Behind the Scenes of a SCOUT Photo Shoot

An Interview with SCOUT’s Creative Director and Co-Founder, Deb Waterman Johns

When Deb decided to form SCOUT with her husband, she brought with her a vast array of color and textile industry knowledge and invaluable experience gained working for Vogue. As Deb puts it, it was the eighties and eighties fashion that was a time of complete and utter excess, the most luxe photo shoots and truly the epitome of style and glamour. This unparalleled exposure undoubtedly shapes the way SCOUT continues to evolve. Read on to see how Deb’s dynamic past continues to shape SCOUT’s growth.


How long have you been doing SCOUT photo shoots?

DWJ: Our first photo shoot was for the Spring 2012 fold out catalog. We paid a family friend $100 to come with us to our photographer’s studio in Baltimore as our very first SCOUT model. It is amazing how far we’ve come in 4 years. #of photoshoots

What is the best part of the photo shoots?

DWJ: I love gathering everything – hate putting it back! So much of what goes into the photo shoots is stuff from our house, my closet, my travels. It’s fun to pull all of these things together – you wouldn’t believe it if you saw it – our entire dining room is just a staging area for the ideas for the next shoot. 6 clothing racks, 16 Rump Roosts full of items I’ve purchased all organized by category. It’s an extension of the office.

shot_3_12121- webSCOUT SS12
Which photo shoot was your favorite?

DWJ: The 1st because it opened all sorts of possibilities for us and the most recent because we keep pushing the envelope. We have come a long way and it is really fantastic to watch and be involved in the evolution.

# of rump roosts

How did you prepare for the “Family Bag” shoot?

The inspiration for the whole “Family Bag” came from Kate, our VP of Creative Engagement. The ideas for conceptual looks + tendencies are where I get involved. I pull the outfits that our models will be wearing and the props. I make sure each shoot is in keeping with SCOUT’s overall look.

DSC_3003“Family Bag” lifestyle shoot FW15
What goes into the looks for each shoot?

DWJ: The looks are based on the destination, products and formality. Where are we? Are we at the beach or are we in a log cabin? What products need to be featured? And then what are we trying to convey.

# of clothing racks

What clothes are you pulling for the looks?

DWJ: I start with great basics – I buy a lot of great striped shirts, bright colored jackets and dresses, patterned pants that are color + white. It’s always a mix of high and low, Forever 21 and Prada, the attainable and the inspirational. SCOUT’s signature is an ageless model, dressed in high/low so anyone can look at them and think “it could be me!”

What are your favorite places to pull the looks?

DWJ: H&M, Zara, Forever 21. They all work because they mix with designer stuff.

What are some places you look for inspiration? Who are the people/companies who do it well in your opinion?

DWJ: For inspiration I relate to people who have an identifiable look. Kate Spade, you see their stuff and you know it. Zara, they do minimalist well, it works. Ralph Lauren, very luxe + “more is better” signature style. It’s very convincing and makes people want to be in them.



Come back tomorrow as we will be continuing our behind the scenes look at the “Family Bag” shoot and the models who partook!

Mary Jo’s Family Bag


Meet Mary Jo.

As a mother of three, she is always on the go. With no room to compromise on organization she has opted for SCOUT as the tote of choice for keeping her on the ball. “We love using SCOUT bags in my house – the colors and designs are always fun, and we have bags for various functions – from lunch/picnics, to sports/activity totes, travel gear, grocery shopping, pool/beach time, storage – the list is endless. SCOUT is a household name here! We give SCOUT bags as teacher, birthday, and hostess gifts and they are always a hit.”

Read on to see Mary Jo’s picks!


DSC_3351pictured (L to R): SCOUT Bagette in Chili Prepster and Glory Maze

“The Bagette is my go-to grocery bag. I always get compliments on the designs, plus it holds a TON of groceries and is super sturdy. The two different handle lengths are great, plus they fold and stack easily. I have about 8 in rotation.”


DSC_3380Pictured: SCOUT Halfpint in Bluey Lewis

“The girls use their SCOUT bags for so much – sleepovers, sports practice, lunches, dance class….my youngest, Anna, even uses hers to transport her dolls and their accessories. My son used a baguette as his summer camp bag.”


“The patterns and color selection are always great, my girls especially love them. (and I personally love hearing the witty new bag and pattern names you come up with each season!) They are easy to transport and easy to clean.  I love that there is a bag for every function, and the ability to personalize them is an added bonus!”

DSC_3421Join us tomorrow as we go behind the scenes of the “Family Bag” photo shoot. Creative Director, Deb Johns, will share her vision and all that goes into a SCOUT photo shoot!

Anne’s Family Bag


Meet Anne.

She’s newly married to a darling man named Dave. She’s busy as ever, balancing her work and new family. She has to stay organized and she uses SCOUT to help her do so! Below, to kickoff our three part series “In Search of the Perfect Family Bag,” she discusses some of the reasons SCOUT works for her life.

DSC_3490Anne is carrying the SCOUT Bacall cross body bag in Diamond Marine.  Available in November.

“Brunch is a big weekend activity in D.C. When I saw this SCOUT bag I was so surprised. I thought ‘I’ve never seen SCOUT like this before!’ It is great for going out and about in the city.”family bag bj bagBag of choice: The Ben Johns Bag (pictured left in Chili Prepster)

Why she loves it: “I use this SCOUT bag for a little bit of everything. From a gym bag to a weekend bag it is perfect because it folds flat and I love the pop of color!”

DSC_3689“I actually received this bag as a gift with my monogram with my new married name. It was a really sentimental touch to a gift that I use everyday.”

4 boyspictured: SCOUT 4 Boys in Bulldog Blue

“I’m always going back and forth between D.C. and Richmond, where my family lives. The 4 Boys is a great bag because I can throw anything in it. It is so easy to take things in and out of the house with just one bag.”

Why the 4 Boys bag is great for us: “We live in a small apartment and I love the 4 Boys because when it’s not in use it double as a storage piece.”


Join us next week as we take a look at how Mary Jo keeps her family of six in check with her perfect family bag!

Enjoy your weekend!

Go Bo 2015: #swagbag

#swagbagFor this years Go Bo festivities one of our classic bags – the Bagette – has been reserved as the official swag bag for all of the attendees to grab on their way out. The Bagette is amazing. It folds up incredibly thin and can be stowed easily in the tiniest crevice and then when you need it – it’s toting your Thanksgiving turkey and all of the fixin’s. It is incredibly durable and yet still unbelievably lightweight. Have we mentioned before our love for the Bagette?

Black & White is a high impact duo…never better than in this classic with a twist PLAID!  Lets load the Bachelor Plaid Bagette with B & W goodies that will energize your fall!

bagette bachelor plaid

Portable Boot Camp…everything you need for the best outdoor workout

SCOUT Bagette in Bachelor Plaid

bootcamp essentials

SKLZ TRAINERmat Sport Performance | SKLZ Weighted Jump Rope SetSKLZ Light Pro Resistance Band | Fitness Gear 5lb Rubber Hex Dumbbell

newbalances Nike-5-Pro-Core-Compression-Womens-Shorts-589365_011_A_PREM

New Balance Minimus 20v4 Trainer Nike PRO 5″ Training Shorts

Nike-Pro-Hyperwarm-Fitted-Crew-30-Womens-Shirt-620429_010_A_PREM tennis hat

Nike PRO Warm Crew 3.0POLO U.S. Open NYC Stretch Cap

Spicy Red punctuated with white is a dynamic combination for Fall…grab your favorite tailgate accessories and head to the game!bagette chili prepster

SCOUT Bagette in Chili Prepster the tailgate bag

Fishs Eddy Jumbo Black Speckle Enamel MugOrvis Red Plaid Jar with Lid Orvis Heritage Plaid Vacuum Bottle | Amy Sedaris Red Gingham Storage Bowl Hard Times Chili – Terlingua Red Spice Mix

tailgate blanket woolrichtailgate blanket

Woolrich Hudson’s Bay Scarlet Wool Blanket | Woolrich Wool Team Color Blanket

its cold outside zara hat keep calm alpaca gloves

Zara Text Print HatKnuckle Tattoo Gloves

hand warmers

Heat Pax Winter Hand Warmers

Navy and white twin in a clever greek key pattern with timeless appeal for a bagette with endless uses!  Family travels require toting necessities and novelties along the way…here is a survival kit for all ages:

bagette glory maze correct

“I’m bored!” “Are we there yet!?” “I’m hungry!” If you’re tired of these complaints, this is the bag for you! Be prepared! Combat boredom + hunger!

SCOUT Bagette in Glory Maze

anchor notebookAnchor Drawing Book

the family bag

Poppin Assorted Crayons, Set of 10 | Hoyle Super Jumbo Playing Cards Pirate’s Booty, Aged White Cheddar PopcornCrunch Time by Peanut Butter & Co. | Smooth Operator by Peanut Butter & Co. Honest Organic Super Fruit Punch UTZ’s Old Fashioned Pretzel Rods | Johnson & Johnson First Aid Kit

We love the idea of the perfect family bag. Join us tomorrow as we begin our look at how some of our real customers use their bags for their family!!

Go Bo 2015: Wild Wild West

gobo new year new themeGo Bo is officially upon us. This years theme: Wild Wild West. The invitation pictured above is designed in house by Deb. Each year’s invitation is another piece of artwork done in Deb’s signature style. She always sets the stage by included outfit inspiration for all of the attendees.Go-Bo-Email-Image

This year is particularly unique for the Wild Wild West theme because western wear is trending heavily in fashion right now. So how about splurging on a piece for your costume that you can wear all season long?

Western Fashion for Fall 2015

Fringed suede, distressed denim& chambray, bandana accessories, western boots and cowboy hats, waistcoat and long vests,native american blanket ponchos,western shirts,native american beading, western belts….all add up to a modern Urban Cowgirl look for fall!


Let’s just get this out of the way: NO self-respecting cowboy or girl leaves the house without the right hat and belt combo.

Saint Laurent Leather Belt | Forever21 Embossed Band Wool Fedora


Fringe, anyone? It’s time to embrace the trend; how are you working this into your wardrobe? We hope with this amazing jacket by Free People!

Free People Fringe Suede Jacket


Current/Elliott On The Fringe Trucker Suede Jacket | Saint Laurent Western Denim Shirt


Burberry Prorsum Fringed Suede Bucket BagFree People Willow Fringe Hobo | Zara Fringed Messenger Style Bucket

ralph jackets

Lauren Jeans Co. Western Denim Vest | POLO Ralph Lauren Fringed Suede Jacket


8PM Fringe Poncho Cape


H&M Denim Skirt Tamara Mellon Fringed Nubuck ShortsZara Fringed Mini Skirt


And the #fringefetish continues!

P.A.R.O.S.H. ‘Mindy’ Fringed Skirt


Zara High Heel Leather Ankle Boot with Fringes | Cinzia Araia Fringe Ankle Boots | Saint Laurent New Western Fringed Suede Ankle BootsSaint Laurent Babies Fringed Suede Boots


Free People FP Vintage Bandanas

Go Bo Go!: A History

gobo a history

Every year, as summer draws to a close and September rolls around, the Johns’ family enter full swing preparation mode for their annual fundraiser, Go Bo Go. Each year they throw together one of the most fantastic soiree’s of the year at their home, surrounded by hoards of family and friends. The Johns’ were first motivated to have this annual benefit as a result of their son Bo’s successful battle with cancer. The proceeds from the event benefit the Georgetown Emergency Family Relief Fund. Bo underwent treatment at Georgetown University Hospital and the Johns’ witnessed firsthand many families struggling to pay for all of the costs that arise when their children go through treatment. The proceeds directly benefit those families at Georgetown University Hospital. The Johns’ bring the community together for a great cause – and a great theme, each year. Anyone who has been to the party knows, the themes are meant to inspire your most fun and irreverent costume choices.

Go Bo is in it’s 11th year this year and over the years we have seen some particularly hysterical themes…

The Jersey Shore

DSC_9565DSC_9849 DSC_9852DSC_9596

British Invasion


Tacky Christmas


This years theme: Wild Wild West. Go ahead and let your imagination run wild. We’ve got some Western wear coming up on the blog for y’all tomorrow.

Reactivate Your Life: Eat Fresh!



Featured SCOUT Bags: 1. Bagette, Stripe Tease 9. Pocket Rocket, Montauk Mint

2. Ojai Cook Lemonaise 3. The Lemonade Cookbook 4. Basil Extra Virgin Olive Oil 5. Lemon Olive Oil 6. Chez Panisse Café Cookbook 7. Brad’s Raw Kale Chips 8. Lime Shaker 10. Lemon Pepper Seasoning Blend 

Thanksgiving Inspired Looks, Pumpkin Pie

pumpkin pie


Featured SCOUT Bag: Oh Buck It, Chai T

1. Narciso Rodriguez, Two-Tone Collarless Coat 2. Gucci, Striped Knit Cotton Sweater 3. Gucci, Python-collar Silk Dress 4.Ralph Lauren Collection, Paola Block-Heel Leather Sandals 5. Zara, Double Layer Combined Top 6. Giuseppe Zanotti, Croc-Print Leather High-Top Sneakers 7. Canada Goose, Camp Puffer Jacket 8. Zara, Patent Ballet Flat

Recipe Continued…

  1. Brush edges of pie shells with a damp pastry brush; arrange leaves around edges, pressing to adhere. Whisk 1 egg and cream in a small bowl. Brush leaves with egg wash. Cut 2 large circles of parchment; fit into pie shells, extending above edges. Fill with pie weights or dried beans.
  2. Bake pie shells 15 minutes. Remove weights and parchment; bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes more. Cool completely on wire racks.
  3. If using fresh pumpkin, discard seeds. Scoop out flesh, using a large spoon, into a food processor. Process until smooth, about 1 minute. Measure out 3 cups, and transfer pumpkin to a large bowl (reserve any remaining for another use; if using canned pumpkin, add that to the bowl instead). Add brown sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, nutmeg, remaining 6 eggs, and evaporated milk; whisk until combined.
  4. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Place pie shells on rimmed baking sheets. Divide pumpkin mixture evenly between shells. Bake until all but centers are set, 35 to 40 minutes. Let pies cool completely on wire racks. Cut into wedges, and serve with whipped cream.

Thanksgiving Inspired Looks, Mashed Potatoes


Featured SCOUT Bag: Original Deano, Midas Well

1. Carven, Oversized Curly Coat 2. Nina Ricci, Ruffled Lace Skirt 3. Helmut Lang, Fur-Collar Felt Coat 4. Maison Rabih Kayrouz, Fringed Dress 5. Jil Sander, Fluted Duster Jacket 6. Thom Brown, White & Gold Metallic Longwing Brogues 7. Dolce & Gabbana, Nude Crystal Accent Patent Flats 8. Chloe, Goergette Tiered Ruffled Skirt 

Thanksgiving Inspired Looks, Green Bean Casserole



Featured SCOUT Bag: Two Plate Special, Off the Chain 

1. Katie Ermilio, Bow-detail Satin Dress 2.ERDEM, Brenton embellished wool-crepe and jersey dress 3. Givenchy, Sequin Silk-crepe Dress 4. Dolce & Gabbana, Crystal-embellishe Wool Coat 5. Joseph, Commando Cargo Pants 6. No.21, Brunilde Sequin Pants 7. Prada, Fringe-Trim T-Pumps 8. Valentino, Rockstud Ballerina Flat