I heard somewhere the best way to combat the winter blues is to eat fruit and look at fresh flowers. Well, I certainly have the fresh flower piece covered. After a dreamy Spring and Summer season filled with cut blooms from my garden everywhere I looked, I was determined to stay inspired through the cold Winter months. I’ve made friends with my local florist, ordered bouquets for myself when I know select varieties are in stock and most recently attended the Philadelphia Flower Show, coming home with over 6 dozen blooms to play with. Needless to say, our home has remained full of flowers and that has given me the chance to paint my winter nights away in bliss. Watercolor Floral Patterns are my jam this Winter and I’m feeling so full and grateful to let the fullness spill out on the blank page.
Be sure to look closely…this post is full of fun galleries and a video – enjoy!
About 4 weeks ago I began painting every night, into the wee hours…I was a bit crazed; sleep escaped me yet I wasn’t tired. My hands wanted to move and make things and that is all I knew. Lovingly called my #creativefury series, I began to document every step of the way. While now I’m back on a more normal sleep schedule, I can’t help but think that the hyper-creative experience I had in February was meant for something. It was meant to lift me up and carve out a moment in time, that I’m convinced I will look back on soon and think…this is where IT began.
So the fury began with this Instagram image. A simple peek at elements from a Flowerwild Workshop by Jose Villa. If you know Wedding Photography, you’re likely familiar with this name. Jose’s work magically combines and thrill for natural light and his ability to honor both the couples he captures and his own artistic heart. Jose unfailingly creates only the work that is of the utmost in meaning to him and thus that spirit of commitment shines through everything he does. That spirit, is contagious really and you can feel it pour from his images. I’ve had the honor to work with Jose a few times over the years and experience his heart in action.
Something about the above image captured my heart…the way each bloom and petal contributed to a balanced composition of similar but uncommon elements. The main branch bloomed with Scabiosa, Magnolia, berries and Peonies all at once seeming completely natural and in their perfect place. So I began to sketch…
So all the sketching led to a pattern than has now become one of my new favorites. Have a look through the gallery below:
And so the fun continued. I got my Jose Villa on and arranged these killer Anemones with various greens. The most amazing fun of painting flowers like this is that the best time to make collages is when the blooms are on their way out…so I’m really getting the most out of my precious Winter bloom hoard. Another gallery for you to experience the evolution of this pattern:
And the finished pattern…
I didn’t stop, remember I mentioned this #creativefury last for the better part of a month and had me painting at least 6 hours a day… Next I tore apart a basket of bulbs nearly dying and plucked leaves from some market arrangement to craft this bright composition. The creamy peach roses were so old, their petals were falling away as I tried to arrange, but once in place they seemed to take on a second life full of shape and color. The tulip would have lost its shape with a slight whisper but I felt honored to have its graphic center revealed, to eventually become the focal point of my next watercolor pattern.
This pattern is just beginning and where my #creaive fury of February seemed to find it’s close. Mindful of where this pattern may head, I’ve left it bare…Waiting to feel where the color here needs to go.
God has been teaching me lesson after lesson since September of last year…He is reminding me to be grateful for the smallest of moments and pleasures, to give more than I could ever receive, to speak slowly. Somehow the artwork I’ve been creating in the last months, has situated my spirit exactly where it needs to be so I can honor Him with my words and actions. For so long I was lacking peace, lacking a pure experience of joy and in Him I have found them again.
Look for something, someone to fill your spirit full as you can only begin to dream what may spill out of you once you do.
4 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. 1 Corinthians Chapter 12
Easily one of the most enchanting places on earth, Yosemite National Park has captured my attention time and time again. Just off the phone with Robin and feeling inspired to paint this majestic scenery once again…
I think many of us are wishing the last weeks of winter to make a quiet exit as we happily glide into Spring. This Winter, at least in Northeastern Pennsylvania has been…for lack of a better word… insane! Snow after snowstorm has crippled us time after time leaving the white stuff to collect everywhere in towering piles. But just as winter has gotten on my last nerve I recall our Holiday celebration held in a local private cabin. So let’s let Winter linger for just a few more minutes and soak up the warmth and coziness it brings as we shelter ourselves from its harshness.
Every Momental Celebration starts with an invitation, no matter how small the guest list might be. I collaborated with childhood friend and master woodworker in Northeastern Pennsylvania, Dan Brody, of Skilltree Designs, to create these exotic wooden slide top invitation boxes. Of course we had to experiment with adding a watercolor finish to the wood and the results were simply breathtaking. Seeing the woodgrain through the watercolor was important to give the look a certain softness and maintain the natural textures of the wood.
Our friends at Tieks worked closely with our planning team to develop a perfect gifting experience for the Momental Girls. Each artist was given a gift certificate for their very own pair of Tieks! XO
Fiftyflowers.com provide the wholesale flowers for my creative pleasure. White Amaryllis, Scabiosa Pods, Hanging Amaranthus, Dusty Miller and loads of textural bits made their way into my collection of Vintage Daher Tins. Oh and how about those sweet flatware pockets/menus? We foiled a simply bare tree on each and added touches of white ink….
Can hardly get enough of LaTavola Linen‘s sequin chevron number…so fun!
My Grandma’s Vintage Noritake China made an appearance…Love the eclectic mix of decor…those watercolor paper chains were made at 2 am the night before!!
I’ve been hoarding this one textile for a while, waiting for the perfect moment to use it. It had the most amazing woven texture and thickness…each invitation box was lined with its glory.
Pine trees painted in whites and teal kept things fresh and youthful…not overly traditional.
Love these ladies!
Photography - Morrissey Photo :: Food – The Epicurean Delight :: Wholesale Flowers – FiftyFlowers.com :: Flower Design – DIY By Kristy Rice :: Gifting - Tieks :: Linens – LaTavola Linen :: Styling, Celebration Design and Watercolor Stationery – Momental Designs :: Watercolor Wood Invitation Boxes - Skilltree Designs
Earlier this week a sweet shoot we participated in was featured on Wedluxe.com. If you haven’t read the Wedluxe blog or flipped the pages of their print magazine….please do. This publication, based in Canada features some of the most artful, inspired and lavish celebrations. Each issue is bursting with fresh ideas and tons of inspiring content!
The inspiration here was all about illustration and tattoo inspired imagery. Our Bride even had body art as a focal point to her wedding day look. Love it! Pink Cherry Blossoms were chosen for this Wedding Invitation suite to conjure the vibe of classic tattoo illustrations. Simple shapes, saturated colors in places and bold outlines define the look.
Large all over blooms create BIG drama, even on the most elegant of wedding invitations. Careful layout and color choice ensures the look remains sophisticated.
What would a tattoo inspired wedding menu be without an illustrated banner?
Have a look here to dive into the full feature!
It is hard to put into words seeing a project of this magnitude come to life. I began my career very humbly…literally building invitations on my dining room table and scrubbing paint of it’s hardwood surface everyday before dinner. Never could I have dreamed that one day I would lead a team of creatives in making art at one of this country’s most beloved pieces of architectural history. Last June I visited The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina and fell completely, head-over-heels in love. Never have I experienced a place bursting with such pride of ownership. Everyone from the shuttle driver to the cafe worker seemed to beam with pride at this place that seemed more like everyone’s home that a private estate originally built for just one family.
So imagine then hosting a wedding at this place so steeped in tradition and history. Imagine starting your modern love story amidst visually beguiling scenery and heirlooms at every glance. Imagine, just for a moment walking the sprawling grounds with The Biltmore Estate in the misty distant view. Well, that is exactly what we did, we imagined, dreamed and asked a lot of ourselves and the images to follow are the bounty.
Blueberry Creative documented our day. Just love the spirit captured here….
We crafted a table for twenty. Scale was so important here so we had to build a table that would visually stand up to the grandeur of The Biltmore! Wholesale Flowers were provided by Fiftyflowers.com to include delicate Hydrangea, Garden Roses, Star of Bethlehem and Hanging Amaranthus for Lily Greenthumb’s to design away with!
Th hummingbird became a subtle visual thread throughout…I just adore this die cut and hand painted hummingbird table number nestled in the blooms.
Dreaming of this linen from LaTavola Linen for quite some time I knew quickly it was the perfect backdrop for our table. It feels so much like a painting with its gradients of color…romantic blooms, leafy moments and a subtle peacock reference lend an exotic touch…20 feet of greens, dahlias and eucalyptus was built on location. Pops of bold, saturated watermelon graced each menu for a more youthful element that was a bit unexpected.
Hand sketched in white a gilded monogram is set against a sherbert inspired trio of stocks…
Of the three invitation suites created for this shoot, this was possibly my favorite. Meant to Be Calligraphy gave us stunning script to play with and of course I felt compelled to stretch inside an embroidery hoop!
Skilltree Designs created these exotic wood monogram letters. Love this modern spin on a classic monogram!
Classic layout and structure was mingled with unexpected moments in this suite. A favorite detail are the hand painted dupioni silk ribbon elements; photo corners on the invitation and a wrap at the menu’s bottom.
So over the moon with these hoop art wedding place cards from Thimble and Thistle!
Lulu Frost is a personal favorite of mine so to have the chance to style with her pieces was a dream…A bracelet found its way to the hair but it works, right?
And the garland…what else can I say?
Jill and Ryan from With Love and Embers are like painters with the camera…light becomes paint in their world and I love every minute of it.
It is hard to say thank you properly for an experience of this magnitude. Firs the trust of The Biltmore Team and Destination I Do Magazine is quite simply, humbling. To the team, some of which followed me many states away and dealt with many intensly demanding and highly emotional moments on location…you are a gift. XO
Want to read more about the cover shot? Read here and of course there is more to follow soon!
Venue - The Biltmore, Asheville, North Carolina :: Photography – With Love and Embers :: Styling, Concept and Design – Kristy Rice :: Planning – Erica Stawick, Ashley Baber Weddings :: Cake, Wine and Catering – Biltmore :: Floral Design – Lily’s Greenthumb :: Wholesale Flowers by – Fiftyflowers.com :: Film – Blueberry Creative :: Makeup – Blush :: Hair – Emily Anne Hair :: Gowns – Claire Pettibone :: Calligraphy – Meant to Be Calligraphy :: Linens – LaTavola Linen :: Vintage Rentals – East West Vintage Rentals :: Custom Wood Monogram and Cake Toppers – Skilltree Designs :: Jewelry – Lulu Frost :: Casual Shoes – Tieks :: Hoop Art Place Cards – Thimble and Thistle