Ahh, three years ago. Seems like a world away now. Looking back, it's hard to believe what we've accomplished both personally and professionally in three years (moved to NYC, had a sweet baby boy, bought a house, added a fabulous studio manager/associate photographer to our team). It's been a three big, busy years. So big, so busy that sometimes it's easy to lose track of all the things we had done before, all those things that have ultimately led us to where we are now.
Back in 2010, we were starting on a new road. Forging a new path for ourselves propelled by the driving desire to do all those things we had been dreaming of doing. To take those written-down-on-paper ideas and make them I-can't-believe-we're-actually-doing-this realities. And we knew we couldn't do it alone. So we shared our ideas with others, talked about them (a lot) and made plans. Big plans. Plans that had me nervous. Nervous in the best way possible. Because when you're chasing after those big ideas, it shouldn't be easy. And if you're not nervous, then you're not dreaming big enough.
One of those big, scary ideas was our Taking Off Seminar and Amelie-inspired shoot in Paris back in March of 2010. It took months of planning, hours of international e-mailing and phone calling and many working lunches to pull it all together but then end result was worth all the hard work. And then some. It was such a whirlwind, that I had lost track of just how much fun it was until I was reminded of it all more recently. Looking through the images again, I was transported back and remembered how incredible it had been to see our big ideas become a reality and to feel so grateful to those people we had surrounded ourselves with that believed in us, who believed in our idea, added TONS of their own ideas and worked so hard to make it happen. HUGE thanks to Beth Chapman from The White Dress by the Shore, Candice Coppola from Jubilee Events, Paris-based make-up artist Masafumi Matsuda and the woman who pulled it all together in the City of Light, Paris-based wedding planner Kim Petyt of Parisian Events.
The resulting images have been published several times and one of them is now on the COVER OF A BOOK that I'm certain will be an International sensation: The Paris Wedding by Kim Petyt. That's right, the very same Kim that worked with us on these shoots (I think we have a knack for selecting very talented collaborators). Head over to Amazon and get yourself a copy of Kim's book. And while you're at, maybe plan yourself a wedding in Paris, or a Paris-inspired wedding in the U.S., Kim has tips for doing both in her book. And you know we'd always be happy to capture all that French-inspired beauty, wherever it may be. We'll even bring along the macarons. :)
Photography wasn't my first love. Unlike Rob, I wasn't the little kid with the camera in my hand. You were much more likely to find me with a notebook and a pen. Or typing away at my family computer, writing short stories or poems that I probably wouldn't even show anyone. I loved to write, it was my first love. And then, Rob put a camera in my hand and I feel in love all over again. This time, it was a more mature, serious kind of love. With this tool, I could tell stories too. I set about doing just that through photography but in the back of my mind I was aching to write as well.
When blogging became popular in the photography industry, I saw my window. I found the opportunity to combine those two passions. And that has been incredibly fulfilling. I love hearing a couple's story and then being able to put into the words that maybe they hadn't even been able to think of. I love being able to take what I've learned from these years in the wedding industry and write articles that could potentially help a newly engaged couple. Even more, I love being able to write about our life - to give glimpses into how Rob and I found each other, how we're navigating being parents and running a business and hearing such incredible feedback from all of you loyal blog readers.
Today, I am thrilled to announce that I have taken my writing to another level. I am accomplishing a goal that I would have only dreamed of as a kid (especially since online newspapers didn't exist back then). I am now a Contributing Writer to the Huffington Post. If, like me, you read Huff Po regularly, you already know it's a great resource for top news, helpful advice and thoughtful essays. I'll have many more to come, so check here (or there) regularly to see what I'm up to. And comment away - I'd love to hear from as many of you as possible.
So by now our love for Style Me Pretty is probably pretty obvious and we're perfectly okay with that. Because not only do they consistently feature really beautiful weddings (including many from our very own brides) that are an endless source of inspiration for brides-to-be, they are also always looking for new ways to help their readers navigate the sometimes difficult task of pulling it all together. That's why they have added "Buying Guides" so that brides can know exactly where to find that adorable purse or cute pair of shoes they saw on a recent post. They also have an option to build your own inspiration board where you can pull images from their featured weddings to create a completely unique design board of your very own. Even more, they have now started featuring planning posts where some of your most difficult wedding planning questions are answered - with our very own "10 Common Wedding Day Timing Mistakes" being one of the first such posts over on the Style Me Pretty New York Blog. Since it was posted first thing this morning it's gotten a huge response already, with brides very excited to have some practical advice on how to build a solid wedding timeline. Of course, we want our blog readers to take advantage of all Style Me Pretty has to offer - so head over to their many sites and let them help you build your dream wedding. And while you're at it, re-read our post and leave some feedback for the Style Me Pretty editors. They're always looking for new ways to help brides. And...so are we! So if there's any Planning FAQ post topic you're dying to see, let us know in the comment section below! Or just say hi - we always love to hear from you.
It's a low key day for us today. We're taking a bit of break mid-week since our weekends have been so packed lately. We're loving every minute of it, of course but welcome the opportunity to spend a Tuesday morning puttering around the apartment and making time to see some friends and family. We'll be heading down to New Jersey in a bit to do something especially important - watch my godson Aidan play in his final T-Ball game of the season. He's five and loving every minute of playing (of course it doesn't hurt that he's pretty good at it too!). So please keep your fingers crossed that the rain holds off since Rob and I have our hearts set on seeing him run the bases! :)
Before we disconnect for the day, we thought we'd share some news with you. Loyal blog readers know that we're huge fans of the incredible wedding planning blog (and resource) Style Me Pretty. It's a must-visit for any bride-to-be and so influential that the blog's creator, Abby Larson, was recently interviewed for CBS's Sunday Morning. We are honored to be members of their exclusive Little Black Book of wedding vendors and always thrilled when Style Me Pretty editors decide to feature the weddings of our couples. So it goes without saying that Friday was an especially big day because Style Me Pretty featured not just one but TWO of our couples on the very same day!
First up was Ashley & Alex's Hudson Valley Wedding featured on Style Me Pretty's main page. The editors absolutely fell in love with Ashley's gorgeous Watters WTOO gown gown, her soft pink and ivory color scheme and thoughtful details. Of course it didn't hurt that Ashley and Alex also happen to be incredibly sweet together, as evidenced by their emotional "First Look."
Then, over on the new Style Me Pretty New York was Renee & Matt's Manhattan wedding. Held in the chic Gramercy Park Hotel, Renee and Matt hosted the ultimate NYC wedding for their guests - complete with cocktail hour in the exclusive Rose Bar and reception in the glass-covered terrace of the hotel. Renee and Matt also happen to share a commitment to helping others through their work with Indego Africa.
And then - just when we thought it couldn't get any better, we received an e-mail from Ashley letting us know the bridal shop were she got her gown (A Lovely Bride Bridal Shop in the West Village) also wanted to feature her wedding on their fabulous blog, A Lovely Bride Blog. The feature went up yesterday, complete with an interview with Ashley all about how she planned her gorgeous, romantic wedding.
Hope you all enjoy checking out those features and have a wonderful Tuesday! We're off to T-Ball, visiting family and possibly giving in to one of my pregnancy cravings.... Chick-fil-a!
Years ago, back when I worked for the Connecticut Post, the idea of working on a weekend (let alone a holiday weekend) was a particularly dreadful prospect. Sitting at a desk, starring at a computer screen and waiting for news to come in while everyone else was out at barbecues and on the beach wasn't exactly my idea of a good time. I used to think it was because I desperately wanted to be at those barbecues or sitting poolside, but that wasn't it. Really, it was because I hadn't yet found a career I was really passionate about. Now, Rob and I spend nearly every weekend working and I don't mind it one bit. I actually look forward to it - to the excitement of discovering how each couple makes their wedding unique, to challenging myself to do something better at each and every event, and to spending time with the incredibly thoughtful couples we get to photograph. So working two weddings this holiday weekend was more than okay with me. Especially since they were both beautiful and both so different. Lauren & Colin selected a vintage, Etsy-inspired theme for their wedding and Liz & Don's drew inspiration from Don's Irish heritage for their kelly green, Irish wedding (complete with kilts). (For some sneak peeks, head over to our Facebook page and "Like" us!") We say this a lot, but one of the many perks of our job is getting to see how each couple really makes their weddings their own by tying in things that are particularly meaningful to them. It makes working on a weekend not feel like work at all.
And although we may spend the weekends outdoors shooting, we do spend quite a bit of the week indoors at our studio - sitting at our desks, starring at our computer screens. And remarkably, I'm perfectly okay with that too. Because I'm not dreading reading through a story about the stock market or working on the obituary page (one of my thrilling tasks at the paper). I'm looking through our work and knowing that these are images that people will cherish for years to come. But I am thankful for my experiences in the "real world" before joining Rob in this business. They taught me so many things about myself, my goals and what's important to me. Without them, I may not appreciate just how lucky we are to have a job we're passionate about and get to do what we love. And if you have that, you'd work any day (or every day) of the week. Because it wouldn't feel like work. After all, we can always have a barbecue on a Wednesday. Or be poolside on a Monday. The weekends are made for weddings…and that's exactly where we want to be.
And after our exciting weekend, we came back into the office today and were greeted with some wonderful news. Our first wedding of 2011, Danielle & David's New Haven Lawn Club wedding is featured on Style Me Pretty today. Their rainy day, elegant wedding caught the eye of the SMP editors and they couldn't wait to feature it!