Category: Weddings

In anticipation of my 2015 Love & Splendor Workshop (registration opening SOON!), I’m working my way through a recap of last year’s event.  (Welcome Recap / Day 2 Recap) I have loved revisiting the images from this special experience; it all flew by too quickly so these pictures help me savor all those special moments and memories one more time.  Thank you again (and again) to my dear friend Ryan Ray, who captured everything in such a beautiful way.

On the final day of the L&S 2014 workshop, we had another full schedule of speakers + instruction.  Day 3 speakers included Brittany Castro of Financially Wise Women, Carissa Jones of JL Designs and Jesi Haack of Jesi Haack Design.  I felt like we had a great mix of practical presentations (lots of nitty gritty facts and info) as well as anecdotal accounts, shared experiences, street smarts kinda stuff.  😉  There are so many unique paths people have taken into this industry and I am glad my attendees were able to see a handful of them!

Also it was very important to me that the workshop remain mostly instructive on a practical, replicable level.  I know there are a lot of fun sessions we could have filled our day with, learning various creative skills or participating in artistic lessons.  But, ultimately, I don’t think it serves my attendees to dabble in things that will not add value to their services.  I will never be a florist or a calligrapher for my clients because there are so many people who excel in those areas — I want to leave it to the experts.  My primary roles include designer + planner + curator.  So, while I had a floral designer and a calligrapher work with me on the event, I chose to skip the ‘classes’ and keep the workshop syllabus more planning + design + business-strengthening focused.  If you are looking for a workshop that is heavy on the info, presented in a setting/environment/experience that will inspire, this is the one for you.  😉

the lovely Erica of 10.11 Makeup, who made me look & feel fabulous everyday

I was so blown away by my intelligent, creative, passionate attendees.  Love you ladies!

We ate like queens (again) thanks to the Ace Hotel’s LA Chapter.  My favorite items of the day were a baby gem lettuces salad, a treviso and arugula salad, fresh grilled fish with tomato and ginger relish, curried pork loin with capers and roasted broccoli and for dessert… cereal milk panna cotta and bruléed pineapple with coconut and banana mousse!  We also made sure to have snacks like olives, nuts, flatbread, crudité and fruit in the afternoon (along with the requisite restock of Stumptown coffee) because I love a good noshing station!

A fun part of Day 3 was an inspiration-to-reality tabletop design that I created with Carissa from JL Designs and many of our incredible sponsors.  I wanted to give the attendees a glimpse of the creative process, and how I work with a client in pulling together various elements and ideas and produce a cohesive design that WOWs.  For this special tabletop, I was instantly drawn to Delftware.  I have long loved the iconic white and blue patterns of traditional Delft pottery.  With Carissa’s help, we designed a table that was Dutch-inspired, mixing in things like mango and acacia wood, monobotanical arrangements of blooms (many indigenous to the region of inspiration) and modern candlesticks.  I loved the way the table looked and felt: layered, textural, lush and feminine yet natural and almost pastoral… with a breath of fresh modernity.  Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE to play with patterns and am drawn to things with a sense of whimsy.  This is true in how I dress, how I decorate my home, and I how I like to design an event.  This tabletop was totally ‘me’ in every way and I had the best time putting it together with Carissa and our creative colleagues.

The foundation was created by a gorgeous wooden farm table from found vintage rentals, set atop a gorgeous blue rug and surrounded by unique but complementary wooden chairs.  The table was topped with the most beautiful blue garden collection china by Casa de Perrin.  Chic teak flatware kept the tabletop from looking too traditional, as did the mix of floral vessels (traditional pottery mixed with the clean lines of the wood bowls).  Cut crystal and dark blue goblets, along with sparkling salt cellars, added the perfect finishing touches to each setting.  La Tavola‘s linen in Wedgewood (one of my very favorite colors) was the perfect shade of inky blue to create an “anchor” with a runner and napkins.  I added my own sourced Delftware napkin rings (two patterns), too.  Sweet and Saucy blew us away with her hand-painted masterpiece of a cake, mimicking the patterns of Delft pottery, adorned with spectacular white sugar flowers.  I still can’t get over how incredible the cake was!  There were even hand-painted macarons to match; exquisite!  Get ready for photo overload in 3, 2, 1….

 

 

We wrapped the day with a Q&A session; I wanted to make sure everyone felt like they had a chance to ask about anything still left undiscussed.  The truth is we could have spent 3 more days together and still have a long list of questions.  Each attendee had their own vision, their own goals, and their own ideas of what they wanted to walk away with after the workshop.  My hope is that the attendees continue to look to me for any encouragement, support, direction and mentorship they may desire.  I have LOVED catching up with many (most!) of the attendees in the time since the workshop.  My door is always open to these ladies and that’s how it’ll stay.

There’s one more finale post in this recap series: the magnificent farewell dinner!  That post is coming soon so stay tuned.  :)  Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

I’m still in the middle of re-capping 2014’s Love & Splendor Workshop (HERE and HERE), but I had to share a little post of excitement about the location of this year’s workshop: San Luis Obispo, California.  I grew up in southern California but have made California’s gorgeous central coast my home for the past 3.5 years.  It is truly a magical place and as I tell people, it’s everything I love about California (stunning beaches, lots of natural beauty, varied landscapes, incredible food, sunshine and perfect weather) minus everything I dislike about California (traffic, smog, hustle and bustle).  While I am still in LA/OC frequently (with our families still living there, plus weddings), I feel an immediate sense of peace when I cross through the Gaviota Tunnel into the Santa Ynez Valley.  I feel truly blessed to live in a place where many people choose to vacation.

San Luis Obispo county is home to numerous microcommunities, each with its own unique look & feel.  If you love to see rolling hills of vineyards as far as the eye can see, head to Paso Robles (or parts of Arroyo Grande).  If the beach is more your style, my favorites include Shell Beach and Avila Beach.  Nearby Morro Bay reminds me of Monterey, with its charming embarcadero, docks, and wildlife (you can always spy an otter or sea lion nearby).  You can hike the Nine Sisters, bike in the city or the country, kayak along the coast (my husband’s favorite), and surf along Pismo Pier.  The farm to table concept is highlighted beautifully here, with easy access to locally grown food, local wild caught seafood and locally raised livestock.  Can you tell I love it here?

You may know that SLO was named as the “happiest city in America” by Oprah and highlighted as one of the top 4 happiest cities in the world by National Geographic and Reader’s Digest HERE but more recently, the New York Times did a piece on how to spend 36-hours in this idyllic area.  If you have 5 minutes to spare, check out their fun video with some glimpses of local favorites.  Also, the companion article shares many more fabulous recommendations, including my favorite local restaurant, Ember in Arroyo Grande.  Big hint: a good handful of things mentioned in the video and/or article will be incorporated in this year’s Love & Splendor Workshop.  I cannot wait to share the beauty and JOY of this area with new friends.

If you are looking for an inspiration, informative workshop experience that will also double as a soul-refreshing retreat, I can think of no better place to be than this fall’s Love & Splendor Workshop.  More info coming soon!!

I hope you’re having a fabulous Thursday — thank you for stopping by!

I’m back with another recap of last year’s Love & Splendor Workshop — an inspirational & informative time of learning for current and aspiring wedding planners and designers.  Many, many thanks to my dear friend Ryan Ray for all of these beautiful photos…  It meant the world to me to have you there! ((In case you missed it: Recap of the Welcome Dinner 2014))

I was so thrilled to host my first workshop at the Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles.  For this initial experience, I was looking for a venue that was centrally located (in LA), stylish, with fabulous in-house dining (knowing that breakfasts and lunches would take place there).  The Ace in DTLA fit the bill perfectly.  I was very pleased with everything from the space to the service and loved hosting my workshop there!  I had a good number of attendees staying on-site (from as far away as Greece and Canada, and three US states) which made it extra convenient, too.

We set up in Segovia Hall (the main meeting space at the Ace DTLA) and brightened up the industrial-inspired space with colorful La Tavola runners punctuated with coral charm peonies (one of my favorite blooms of all time).  My workshop logo by Julie Song Ink prominently features this very bloom, so it was fun to see my logo “come to life” thanks to JL Designs.  Each guest was greeted with a placecard penned by Anne Robin.  I hung a custom tote bag from each chair, filled with some curated gifts gathered just for them:

  • Jasmine body oil by Herbivore Botanicals — one of my favorite all-natural products; an everyday luxury
  • Mini-Mergency kit from Pinch Provisions — filled with all the essentials you need for your purse or on a wedding day!
  • A colorful watercolor print by Julie Song Ink
  • Two beautiful notebooks from Rifle Paper Co.
  • Stylish crossbody cell phone cases by Vanesa Rey
  • Marble-papered clipboards (which I  made for each attendee)
  • My signature heart sunglasses
  • A beautiful linen binder I filled with templates and information for our time together
  • Pens by Le Pen

In addition to the classroom seating, I had my friends at {found} vintage rentals set up a perfect lounge in the back of the room.  Comfy chambray & indigo upholstered furniture, cement & wire tables and cushy poufs created an ideal setting for mingling during meals and breaks.  I loved how the bright and colorful flowers (again, inspired by my logo) popped in that space.  Carissa, you are magic!

We kicked off our first day of instruction bright and early with a scrumptious breakfast buffet, complete with a mini-fridge stocked with Stumptown Coffee.  Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE coffee, so this was a special “must have” for me.  We emptied that fridge (with re-stocks) two days in a row!  On the menu that morning: soft scrambled eggs, a seasonal frittata, bacon, chorizo, and a decadent waffle station.  YUM.  Then we dived into a packed day of learning, including guest speakers Jen Campbell of Green Wedding Shoes and film photographer Ryan Ray.

iPhone snap with Jen // love this lady and am so grateful for her support!

another iPhone snap: Ryan in action before the day began

Our beautiful lunch spread featured a bibb heart salad with radishes, blue cheese and pumpkin seeds, a roasted vegetable + kale salad, hanger steak with balsamic onion and fingerling potatoes, and buckwheat soba with fresh seafood…as well as a surprise treat of Sweet & Saucy x Sweet Lucie’s organic ice cream sandwiches.  I take my meals very seriously…

Our first day topics laid the foundation covering things like: starting your business, contracts, attracting and booking the clients you want, building strong vendor relationships, handling paperwork, branding, social media, and more.  I loved engaging with the ladies, fielding questions, and sharing my passion and experiences with each of them.

a photo of all the ladies in their new heart sunnies!

I gave attendees the evening to mingle and enjoy on their own, so Michy and I headed to Bäco Mercat (soooo yummy) for a little celebratory dinner.  I completely knocked out when I got back to my hotel room; it was such a full, magical day.

I’ll be back soon with a recap of Day 3, and lots of images of the gorgeous Delft-inspired tablescape I put together with Carissa of JL Designs.  I hope you have a wonderful week!!

**If you’re interested in learning more about how to start, build, elevate and nurture your own wedding planning business, I hope you’ll join me for the next Love & Splendor Workshop taking place this fall, September 14-17, 2015, in beautiful San Luis Obispo!  Save the date; more details coming soon.  Registration will open later this month!!

I am getting SO excited about doing another Love & Splendor Workshop this fall in beautiful San Luis Obispo, California.  I catch myself daydreaming constantly about it, and have been working hard to put together another incredible experience filled with instruction and inspiration.  If you missed the announcement post about this year’s workshop, click HERE!

There are lots of details to share soon, and I hope to open registration in a few weeks.  Today, I wanted to give you a better look at what happened at last year’s inaugural workshop.  You may have seen glimpses of the workshop on Green Wedding Shoes (Part 1 and Part 2), but today I’ll be sharing a more unabridged recap of the event.  I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to look back on these beautiful images by my dear friend, Ryan Ray.  The entire workshop experience was magical, from start to finish.  I loved meeting these creative women and sharing my heart with them!

I kicked off the 2014 Love & Splendor Workshop with a welcome dinner at The Salon — the private tasting room of Heirloom LA.  If you follow me on Instagram or have been reading my blog for any length of time, you know how I feel about Heirloom.  They are set apart in the industry as champions for sustainable, local, & organic foods.  They put together beautiful menus that feature the best of the season.  They work hand-in-hand with small farms and purveyors to utilize the most interesting and flavorful ingredients.  Most of all, their food is INCREDIBLE and is prepared with a great amount of love, care, and intention.  I frequently say if Chef Matt is in the kitchen, I want to be at the table.  I can never get enough Heirloom LA, and neither can my clients!  My favorite meetings are tastings at Heirloom LA because really, how can it get better than working while eating scrumptious food??  I knew I wanted to share the intimate “tasting” experience with my attendees for this welcome workshop, so there was no better setting than the The Salon.

With the perfect sized group of 15 attendees and a handful of vendors, we were seated at two tables: one large “horseshoe” shaped table and a second dining table.  Chef Matt prepared the entire meal in front of us, in the center of the horseshoe, answering questions about the food as we went.  It was the ultimate foodie experience and I heard many tell me that night that it was the best meal they had ever had.  That makes me so happy!!  I wanted to simply enjoy our first night together in a more casual way, getting to know each other, laughing together, and bonding in that unique way that only comes from breaking bread with one another.

I embraced a black & white palette for this event, with a slight “newspaper” influence.  With such a limited color palette, I knew I’d have to bring in lots of layers, patterns, and textures to add visual interest.  It was fun designing in black and white… especially for a color-lover like me!  Menus read, “Extra! Extra! Eat all about it!” (I couldn’t help myself…) and were formatted in columns like a page out of the newspaper.  A chalkboard was covered with modern b&w typography prints featuring inspirational quotes, offering uplifting “headlines.”  I loved using a geometric b&w patterned rug from found as an anchor in the room, along with a black dining table and industrial bar cart for the welcome drinks.  La Tavola‘s abstract b&w patterned runners and napkins made the perfect statement on the tabletops.  One of my favorite details?  The opaque black and white goblets from Casa de Perrin, white signature collection chargers, and ebony flatware.  So chic!  Carissa from JL Designs topped tables with white bud vases filled with b&w textured blooms (we needed lots of space for food, so these petite pieces added just the right amount of height and interest to the tables) and placesettings were noted with placecards hand-lettered by my friend and favorite calligrapher, Anne Robin.  The look was simple and unfussy but still brimming with playful details.  I can never resist adding a little bit of whimsy when I can…  I even dressed the part, in a black and white dress from Anthropologie topped with a loud & crazy Alice + Olivia embroidered jacket.

As guests arrived, I greeted each one (alongside my amazing assistant, Michelle) and they were offered a beautiful hand-crafted drink.  I was crazy about the “mocktail” we served up which featured passion fruit juice, pear nectar, lemon juice and sugar.  Yum!  As attendees trickled in, they noshed at one of Heirloom’s signature crostini stations: a feast for the senses brimming with artisan cured meats, fresh milk cheeses, olives, organic pickled vegetables, grilled flatbreads, housemade crostini and a variety of dips, nuts and butters.  I made sure we took care of our two gluten free attendees (Hi sweet J & L!), too!

I made a brief welcome and let Chef Matt take it from there!  Our menu was as follows:

White Corn and Radish Salad: shaved carrots, mouse melon and cucumbers,
cherry tomatoes, tomatillo vinaigrette, toasted ricotta cheese and spicy almonds.

Fresh Ricotta Cavatelli: plancha grilled pumpkin, fried sage, crumbled queso fresco,
charred spring onion, swiss chard swerved witha  pumpkin bisque velouté

Heirloom LA Syrah Braised Buffalo Short Ribs (!): served with tuscan kale,
natural jus and tuscan cabbage

Sautéed Baby Broccoli: with citrus vinaigrette, roasted fennel and dandelion greens,
spicy pumpkin seeds and a cilantro vinaigrette

Flourless Chocolate Cake: topped with dark chocolate ganache,
creme anglaise and seasonal berries

My mouth is watering just reliving that perfect meal!

what can I say?  I get excited about food, clearly…

By the end of the evening, I felt like we had all successfully broken the ice and made some new friends.  It was the ideal way to kick off our time together and give the attendees “just a taste” of what was to come…  Each attendee left with a food-inspired gift along those lines, featuring a favorite ascolana olive oil from Il Fustino and artisan finishing salt from Jacobsen Salt Co.

VENDORS: Design & Styling by Love & Splendor | Photography by Ryan Ray | Catering by Heirloom LA | Venue: The Salon by Heirloom LA | Furniture Rental by Found Vintage Rentals | Tabletop Rental by Casa de Perrin | Floral by JL Designs | Linens by La Tavola Fine Linens | Paper Goods by Love & Splendor in-house graphic designer, Kristin

I can’t wait to welcome a new bunch of attendees this fall and make new memories and new friends…

I’ll be recapping the rest of the workshop in 3 more posts coming your way soon!  :)  Until then, make sure to save-the-date for September 14-17 to join me for round 2 at beautiful Greengate Ranch in SLO!  One thing I can certainly promise is that the food will (once again) be utterly incredible.

I haven’t blogged in ages so let’s just put that aside for a moment.  Life with two little ones at home has certainly kept me busy!  I promise some catch-up posts are coming soon, including some wonderful wedding features and fun family updates.  Today, I am THRILLED to share (here on the blog) that I’m hosting the 2nd Love & Splendor Workshop this fall, September 14-17, 2015, at beautiful Greengate Ranch and Vineyard in San Luis Obispo, California!

I revealed the location of the workshop yesterday on Instagram, but wanted to give you a little more information about the stunning venue I selected for our time together this fall.  In case you are a newcomer to my blog or haven’t heard about the workshop in the past, let me first introduce you to the workshop itself.  Last fall, I had the privilege and joy of hosting my very first wedding workshop.  It took place at the Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles and 15 wonderful women (including one from Canada, and one from Greece!) joined me for a time of instruction and inspiration.  The Love & Splendor Workshop is an immersive educational experience for aspiring and current wedding planners and designers.  Whether you’re still dreaming of taking the leap into entrepreneurship, or have been working in the business for years, I believe that the workshop will facilitate growth, innovation and excitement for all of the attendees.  The workshop covers everything you need to know about starting and building a successful planning and design business, as well as how to continue to elevate your client experience, remain memorable in a saturated market, and develop and nurture incredible relationships with your colleagues and collaborators.  I strive to make the workshop an immersive experience, which means I plan and design every moment (from classroom sessions to spectacular meals together) to feel special.  I am blessed to have some amazing friends and collaborators on board (again! yes!!) and I can’t wait to reveal more details in the coming weeks…

On Monday I’ll be sharing some details about the workshop schedule and how some changes to the itinerary will help encourage even more connecting and learning.  For now, save the dates!!

Today’s workshop focus is a reveal of the location of the workshop: Greengate Ranch and Vineyard in beautiful SLO, located on the central coast of California.  One of the key distinctions with this year’s workshop is that I chose a private property as our home base, rather than a hotel.  I wanted to create a more retreat-like atmosphere and experience, where we had more opportunities to mingle, socialize, dream and share together.  I can’t imagine a more perfect place to do this than Greengate.

Greengate is a working ranch and vineyard set in the Edna Valley, a winemaking region here in CA.  Surrounded by lush green hills, the sprawling property features a variety of settings for special events including two luxury rental homes, grassy open lawns, a pond and a stunning barn and courtyard.  There are chickens and horses on-site, and I’m not kidding when I say the birds just sing sweeter there.  I’ll have to post a video up on IG that I took yesterday morning… I couldn’t believe the beautiful song they sang for my arrival.  😉  Greengate Ranch frequently hosts incredible weddings and events, but their wonderful grounds make it perfect for a workshop retreat as well!  There are a number of accommodations on-site that will facilitate smooth travel arrangements.  I will outline accommodations in a future post but it will be a first-come, first-served basis for accommodations.  The first attendees to sign up with get “dibs” on the magnificent rooms on-site.  But don’t you fret — the other attendees will stay in phenomenal 2-bedroom oceanview suites at a four diamond resort just 15 minutes away (with shuttle provided back and forth each day).  So the real question is, do you want the vineyard or ocean view??

We will spend our “classroom sessions” in the ranch house’s gorgeous library/den or great room, with that golden California light pouring in through the windows.  But with this beautiful setting, I imagine so many more unique and valuable learning opportunities.  I see breakfast around the gigantic kitchen island, sitting on barstools and sharing stories and dreams together.  I see us roasting marshmallows out back (I’ll bring plenty so please don’t let me be the only one… haha), wrapped up in blankets under the sparkling stars.  I know it sounds crazy but there’s something about a bonfire that helps people open up.  I’ve had so many great conversations with friends around a fire… I look forward to the ones I’ll have with you this fall!  To top it off, many/most of our speakers will be staying with us on-site (yes!!) which means instead of just 45 minutes listening to a speaker from a distance, you will have more opportunities to ask questions, get to know everyone, and build genuine relationships.  Someone pinch me, because I seriously can’t imagine anything better than a giant sleepover with my favorite friends & colleagues plus the new ones I’ll be making.  :)

I’ll be taking advantage of all the unique venues on-site at Greengate to design some magical experiences.  If you want a taste of the scale of the workshop, take a peek at these posts Green Wedding Shoes shared from the last workshop: HERE and HERE.  You can expect the same attention to detail this time; I definitely don’t hold back when it comes to spoiling my attendees!

I have a LOT more to share next week (schedule! speakers! collaborators! a full recap of what we did last year!) but I’m going to wrap up now with some photos I snapped at Greengate yesterday.  You can see much more on their website as well — I thought it was easier to direct you there then re-post them all here!  😉

Enjoy your Friday and see you back here next week!

I have been dying to share this special celebration with you, and I am thrilled that the day has finally arrived!  Tina and Brian’s incredibly creative, colorful, and detail-laden 5-year vow renewal is featured today on Green Wedding Shoes (thank you, sweet Jen!).  Make sure you scoot on over to feast on all the eye candy, courtesy of my talented friend Braedon Flynn.  It is always an honor to be featured on Green Wedding Shoes and I think it’s the perfect venue to debut these stunning images.

I couldn’t resist sharing my own post today, whittled down to some of my favorite images from the day, as well as some extra background and details.  I had the hardest time selecting photos because this event was seriously jam-packed with gorgeous.  Everywhere you turned, there were layers and layers of beauty and visual interest.  I hope you’re pulled up in a comfy chair and ready to dive into all the goodness.

Tina and Brian are a very special couple to me, because we go way, way back to 2009.  Tina had been a blog follower even before her engagement, and I was blown away when she contacted me to help her style her nearly 800-guest wedding in Taipei, Taiwan (!!!) *and* her stateside reception in Los Angeles.  We clicked from the very start, and I can tell you that she truly become one of my most precious friends since then.  When she told me she wanted to throw a 5-year vow renewal celebration, and wanted me to be a part of it again, I was over the moon.  Tina, for you — any party, anytime, I’m there.  😉  It is a dream working with a friend/client who is so creative and stylish herself, yet also yields to her vendors an amazing amount of trust.  She had such a strong sense of vision from the get-go, and all we had to do was embellish and breathe life into it!

For this occasion, I had the pleasure of collaborating with  my dear friend, Tori Hendrix of Sitting in a Tree Design, on the design for the celebration.  We had a perfect creative synergy and had a blast working together!  The vow renewal was drenched in rich colors embracing a jewel-toned palette (inspired by Tina’s background as a gemologist) that included sapphire, emerald green, deepest purple, oxblood, onyx and metallic accents.  Texture also played a big part in the overall event design, and elements such as leather, ponyhair hide, herringbone tweed and velvet all made their way into the look of the day.

Tina blew us away right out of the gate by setting the tone with her one-of-a-kind invitations.  You guys, it was the kind of invitation that you wonder how you can display forever.  (No wonder, since Tina is a gifted calligrapher and hand lettering artist that goes by Miss Multee.)  A custom black acrylic box was topped with a geode “handle” like a sleek jewelry box.  Inside upon a velvet pillow, an agate slice was hand-lettered in gold ink.  Accessory cards were also done in Tina’s calligraphy, letterpressed and foil stamped by Copper Willow.  A black leather tag wrapped around the entire box on a length of black suede cord.  It took my breath away!  Best of all, Tina had thoughtfully chosen each geode and agate slice to match the style and sensibilities of the recipient.  No two were alike.

They invited 30 of their nearest and dearest to be present for this momentous occasion.  Though the celebration was intimately-sized, the details were larger than life and styled for maximum impact.  Upon arrival, guests encountered a station with an array of floral crowns and boutonnieres to adorn themselves.  They grabbed a beverage and followed a path through a set of striking green vintage doors to enter the ceremony space, where sumptuous upholstered furniture from Found Vintage Rentals faced a bougainvillea-draped arch by Siren Floral Co.  Overhead, hundreds of agate slices were strung as linear garlands, creating an aerial “cloud” (one of our earliest design ideas).

The incredible dinner, artfully prepared by Chef Matt of Heirloom LA, was entirely vegetarian (and mostly vegan).  Tina and Brian, both vegetarians, were excited to share an inventive meatless meal with their guests.  Creative courses included beet greens ravioli, coddled eggs and potatoes served in miniature mason jars, and the tiniest casserole dishes filled with vegetarian bibimbap: a spicy and savory Korean rice dish.  Sweets were plentiful, with macaron ice cream sandwiches by Sweet and Saucy Shop and Sweet Lucie’s, as well as an assortment of mini desserts and cakes by The Scootabaker.

Guests enjoyed the evening at one of four uniquely-designed tablescapes.  Each table featured a unique color story and design details.  It looked like a veritable showcase of the Casa de Perrin inventory, because we were able to play with so many incredible pieces from their collection.  One table featured ponyhair, succulents, airplants, cement, clear glass, corrugated zinc and wood.  A second table was topped with black leather placemats (made by Tori), sapphire blue glassware and milkglass budvases filled with bursts of berry-colored florals.  The third table showcased green glass demijohns from Found, filled with bougainvillea.  Black taper candles in brass candlesticks completed the moody look.  The couple themselves joined their friends at the fourth vignette: a breathtaking green wooden table topped with dazzling gold details, aubergine glassware and a literal treasure chest overflowing with florals.  Rachael of Siren Floral Co. beautifully executed the floral vision to capture the wild, romantic, lush feel of the day.  Although each table felt distinct, they were tied together in the scale of their design.  I spent most of the day debating which one was my favorite and I think I changed my mind 100 times!

Tina and Brian are a truly unique couple, inspiring those around them with their impeccable taste as well as their generous and loving hearts.  Everyone present, myself included, felt blessed to be a part of such a special celebration.  Sitting down as a guest that evening was the ultimate gift, because I am thankful to be invited into their lives after all these years.  I wish Tina and Brian only the best for the future and am already counting down until their 10-year anniversary!

Vendor Dream Team

photography: Braedon Photography // wedding planning + design: Love & Splendor // venue: The couple’s home in Los Angeles, California // wedding design + styling: Sitting in a Tree Events // florals: Siren Floral Co. // videography: Elysium Productions // invitations, favors + calligraphy: bride, Miss Multee // printing studio: Copper Willow Paper Studio // makeup: e2beauty // hair: 1011 Makeup // furniture rentals: Found Vintage Rentals // tabletop rentals: Casa de Perrin // welcome drinks + dessert bar rentals: The Hostess Haven // table linens: La Tavola // geodes, agates + crystals: All sourced by bride // concrete planters: Concrete Geometric // bar: Please & Thank You Bar // catering: Heirloom LA // desserts: The Scootabaker // macaron ice cream sandwiches: Sweet & Saucy Shop + Sweet Lucie’s // bride’s gowns: Rachel Gilbert // bride’s shoes: ValentinoStella McCartney // bride’s headpieces: Twigs & Honey // groom’s suit: Club Monaco // shirts: Club Monaco(multee)project // shoes: Cole Haan // watch: Rolex // live musician: Kevin Miso

And I can’t end this post without sneaking these personal photos of us at the celebration.  See that ridiculous swing that Rachael made??  Braedon snapped a dozen photos of Olive on it and they’re easily some of my favorites of my little girl!  Thanks also to Erica of 10.11 Makeup who did my hair and makeup as a gift from Tina (!!!).

 

Happy Friday, everyone!!  I thought I’d send us off into the weekend with some beautiful engagement photos from one of my 2015 couples, Makenna and Tyler.  Although I’ve yet to meet Tyler, I just ADORE Makenna!  She is an absolute joy and I feel truly blessed to be working alongside her (and her darling mom!) on her wedding next year.  Clients like Makenna remind me how very fortunate I am to do what I do.  After nine + years in this industry, this is what keeps me going: the sincere connections I am able to build with incredible people.  It is a privilege and joy.  Can’t wait for this beautiful day to unfold next fall… it’s going to be one for the books!

Makenna — thank you for entrusting me with the planning of your special day.  Love you!!

Here are some sneak peeks of their recent engagement session with I Heart My Groom.  Although Madison and Felicia aren’t shooting the wedding, they did a stunning job with these heartfelt images.  <3

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!  My big tasks are to  finalize my Thanksgiving menu (can’t wait to be hostess for the first time!), do some grocery shopping, and deep clean the kitchen.  See you soon!

Today is an exciting day for our family, as Erik’s older sister is getting married!  We are so thrilled for her and her fiancé, whom we’ve known and loved for years now.  They will exchange vows after dark, in a super romantic rooftop ceremony in downtown Los Angeles.  As a fun bonus, Erik, Olive and I are all in the wedding!  I’m a bridesmaid, Erik is a groomsman, and Olive is one of two adorable flower girls.

One thing I am NOT, however, is the wedding planner.  😉  Although I assisted in pulling a few things together for Meg, I really wanted to enjoy the wedding day as a member of the bridal party and family.  I am grateful for some sweet friends who will be managing the set-up and day-of details so we can all relax today.

The wedding has an underlying Art Deco and Gatsby-inspired theme, since her venue is a historical building with period architecture and furnishings.  This made it a ton of fun picking our my bridesmaid dress (we all go to pick our own!) and accessories.  My lovely friend Heather from Twig and Twine did the dark and moody florals — I can’t wait to see everything come together!  Feel free to check my Instagram today where I’m sure I’ll post a few sneak peeks of the big day, too!

photo by Callaway Gable

Congratulations, Megan and Anthony!!  We love you so much and are truly delighted to see you join together in marriage.  Let’s celebrate!

Everyone else — enjoy the weekend and see you soon!

It’s true — I haven’t blogged in ages!  As things got busy around here with my final weddings of 2014, the blog took a backseat.  Then, I spent the majority of the last month finalizing preparations for the very first Love & Splendor workshop.  I’m here to report that by God’s grace, the event was a smashing success.  I am still floating on cloud 9 from the experience, and I know it will be a few weeks before I can fully process the beauty of it all.  It will also be a bit before we see the professional film photos from Ryan Ray (eek!!) so these iPhone snaps will have to do for now…

This past Sunday, as I scurried around the Heirloom LA Salon with Michelle, prepping for the welcome dinner, I confessed that my heart was beating wildly in my chest.  She couldn’t fathom why I’d be nervous.  After all, I’m definitely not afraid of public speaking, and I was totally prepared and ready for the workshop itself.  I told her that I thought my nerves were a mix of excitement, anticipation and maybe even a bit of self-imposed pressure.  I spent nearly a year thinking about hosting a workshop, and then planning every last detail.  I wanted to present a workshop that was impactful, educational, and inspiring.  Once we had our attendees locked in and registration closed, I think it became real to me.  There were 15 incredibly passionate, intelligent, creative women coming to this workshop — would I meet their expectations?  Would I be “worth” the journey some were making (from as far as Greece, Canada, Detroit, Pittsburgh…)?  In the end I knew all I could do was my very best, and all I could give them was myself, genuinely and freely.

Once the ladies arrived on Sunday and the introductory hugs were given, my nerves naturally calmed.  I felt truly humbled to spend a few days with this beautiful group of women, just sharing my heart, my story, and the lessons I’ve learned in the 9 years I’ve worked in this business.  With such an intimately-sized group (the perfect size!!), I got to spend time chatting with each of them, too.  I got to hear about their goals, their struggles, their desires.  We laughed together, I cried (haha! at least 3x on Tuesday — all happy tears!), and we shared some unforgettable moments.  When I walked into the farewell dinner at The Washbow, I burst into (joyful) tears.  I felt like I had finally given birth, in a way… something I had dreamed of for so long had finally come to fruition and I felt so blessed.  I am SO thankful I put on this workshop.  I am SO grateful to have met each of these hearts.  I can’t wait to keep in touch with each of them, following their journey in the years ahead.  Look out for these ladies — I think the L&S “alumni” are the best of the best for the future of this industry.  😉

I could not have put on this workshop alone and I plan to blog a bit about each of the speakers, collaborators and sponsors for this workshop in the weeks ahead.

Our amazing team included: Ryan Ray // Heirloom LA // Green Wedding Shoes // Jesi Haack Design // JL Designs // found vintage rentals // Julie Song Ink // Casa de Perrin // The Venue Report // Elysium Productions // La Tavola Linen // Sweet Lucie’s // Sweet and Saucy Shop // Financially Wise Women // The Washbow // 10.11 Makeup // Flipbooth LA // Jacobsen Salt Co. // Rosy Rings // Il Fustino // Pinch Provisions // Herbivore Botanicals // Malvi Joy // Solstice Canyon // Vanesa Rey // Rifle Paper Company

For now, let it suffice to say that I had the BEST team of people behind me for this workshop and that made all the difference.  Above all, I have to give all glory to God.  Anything good in me, any gifts that I have, come from Him.  I am so grateful for the opportunities He has given me.

I also have lots of general blogging catch-up (life, Olive updates, real weddings) to do.  Now that my 2014 season has come to a close, you’ll be hearing more from me here again!

I’ve already been asked many times — will you do another workshop?  I think the answer is a resounding yes.  But, before diving into that process, I will be taking time to relax, recharge and pray about it.  It’s important to me that each workshop has the same level of intention, purpose and attention to detail as this one did.  Once I have some information to share, you’ll hear about it!  If you would like to join the interest list for the next workshop (and have priority pre-sale for tickets before they are released), feel free to email workshops@loveandsplendor.com.

Thank you to each of you who has followed along here on my blog (or on Instagram) as I embarked on this inaugural workshop journey.  Your love, support, prayers and encouragement mean the world to me.

Have a wonderful weekend and chat again soon!

Happy Wednesday, everyone!  I’m back with another edition of Workshop Wednesday and I am thrilled that we are now just shy of TWO MONTHS until the Love & Splendor Workshop in downtown Los Angeles!  If you are thinking about joining us, don’t delay and grab your seat HERE.  We’d love to have you join us and the inspiring attendees from all over the country and world ( gasp! — we just had our first international attendee register all the way from Greece!  Hi V!).

Today I wanted to whet your appetites with some additional information about the fabulous speakers who will be joining us for the workshop in October.  I wanted to bring on speakers who were excellent communicators, experts in their field and passionate about what they do.  I also wanted to make sure that the content of their presentations was useful, informational and inspiring.  While I expect to have tons of fun during our time together at the workshop, my main goal is to fill our days with really practical, eye-opening, spark-igniting KNOWLEDGE and then a breakdown of the tools needed to get things into motion.  😉  So without further ado, here is a rundown on the all-stars (and my dear friends) who will be presenting at the workshop this fall…

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Ryan Ray, Film Photographer // Ryan is a highly sought-after photographer who shoots film exclusively.  He creates consistently stunning images that are full of emotion and natural beauty.  Ryan will be sharing about his experiences working with planners and designers, and what he finds to be their ideal and most helpful qualities and characteristics.  He will explain his creative process and how he collaborates with a designer on a shoot or a wedding day, styling each shot to perfection. Ryan exemplifies the importance of vendor relationships and aligning yourself with like-minded creatives as you hone in on your target clientele.  You will also get to witness the talent and passion of one of the industry’s foremost photographers and learn about his own story of finding success in a saturated market.

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Jen Campbell of Green Wedding Shoes // Jen Campbell, a formally trained graphic designer, started Green Wedding Shoes in October of 2008. GWS was born out of Jen’s desire to help couples dream up and plan weddings that reflect their personal interests and sense of style. GWS has since grown to become one of the most popular wedding blogs.

As the Editor and Creative Director of GWS, Jen works closely with top wedding industry talent and creative brides to showcase innovative and unique weddings, style photo shoots, share DIY ideas, and identify trends that give brides-to-be daily inspiration as they plan their big day. Green Wedding Shoes is widely recognized as the go-to wedding blog to find the most creative wedding ideas and vendors along with always keeping a high standard for gorgeous photography.

Ever wonder how to get featured on blogs like Green Wedding Shoes?  What is the editor looking for?  What makes a submission stand out (in a good way vs. a bad way) and how can you work with your photographer to style & shoot “for” submission?  Jen will address these topics and more, as she candidly shares her experience working with planners and designers all over the world.  She has a truly unique perspective as an industry figurehead and will make herself available for a no-holds-barred Q&A session following her talk.  You’re going to love getting to know the sweet Jen, and will benefit from a personal introduction to her in an intimate, encouraging environment.

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Jesi Haack Design // Jesi Haack is a designer, stylist and unmatched craft specialist.  She is the brilliant mind behind one of the hottest event design studios in the country, now bicoastal with outposts in soCal and NYC.  Jesi found quick success in the industry, making a name for herself with her out-of-the-box design style.  She mixes her fresh, playful style with a bit of irreverence for a modern take on celebrations of all kinds.  You will find her work all over the web and Pinned to no end.

How did she find success in a relatively short period of time?  Why did she quit planning and move toward design-only?  What does her wedding design process look like?  How does she remain ahead of the trends?  I know you will be pumped up by Jesi’s infectious energy as she shares on these topics and more in her presentation.

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Carissa Jowett // Carissa Jowett is the owner and floral event designer behind JL Designs: one of California’s top floral design studios.  Carissa’s incredible eye for design is evident in every wedding she does. She has put together phenomenal designs in every aesthetic, from rustic to classic, and retro-tropical to ultra modern.  With innate talent and creativity, Carissa produces work that is layered and textural, creating lots of interest and drama.  I could stare at her work for hours!

Did you know Carissa once worked for a wedding planner?  Carissa will share about her past experiences in the field, as well as how she now works alongside wedding planners and designers in creating a perfect day for her clients.  In addition to enjoying Carissa’s insightful presentation, we will have the pleasure of soaking up her gorgeous designs all around us at the workshop itself: her stunning florals will be featured at each workshop event.

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Brittney Castro // Brittney Castro is the founder and CEO of Financially Wise Women.  As a Certified Financial Planner who specializes in working with female entrepreneurs, Brittney is well-versed on the pitfalls and mistakes many young business owners make in their first few years.  She will share priceless knowledge with us about starting your own business, pricing, how to manage your money wisely, and creating sound financial goals.  She will also open up for a Q&A so you can ask her about your own business money questions.

I know many people in this industry who work full time and yet barely make more than they might working a minimum wage job.  I believe this is mostly due to poor financial planning.  If you are running a business (and not merely enjoying a hobby), you need to be financially wise.  Brittney is so adept in taking the intimidation out of money talk.  I can’t think of a better advisor in this arena and am thrilled to have Brittney speak at the workshop!

In my own sessions, I’ll be covering the wedding industry from A-Z.  Here are just some of the topics I’ll touch on in my sessions…

  • Starting your business: the nitty gritty steps and priorities
  • Writing a solid contract and what needs to be included
  • Pricing wisely for your market
  • Workflow and time management: how to run the business and not let it run you
  • Advertising & Marketing: getting your name out there without spending a dime
  • Social Media: using it as an extension of your brand; being active and relevant but not obsessed :)
  • Event production from start to finish: day-of management and handling the “what-ifs”
  • Client experience and tips for memorable interaction
  • Cultivating priceless vendor relationships
  • The planning process: budgets, checklists, timelines and emails.
  • Targeting your ideal client
  • Hiring and building your team
  • The Illusion of Competition
  • and much, much more!

I feel very strongly that our lineup of speakers represents the industry’s cream of the crop; we will all have so much to glean in October!  Come join us and learn firsthand why it pays “flock together” with these birds.  😉

For more information on the workshop:

Thanks for stopping by today; I hope you’re having a great week!