My dear friend and colleague, Jen, asked me to photograph her best friend Dara’s baby shower at the end of August. I have been welcoming every opportunity to work on my photography skills , so I was incredibly excited to capture the sweet details of this jungle-themed shower and portraits of the mom-to-be, her friends, and family.
Winter sunsets are my favorite. There is a sweet glimmer on the horizon as the sun slowly sinks, flecks of gold sprayed everywhere. I’m not sure if it’s just the comforting and happy qualities of gold in the midst of a cold winter, but I’ve been drawn to it lately… enough to make me want to paint odds and ends in my room a nice, bright gold. On this particular golden day, I teamed up with Vanessa Riojas to capture our New Year’s Eve attire. New Year’s Eve in Northern Virginia was a cold one, so I wore my favorite gold sequin dress with a black and white plaid shirt, tights, and booties for a little added warmth. I also wore my favorite red winter hat from The Current, a pretty awesome radio station out of Minneapolis, MN. The plaid and hat together have a lumberjack[ie]-chic feel, no? Ah, I live for puns.
Vanessa wore a fun long-sleeved floral patterned dress that she recently found while thrift shoppin’ in Chicago, and just looking at her made me feel a bit warmer! Vanessa is not only a photographer, but also a thrifty girl extraordinaire, and runs her own vintage shop. I have always had a love for vintage clothes, hanging onto pieces that my mother and grandmother have passed down to me, and Vanessa’s unique style has inspired me to pull some of those favorites to the front of my closet. Also, don’t be surprised if you run into me at thrift stores on H Street one of these days…
Photography by Vanessa Riojas
Happiness. Such a simple word, but defined in so many ways by different people. It’s a word that I will be thinking about a lot. I’m going through a big transition in my life [which scares the hell out of me] but it’s also an opportunity in other ways. One of them being the chance to really think about what makes me happy. Not my significant other, friends, family, or coworkers, but me. I realize that’s a selfish thing to say, but if you can’t be selfish after being dumped, when can you be?
I hope to find even more joy in the small things in life, which is one of the reasons I started this blog. Like my new morning ritual of making pour over coffee in my now empty apartment, and walking around my neighborhood taking in everything going on around me. I’ve been telling everyone that I am now a “yes girl.” This is a time for me to experience everything that I can. In the words of Ms. Frizzle, to “take chances, make mistakes, and get messy.”
Photography by Traci J. Brooks Studios
Follow my daily inspirations on Instagram @jackietara.
Our last craft night before the holidays featured “gold dipped” pine cones. I thought they would be an easy and festive decoration for friends to have on display in their homes, or to give as gifts! I found a couple of different ways to make DIY gold pine cones, but settled on the painting option [like this example from A Pear of Pears]. Michael’s has several types of metallic paint and inexpensive sets of paint brushes. Thankfully the paint eventually washes out but it took a little bit of scrubbing, so I wouldn’t suggest using your best brushes on this project!
Gold, silver, or copper liquid gilding paint
Fine tipped paint brushes
Pine cones [store bought or found outside]
Cover your workspace with newspaper or wax paper to make sure you don’t spill any paint on your furniture! You can paint only the tips of your pine cones, or paint them a solid metallic color. I did a mix of silver and gold and went for the store bought scented ones from Michael’s. Let dry for at least an hour. Put them in a bowl or vase and enjoy!
Lettering by Dan Rader
I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season with family and friends, and for those of you who celebrate it, I hope you had a very merry Christmas! Between the boisterous game nights, delicious meals, services, singing, and cocktail drinking, T and I were able to escape for a couple peaceful hours at the Kenilworth Park & Aquatic Gardens in Northeast D.C. It’s a hidden gem on the other side of the National Arboretum [both just minutes from our apartment] in Anacostia. You would never know it’s there… and unfortunately I think a lot of people don’t. We visited on a Thursday afternoon and the entire park was empty, save for a few mallards splashing in the ponds and a couple of frisky doe romping in the woods.
It was absolutely gorgeous out. We didn’t need coats and I was glad to get outside for some fresh air in this little pocketed sanctuary of the city. T and I were heading to his brother’s holiday party later that evening, so I was already dressed in a new gold lace cocktail dress with an aqua cardigan for a pop of color. I’ve been legitimately obsessed with this color palette this season – I even wrapped all my gifts in gold paper with aqua and neutral rafia and ribbon!
Photography by Teddy Wolff
I can’t wait for New Year’s Eve to break out some more gold… and maybe a little sparkle too!
Last week my colleague and I attended RSVP Catering’s Fall and Holiday Open House Tasting at the Anderson House, D.C. The “house” is more of a mansion with it’s grand staircases, marble structures, and statues fit for a museum and, in addition to the delicious food and “Lavender Louvre” cocktail, the decor was beautiful inside the house, and out. Navy and aqua blues filled the backyard garden and complemented a serene reflecting pool.
And blue is just the beginning! Here are some other popular event themes that have been trending lately:
Pink and Gold
Hints of gold have been popping up everywhere on Pinterest and in several blog posts from The Wedding Chicks and Style Me Pretty. I’m loving this feminine look that can be used for showers, weddings, or even a backyard party!
Photo via loverly.com
Photo via Style Me Pretty
Creative Cake Toppers
I tried my hand this summer at making a cake topper for my birthday cake. It didn’t come out perfectly, but it was an easy and cute way to jazz up a dessert. Check out these beautiful and intricate toppers featured on The Wedding Chicks.
Photo via The Wedding Chicks
A classic fashion style turned event decor staple. How is is that dots and confetti make things seem that much more fun?! Creating Couture Parties has a great blog post on polka dot party inspiration.
Photo via wehearit.com
Photo via sweetlittledetailsbyjen.com
What trends are you seeing so far this fall? Please share!