Hi! I'm SarahKate, welcome to my Blog!

My Speciality is honoring motherhood with Henna Tattoos, but I adorn women and their daughters for all kinds of reasons - birthday parties, rites of passage, even weddings. I love to adorn pregnant and breastfeeding women with henna then make beautiful photos for them. I live in Lafayette, CO and travel the front range from Colorado Springs, Denver and as far North as Fort Collins to find my living works or art. I am also the creative director of Artfull Mother magazine - a local magazine devoted to the interests of mothers and the art that empowers them!

  •  In 2008 I began my pregnancy art project, inspired by henna traditions practiced by women during the 8th month as well as postpartum in the rural regions in India. I had read about these traditions in Catherine Cartwright Jones's book, The Functions of Childbirth and Postpartum Henna Traditions

    After celebrating their pregnancy with henna, I offered to come to women's homes in the first month after birth and create our own version of the postpartum ritual, often hennaing their hand(s) and arm(s) while their baby was asleep in their lap. I would return to photograph these new mothers in their home and after a couple years of doing this, I asked if I could also photograph them while they nursed their baby. The first mama to really get into this and have me come to her home several times was Kala (in 2010), her photos are above. 


    I continued photographing breastfeeding mamas after applying postpartum henna. Women loved it! It was only a matter of time before someone asked me to do a new kind of postpartum henna, what I would start calling breastfeeding henna. Verna (above on right) was one of my first models for this new kind of art. 


    Breastfeeding is such a beautiful, natural act to witness. It fills me with appreciation for motherhood, especially the mother I'm photographing. I love honoring this phase in life. Here are some images of this type of work done in 2018. 

    I was so excited to share this kind of art with the world that our first issue of Artfull Mother magazine focused on Breastfeeding! See more back issues here, they are all free to read.

    Posted by SarahKate

  • Common Question: Do you have to be pregnant or breastfeeding to get henna from  SarahKate?
    Answer: No! I adorn women in all stages of life. The photos below are of women with either no children or grown children. 

    My Sacred Feminine Art Project has been going on several years now and I have really enjoyed exploring how the medium of henna & photography empowers women. I do plan to create a book in the 2020s with all the best photos (many of which are nude and will not be posted online). This book will include pregnant and breastfeeding mamas as well as all other stages of life. 


    I adorn women wherever they wish, often as a chest piece but I have done many thighs as well. For some of these sessions women lie nude in my heated studio while I adorn chest and belly with jewel like henna. 


    This art project includes women of all ages, and I have celebrated with many grandmothers. What a pleasure to hear their stories as they sit in my special henna chair. There is a reason that stage of life is often called the Wise Woman years. 


    Contact me if you'd like to get on my list for receiving art updates! 

    SKB@SarahKateButterworth.com
     

    Posted by SarahKate

  • Henna for both pregnancies, 2 years apart

    I first met this amazing mama in 2017 when she was celebrating her first pregnancy. There was a request for a peacock in a tree, an unborn baby, and the universe for her first henna design. The 2nd design, done this week, involved an elephant, turtle, her dog, moon & stars. I love the ideas women bring me! 


    Her dear young daughter and partner came in for photos when the henna was peaking in color and we got some sweet shots. How precious!


    I love photographing the henna designs close up. I mix up my henna paste by hand and include only natural ingredients, henna leaf powder, essential oil, lemon and sugars. 

    My hand made henna dries dark brown but it is not the dangerous "black henna" that you may have read about. This fake "henna" includes ridiculously dangerous chemicals that can cause terrible skin burns that can scar for life. Unfortunately this factory produced chemical "henna" is labeled "100% natural" and is sold in Indian grocery stores, Walmart, etc. Please be safe and only use hand made natural henna paste! If you need a good source just contact me and I'd be happy to sell some of my own henna or direct you to a website with trusted henna powder/paste. 

    Posted by SarahKate

  • Celebrating pregnancy as a family

    Today in the studio I photographed this lovely family! It's always so amazing to see how a child wants to interact with his mama's belly. This dear one was a pleasure to capture mid-kiss! 

    I loved the mala this mama had made in her Sacred Pregnancy group and we found some other purple silky things to bring it out. Celebrating pregnancy with this unique style of body art and photography is a deep passion of mine! 

    Below is a photo when the henna was freshly applied.

    Posted by SarahKate

  • Last December I had a really special couple come in to celebrate pregnancy together with henna. When we first start talking about her appointment, this lovely new mama looked online for inspiration and found an image of a woman and husband covered in body paint, with a tree that grew over the mama's belly and over the dad's arm as he held her from behind, with his arm covering her breasts. It was gorgeous how the branches of the tree connected solidly from the mama's belly to the dad's arm and then back to the mama's chest. 


      I listened to her other ideas for design elements... there were many that we explored! We incorporated a sense of dahlias, tiny baby footprints and the swirling flower element she's seen in my earlier work on my website. Below is some photos that inspired this work, it's from 2012! I remember this mama fondly... she was planning to name her daughter Zinnia and wanted me to cover her belly and chest in zinnias. 


      I loved how this henna ended up connecting this couple, an artistic representation of their growing bond, their growing family. So wonderful to get to know them and witness their deep love for each other. 


      They were also pretty creative in the photo session! We went through a bunch of poses ... it's really fun to keep changing colors and trying new ideas.


      The couple returned a few days later when the henna was peaking in color and we had another photo shoot. The weather was pretty cold that week so all the photos were taken inside, where it was warm enough for some shots with less silks involved.... photos to remember! 

    Posted by SarahKate

  • I first met this mama in 2015 when she came in for nursing henna and photos. It was great to catch up with her again and met her new baby! He is just 2 1/2 months old and so adorable.... more photos of him later! 
     
    The design started with a request for the tree of life, the Acacia tree. As I looked through my pile of inspiration she spied some giraffes and requested that they were included. And so the art began! 2 hours later I was blow drying her. 


      The nursing session was about a half hour, and we got a lot of GEMS! It is so powerful to witness the act of breastfeeding. 

    Posted by SarahKate

  • Snowy January moment

    Today's snowy weather reminded me of a snowy January in 2016, when Jennifer came to our studio for her 2nd pregnancy. It was an especially fun henna since her sister Erika was present too.


     Erika has been a long time supporter of the local mama community with her amazing birthing classes based on the philosophy Birthing from Within. She is one of Artfull Mother's Community Partners, read about her here.


    There was fresh snow when Jennifer came to the studio and we bundled up to photograph her outside in the Colorado wild... near Walden Ponds in Boulder. There is something really special about fresh snow! 


    I loved how the photos came out, and used them in the 2018 Winter issue of Artfull Mother. This magazine was such a massive creative endeavor and lasted for 13 glorious issues (3 years). They are all available to read online at ArtfullMother.com, check it out!  

    Posted by SarahKate

Pages

Schedule your henna pampering
and photography session
Schedule your henna pampering
and photography session
Schedule your henna pampering
and photography session