Missio Dei Chicago's All-Family Gathering

My church family is Missio Dei Wrigleyville. They have multiple congregations throughout the city, but Wrigleyville hosted its 10-year celebration October 12, 2018 called the All-Family Gathering.

A dear friend and mentor of mine Melissa Pillman asked me to design some floral arrangements for it, and I was thrilled. I loved this color palette, the texture, and shape of these pieces. It was a ton a fun, and such a honor to decorate a place that has become so integral to my own life and relationships.

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Botanical Installation & Photography for AOKI's Inaugural Fundraiser: SEEN / UNSEEN

On September 30, 2018, Chicago’s non-profit arts organization AOKI hosted it’s inaugural fundraiser event SEEN / UNSEEN at The Frances Chicago.

AOKI’s Founder and Executive Director Aiyana Taylor invited me and my friend Alicia to be among the artists showcasing their work. There were painters, a textile artist, a ceramicist, a musician, a spoken word artist a chef, a baker, a dancer, and we were asked to create a “botanical installation.”

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Florals, Photography, & Film for Carrie & Dan's Backyard Wedding

Carrie and Dan’s September wedding was for the books. Not only did I photograph this wedding, I also did their floral design, and my husband Andrew did their videography.

From Carrie’s shimmering champagne gown #1 (she had an evening one, too!) to their Pampas Grass installations, their family’s backyard wedding was uniquely theirs.

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White Florals & Greenery Galore for Meredith & Tony's July Wedding

Meredith and Tony’s venue Prairie Production was an incredible space to work in. With it’s historic charm, natural light, high ceilings, and white canvas, the flowers, greenery, and details were able to speak for themselves. All in all, Meredith and Tony’s wedding was a wonderful experience for me – as their floral designer and their friend. Without further adieu, here are gorgeous photos from Meredith and Tony’s special day captured by the wonderful Louie Abellera and Tony’s sister Meghan Bradley.

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Florals for Friends' Nashville Wedding

Becca and Nicky's wedding was held at the Pick Inn in Gallatin, Tennessee. And while their ceremony was brought inside due to rain, it was still such a lovely wedding. I've been longing to use my love for flowers, and Becca just called me up and out into it. Working with her on the stem choices and greenery was so enjoyable for me, and then working with my hands the day of to bring our vision to life was truly a gift to me. 

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Behind the Scenes with Textile Artist Prophet Gypsy Robot

A couple months ago, Jamie Tubbs – owner of sustainable textile artwork biz Prophet Gypsy Robot – invited me to capture some branding photos for her. I was thrilled because I've been a fan of her work since I first encountered it about a year ago. 

Previous to meeting Jamie, I'd suspected her mission and values aligned with what I love to share on this blog. And when we met and began talking about her experiences in entrepreneurship, motherhood, faith, and living in Chicago, I was quickly affirmed in that. Jamie's journey, perspective, and wisdom are the very things I aim to feature and dialogue about with you here.

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Behind Beloved Chicago Worship with Lauren Awtry & Mia Gjeldum

Beloved is a worship movement rooted in the city of Chicago set out to ignite a fire in the Midwest and beyond, spreading passion for our King Jesus through completely free worship and expression. Behind this movement is the powerhouse duo Laura Awtry and Mia Gjeldum. These ladies found themselves a kindred connection via Missio Dei Wrigleyville (also my church home) in 2015, and they're on a mission to use their gifts of song and leading worship to help you experience the true freedom in Jesus. 

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An Autumnal Styled Gathering in Chicago

In September of 2017, the briskness of fall was fast-approaching, and I really wanted to make the most of our outdoor time. So my friend Devin Sutter and I decided to call some of our favorite people and see if they'd like to attend a small last-minute gathering. As luck would have it, they were all available. 

One of my and Devin's favorite things to do is to create a beautiful experience for people – we prioritize community and ambiance. And that almost always involves flowers, food, and most likely, a libation. For this one, we went with an autumnal-inspired warm Apple Cider Old Fashioned

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An Urban Elegant Bridal Shoot

In collaboration with fellow photographer Chloé Sheldon, we present an elegant, urban bridal shoot. You'll find minimalist gowns with modern silhouette; leafy-creamy florals; sophisticated styled dos, mouth-watering vanilla cake with earl-grey frosting and strawberry filling, and a Chicago loft space as the backdrop.

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Allie Sundet on Ethical Business, Equality, Faith, & Finding Her Purpose in Chicago

Alexandra (Allie) Sundet and I met at least six years ago at small group. Our paths have criss-crossed as acquaintances for over six years now, and I've always admired her journey from afar through church and social media. I finally got a chance to interview Allie about her faith journey, her work, and where they intersect.

She's a natural beauty with fantastic style and sense of humor. But more than those things, her heart for equality, ethical business, and tuning into her gifts to serve others is why she radiates. 

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Splendor of Eden | Floral Design

Today I'm sharing my interview with 27-year-old floral designer Brie Pflederer of Splendor of Eden. I discovered Brie's textural and garden-inspired florals through the Rising Tide Society. With my own adoration of flowers, I was drawn to her organic and varied arrangements. From peonies to poppies, jasmine to scabiosa, and our favorite: ranunculus, I've been so inspired (hello heart eyes emoji!) by Brie's work.

On a gorgeous April afternoon, she invited me down to her Pilsen abode to document her design and prepare for a wedding.

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Storytelling with My Janina Nana

This post is a long-time coming. A year in the making, technically. Much longer if you know who my Nana is to me. To say she is special is a grand understatement. I found I so badly wanted to do this justice – to provide you a proper glimpse. It held me back. So I finally gathered some thoughts and am releasing them here:

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The Adventures of Tiny Living with Kathleen, Greg, Blaize & Peaches

Kathleen and I met in 2011 at a K-8 school in Chicago. She was moving to Colorado, and I was hired for the web editor and communications position she was leaving. In the days she spent training me, I knew she was a bright and passionate person. And I knew she would find adventure in Colorado. We've kept in touch (through social media, of course!), and I've followed along as her Tiny House, Tiny Footprint storytelling has become both a lifestyle and a career. It's a beautiful thing to witness people find their callings and come alive in them. I love that Kathleen and Greg's mission isn't just about reducing their carbon footprints, but it's also about encouraging others to connect with nature. Here's a look into their life of tiny living.

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