate + get a gift for each other … but we had to have fun + put some thought into it. The Scavenger Hunt/Criteria Gift Idea was born (no, we don’t have a good title for it). Here’s how it works.

At some point when one of us realizes Valentine’s is coming up, we panic. Just kidding. We sit down and come up with five criteria for the gift. What we end up buying/making has to meet three of the five criteria + it has to cost us under $50. This year I think I emailed him and said we needed to come up with the list. He emailed me back with, “Octagon!”. Well played, husband. Well played. We went back + forth from there. This year’s list is:

1. Octagon
2. Purple
3. Metal
4. Plastic
5. Circle

Neither of us has bought the gift yet but I do know what I’m getting … and I always go for bragging rights so I’m aiming for all five. Wish me luck everyone. I’m going to need it.

Oh. I did post about this before a couple years ago here and here. Hopefully our wacky ways inspire some others <3

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Oh Parisienne, how I love you … and the Fleetwood Mac song, Sara …


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It’s not much of a secret now that I’m focusing more on the product side of Moments That Shine. This is because keeping a two/almost three-year old amused is *MUCH* more time-consuming than I ever imagined. I’m not complaining one bit as these years are something I wouldn’t miss for anything. So to balance out things a bit, readers will notice a lot more jewellery being added to the blog/etc. Invitations are also on the plate but let’s be honest … bling is more fun. Here are just some of the things available in the shop. Contact me at inquiries{at} for more info.

Grays and Blues Teardrop Crystals Necklace by Moments That Shine
Grays and Blues Teardrop Crystals Necklace

Purple Swarovski and Chinese Crystals Fireworks Earrings by Moments That Shine
Purple Swarovski and Chinese Crystals Fireworks Earrings

Brass Bird Charm with Crystals and Pearls Necklace by Moments That Shine
Brass Bird Charm with Crystals and Pearls Necklace

Beige Gemstone and Pink Chinese Crystals Brass Bracelet by Moments That Shine
Beige Gemstone and Pink Chinese Crystals Brass Bracelet

Coral Resin Flower with Champagne Chinese Crystals Necklace by Moments That Shine
Coral Resin Flower with Champagne Chinese Crystals

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Let me start off by saying by no means am I a professional photographer (or a wannabe!). I also don’t use my camera to its full capabilities so I’m not the most knowledgeable amateur out there. But in the three or so years that I’ve had my fancy-dancy DSLR I’ve taken over ten thousand pictures. This is mainly because I have a toddler + I’m in love with taking consecutive shots. If you click a hundred times, one is bound to turn out, right?

Product photography is a bit different though. I’m constantly learning ways that I can improve the angle, mode, lighting … the list goes on. This post is less of a DIY + more of a love letter to everyone else that goes through the same process. Sometimes the sessions go wonderfully but others, like my last one, are riddled with speed-bumps.

This poor necklace had the misfortune of seeing very little light out of my bay window …


That was kind of disheartening since it was a custom piece of (shiny!) jewellery that I want to show off. I may very well end up using it in my portfolio with a little TLC. So it’s off to whatever photo editing program I felt like that day.

Step #1 … re-size that baby (done).

Step #2 … start adjusting things! My first stop is to always look at the brightness and contrast. The necklace – or whatever product I’m working on – should be the focal point. I prefer shooting against a white background as it makes things pop that much more.

Beaded Crystals and Pearls Necklace by Moments That Shine

Step #3 … still not quite what I’m looking for so time to look at other goodies. Exposure, Gamma Correction and Vibrance are all favourites of mine.

Beaded Crystals and Pearls Necklace by Moments That Shine

At this point I’m content. It isn’t perfect but considering I have what seems like a gazillion more to do, I’ll take it! There is one last thing though.

Step #4 … add a logo/watermark/website! Please please please don’t forget to do this. It doesn’t always have to be big + in your face (in fact I’m not a fan of my full-sized logo on many pics) but one should be careful. There’s a great chance one of my images will wind up someplace else so I want to make sure people can always trace it back to me.

Beaded Crystals and Pearls Necklace by Moments That Shine

So my hat is off to everyone else who does the same thing as me. It may seem simple enough but when you add up all of the images, it can be overwhelming. I can only imagine how bug-eyed professional photographers get + how much patience they have!


I love making gifts for friends + family. That is all.

Mini Kaleidoscope Earrings by Moments That Shine

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I’m not really sure how I got into offering invitations as a service for my business. I’m fairly certain it must have had something to do with my insane obsession for stationery. This can be traced back to grade school. I was the geek who loved the end of summer simply because it meant getting to go back to school shopping. When I was older and saw all the lovely goodies at craft supply stores, I was sold. Art was were it was at.

So I suppose adding invites was a logical thing. I get to play with paper, ribbon, pencils … and fonts. I am font-obsessed. Not only do I have hundreds but I seek out new ones constantly. For a little end-of-the-week fun I think I’ll put together quotes/etc in a new series called … Fontastic Fridays!

Here’s the great *free* font Channel and a quote from my favourite song.

Blew It Again quote in Channel font

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