by Kayla Sosa | photos courtesy of Elise Kutt
Empowering and creating relationships with women is what MOD Bettie Portraits, Grand Rapids’ very own female portrait boutique, is intent on doing. By providing an open, relaxing atmosphere and truly a day “all about you,” women walk away with much more than a stunning photo.
Five years ago, Elise Kutt launched MOD Bettie initially as an exclusive pin-up studio, but she soon realized she wanted to reach all women where they are. Now her photography studio, named after the Modern Bettie Page, offers a wide variety of packages including boudoir and glamour shoots, mommy and me sessions, bachelorette parties and personal branding.
The studio is “all-inclusive,” Kutt said, meaning that hair, makeup and wardrobe styling is offered on site prior to a shoot. The most popular package is a four-hour session that includes all of the services.
“Having three or four of us all together for a four-hour photo shoot is just really fun,” Kutt said. “We’re your biggest cheerleaders. It’s four hours all about you, starting with hair and makeup. We’re talking all about you, we’re getting to know each other.”
“I wanted to make it really meaningful, and I wanted it to impact lives.”
Women can try on clothing from the MOD Bettie closet or bring their own outfits. After getting hair and makeup done, Kutt takes over for the photography portion. A videographer is also present documenting behind the scenes.
“We make you feel like a queen for four hours,” Kutt expressed.
The primary goal of a MOD Bettie photo shoot is to affirm an individual’s beauty and to help them build confidence.
“The images are sort of the icing on the cake,”she reflected. “It’s more about the four hours you spend with us. It’s about the experience and how good you feel.”
Kutt added that because women are surrounded by constant marketing of what the beauty standard should look like, she wanted to create a place where women didn’t have to feel those boundaries.
“I always knew that I wanted to be careful, that I didn’t want to use this empowerment marketing tactic as a tool for getting people through the door,” she divulged. “I wanted to make it really meaningful, and I wanted it to impact lives.”
Kutt recently created an online community for female empowerment and positivity, called #SQUADBETTIE. Women are invited to have conversations and talk about their lives or questions or concerns. Additionally, she organizes monthly meetups for the women to socialize and enjoy an event in the studio and boutique space.
Learn more at modbettie.com.