Featured: Bohemian Beauty

I don't even know if I can actually form the right words to say how grateful I am to have had the opportunity to be a part of the Carolina Bride: Inspired Design For A Bespoke Affair. A styled shoot that I designed especially for the book, as well as one of our 2014 weddings, was chosen to be in this gorgeous hardcover coffee table book.

I've been dying to share a few of my favorite images for this incredible experience, and now that the book has been officially released (and available for purchase, by the way!), I am so excited to share more with you today!

My inspiration for this design was "bohemian elegance" in the high country.  Which for me, means a simple and effortless feeling with artistic and unconventional styling. I wanted to really bring out the idea of community and the free-spirited, gypsy traveller side of the bohemian lifestyle. Our color palette was organic and natural with gorgeous jewel tone pops of burgundy and deep purple. Here is a peek at my inspiration board.

The shoot took place on the property of the stunning Eseeola Lodge in Linville, North Carolina. Shoot days are always a lot of fun and full of organized chaos. It's a great time to collaborate with talented creatives you might not have the chance to work with on a real wedding or event. We had an amazing team assembled: Crystal Stokes Photography, New Creations Flower Company, Pink Toast Ink, Something Classic, Erin Ashley Makeup, Mirror Bomb Studios, Wow Factor Cakes, Upper Barn Rentals, & Party Reflections. I pulled a number of dresses and accessories from J. Majors Bridal Boutique as well as some great bold pieces of jewelry from Scout and Molly's Boutique. And I had the chance to style a gorgeous Zuhair Murad gown straight from the runway during Bridal Fashion week. Styling this shoot had to be different. I mean, it was meant for a book! The look of the brides was meant to be a more natural and earthy looking, with some edgy style. We kept the makeup more subdued and romantic, with long tussled hair. And I wanted to kept the detailing of the dresses minimal and throw in some unexpected elements.

This tablescape has to be one of my absolute favorites of all the styled shoots I've had the chance to design over the past year. I love the layering of textures and the rich colors against the gorgeous wood table. From the flowers to the place settings, everything came together so perfectly! The gorgeous backdrop, next to the lake didn't hurt things either. :) I found a little hidden field close to where we were shooting and it was the prefect backdrop for our lounge setting. I sourced tons of pillows, puffs and blankets from all over bringing in different patterns, colors and textures to create a cozy seating area. For the ceremony, I had this vision of a very simple and small teepee-like backdrop with pillows and blankets for guest seating and rose petals marking the aisle. Just for the record, building a teepee isn't exactly easy! But I think our minimalistic ceremony design fit this organic and bohemian styled shoot.

Honored and humbled is how I'd describe my feelings to not only have had the opportunity to be a part of this book, but to also have my work listed among so many designers and photographers that I love and admire! I owe a huge THANK YOU to authors Cristina Wilson and Drew Humphries for allowing me to be a part of this amazing publication. You both did such an amazing job creating this book! I am really, really proud to share all the behind the scenes details of this shoot, and I am SO excited to show you a few of my favorite photos captured by the incredibly talented Crystal Stokes Photography


The team:
Design and Styling: The Graceful Host | Photography: Crystal Stokes Photography | Floral Design: New Creations Flower Company | Food and Cocktail: Something Classic Catering and Cafe | Paper Goods: Pink Toast Ink | Calligraphy: The Graceful Host | Cake and Sweets: The Wow Factor Cakes | Location: Eseeola Lodge | Furniture and Wooden Table Rentals: Upper Barn Rentals | Woven Chargers and Gold Flatware: Party Reflections | Gowns: Zuhair Murad and J. Majors Bridal Boutique | Veil: J. Majors Bridal Boutique | Jewelry: Scout and Molly's | Makeup: Erin Ashley Makeup | Hair Styling: Mirror Bomb Studios | Producers: Cristina Wilson and Drew Humphries

Be sure to go pick up a copy of the Carolina Bride Book today to see so many other absolutely gorgeous real weddings and wedding design inspiration! It makes a great gift for anyone who might have gotten engaged over the holidays ... hint, hint! :)