New York is such a romantic city, and Francis and Andy agree. Says Francis: “We chose NY because we wanted a different photography experience than we’d have in Taiwan, where the engagement shoots can be very staged in a way that would take most of the fun out of it. So after talking about what we didn’t want, we knew we wanted something natural with amazing light and warmth, so we found Ryan Ray! We also chose New York because that’s the only city Andy and I have traveled to in U.S. together, and we were excited about the possibilities for photos there.”

Photos by Ryan Ray. Hair by Dennis Fei, makeup by Nam Vo.

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Today’s feature comes from the imagination of Ariella Chezar: a party created with the littlest wedding guests in mind, full of whimsy and butterflies…

Layers of texture and color plus pops of bright, girly color make for an utterly delightful setting.

Instead of flowers, how about a giant agate balloon for each of your young attendants? Tied with a beautiful ombre ribbon, of course.

The playful details extend to this sweethearts table, with a glittery table cloth, opalescent blue tumblers, and ribbon medal place cards.

Paper cones can be filled with anything from paper confetti to caramel corn to potato chips. Dress them up or down with colors and patterns that fit your theme.

I don’t know about you, but this is a party I would love to attend, no matter how old I am! A big thank you to Ariella Chezar and Meg Smith for sharing this story with us. You can see more from this shoot in the current issue of Sweet Paul magazine.

Also! If you love these beautiful photos, Meg Smith is collaborating with Lisa Lefkowitz and Suzy Clement (two more brilliant photographers) on a photography workshop in Sonoma in August. The venue is the gorgeous Twin Palms, which I can honestly say is one of the loveliest places I’ve had the pleasure to visit. Plus, I’ll be speaking on day two of the workshop, so I hope to see you there!



Photographer: Meg Smith / Concept, floral design, production: Ariella Chezar / Food styling: Abby Stolfo / Graphic design, paper products: Viola Sutanto, Chewing the Cud / Flower girl dresses: Ariella Bella / Event Coordination: Traci Steuteville, Napa Valley Celebrations / Edible butterflies: similar from incrEDIBLE toppers / 30-inch agate balloons: similar from Balloon Maniacs

  • Fairyland Flower Girls by Ariella Chezar

    20 June 2012
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    Back in May, I had the pleasure of being a guest at the Little Flower School at Garden Valley Ranch, a gorgeous rose farm in Petaluma, California. Jen Huang was along to capture the beauty of the day, and as an extra bonus, one lucky couple won the chance to model for a bridal shoot, complete with flowers by Saipua and Nicolette Camille.

    The day started with a tour of the gardens, followed by lunch at the gazebo, then a flower arranging lesson with Sarah and Nicolette. After attending two of their classes, I have to say that if you’ve never arranged flowers but always wanted to try, the Little Flower School is a great place to start!

    Arrangements created by some of the folks attending the class:

    When the class had ended, Sarah and Nicolette created a stunning bridal bouquet, elaborate floral headdress, and sweet boutonniere for Judith and Brody, the darling couple who won the photo shoot with Jen. Judith and Brody hadn’t planned to hire a photographer for their own upcoming wedding, so this was the perfect opportunity for them to get some gorgeous photos together.

    Congratulations Judith and Brody! And thank you to all of the amazing vendors who brought this lovely day to life…



    Photographer: Jen Huang / Venue: Garden Valley Ranch / Flowers: Nicolette Camille and Saipua / Dress: Saja / Hair, makeup: Jess Wilcox

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    I love seeing something like the farm-to-table movement find its way into the wedding world. This lovely shoot was created by stylist Jessica Sloane, who says, “I love the concept of growing your own food and gathering friends for a casual dinner party centered around that homegrown food. So we decided to have a dinner at a local farm for Jordana and Trent, a sweet engaged couple who was getting married in a few weeks. All the food was from the farm we were on and the drinks were made at a local brewery.”

    I love the idea of printing the menu on a tea towel napkin, and farm fresh vegetables make for a charming and unexpected centerpiece.

    Congratulations Jordana and Trent, and thank you to Jessica Sloane for sharing this fun dinner party with us! Check out the behind-the-scenes video of the shoot right here.



    Appetizer: Blistered Thin Beans with Crispy Spring Garlic, Lemon, Bottarga  //  First Course: Spring Strawberry Salad with Organic Baby Spinach, Fennel, Blue Cheese, Balsamic  //  Second Course: Spring Pea Carbonara with Tagliatelle, Bacon, Local Egg, Pecorino  //  Third Course: Braised Lamb Shank with Creamy Polenta, Tomatoes and Farm Fresh Vegetables  //  Dessert: Apple Pie with Cheddar Crisp and Rosemary Ice Cream



    Design concept, styling: Jessica Sloane / Photographer: Jessica Lorren / Videographer: Root House / Venue: Rocky Glade Farm in Eagleville, Tennessee / Paper goods: Yours is the Earth / Potted herbs: Artisan Flowers / Farm table: Awaken

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