Erika & Brett's Desert Boho Brasada Wedding

I first met Erika & Brett out at Brasada Ranch for our initial consultation. I could tell right away we would get along. Erika has this laid back but direct personality which I can appreciate, especially when it came to floral designs. Erika knew what she wanted but also gave me the creative freedom to put my touch on everything. The vibe was desert Boho with a soft peach, mauve and sage green color palate. I used lots of sage and juniper to compliment Brasada's beautiful surroundings. The romantic mauve garden roses softened the look of the harsh desert accents. 

For the fireplace mantel, I used bunches of smoke bush in the perfect shade of mauve/pink which acted as the perfect pillow for the voluptuous white and mauve roses to rest in.

The ceremony took place down at the pond on the lower terrace at Brasada. We lined the aisle with juniper, sage and eucalyptus filled wooden boxes. Erika’s family is greek orthodox, so I made two crowns connected with a white ribbon for Brett & Erika to wear together during the ceremony. The wedding crowns, or Stefana, symbolize the glory and honor that is being bestowed on them during the ceremony. The Stefana are joined by a ribbon which symbolizes the unity of the couple and joins them together.

Judging by the photos, I think this wedding ended in one EPIC dance party! Cheers to Erika & Brett!


 

A little about me & Owning a business

As I enter into my 4th year owning Petals. Flowers by Katie I find myself reflecting on how much I have learned during this journey and how grateful I am to be working as a florist in Beautiful Bend, Oregon! 

It started really, as a child, in my mother's garden. Some would say that as a kid, I was a little hard to handle...lot's of energy. My mom was an avid gardner, so decided one day to put my energy to good use and set me free in her garden. My job was to pull out all of the weeds. Several hours later, my mom came out to find me digging up her large "weed" which was actually not a weed at all, but a dormant rose bush! As distraught as she was at this, she took the time to teach me about plants and flowers. I was hooked. I fell in love with the care and attention it took to grow something beautiful. Even in their seemingly lifeless state, it takes patience and hard work to bring a plant to their full potential. 

Fast forward to my college years in San Diego when I took a summer job at a floral shop. I spent the summer working under the owner learning all the names of the flowers, pricing and floral design. I still remember the smell of the shop as the early morning sun rose and beckoned for all the roses to open up. This was by far my favorite job to date, but I graduated and had to get a "real job", never would I have imagined that more than a decade later, I would find my way back to flowers and make it a career.

After working for 10 years in jobs that I didn't love, my husband and I embarked on a life changing adventure hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. Needless to say, we both had lot's of time to think and reflect on what we wanted to do when we got home. I realized that I wanted to get back to what really made me happy. The one thing that was crystal clear to me was my passion for flowers and creating. So, without much thought of where it would lead me, I enrolled in a 3 month long intensive floral design course at the San Francisco Flower Mart. Each 3 hour long class was spent mastering a specific aspect of floral design as well as learning about pricing and running a business. When I graduated, I decided to take a huge risk and quit my job to start Petals. 

The first year was spent working out all the business logistics and flowering my sister's wedding along with some friend's weddings and by the end of the summer, I landed my first organic client! Luckily, my business took off from there and has continued to grow even since moving to Bend, OR. It hasn't always been easy. I remember several times towards the end of a very busy second season wanting to quit it all. My husband has been very supportive and gave up his weekends in the beginning to help me with weddings. But mostly, I was alone, learning it all as I went. 

It's not all roses and rainbows. Being a florist is hard work. only about 20% of the work is actual floral designing and 80% is the daily grind and pressure of running a business. Lots of sleepless nights spent worrying about if my flower order will arrive, will the flowers be of the quality I demand, will the bride like my designs, will my cooler break on me, did I forget anything for tomorrow's wedding... I am sure we all experience this and it's just all part of owning your own business. As hard as it is at times, I can't imagine doing anything else. I love my job and the couples I get to work with. Not to mention this amazingly supportive wedding community I get to collaborate with!  

Time has flown by, and I pinch myself thinking that I am already booking brides for 2019 in my 5th year as a floral designer! If I have any advice for someone starting their own business, it would this; the first couple years are the hardest, be patient and stick with it, trust me it gets easier. Stay organized, ask questions, network, find a mentor. Be open to evolving and growing as a business owner, and remember it's all worth it!

 

White Aspen Styled Shoot

This past December I had the opportunity to collaborate with Christine from Swoon Event and Design on one EPIC styled shoot. This elaborate, shoot uncluded 20 plus super talented Central Oregon wedding vendors (see complete list below) who helped bring Christine's vision to life. It was a magical night held at White Aspen Creative that truly felt like a wedding. Looking around, I thought, if I did it all over again, THIS is how I would want my wedding to look and feel. 

Being a winter shoot, we really wanted it to have a moody, cozy vibe. The florals were heavy on the greenery, local juniper, silver Acacia and blue thistle lent to the holiday vibe without looking too "christmasy". The bridal bouquet was dotted with deep red charm peonies and tons of fun textural elements. To match the velvet blue couch and blue undertones, I wrapped the bouquet in a storm blue ribbon from Tono&Co, which hung beautifully from the bouquet. 

            Photo by my girl  BrittRene Photo

            Photo by my girl BrittRene Photo

 The chemistry and love between this real life couple was palpaple and the "ceremony" was so sweet. After the I do's, we feasted on delicious passed Hors d'oeuvres by Bowtie Catering and sipped on some handccrafted cocktails while dancing the night away! 

The amount of support that came out of this shoot was truly heartwarming. The Bend wedding community is the BEST! I am looking forward to creating some real wedding moments half as grand as this in 2018!! See more photos in my Portfolio section. 

 List Of Vendors:

Planning and Design: Swoon Event & Design, Photography: BrittRene Photography, Catering: Bowtie Catering, Cake: Too Sweet Cakes, Venue: White Aspen Creative, Hair & Makeup: Edge Hair & Makeup, Dress: Katie May  Lighting:  Illuminate Your Night, Signs: Benson Paper CO., D.J.: Muchmore Productions, Rentals: Heirlooms and Co., Leather Work: Hidealchemy, Furniture: Haven Home Style, Furnishings: Abode, Alcohol: Bend South Liquor, Silk Ribbon: Tono & Co., Custom Lighting Installation: Ondine, Get Ready Suit:  The Oxford Hotel, Knits: Platypus Perspective, Lingerie: Black Bird Underpinnings

 

 

 

What a Year it has Been!

Wow, What a year it has been! Since my last blog post, we participated in several styled shoots, weddings here in Bend and back home in Sonoma, rehearsal dinners, several elopements and engagement shoots, explored the PNW,, and have met some incredible friends and fellow wedding industry vendors along the way. Whew! 

It has been a glorious ride and moving our lives and businesses to Bend has been one of the best  decisions we have made. I honestly didn't know what to expect when moving here, I just knew that we needed a life change and wanted to be closer to the outdoors. I was immediately met with such a warm welcome from the wedding community.  Fellow Bend florists have been so kind and I have formed very close working and personal relationships with some of my "Competitors". Bend has a very unique artistic and entrepreneurial spirit. These two things combined have helped me and my business flourish. 

I can't say enough about the talented wedding community here, so I will just show you! Here are just a few of my favorite weddings this past year. . Head on over to the Portfolio Tab to view more!