Garden Party Styled Shoot


In early May I met with Maewood Photography and pitched them my ideas around planning a styled shoot over the summer. My goal was to collaborate with a variety of local small businesses to create beautiful content that highlights each business.  Maewood loved the idea and we tentatively penciled in a date at the end of June. My original concept was around an Americana/Fourth of July summer family BBQ. I had intended to hit the grounding running and start planning immediately however, this was around the time I was going back to work full time. Additionally, Kade had started school and was already sick. Between the little sleep I could steal, and balancing all the roles I play {Mom, Wife, Girl Boss, Daughter, Sister, Friend, Stylist}, I was struggling to find time for anything else. And sure enough it was mid June when I realized I hadn’t made much progress, so I called MP to explain and asked if we could reserve a date in July and promised I would make this happen. And sure enough, I did! 

Right about now you might be thinking “is she crazy?!” The answer is yes, I sort of am. For better or worse, I have always been this way. For some reason I can never be bored… like NEVER. I am constantly coming up with new ideas, projects and events that completely overload my calendar/to-do list. I love having events to look forward to, and I thrive on the excitement and adrenaline each project or event deadline brings. 
That night, after Maewood and I rescheduled the styled shoot, I created a new concept around a “Girls Summertime Garden Party.” I put together an inspiration style board and emailed a handful of my favorite local business inviting them to participate. Day by day, more businesses were agreeing to collaborate in the styled shoot. It was actually coming together! I mean, I knew it would, but yet I was still a little surprised, that the concept was becoming reality! By the time shoot day came around I had brought together the venue, photography, videography, wardrobe/boutique, florist, bakery, hair stylist, makeup artist, tea company,and four local style/lifestyle bloggers, including myself. 
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One of the most important businesses in the collaboration was the venue! The beautiful Vineyard of Mary’s Meadow, tucked away in the country side of Northern Harford County, was the perfect place for our shoot! Located just south of the Mason Dixon Line in Street, Maryland, their beautifully restored two story barn over looking a tree lined luscious grass pasture is available to rent for Weddings, Birthdays, Parties, Corporate events & meetings and pretty much any other event. 
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Of course, Meg and Jes from Maewood Photography were my first choice when it came to selecting photographers. We have been working together for almost two years! Each project they continue to WOW me even more than the one before! Their personalities, attention to detail, and photographic eye make them a crazy talented dynamic duo! They specialize in photo journalistic documentation of those special moments in life that you want to capture for all time: weddings, engagements, maternity, newborn and family photography! But is doesn’t end there… they are always up for a new challenge or creative project! 
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While searching for a local videographer, I came across Positive Vibe Media and loved Zach’s work. He is located a few hours south of the venue but is willing to travel around the DMV area! Zach carefully creates video masterpieces by paying specific attention to story telling through landscapes, wide & detailed shots and music selection. His portfolio is vast including: weddings, music videos, real estate and now garden parties!
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My style inspiration for the garden party was “colorful, free flowing and fun with a hint of bohemian.” Brightside Boutique was the perfect paring to bring this look together. Just opening their 3rd and largest location in Hamden, they have become a Baltimore Boutique staple! Each of the girls in the shoot went to BB to select their outfit for shoot day.
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Flower crowns, centerpieces, arm bands…OH MY! I have partnered with Lana from Fleur de Lis on a variety of other Shoptini projects, and her talents are absolutely amazing.  She has taken my concept ideas and turned them into gorgeous works of art!  Lana worked with Butter Bee Farms to select the vibrantly colored florals that decorated the girls hair and tablescape.
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I LOVE cake… cake and cupcakes! And truly believe no party is complete without them! So naturally I looked to partner with Flavor Cupcakery… their flavor creations are out of this world! With their two locations in Timonium and Bel Air they specialize in not only cake/cupcake designs but flavors too! For our party, we went with a strawberry margarita cake complimented by vanilla and cosmopolitan cupcakes. Oh, and some yummy rainbow sherbet macaroons too!
When selecting our hair stylist I had a few things in mind… 1) experience with long hair, braids and beachy waves, and 2) willingness to style on set. The schedule for the day was going to be pretty tight with arrival, setup, four girls’ hair and makeup, shooting and touch ups! It would be nearly impossible to have the girls getting ready at a studio {especially me, since I was styling the shoot and also one of the model/bloggers}. So, I focused on traveling hair stylists, and upon recommendation from a friend, I contacted Dana at The Brushing Bride. She was absolutely amazing to work with, great personality, listened to feedback and created beautiful unique looks for each girl. I love how Dana was inspired by the theme and able to tastefully incorporate florals into each hairstyle.
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Hannah, from Hashtag Hannah, and I have known each other for years. We had previously worked together in another capacity, but a waited for the perfect opportunity for our passions to cross paths and this was it! Hannah has a beautiful talent in highlighting one’s natural beauty while popping their best facial features. Each of the girls looked absolutely flawless all day long!
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Besides champagne, I wanted to have another beverage on our tablescape. Especially because I was planning on each of the girls popping a bottle, which meant the champagne would not actually be on the table until after the bottles had been popped. When I think of iconic summer time drinks, I think of cold, refreshing tea! And it just so happened to be that Hannah’s sister, Lindsey, owns Coco Love Teas based in Philadelphia. Lindsay and I discussed the desserts we would have at the party and agreed the Juliet Shimmer Chai and Sophia Shimmer Chamomile Tisane would be the perfect teas to pair back to our sweet treats. Her shimmer teas were absolutely what we needed to refresh us during the garden party shoot.

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Well, any party has to have guests right?! I invited three of my favorite local style/lifestyle bloggers to participate in the shoot.
Melissa from Craving Currently
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Ashley recently named Baltimore’s Best New Blog neverbeenso
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Oh and me! Well you know a lot about me by now… but what you might not know is that I have a pretty extensive background in event planning, experience with photo shoots, styling individuals and home decor. For this shoot I took on a lot of roles: collaboration planner, style designer, scheduler, event planner, on-site stylist and model/blogger. In addition to planning the shoot I also designed the tablescape. Most of the items are from Home Goods which I had previously owned. I did buy a few new pieces like the gold place mats from Home Goods and the gold silverware from Target. I also selected the fabric from JoAnn fabrics to make the linen napkins. I used my large wood table at home to roughly stage the tablescape and took lots of pictures so I could easily recreate the look on shoot day. Thankfully the weather was not scorching but the sun was out and it was still fairly warm. I arrived around 7:30am and we started setting up right away. Surprisingly we stayed pretty close to the time schedule and wrapped around 3pm. It was by far my favorite “workday” of the entire summer!
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I’m extremely happy with how the shoot turned out and honored to have worked with so many great folks! Silly me thought I would plan one of these every other month. While I am crazy… I am also a realist! I think once a quarter is a bit more realistic.  Looking forward to sharing the next one!


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