Lovely Meeting You| How to Care for your Succulent


Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me! I hope that we will have the opportunity to chat again very soon! If you have any questions at all in the meantime, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Now that you’ve gotten your succulent home, here are a few tips on how to care for them so they thrive for years to come.

  1. When you get home, make sure to give your succulent some water!
  2. If you want to replant your succulent, be sure to select a pot with a hole in the bottom so the water can drain easily. You may also want to use potting soil specifically formulated for cacti and succulents. You can find this at most home improvement stores.
  3. Sunlight, sunlight, sunlight! Place your succulent in a sunny window so it gets as many hours of direct sunlight per day as possible.
  4. When the soil gets dry (or if their leaves start wilting), give your succulent enough water to soak the soil through, being careful not to over-water.
  5. If your room temperature is uncomfortable to you, it’s uncomfortable for your succulent, so keep your room between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
  6. Every few months, give your succulent a diluted fertilizer (check your favorite home improvement store).
  7. Keep your succulent out of reach of pets and children.

I hope you’ll enjoy your succulent long past your wedding day!

Christmas 2014

Tom and I were so happy to host some of our lovely family and friends for our first Christmas in our new house.  My sweet mama accompanied me to the flower mart on Christmas Eve and it was so fun to have them all around and helping prep for the festivities. My brother jumped in to fold the napkins like  Christmas trees, and it was hilarious to watch my dad start nit picking the alignment of the chairs and silverware!

We even had a turkey cook-off; one in the oven (dad), one on the grill (Tom)! Needless to say we have quite a few leftovers!

Here are some pics of the dinner setup; gotta love California (al fresco dining in December is okay by me!)! I was a little obsessed with the emerald green crushed velvet linen by La Tavola! You’ll have to forgive my photography, though. The photos came out a bit bluer than it was in real life.


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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Styling, Florals, Calligraphy: A Charming Affair
Linens: La Tavola
Rentals: Classic Party Rentals San Francisco

Sarah + Ty | Engagement Shoot

All of my clients are legitimately super people, and Sarah and Ty are no exception. These two are always on the go, often taking our bi-weekly update calls from an airport somewhere around the country. I’ve been working them since June to pull together their perfect day: a summertime, wine country wedding.

Check out these incredible images from their recent engagement shoot with This Love of Yours Photography. Amazing, huh? It was really difficult to choose just a few photos to post here because each was prettier than the next! I cannot wait to see the magic Erika captures on their wedding day!

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As native east coasters, now living in California, the majority of Sarah and Ty’s families and friends will need to travel west for their wedding,  so we’ve been busy coordinating hotels, buses, welcome bags and other logistics to make the weekend as stress fee as possible for their family and friends. Being that many of their guests will be traveling from far and wide, it is also really important to them that their wedding have a California Wine Country vibe. They’ve selected Cornerstone Gardens in Sonoma for their reception, which fit’s that bill perfectly! Their cocktail hour will be outdoors adjacent to a vineyard, followed by an al fresco dinner under Cornerstone’s gorgeous tent, and dancing in their barn.


I’ve had such a great time working with these two over the past few months. They are genuinely nice people, and after chatting with them every other Sunday evening, I can’t help but be in a good mood. I am super excited to see all the pretty details we’ve been working on come together on their big day. Until August!

Photos by This Love of Yours Photography
Sarah’s Makeup by Kristen Calderaro of Kristen and Gigi

Erica + Brett | St. Helena Wedding

Erica + Brett’s wedding was my last for the 2013 season. Set in gorgeous california wine county, on a stunning fall day, it was just one of those days brides-to-be dream about. So many things about e + b’s wedding were perfect, here are are just a few of my favorite things and favorite shots from the day.
(All photos by Ashley Maxwell)

I was totally in love with the processional. They had their wedding party process into the ceremony to “Such Great Heights” by the Postal Service.  At each change in the melody, another couple would walk in. It worked perfectly and was totally hip, romantic, and absolutely dramatic.


The brides grandmothers favorite flower was the yellow rose. We included three yellow tea roses in the brides and her two cousins bouquets in memory of their grandmother.  The bride also had small pieces from her mom’s veil that we wrapped around her bouquet, and incorporate into her mom’s corsage and dad’s boutonniere. I just love the small, sentimental details that couples incorporate into their weddings. These details are usually subtle and are not be noticeable to most, but mean a lot to them, and isn’t that the point?



Kudos to the groom for making the delicious salted caramel favors. Yes, he made them. from. scratch.  They were a hit, to say the least.


A big thanks to the team of vendors who make their day come together. Check them out, below.

Congratulations Erica + Brett!!
Planning + florals: A Charming Affair
Photographer: Ashley Maxwell
Ceremony + Reception Venue + Caterer: Long Meadow Ranch / Farmstead Restaurant
Makeup: Katie Land
Hair: Heather Bettencourt of Unveiling Designs
Officiant: Friend of the Couple
DJ: James Miranda
Cake: Kara’s Cupcakes
Transportation: Beau Wine Tours

Rosita + Loren | St. Helena Wedding

When I think of Rosita and Loren, one word comes to mind, and that’s love. Love for their families, love of good food, wine, love for life, and so so so much love for one another. I adored getting to know these two in the months prior to their wedding, and I think their wedding really reflected them as a couple, sweet and down to earth, but undoubtably glamorous!


The handmade details of their wedding were unbelievably adorable. The groom’s parents hauled in a suitcase with over twenty hand-made reclaimed barn wood flower boxes for the table flowers (all the way from the mid-west no less). The bride’s parents brought a gorgeous rustic wooden sign (also all the way from the mid-west).



The escort card display was made of corks from bottles of wine they drank together throughout the years. How sweet is that?Loftesnes-449

Like I said, their wedding was totally wine county, with tons of glam mixed in. I mean, check out the girls glitzy mix and match dresses,  Rosita’s cascading bouquet and feathered hairpiece, plus all the feathers in the flowers.



Their day totally embraced the wonderful things about California wine county: fresh amazing food, delicious wine, a gorgeous outdoor setting.



Their wedding had tons of outdoor amazingness, including live fire s’mores, yard games, and a cigar roller! In fact, at the last minute, we ended up extending the reception an extra hour because the guests couldn’t get enough of one another. It was amazing.

Congratulations to the happy couple!!

Planning + florals: A Charming Affair
Photographer: Caitlin O’Reilly
Ceremony + Reception Venue, + Caterer: Long Meadow Ranch / Farmstead Restaurant
Hair + Makeup: Betten Chaston
Officiant: Aunt of the Groom
Ceremony Music: Giovanni Mandala
DJ: Von Woo
Cigar Roller: Art of Cigars
Transportation: St. Helena Wine Tours

Eleven Things to do now that You’re Engaged!

Hope you all had a great holiday season! I know some you probably have one more thing besides Santa’s visit to celebrate this year… Holidays mean engagement season, in fact, according to BRIDES magazine, December is the most popular month to get engaged. So congrats to you! Here are 11 things to do once you say “yes”!

1. Tell your family and friends.
This I’m sure is a no brainer, but before you excitedly post the big news on facebook, or instagram a pic of that gorgeous rock, be sure to think of who might want to hear the news directly from you (grandma, BFF?). Give those special people a telephone call, and then post away my friend!

2. Write down your memories from the proposal.
Over the next few months, as wedding preparation kicks into full gear, it’s easy to forget the little details that made your proposal so special. Take some time to write down the memories while they’re still fresh. You’ll love to reminisce about them years from now, and it will help you perfect your proposal story telling — you can bet you’ll be recounting it a lot as your friends and family find out you’re engaged!

3. Doll up those digits!
Maybe you were expecting that special someone to pop the question, and you’ve already got a lovely mani, but if you haven’t, get one. You’ll be flashing that left hand very frequently over the next few weeks, plus getting a manicure is a great way to relax and unwind during all the excitement of being newly engaged.

4. Get your ring appraised and insured.
Okay, I know this isn’t the most thrilling item on the to-do list, but folks, it’s really, really important. Many local jewelers offer appraisal services, so call around and find an experienced, trusted shop and bring the ring in. While you’re there, you can also get it resized if you need to. Once appraised and documented, call you insurance company and ask if you can add the ring to your existing rental or homeowner’s policy, if you have one. If it can’t be added to an existing policy, find a trustworthy jewelry insurance company. You may also want to take some photos of the ring to keep with the appraisal documentation in the event it is lost or stolen.

5. Start thinking about when and where you want to get married.
You’ll get the “when is the big day?” question a lot. Also think geographically about where you want your wedding. A beach in Tahiti? Your hometown in Michigan? To have even a vague answer prepared, for example, “We’re hoping next summer in San Francisco,” will make it a lot easier to respond and help your friends and family feel in the know.

6. Setup a wedding website.
Sure, you probably don’t have much information to put up there yet, but it will be an invaluable tool to communicate with your guests as your big day gets closer. In the meantime, you can post something like, “Stay tuned for more details, but we hope to get married in summer 2014 in Claire’s hometown in Maine” (see item #5).

7. Have the budget talk.
This is a toughie, but it must be done. Whether your parents, you and your fiancé, or a combination of people will be paying for wedding, you need to have an honest conversation about what’s doable, and what’s not. Getting a realistic number down on paper is a good starting point.

8. Draft a guest list.
Just get names written down. This initial exercise is by no means the end-all-be-all of guest lists, but is simply a starting point to get a rough headcount. If you’re thinking of a small affair with thirty of your closet relations versus a huge soiree with hundreds of guests, it will change a lot of the planning logistics, including the types of venues you’ll be exploring. Don’t forget to include your parents and future in-laws in this conversation, as it should mitigate any potential conflicts if everybody is on the same page from the beginning.

9. Get inspired!
Here’s a fun one! Start looking for inspiration on the internet, in magazines, blogs, and Pinterest. Think about what makes you and your fiancé unique and how to incorporate some of your personalities into you big day. Also, keep a small notebook with you… When you hear a song you love that you want played, or remember a story you must include in your toast, write it down!

10. Remember your relationship.
You’ve probably been building a relationship with the person you’ve agreed to marry to for some time. Don’t forget to keep building and strengthening that bond. The investment you make in your relationship now will be there long after you say “I Do”.

11. Don’t panic.
The average engagement is 14 months. You have time. Being engaged is so exciting, so enjoy it.


Indigo is the New Emerald Green

Last winter, it seemed like people people couldn’t get enough emerald green. And why not? It’s a beautiful color, ridiculously festive (especially when used with gold) and looks great with a surprisingly wide variety of other colors, both brights and neutrals. As 2013 is quickly drawing to a close, I’m wondering what the new “it” color will be. I’m not going to venture a guess, but will only say that what’s been inspiring me lately is Indigo! There’s something about it that screams winter to me, especially paired with silver, whites, and ivories. Here are a few lovely “Indigo Winter Wedding” inspired  things I found around the internet.

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1. Vintage White China from Archive Vintage Rentals, 2. Winston Settee from One True Love Vintage Rentals, 3. Oswald Trunk from One True Love Vintage Rentals, 4. From Pinterest: Photography by Heidi Geldhauser, Floral Design by Amy Osaba, Erica Loesing Calligraphy, 5. Isabella Midnight Blue Linen from La Tavola, 6. Via SummerTimeSerene on Tumblr, 7. Glitter Pinecone by PotterandButler (Etsy), 8. Silver and Crystal Chandelier from Archive Vintage Rentals, 9. Pinterest via Unknown Source, 10.Via Marion WD on Tumblr, 11. Agnes Wingback Chair from One True Love Vintage Rentals, 12. West Elm Mercury Tealight Holders, 13. New York Midnight Blue Linen from La Tavola.