I recently published an article over at The Not Wedding about how I’d like to specialize in intimate weddings this year. And just a couple weeks ago, I hear from a bride who couldn’t be planning a more perfect intimate wedding if she tried. I won’t spill any details but just feast your eyes on this inspiration board. I am feeling so blessed to have met this bride and I cannot wait to share more on how we turned her vision into reality!
There were so many moments when the kids were little when I wished I could just freeze time. But since I knew this wasn’t possible, I did the next best thing and obsessively collected every little piece of art, love note, and drawing (I’m a pen to paper kind of person). I wrote down every funny thing they said in a memory book, all so that I could just savor those moments, one more time.
When I look at Kate T. Parker's photography, I get that same feeling--of a moment in time captured so well that it stays with you forever. A fine art photographer in the truest sense of the word, her images of children, families, weddings, and nature will blow you away. I cannot say enough wonderful things about this Atlanta photographer, so I am just going to be quiet now and share a brief interview we did, as well as a couple of my favorite photos. To see more of her stunning images and how she turns special moments into art, head to her Facebook page or her website. You'll be glad you did!
Most cherished everyday moment? // I love at the end of everyday, we all say our "highs and lows". The best moments and the worst moments of the day…I love hearing about what my kids (and husband) did that day.
Business success you are most proud of? // I was recently asked to have a gallery show. (Feb. 7th at Mason Murer Gallery in Atlanta!) This was a huge moment for me and I kind of still feel like it isn't real until I see it hanging on the walls. I am beyond excited and honored to be hanging in such a respected gallery.
What inspires you to create? // My girls are my largest inspiration, by far. Their purity, their silliness, their take on things.
How would you like to see your business change or grow in the next year? // I would love to work more commercially and more in the fine art world. I love new challenges and want to grow more each year.
I couldn’t think of a better way to start off the year than sharing this interview with the talented duo from The Little Canopy. Chloe Youm and her husband Philip are the designers behind this “event designing studio that specializes in artsy weddings, vintage weddings or any kind of non-traditional wedding”. They offer full wedding design, day-of coordination and custom private workshops (what a great alternative to traditional bridal showers!). Read this interview to get to know a little more about Chloe, and go to their website to learn more about how The Little Canopy can serve you!
Most cherished everyday moment? // The most cherished everyday moment would be when the whole gang (my husband, me, and our two chihuahua-babies) are all sitting on our couch after our daytime jobs, sharing what happened during the day, and what creative things we’ll be working on that night.
Business success you are most proud of? // I’m not really sure if we had one big moment of business success, but at the moment I must be most proud of the blog. Over the year since the launch, we have worked so hard to build traffic and publicity, and with the new blog design, it has been bringing more people together for inspirations. we still have a long way to go for it to be where I visualize it, but the support we get from all the readers is such a big motivation for us to keep working!
Why wedding design? // I love weddings! I love all events where people get together to leave their worries behind at home to share joy and happiness and just celebrate each other presence. I got into wedding especially, because wedding planning is very challenging. I feel like sometimes that we get too caught up in the preparation part that we forget what wedding is all about. I wanted to create a community where I can help couples make it a fun, intimate part of their journey, and focus on themselves and prepare for their marriage.
Something you’ve learned about yourself this year? // Something important I’ve learned this year about myself is that I can do whatever I want to do. Meaning, it really doesn’t matter what the outcome is in the beginning, I just need to start what I vision myself doing. Last year, I found myself saying “Hmm, I really want to do wedding designs,” and so I started The Little Canopy. And I’m already “successful” that I’m working towards what I love.
What inspires you to create? // Honestly, I get inspired by all the DIY brides out there. I was a DIY bride, and although I had so much fun creating every details of our wedding, I also felt a little helpless at the same time. The whole reason I started The Little Canopy is to not only provide inspirations but hoping to be the go to place for all questions and comfort.
What’s your ideal client? // My ideal client would be an artsy, creative couple who has an idea of what they want, but need a helping hand putting together their visions.
What’s does your dream office/work space look like? // My dream work space would have brick walls, tall ceilings, lots of windows, and hardwood floors. And in the middle of the whole office would be a wide and long working table for all the custom creations to come alive! The office will also have a nice garden area for our doggies to play around while we work.
How would you like to see your business change or grow in the next year? // Next year, I would like to see us finding and concentrating on our area of expertise. This year we’ve been doing a lot of various things, to see where we have our most passion. Right now The Little Canopy team consists of me, my husband Philip and our designer Kelly. I would like us to bring in more team members, bringing more opportunities to help creative brides in the world.
Yesterday, I had the priviledge of guest posting on The Not Wedding about the benefits of having an intimate wedding. In the post, I share some great benefits of having an intimate wedding, from simplifying wedding planning to choosing unique venues. Head on over to The Not Wedding Blog to read more!
Today I am revisiting the Destin inspiration shoot that I participated in with Simply Sarah Photography. This shoot has generated quite a bit of interested in the last few months and so I wanted to take a moment to share my happiness but also to send dear Sarah a big shoutout! This shoot was entirely her vision and I was just fortunate enough to be a part of the fun, along with some really great vendors!
Credits: Photography: Simply Sarah Photography // Masks: Artisan Maskers // Starfish cookies: Cookies by Becky // Calligraphy: Ink & Honey // Watercolor boxes: Boxes Squared // Sea shell soap: Latika Soap // Sea fan: Nature’s Bounty Supply // Kraft tubes: Sparkle and Posy // SPF bar: Blackberry Ranch // SPF bottle: Bohemian Atelier
// Utensils: For Such a Time Designs // Rope knots: Karen’s Wedding Shop // Florals: Supposey Florals // Hair & makeup: Brooke Miller // Wedding cake: Cupcake Emporium // Invitation suite & placecards: Lauren Chism Fine Papers // Dress designer: Badgley Mischka // Bridal accessories: Madison Lane Bridal // Design & styling: Elisa Event Design
I think that if I could, I would incorporate a shade of peach into every wedding design. You can go ahead and blame this crush on the fact that I am a Georgia peach through and through. So when Diana Lupu shared these images with me from a Chicago wedding she shot earlier this year, I just knew I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share them with you!
The florist behind these charming creations is Sheila at Ipomea Floral Design. Here's more from her on the inspiration for these florals: "The inspiration for the florals were California-inspired colors of coral, poppy, peach and pink combined with lots of lush greenery in loose, natural compositions. AnaMaria's bouquet and was soft, feminine and colorful. It was hand tied in a natural shape, yet we kept it from getting too large and competing with the bride for attention.
The bridesmaid's bouquets were even more natural in form with similar colors, but we added more white flowers and greenery to help tie all of their different color and texture dresses together. The boutonnieres were succulents and hypericum berries.
The flowers we used were coral peonies and roses, peach garden roses, green hydrangea, pink larkspur, coral snapdragons and lots of seeded eucalyptus and other greenery and flowers. We also included real peaches in the centerpieces for added interest!"
In addition to the flowers, here are some images Diana captured of the sweet, romantic nuances of this wedding.
I am so excited to have Diana on the blog today! She graciously agreed to this interview, and I couldn’t wait to share her heart for photography, her family, and life. Read her interview below and see more of her work on her website!
Most cherished everyday moment? // This has nothing to do with my business, but my most cherished everyday moment(s) are mornings with my baby boy. I usually begin my day making coffee and breakfast with E (he loves to pour the water in the coffee maker for mama and help mash fruit for his breakfast), which we both share on the living room floor surrounded by pillows. According to my son, pillows are meant for the floor, not for the sofa. After breakfast, we feed the ducks because E can’t stand the thought of his belly full and theirs empty. We then either stay in our pj’s and play with train sets or build blocks or if we’re feeling ambitious, we get dressed and head to the park together. Currently, I’m his favorite playmate (at least this is true if his papa isn’t around) and I couldn’t be more thrilled. So I guess it’s a bunch of morning moments that I hold on to with everything in me.
Business success you are most proud of? // Satisfied, happy clients. The features, the peer recognition, and the kind words from others is always so great, and I’m deeply appreciative, but nothing beats a client that calls me or sends an excited text saying how much they love their photos. Seeing my photos plastered all over their Facebook wall or Instagram feed lets me know that they love their photos as much as I do. And this makes me happier than anything else.
Why wedding photography? // This is simple… and perhaps a bit cliche…but I chose to be a wedding photographer because I’m inspired by love. I believe in love and marriage and family and all the intricacies that comes with that. The union of two souls is something I feel so deeply about, that after photographing my first wedding, I could no longer imagine photographing anything else. It’s a crazy beautiful feeling to know that what you capture that day will be passed down and looked at for generations to come.
Something you’ve learned about yourself this year? // Just one thing? Oh, man. Probably the most important thing that I’ve learned (still learning) is how to set limits to work. Before I became a mom, I was completely unselfish with my time. I gave as much as I possibly could and felt like it was unfair, almost even a little ridiculous to “need time for myself”. Looking back, I realize how untrue that was, but I loved what I did so much that time to myself seemed to take away from what I was so passionately working towards. Becoming a mom has completely changed that. God has taught me that my time needs to be selfish; that my family requires precious attention from me and that I need time alone, away from work, to focus on bettering myself, my faith, my goals, and those around me. I’m learning that work, though I’m so passionate about it and driven by it, comes second to the Lord and my family.
What inspires you to create? // Each event, whether it’s an engagement, a wedding, or a lifestyle session inspires me separately. It isn’t necessarily one thing, like good details or a dress (though I’m not complaining about these one bit), but rather a culmination of things. And since no two couples are identical, this culmination is always different, which is so exciting. I’m inspired by the couple’s love story, how they met, why they chose the details they chose, the location, their style, and all the in-between, heartfelt moments.
What person inspires you the most as a business professional? // Photography wise, it’s the incredible Ozzy Garcia. I’ve been privileged to have him mentor me in many ways and his vision, composition, and consuming passion for photography has inspired me more than he could ever know. I’m forever grateful to him and he will forever be my favorite. Business wise, I’m inspired by people inside and outside of the photography world. Successful business owners that place a high value on customer service while still being able to push visionary, creative boundaries and maintain a balanced living, drive me to be better. These business owners all have many things in common, but probably my favorite thing is their genuine belief in having a business model that serves others first. David Jay, Promise Tangeman, Joy Thigpen, and Jonathan Canlas are a few of my favorites.
What’s your ideal client? // My ideal client isn’t afraid to push boundaries, think outside of the box, has a great eye and confident style, and trusts my vision 100%. I always love a client that involves me in the creative process as much as possible, as well. And if you really want to be my dream bride, you’ll tell uncle Jessie that I don’t need his assistance as you walk down the aisle.
What’s does your dream office/work space look like? // Tons of natural light, clean and organized, earthy with warm woods, live plants, & light walls. A chalkboard wall is great for checking off to-do lists and maybe a bulletin board covered in canvas where I can pin inspiring photos or words I come across. My style is a combination of urban, vintage, and modern with an industrial flair. Oh, and two computers with tons of hard drive space would be awesome with a capital A. span>
How would you like to see your business change or grow in the next year? // This past year, I focused on branding my business with a new logo & blog-site. In 2014, I’d love to focus more on branding my images and become more selective in what and how I shoot. Because I photograph digitally, you can easily “overshoot”. I’d like to take a more conservative approach and really look for beauty. My goal is always to improve, stylistically and technically, and I’d love to take more chances–be more bold. I hope to connect to my peers and vendors in the industry more and really focus on growing that aspect of my business as well. I’d also love to photograph a wedding somewhere in an open field surrounded by mountains. That’s always been a dream.
Today I have the honor of introducing Jasmine Shah of IDEA! event + style. Her parties are genius, and her marketing and branding impeccable. And, what’s more, talking with her always leaves me feeling encouraged and inspired. I wanted to share a bit of this with you today with a short interview.
Most cherished everyday moment? // When I shut off my computer right around 2:30 in the afternoon, and head to school to bring my sweeties home! This usually marks the end of the first part of my work day – I take off my event planner hat for a few hours and put on that proverbial apron 9pm is usually when I get back to work for a couple hours before calling it a day.
Business success you are most proud of? // Ah this is a tough one! I can’t really name just one, but I really am very grateful and very proud of how far IDEA! has come in two years. And the biggest factor in making that happen has been the absolute trust that my clients have put in me to make their life’s celebration unique, meaningful and memorable!
Why events? // I truly believe that life is magical and should be celebrated. We should all have sweet memories of our major milestones being celebrated with friends and loved ones, because that is what life is all about, and what families are about! Celebrate what truly matters to you because life is too short not to!
Something you’ve learned about yourself this year? // This has been a monumental year for me in terms of recognizing my priorities, what truly matters to me, what my personal and business core is, and how to put it into action in my daily life. I truly learnt how to shrink all my seemingly endless worries into the big picture of LIFE. I understood the value of being present NOW. Making things happen starts with first making LIFE happen. With the things that fire YOU up. When you live life inside out, you make your core happen. When you make your core happen, you do the right things to grow your business. Which means you naturally attract the right kind of clients, the ones that reflect your core and connect with you immediately. When you connect with the right clients, you are able to do your best work. And that has truly changed everything for me!
What inspires you to create? // It comes from anywhere and everywhere! Whether it’s creating a beautiful celebration for my client, or creating a painting for my house, or creating a fresh meal for my family! Being creative really has no expiration date, its just a way of life in every little thing I do.
What person inspires you the most as a business professional? // In this phase of my business, it would have to be Lara Casey of Southern Weddings. I admire the authentic way she has grown her business, the way she inspires other small business owners like myself and the way she juggles motherhood in the midst of it all!
What’s your ideal client? // This image sums it up best!
What’s does your dream office/work space look like? // My dream office would be ALL white with plenty of natural light! I work best with minimal distraction and clutter, so a clean fresh white space would be lovely. While that is a distant dream with two young kids, my current office is great too! Working from home is my biggest priority so I can stay close to my family so we converted our family room into my office. It’s my beautiful teal-walled space to dream in, and to make things happen in!
How would you like to see your business change or grow in the next year? // I would love to plan milestone celebrations that I haven’t had the chance to work on yet. These would include bar/bat mitzvahs, graduation parties and anniversary parties to name a few!
Photo Credit: Sophia Barrett
I am always looking for design inspiration. When it comes to web site design (and even branding), here are three sites that really stand out in their own unique way.
Kate T. Parker Photography // Magical
Her ability to capture the magic in both everyday life and special events is astonishing, and her site reflects this magic so well. I cannot think of a better word to describe this Atlanta photographer’s work and site design.
Pearl & Godiva // Inspirational
Their artistry is ethereal, with a depth and flavor that is often inspired from great works of literature. Prepare to be stunned by their work, and the inspiration behind it when you visit their site.
Cecilia Fox // Fresh
I love, love, love the way they’ve used of fresh flowers on a flat background. The design is clean, and the flowers really have a chance to shine and show off their natural glory. Such a great look for a floral studio!
Guess who will be a featured vendor for The Not Wedding Atlanta in 2014? Yours truly The Not Wedding is a new take on the traditional bridal show, and I look forward to being part of the wonderful group of vendors participating next fall.