July 30, 2007

{guest blogger ansley: hey y'all}

Thanks for the glowing introduction, Chelsea.

The biggest event in my life right now is that I'm planning to leave Salt Lake City and be a travel nurse. Basically I get to pick cities I want to audition as my next place to live and try them for 3 months while getting paid, they even pay for housing. Pretty great deal. Picking the cities has made me think about the places I have lived and what I liked about each of them. I have realized that I really like living near water, living in the middle of a desert will do that to you. Other things I like include:
Having public transportation
Being in a walkable city
Friendly people
Not too much cold or snow
A European feel
Cities that aren't too big but have more arts and culture than they should for their size.

So far, I have picked Boston, Austin TX, and a trip back to Charleston to be closer to family. I'm also thinking about Nashville, Memphis, or Louisville.

Any suggestions?

July 20, 2007

{guest blogger elisabeth: thank you!}


Thank you, Chelsea! I could blather on for days but the week's over, my time is up! I'm sorry I couldn't post more today, I am busy getting ready for a web update on Monday (finally!). I had a look at the site today and was horrified by what I saw. So stay tuned for that, plus an exciting new thing on August 1. Send me an email if you'd like to be notified of when "it" happens.

Have a fun weekend! And thanks again for having me!

{guest blogger elisabeth: one more dress}


For all the girls who loved the Carolina Herrera dress, one more for you, from Reem Acra Spring 2007. I don't know about the flower but the silhouette and draping and shirred bodice are beautiful. Last one, I promise.

Photo from brides.com

{guest blogger elisabeth: pretty bangles}


Let's say you're like me and don't wear much jewelry but you do like the occasional fun piece. I don't picture myself wearing something that is made to appear that it came from Harry Winston at our wedding, and I certainly wouldn't buy something like that just for one day. So I love these bangles from Alexis Bittar: I think they're super fun but have a classic look to them, and if I needed to convince myself that they are perfectly suited to a Maine wedding I might say that the sparkly bits are shaped like rocks on the shoreline. Or something. The dress would have to be really simple, like the Carolina Herrera number I posted a few days ago. But the best part is that one of these bracelets wouldn't be relegated to the bottom of a jewelry box, you could totally put on a white tank, jeans, metallic flats and a bracelet, and you'd look pretty sharp.

Photos are from Alexis Bittar

{guest blogger elisabeth: supercool invitations}



These are, in my most humble opinion, the coolest, bestest invitations ever. They let you know right off the bat that this is going to be fun, fun, fun so don't get stressed about icky formalities. And it's clear from the responses that the happy couple has super cool friends too. If I can figure out a way to encourage the same from our friends while keeping the whole barn in Maine theme in mind, I'll do the same. Printed by Coeur Noir for Robin Rosenthal and Matt Hall, in Martha Stewart Weddings Winter 2006.

{guest blogger elisabeth: a short dress}




This isn't exactly a novel idea but there are so few shorter dresses out there. Why is that? I'd love to wear a shorter dress and these are some of my favorites. The Oscar de la Renta is totally perfect and my mom saw it said "that dress was made for you", but is it a bit much for a field in Maine?

The lovely thing about opting for a less bridal-y dress is that so many designers come out with white dresses for the summer, so you don't end up with a bride's price tag.

Dress are top to bottom: Oscar de la Renta, Carolina Herrera, and Romona Keveza, all from brides.com

July 19, 2007

{guest blogger elisabeth: some origami}




A while back a client asked if I was "good at folding". I thought of course I'm good at folding, who isn't? And then I remembered that not everyone took origami classes for six years. I did, and it was pretty cool because every year we'd help set up the JAL tree on Park and fold the stars for the incredible tree at the Natural History Museum. My teacher was super cool and put honey on his french fries. One day he came over and taught my mom and me how to fold a baby grand piano, with white keys and everything. It took us about 3 hours. Very sadly he's since passed away.

The photos here are from Joseph Wu, an origamist (I may have made up that word) who has a pretty neat website chock full of really intricate work that would probably take a lot longer than 3 hours to fold (or at least it would take me that long).

But here's a neat trick, and probably the only thing that I remember how to fold because I'm in the habit of folding bills into peacocks and leaving them as tips at bars. It's also a useful skill if the person you're with is boring. I was able to find instructions for a similar (though I will say, not as cool) peacock, and if you'd like to give it a try click here. And don't be offended if the bartender unfolds your tip and adds it to the jar. I got over it the first time it happened.

{guest blogger elisabeth: the invitations}



I am beginning to understand how clients feel when they say "But I want it all!" I have no idea how we'll come to a decision about the wedding stationery and truth be told we haven't talked about it. I will however come clean and say that on the train to New York a few weeks after the proposal I pulled together an idea for the save the date, a snippet of which you see here. Just a first draft, and the paper that you see is a swatch I picked up recently at Paper Source because I liked the look of it. It might end up as envelope liners for the invitations, which will be much simpler than the save the dates. We'll see.

Update: Not sure about the colors either, here's another.


{guest blogger elisabeth: flowers and stripes}




I am picturing flowers and stripes, through and through. Seersucker suits with different Liberty pocket squares, a striped ribbon for my bouquet and for the girls, and more to decorate the tables. I will share my ideas for the invitations next.

Liberty London fabric photos are from Heirloom Imports; flowers and table setting are by Artfool from Martha Stewart Weddings Spring 2006

{guest blogger elisabeth: flea market wedding}




This is a brilliant idea: I saw yesterday on Social Design photos from a spread in Brides, for which the editors scoured eBay and acquired all of the decor and trimmings for a wedding. I have had in mind for some time now a flea market / antique store just north of Lake George that we would visit on our way up to Middlebury, chock full of vases and pitchers and plates and flatware and linens and the list goes on. And the lovely thing about it is that you'll have, presumably, loads of pretty things that you might otherwise have rented for the occasion, and which are no doubt more meaningful and better suited to your party.

All photos by Jim Bastardo for brides.com

July 18, 2007

{guest blogger elisabeth: budgeting for letterpress}


Two comments that I have heard dozens of times before and since being engaged are: I bet you'll go all out with your own wedding invitations, and You must have already designed your own. I have a small inkling of what they'll be like: simple and straightforward. I am lucky of course that I can design and print just about anything we might want, but we're not over-the-top folks so there's no need to go overboard.

I do know that we'll be using vintage stamps, some of which you can see here from my searches on eBay. I buy them in sheets, at a premium comparable to what one might pay to have custom photo stamps made.

Here are some tips for brides and grooms in budgeting for wedding stationery, specifically letterpress:

1. 2 color will always be more expensive than 1, big more costly than small. Consider a smaller invitation in just 1 color, like Lexy and Neal's invitations.
2. Consider including a reply line on the invitation itself, especially if you don't need to collect information about meal selections and the like. You'll have to be prepared for the phone calls though.
3. Skip the directions and info card. Instead include a small card that directs your guests to a website where they can find relevant information.
4. Skip the inner envelopes. My clients pay little to me for them, but if using a calligrapher, they have to be lettered too.
5. Ask your friends to help address envelopes.
6. Ask your stationer to create an image file that matches the cards in your invitation set, and have a custom rubber stamp made for the return address on both invitation and reply envelopes. The cost of the blank envelopes will be minimal compared to the cost of having them printed.
7. If you are having small cards printed, ask your printer if they can be printed 2 or 4 at a time. Some of the best looking escort cards and gift tags I've printed included a single illustration printed in the center of a card that is cut into quarters, with a little piece on each card
8. Let's say your invites are illustrated with a design in 1 color and the typography in another. If you need table numbers, or other large cards, ask your printer to run 20 (or however many you need) extra cards that contain just the illustration, then add the numbers or text to the cards by hand
9. Bells and whistles -- belly bands, ribbon, overlays -- cost more and won't always enhance your invitations
10. Unless you are hosting a black tie affair, include a reception line on the invitation

I'm sorry if I sound too bossy.

{guest blogger elisabeth: setting the table}




I don't think having a pig roast means that our reception can't be casually, simply elegant. But the difficulty of serving dinner family style is that there will be little room for large floral centerpieces. This is just fine by me, I don't go in for that look except in small doses (as opposed to on 12 tables). I love the look of single blooms in small vases or mason jars, unfussy and maybe with some rosemary and sage tucked in for greenery.

All images from Martha Stewart: top, from Outdoor Living special issue, middle from Weddings "Color" special issue, bottom from Weddings Winter 2005

{guest blogger elisabeth: a garden wedding}


(click the photo to enlarge)

This invitation is another of my favorites. Liz and Craig were married a few weeks ago in her mom's garden in Connecticut. The invitation is printed on a 600 gsm stock on both sides, with a full pattern of orchids and ferns printed in fuschia ink, and the text and larger ferns in leafy green and chocolate brown on the front. Printing on the back was an unexpected surprise for guests when they flipped the invitation to find the reply card and envelope.

I'm sorry the photo is so bad, I'll update it with a better one if I can

July 17, 2007

{guest blogger elisabeth: linda & harriett}


A few weeks back I found Linda & Harriett thanks to Grace. Linda & Harriet is the work of Liz Coulson Libré and after looking through her portfolio I was smitten with her work. And it turns out that we either have a whole bunch in common or it feels oddly that way. Well the two most recent weirdest things are the following: Stacey Kane photographed her wedding last September (see below) at Kingsley Pines in Maine, and a photo from the wedding appeared in the current issue of Martha Stewart Weddings. Last weekend I went up to a friend's camp and it turns out Kingsley Pines is just down the road. Weird, right?

Now, I had planned to write about her today, and guess what: it turns out that I should also be wishing Liz a Hippity Happity Birthday! Have fun today!

You can see the slideshow of Liz and John's wedding on Stacey's site right here. It looks magical to me.

{guest blogger elisabeth: stacey kane}





Z and I have each picked the one thing that matters the most to us for the wedding: for Z it's the music, for me it's photography. I found Stacey Kane while researching where all of this is going to happen, and her photos made me cry (in a good way). I think her work is tremendous and her sensibilities are just what you would want in a photographer. We've yet to sit down together but I think we will in the next few weeks. I'm thrilled about that.

I will tell you about a very strange coincidence next.

All photos copyright Stacey Kane.

{guest blogger elisabeth: this could be the one}


A dress that suits me to a T, I think. Though I would love it in cotton voile. Even better in a swiss dot. Any cotton wedding dresses out there?

Dress from Carolina Herrera's Spring 2007 collection, from brides.com

{guest blogger elisabeth: a maine wedding}


I'm having some trouble writing about our wedding because it's essentially all in my head. This is a good exercise though (thanks, Chelsea!) Here is what we've come up with so far, off the top of my head:

pigroast / bluegrass band / Lunasa's Inion Ni Scannlain for my walk down the aisle / long tables, family style / seasonal, local produce and flowers / galvanized tin tubs at each table for wine and beer and lemonade / strawberry shortcake / mojitoes / z will likely play some sort of song with his dad and brothers / seersucker for the boys / painted chuck taylors and a bowtie for z / loads of fairy lights for the barn / not too much in the way of decoration because it's beautiful as it is

I think I'll stop there. I have a few photos that I will share in other posts.

Left photo from Seasons Downeast Designs in Rockport, Maine; right photo from the barn site.

{guest blogger elisabeth: maison de vacances}




I don't think that I would feel totally at ease living in one of these spaces, but I do like the styling and different bits and pieces from French interiors brand Maison de Vacances. Maybe I would just visit. And I do love the pattern and saturated colors of the floor pillow in the second picture. Also that beautiful wall of wood.

July 16, 2007

{guest blogger elisabeth: sensura studio}



I like to see what other letterpress-ers have loaded to Flickr, and am always delighted by new work from Sensura Studio. I love that her work has the feeling of experimentation but is so clearly thought out, not to mention perfectly pressed. It's exquisite. Her letterpress Flickr set is here.

{guest blogger elisabeth: a winter wedding}



Mid-summer is about the time that I start thinking about how much I'm looking forward to fall and winter and the holidays. A few years ago my family spent Christmas at the Pitcher Inn in Warren, Vermont. It is an incredibly cozy and welcoming place, and if we weren't getting married on the Maine coast in summertime we'd do the opposite: a small gathering just over the mountains from Middlebury, at the inn in January. The interior of the inn is amazing: every room so cleverly designed around a theme relevant to the area. My mom, brother and I bunked up in the Mountain Room, and the picture you see here is taken from inside the room but outside of the cabin that is in the room, housing the bed and painted murals of the Green Mountains. There is a cabin inside the room. Can you picture it?

Now if you were to be married in wintertime at the Pitcher Inn or anywhere else in Vermont for that matter, you'd need a cake to suit the setting. This cake was designed by artist Will Cotton for the New York Times Magazine, and appeared on January 16, 2005. Of course I clipped it.


{guest blogger elisabeth: joseph cornell}



A few weeks back I saw a poster for an exhibition called Joseph Cornell: Navigating the Imagination at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem. I like fanciful, imaginary things and so I'm bananas for Mr. Cornell's box constructions.
I haven't had a chance to hop on the train to see it yet but I will before it closes in mid-August. The interactive website is quite cool, you can see it here. And more of his box constructions can be seen here at the Smithsonian.

Top photo, Untitled (Cockatoo with Watch Faces), about 1949 from the PEM site; bottom photo Setting for a Fairytale, 1942 from the Guggenheim Collection.

{guest blogger elisabeth: thinking small}

I have always preferred small things, they just feel more cozy and intimate. For invitations in particular, unless there is loads of text to include, I think the convention that they be quite big is off the mark. And so I'm happy to say that three brides in the last two weeks have opted for smaller invitations that measure 4.5 x 6.25, with a reply card that is about as small as the post office will allow. They are ultimately less expensive, nicer to the environment, and often cheaper to mail. I love how they look, and these in particular are to my mind close to perfect. The liner is a flocked paper from Paper Mojo.


Thank you to Lexy and Neal for letting me include their invites!

{guest blogger elisabeth: hello}

Hello! I'm so happy to be here this week and many thanks to Chelsea for the invitation. She asked that I post about letterpress, inspiration, and wedding-ish things, since I'll be marrying my guy of almost nine years next summer. We've yet to formalize any of our plans but we're getting there.

Most importantly, we've found the perfect spot. The saltwater farm is a 100 acre property in Martinsville, Maine, on the coast between Tenants Harbor and Port Clyde. The beautiful barn will be the site of the ceremony or reception, though we may ultimately have to have a tent. I hope not.

You can see more photos of the barn and vacation rentals here.