“the Japanese art of finding beauty within the imperfections of life and accepting the natural cycle of growth and decay — celebrating cracks, crevices and all other marks that time, weather and love leave behind”
For years, I’ve been drawn to this Japanese idea that things get more and more beautiful with age and wear.
When I shared this idea with planner, Kellyne of Hand & Heart Events, she immediately thought of a monochromatic shoot incorporating dried florals and pampas grass (hello, pretty!). For the tabletop decor, she chose handcrafted ceramics because she wanted to incorporate the imperfection that comes with handmade goods. Each plate has its own unique marks, color, and texture — embracing the idea that beauty can be found in asymmetry and imbalance. To nod to Japanese heritage and western custom, each setting was set with chopsticks and a fork and knife. For the custom cocktails, she chose two cocktail glasses that featured the traditional Japanese “Yari” pattern. This is a common technique used in Japanese glass making and refers to the weave pattern on the glass. We were even lucky enough to have a professional bartender create a custom cocktail using traditional Japanese whiskey and ingredients!
The stationery suite and paper goods were created by the very talented Stephanie of Bowerbird Atelier, who was inspired by natural textures, and used handmade paper overlaid with vellum for a romantic effect. Classic typography was paired with illustrations of cherry blossoms to symbolize spirituality, beauty and impermanence. The menu cards were embellished with blossoms embedded in pearlescent wax for an extra touch of natural elegance. She used broken pieces of neutral ceramic pottery for the place cards, embellished with a gold edge to mimic Kintsugi (the Japanese art of highlighting broken lines with real gold when fixing ceramics). This nod to the practice of the kintsugi tradition is also reflected on the stunning cake created by Natty Cakes.
The floral creations were the genius of Carrie from Boheme Tipi Events! She created a stunning asymmetrical ceremony altar anchored by a giant dried palm. Her hanging pampas grass installation above the table made the perfect wow-moment impact on the design. One of my favorite little details of this shoot is the way the accordion silk fabric of the bride’s dress mimics the fan palms used throughout the decor! The bride wore a gorgeous champagne diamond ring from Lauren Wolf Jewelry to match the monochrome look of the shoot. Scroll to the bottom to check out all of my talented collaborators – this was a fun one! Also head to 100 Layer Cake to see our feature!
Photography + Art Direction // Cheers Babe Photo
Planning, Styling + Decor // Hand & Heart Events
Paper Goods + Signage // Bowerbird Atelier
Floral Design // Boheme Tipi Events
Hair + Makeup // Beauty by Lia
Cake // Natty Cakes
Bar // John McKenna
Suit // Knot Standard
Read more >
Hello again & happy Friday! Over the last couple of years I’ve seen some really exciting momentum in my business & so many business concepts finally “clicked” for me. Now, part of this I attribute to trial and error and showing up every day ready to learn. However, along the way I have read some extremely useful business books & I’d love to share them with you today! I try to read one business book every other month these days & that’s been an invaluable practice for my business. Continual learning has really become a core value of my business because things change so quickly these days & we can literally never know all the things! Here are some of the best books for business that I’ve read & would highly recommend to you!
disclosure: the links below are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Business Books You Have to Read
click the book’s cover to grab it over on amazon!
Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen
This book is my NUMBER ONE recommendation to anyone running a business! After reading this book by Donald Miller, I literally added an entire new page on my website to clarify the message I was putting out into the world & it’s been a game changer! My favorite part of the book is when he talks about how to position your voice with your audience so that what you’re saying compels your ideal clients. Go buy this book now if you haven’t read it!
Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All
Co-Written by brothers Tom & David Kelley who founded the incredible design firm IDEO where they use creativity to solve major human problems and create positive impact for the world. Although this isn’t technically a business book, if you’re offer a creative service to clients like I do, you’re always trying to solve your client’s biggest problems and improve their experience. The problem is, doing that sometimes takes big risks and can be scary! This book dials down on basically how to think creatively and make bold, creative decisions.
Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business
I’ll be honest – I’m actually only about halfway done with this book, but I HAVE to include it in this list because it’s already that good! As I look into the future of Cheers Babe Photo, I’m super excited to grow my team & this book talks all about how to do that well — all the way from how to hire & what to look for through day-to-day systems to put in place that both motivate your team and grow your business. Definitely pick up this book if you’re thinking about hiring!
This Is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn to See
First of all, Seth Godin is like a business genius and has written many books that are worth reading. Most recently I read his book This is Marketing which talks both about how you should be approaching you marketing today as well as how you shouldn’t be, which is so useful! My favorite line in the whole book is about realizing that you’re not a good fit for every client and that is totally okay! — “When we find the empathy to say, “I’m sorry, this isn’t for you, here’s the phone number of my competitor,” then we also find the freedom to do work that matters.” – S.Godin
The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery
While obviously this isn’t actually a business book but a book about the enneagram, I’m including it in my business books list because as I dive deeper into the psychology tool that is the Enneagram typing system, the more empathy I gain for my couples as well as potential clients who end up going with someone else. If you’ve heard about the enneagram (yes, I know it’s trendy right now, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t great!), this book is a really great place to start & even determine your dominant type!
WorkParty: How to Create & Cultivate the Career of Your Dreams
Part business book & part-memoir by Jaclyn Johnson, the founder of ultra successful Create & Cultivate is a really fun & quick read. Hear her story, her mistakes, her triumphs and best advice for women running their own business today while remaining a healthy & taking care of yourself too!
What should I read next, babe?
Read more >
Hello my Santa Barbara bride-to-be’s!! How tired are you of googling a million places in this vast state to find the picture perfect wedding venue? Probs real tired. That’s why I’ve compiled a list of the best, coolest, prettiest, cutest, dreamiest Santa Barbara wedding venues that I recommend you visit first! These are fool-proof and gorgeous – sign on their dotted line and call a sista up, because I’m SO there.
If you haven’t seen my LA Wedding Venue List, Bay Area Wedding Venue List, Orange County Venue List or Palm Springs Wedding Venue List, be sure to check those out if you’re thinking about other parts of California!
I am obsessed with this perfect greenhouse venue! It’s also right near the ocean!
Everything you could want – vines, a perfect oak tree, historic home to get ready in & a barn-style ballroom.
Quirky & fun hotel with unique decor details that will definitely spark joy!
Gorgeous Spanish architecture with a modern interior – the courtyard is amazing at night!
The columns are pink!! Need I say more?
The gardens are stunning! My favorite is their field of lavender!
Ocean-view ceremony & a barn reception
The ultimate glamping wedding spot!
There’s a view of the ocean, gorgeous Spanish tile steps and some of the most amazing light I’ve ever seen.
I seriously don’t know what to say other than this place is perfection!
Think classy jurassic park vibes haha!
This place is so luxurious!
Get a massage the day of your wedding while your boo plays a round of golf with his boys!
Wanna feel like you’re having a wedding in Tuscany without the jet lag? This is where you go!
Photo Credit in order from top to bottom:
Jodee Debes Photography, Cheers Babe Photo, Erin J Saldana Photography, Gaby J Photography, James & Jess, The Great Romance Photo, Jana Williams, Lisse Lundin, Jenny Quicksall, Belmond El Encanto, Wild Whim Design & Photography, Cheers Babe Photo for The Day.Collective, Michelle Beller and Jen Huang