Exciting update: Head to Green Wedding Shoes to see their lovely feature about the event!
Now that fall is here and we're done with weddings for the year, I'm looking forward to sharing a ton of images from the beautiful events and collaborations we got to be a part of this year! First up is an intimate styled shoot / dinner party that my good photo friend Kayla of Kayla F Photo dreamed up and asked me to help bring to life.
Like many lovers of good food and unique urban outdoor spaces, I am a long-time fan and frequent patron of Stable Cafe here in the Mission. It's pretty much the perfect urban oasis: a peaceful outdoor courtyard lined with fruit trees and accented with clever groupings of succulents and other pretty plants from Lila B. Add zig-zags of string lights overhead, a lush covered greenhouse and beautiful old café tables and chairs...and I basically want to move in. Intimate parties or small wedding celebrations are made for this place. Who wants to let me plan an event here?!
Kayla's original vision was a simple and rustic dinner among friends - sounds easy, right?! Here are the key ingredients to any good intimate gathering, as far as I'm concerned:
Beautiful flowers. If you know anything about me you probably know that I'm a full-fledged flower addict. Amanda Vidmar created this garden-inspired centerpiece that had us all swooning with its romantic combo of garden roses, ranunculus, bearded iris, Abelia branches, and blue Viburnum.
To help the table blend in even more with the courtyard setting, Amanda draped Hops across the backs of the chairs.
Next, you need a beautifully set table. We chose blue and white stoneware and votives from Heath Ceramics and these gorgeous pale grey, hand-blown glasses, both from Chairs + Cups' perfectly curated inventory. Cloth napkins, flatware, and marble candlesticks came from CB2. And that gorgeous hand-dyed grey runner from Silk + Willow.
Beautiful paper goods - another one of my favorite things. Including a simple menu at each person's place setting makes any meal that much more special and builds anticipation for the delicious food you're about to have. Bri of Brown Fox Calligraphy hand-wrote these menus in a medium-gray ink on light-gray paper. Of course, for a larger event, hand-written menus for each guest might not be practical, but when you're only setting a table for 8 this is a worthy splurge! We made each place setting extra special by attaching each person's place card to a sweet little plum.
Sometimes a little literary inspiration can really help set the mood. When I found this Virginia Wolfe quote, I knew I had to incorporate it into the design, so I had Bri make up a small sign to adorn our dessert table:
And of course, what's a good dinner party without amazing food?! We teamed up with LRE Catering who put together the most delicious, fresh, seasonal summer menu we could have dreamed of. Not only was everything to-die-for scrumptious but their presentation was spot-on. My stomach is grumbling right now...
The best part of any intimate gathering is undoubtedly getting to spend time with friends and enjoy each others' company. Ryanne at One True Love made sure we were all comfortably and stylishly equipped for QT with some pieces from the collection at One True Love Vintage Rentals. I love the rustic, mid-century feel of those leather and wood armchairs together with the weathered leather poof. And how sweet is that wicker basket? It became the perfect spot for Amanda to stash all of the hops!
See, it's not so hard to pull off an intimate dinner party! Grab a few of your closest friends and lay the table...and just remember, "one cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well"!