FORAGING X STYLING : DEEP WARMTH : Wedding planning ideas 01

  This is the beginning of an ongoing series that I hope that is both encouraging and inspiring. I am writing this because this is something that is heavy on my heart as a wedding photographer. I feel like wedding planning has become a process filled with striving, stress, and discontentment versus a process of abounding peace, joy, and sincere thankfulness. I mean, I don't blame all the brides out there feeling stressed and overwhelmed because they feel like can't keep up with the planing, they feel like they can't make their wedding day look like everything they dreamed it to be, all the costs are adding up super quick, and there are too many decisions, etc, etc, etc,. Every bride probably at one point or another, finds herself scrolling through Pinterest, pinning to her "wedding board", and reading all of the "Don't Forget at Your Wedding" and "Must-Have's" lists. We live in a culture that has taken a sacred day and turned it into a production, and you better not forget to feed your guests appetizers and a fancy, wedding-like meal. Don't get me wrong, I love appetizers and wedding food and beautiful weddings days. What I don't like is the expectations placed upon brides and grooms in the planning process. Let me explain further -- 

 My sister got married two months ago (woohoo!!) and during her planning process she came to me and asked about if the dinner they planned for the guests was fancy enough. She was struggling because there were so many things that she didn't like from a day to day basis -- burlap, sparkles, fancy meals -- but all of a sudden, these were the "expected" norms for a wedding day. Your wedding day is just that, another day of your life(yes sacred and set apart, but still a day weaved into your story.), so why do we make it a day that feels so different than who we truly our? Bride and Groom, your wedding day should feel like H O M E. 

Do you like wood cutting boards, pretty lamps, and tacos? Then you should have cutting boards, pretty lamps, and tacos are your wedding. Is breakfast your favorite meal of the day? Then you should have breakfast for dinner at your wedding, or maybe even a morning wedding? Do you like succulents? Then have succulents at your wedding. Do you hate fancy things? Then don't have a fancy wedding.

I want to use this on-going series to help you and your fiancee see new ideas and ways of doing things at your wedding in order to help you find ideas that feel like home to you, but are also attainable! With that said, I will give one major tip on each series of a creative, beautiful idea that also is budget-friendly! This first inspirational set I am calling Deep Warmth. I spent a little piece of my afternoon wandering and foraging in the woods in the backyard. I put together a little bouquet of dried/dead flowers and leaves, and created the most old-soul, romantic bouquet. If you know me well, then you will know that these warm colors of mustard yellow, burnt orange, brown, deep rusty red/burgundy, tan, and creamy white makes my heart stop. All of these colors being together create a deep, rich mood. 

I think one of the best ways to save money when planning your wedding, in spring, summer, fall, or winter, is plan a little foraging adventure. Find flowers, plants, leaves, and grasses as decorations for your place settings, tables, bouquets, or ceremony. This late autumn/early winter plate bouquet above took me literally 30 seconds to put together, and honestly for larger scale weddings, I would make it way smaller -- maybe just a bundle of three little plants( still mixing up flowers + leaves + grasses). This could also be something enjoyable and fun for you and your bridal party to do together a few days before your wedding, and you will find yourself saving money on store-bought flowers, fake flowers, and/or other wedding decorations. Because honestly, the best wedding decorations are always flowers + plants. Bonus tip/idea: think of something fun to do with your silverware, if you have some. Maybe that's crossing the silverware on the plate (like above) , maybe it's placing them horizontal above the plate, just play around and see what you like and what feels, again, most like home to you. 

Let me know if you have any thoughts, questions, and join me as I help people plan their day to feel like home. 




 For years I have had intentions of blogging on this little blog part of my website, but something seemed to always come up that kept me in the way of being able to act on those intentions. Here I am, leaving a season of hustle and busyness and entering into a season of rest which comes with having more space for things that I have been dreaming of doing for awhile(ex: blogging). While photos can tell the story on their own and they often speak louder than words, I believe when photos are matched with words then a story is able to be told with such fullness and this is what I desire. I desire to be a carrier & teller of stories, and I want to tell each story with deep honor because I think every person has a story that is worth telling. I want to use this space to tell the stories of wedding days and engagement seasons, yes. But I also want to use this space to tell stories of joy, grief, confusion, thoughtfulness, and life. 

  To start off this blog though, I want to share the story of one of the sweetest days of this year so far. This is the story of wandering around Point Reyes National Seashore with two of the most sincere and kindred souls, Ari and Adam. I just want to take a moment to speak encourage and truth about these two. These two met me and John, who came to film the engagement shoot, with outlandish kindness and hospitality. Within minutes of meeting, it felt like we were all old friends. Ari is one of the most vibrant, lively, and joyful souls and Adam is one of the most genuine and gentle humans, and together they make one heck of a team. The way they love each other is encouraging in itself, but they also both seek to love people well individually. I can't think of anyone else better to explore Point Reyes Nation Seashore with. We played around on the beach that was lined by rigged, beautiful cliffs covered in greenery and then wandered through trails surrounded by fields of golden goodness on the edge of rolling hills. My child-like heart was brought to life being there and document the way these two love one another. Here is the film, created by John of United Media Collection, and the photos from our time at their engagement session at the magical seashore.