Thursday, April 26, 2012

Darks with Kamee June Photography...

Today I'm featuring the dark red and black flower arrangements that originated from a headpiece I made for my good friend Kamee of Kamee June Photography.  I covered the headpiece in a previous post that you can read here. I love working in such dark tones and they're really hard to photograph, but Kamee did an awesome job of it. The focus was of course on the model's face but if you look closely, you'll be able to see the details of the flowers.

Here are two shots of the "dark/evil" side of the headpiece. :-)

And here are the arrangements I made with what was left over from the headpiece. I also scoured the surrounding neighborhoods to find material to fill out the bridal bouquet and happened across these beautiful garden roses planted in the yard of an abandoned house. They make this bouquet a little sweeter than the rest of the arrangements, but I think it still has a dark quality to it that makes it all come together cohesively. This shot by Kamee was in the most recent Utterly Engaged issue where I was featured as a "Fresh New Vendor"!!! It was such an honor to be featured and Kamee's photos were so beautiful to see in "print". I'm honored to be featured and I'm so happy to do it with Kamee and Desi Baytan's stunning photographs showing off my work. I am truly a lucky girl. My feature starts on page 128 but you should read the "Organic Love" issue front to back. It's such a gorgeous publication!!

The bridal bouquet was made with garden roses, peonies, anthurium, scabiosa, thistle, and privet.

Here's a little vase arrangement I made with scabiosa, calla lilies, monkey tail, thistle, and privet.

I love these little boutonnieres. They're made with calla lilies, thistle, monkey tail, and backed with a grape leaf.

And my sweet little cake I made the night before...

Here are the two full frontal shots of the headpiece.

It's been another exciting week for Oak & the Owl. Utterly Engaged's feature was so amazing and I cannot thank them enough for showcasing me and my little business. It was a trip to see my words in a magazine, albeit super fun and exhilarating. The morning it was published I was anxious to see everything I wrote out there for so many people to read, but I was happy with how it came out. And to be part of such a professional and beautiful magazine is seriously such an honor. You really should take some time and read the whole "Organic Love" issue, it's a treat for sure!

Oak & the Owl was also featured in The Wedding Chicks blog with another Bouquet Recipe!! I made a second peach bouquet for them and you can read about it here. It was another popular one with over 2,000 pins four days later, but not as popular as the first bouquet I made for them. Just from The Wedding Chicks site alone, that first Peach Bouquet has been pinned over 14,000 times! Sheesh... I feel like nothing will ever come close to that again, ha! I just have to keep trying, right? And try I will! 

Please come back next week for another pretty post! Cheers!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Whites w/ Kamee June Photography!

This next series of photos comes from my headpiece collaboration with Kamee June Photography. I featured it in a previous blog post and you can read all about it here. It's always difficult to go to market for just one small arrangement as well as super expensive because you have to buy in market bunches. I always end up with so much material left over so I decided to circumvent this issue and bought a little extra to make two sets of bouquets/cakes/vase arrangements, one in whites and the others in dark reds. I took advantage of the free moments during hair and make-up and asked Kamee to take some portfolio photos - which she kindly and generously did. Today I'm covering the white!

Here are two photos of the "white/innocent" side of the headpiece that inspired the rest of the arrangements. Again, you view the whole series by clicking this link.

And here are the arrangements...

I used garden roses, peonies, lisianthus, ranunculas, ornithogalum, hellebores, parrot tulips, hydrangea, and dusty miller in these arrangements. Some had all of these elements and others only had a few.

I have a hard time keeping hellebores alive after I bring it home from market. I find the best solution is to put hot hot water, as hot as it can possibly come from the faucet, into a vase, cut the stems and put the hellebores in. It typically brings them right back after about an hour. But sometimes nothing works and I'm only able to use bits and pieces which always bums me out. So the boutonnieres I made featured most of the hellebores that made it through - which isn't saying much, lol.

As I've mentioned before, I love decorating cakes. I knew it was a bit of an overkill for such a small shoot, but I made a couple of cakes the night before, frosted them with a rough, kind of rustic, icing effect and decorated them with flowers.

That's it for today! I'll post the dark series next week, so keep an eye out for it. In other news, I did a shoot for The Wedding Chicks - one of the best wedding industry blog and website companies. It was photographed by the amazing Lane Dittoe last week and they posted it this past Tuesday. It made Wedding Chicks history by having over 4,000 pins in less than 24 hours! I checked again yesterday and it was at more than 7,000 pins in less than 48 hours. I was blown away and SO excited about it! You can check out their post here. Enjoy!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Floral Shoot w/ Kamee June Photography!

I have been fortunate to meet some incredibly talented and successful people in Southern CA. People that blow me away with their creativity and expertise in their craft, as well as their die hard commitment to their businesses and getting their work out there. I have been truly inspired by all of them and it is as though they came into my life at this pinnacle, perfect, moment. One of those people is my lovely friend Kamee of Kamee June Photography. We met in the most unassuming way... in swim class when Bass was 6 months old and her daughter was 2. I liked her right off the bat as she's chill, funny, sarcastic, and totally down to earth.

I wanted to invite them to a party but I didn't have Kamee's contact info. Then I remembered that her website was, so I looked her up. It was over at that point. I was blown away by the beauty of her work and thought to myself, this woman and I have to do something together. So I emailed her something along the lines of blah blah, kids party, blah blah, and then proceeded to tell her how I had just moved back to So. CA and didn't know anyone in the wedding industry and asked if she would be interested in working on something with me. I knew how cool she was from swim class, but I had no idea of her generosity and energy and kindness. I could have not made a better friend.

She offered to come over and photograph my work and told me to come up with something beautiful. This is the first set-up. Soft, pink, romantic and very feminine. Kamee's photos are gorgeous and I didn't know why I was blessed with such a wonderful gift from someone I barely knew. She and I are good buddies now and whenever I can assist her with a project, I do. We've ended up making a pretty great team and I'm a lucky woman to know her. Please look on and enjoy the first of our many collaborations!

I've never used this branch before and I actually don't even know what this tree is called. But I love it! I wanted the guests sitting there to feel like they were completely immersed in nature, and optimally it would occur at dusk so the candles could be lit for ambiance.

I used fully bloomed peonies, garden roses, hydrangea, dahlias, crepe myrtle, smoke bush, and geranium for the lower vase arrangements. The china I used was my great grandmothers. I had never seen it before and was shocked to know my parents had a full set that was so old. I love that I'm able to include pieces of my family history in my design like this. It makes it a fun and more personal experience.

I love this last shot (below) of the bridal bouquet and the way the Cafe au Lait dahlia looks.

Here's a photo (below) that Kamee took this past Tuesday of me and my sweet Bass. I couldn't be happier with it and I'm so excited to see the rest!

I hope you enjoyed Kamee's beautiful photos! You can expect many more as she and I keep on coming up with design ideas. It's pouring here in sunny southern CA today and I'm loving it. I wish it would last for a month so I feel like I got some kind of winter weather when the 100+ hits this summer. On another note, there are lots of fun and exciting developments for Oak & the Owl coming and I can't wait to share them all with you soon. Happy Friday!!


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Before & After ~ St. Louis Cafe

Happy Wednesday everyone! We have a commercial project on the blog today. It was one of my favorite projects of 2010/2011. I was lucky enough to work on it with my close friends and culinary talent, Sarah Lamborn, where we took an essentially plain box and transformed it. Enjoy!!

Fuel Station is an employee cafe in St. Louis, MO. This space was used as the employee break room in a large warehouse where they make and ship corrugated boxes countrywide. The owners of the company wanted to create a not-for-profit cafe that would serve as an employee perk and offer the workers, gourmet, one of a kind dishes, for under $5.00. I worked with the business owner and restaurant manager as a consultant to transform the space from a stark and somewhat dismal eating area, to a visually stimulating, yet comfortable and masculine environment with original rustic design elements.


Inspiration Board


These are custom signs we had framed in recycled barn wood siding found by the restaurant manager at an old farm in northern Missouri. We had them placed on sliders with classic barn door hardware. We used the same barn wood to construct the food and clean-up counters. The clean up counter is shown in the picture above.

Here the contractor is installing the custom 4' square pipe lights we designed. They are made out of iron pipes and elbow pipe fittings.They're super easy to make and the materials can be found at any Home Depot, Lowes, etc.

This is the custom sign we designed to cover the food pass-through window at night. The restaurant manager found an amazing sign company, called Engraphix, gave them the original idea (which came from her old dog tags) and they worked their magic. They took into consideration how the sign was going to be used, and created this gorgeous and functional piece of art. It was constructed out of iron and was patina-ed to a oil rubbed bronze finish with orange rust undertones.

Here's a detail shot of the poured concrete counter tops. When the manager and I first started this project, we were hoping to install concrete floors as well. But with budgetary constraints we weren't able to do it and saved the idea for future developments when the cafe could afford it. The subtlety of the grey concrete combined with the sun-bleached barn wood turned out beautifully though. 

All the delectable baked goods were courtesy of Fuel Stations manager and head chef, Sarah Lamborn. She and I had such a great time working on this project. It was a labor of love for her and she got the chance to do something so many chefs dream of... Start a new restaurant from the ground up with her menu and her overall vision. She did an amazing job and took her new found expertise back to the Bay where she's working for Paula LeDuc on once in a lifetime events. I'm really proud of my friend for following her passion and making an awesome career out of it. Oh, and her food is the best, hands down, you'll ever taste. Ugh, I miss it, and her, so much!

I hope you enjoyed this before and after project today! Look back in the next couple of days for a flower post on something soft and pretty in pink!