I am so excited to be spending the next handful of days traveling out of the country! I will return December 17th. If you reach out to me, please do not be offended, I will have little to no access to email, phone,text, or social media while I am away.
When I return I will return your messages as soon as possible!
We are so excited to announce that we took first place in our first year of participating in LCU Detroit Center for Design + Technology's Holiday Window Walk Competition!
For those of you who follow the studio on Instagram or Facebook you may have noticed all of the posts about the partnership we had with City Bark, in Capitol Park Detroit, this holiday season.
When moving back to Detroit it was my goal to find as many things as I could to get myself, and my studio, into. After joining the Detroit Design Core, and searching through the different events and collaborations they do, I found the Holiday Window Walk Competition's information. After applying, being accepted, and meeting my partner in crime, Jamie the owner of City Bark I got started! We were assigned specific storefronts based on our design background, portfolios, and the short essays we submitted.
I wanted to share a little bit of the journey from First Time to First Place with everyone and again thank all of those who voted, Jamie and City Bark, and the team at DCDT!
Meet the Client
Well first things first...You need to meet your client. Jamie at City Bark was my client along with her four legged partners, and last but not least her bird Ms. Cleo.. The rules to the competition were simple, create a window display that both celebrates the holiday season and reflects the shop your working in. You had to work with your store front, you had a budget of $500, and you had to be completed by November 15th at 3:00.
When I went to meet Jamie for the first time I was early...surprise surprise.. if you know me I am always anxious and get to appointments way ahead of time... I had not been to Capitol Park before so this was exciting. I hung out at the coffee shop at the corner and walked around the area prior to stopping into her shop.
When I did make it to her shop I was soo excited. Jamie's shop is so adorable as it is, clean and neat, colorful in the right spots, and plenty of items for pet lovers in the city to choose from. I can tell you right now I never went and worked there without bringing something home for Chevy....
After discussing with Jamie her perspective, opinions, and past experiences with the competition, I took my measurements and started to brainstorm different options.
Programming: The Shop
IS THIS PLACE NOT THE CUTEST! What I was really impressed with, when it came to Jamie, was truthfully her story on how she opened this shop. She re-located to Detroit from Grossepointe and did her research. When looking for property checking out the residences in the city that allowed pets, how many were registered, and using all of that information to determine the best location for her boutique... it's pretty outstanding. Her shop had a really cool industrial design with fixtures being simple with emphasis drawn in by the greenery walls to display product and to relate to the outdoors, her while dog figures, fire hydrant shelving that allows her products to be the main features and I LOVED her treat bar wall. The use of treats on the wall in a white wash while using a colorful silhouette of a dog as the art work. I also loved her bits and pieces of some more "glam" pieces like the lights above her cash wrap.
LOVE! I knew that if I used color in her display that I replicate the same idea. Simple neutrals with items in color coordinating with her shop colors as well to bring emphasis to important items.
Programming: The Window
I had a great window to work with. Not too big not too small. Jamie was very open and willing to let me hang items from what I needed to vertically, open to be really doing whatever I wanted as long as I made sure I kept circulation clear in specific areas.
Schematic: The Options
After doing the leg work it was time to put my ideas on paper. Just like for my event clients I created a schematic document ( map ). This laid out all the options that I felt fit both Jamie's priorities, the holiday season, and the style of the shop.
After sending Jamie her options we both agreed we really could not go wrong. All the ideas would be a great representation of her shop and her clients. I encouraged Jamie to choose her favorite for her storefront and we went with option #2!
Option #2 was a combination of letters to Santa from the pets of Detroit, and the Naughty and Nice list that Santa keeps. This option best displayed her featured holiday product, celebrated her regular customers, featured a holiday theme and blended with the rest of her shop.
Execution: Work in Progress- Phase #1
I did the display in two phases, two weekend mornings. I did as much prep at home as I could..Like addressing and stamping over 500 envelopes that were headed to the North Pole, or building a mail box.
When getting to the shop I started by laying out the base and where all the boxes were going to go. Once they were all laid out I spent the next 7 hours wrapping boxes, staging the overflowing mailbox and preparing the all the spaces for the main features.
Execution: Work in Progress- Phase #2
Before coming back a week later I had the homework of preparing the massive Naughty or Nice list, all the featured dog letters and photos, and lastly the individual 60 other envelopes for the rest of the contest submissions.
The Final Product
THIS WAS IT! I am very happy with the final product. Adding in out featured dogs, the individual envelopes, the naughty or nice list, more packages and snow, and lastly details with added hanging tag details. After adjusting some lighting we were DONE!
Whose is the Naughty one?
I cannot thank The Detroit Center for Design and Technology enough for accepting me into the competition and to Jamie of City Bark for being an amazing client. All of the windows that participated were truly awesome and it was a pleasure to compete alongside all of the different designers.
Like I stated in my application statement...This competition was giving my studio a chance to let Detroit know..We are back in town.
Till next year..Salud..Slainte..Cheers!
I am so excited to be able to be traveling for a handful of days. I will be out of the country and will not have access to email, phone, or any type of social media ( for the most part ). So, if you reach out do not be offended if I do not respond. I will respond as soon as we return safely to the states!
Silver & Gold
Maybe it is the holidays being right around the corner or just my own obsession with silver and gold tones, but we are going to talk about the trend of Silver and Gold in this months "What's Trending"!
Gold and Silver, while the names of colors, I always think about them as finishes. When I am developing a color story for a couple most of the time one of these is involved. Maybe as an accent or one of the main components. When I think of ether of them as a color, I think of something matte. When I think of them as finishes, I think of them as having a shine or a luster.
When I think of a gold finish, or the color gold, I think about the stylistic flexibility that it has. Gold on the brass side of the spectrum maybe represents a more traditional approach. think golden candle sticks ( as seen above). This is largely trending, the brass candlesticks with simple clean greenery. This is a class look that I admire especially for a venue that has all it's own beauty and charm. A look like this simply compliments and really allows the surrounding details to steal the show.
Gold, again, has this flexibility to evolve and never go out of style. Check out these terrariums and candle holders. This look is a very common trend in the industry. I mean it's obvious why! The gold framing is just enough to give you the finish while encompassing florals, candles, or other small personal details.
While its a totally different style in form, I would say both of these concepts do the same for the surrounding details of the venue. I mean can you see it??? They are enough to have form, be eye catching, but neither of these two ideas would take away from the surrounding details of the venue..
WHAT an amazing compliment to texture as well. I think that a beautiful brass or golden finish against a wood, brick or nature backdrop is a combination that will ALWAYS be trending.
There is something so clean about a wedding that uses silver. Like gold, silver has transformed through time as well. There are a handful of different versions of a silver finish. Seen above you see what would consider a more modern use of silver. It is a clean space, clean linens, monochromatic florals which allows the silver in the space to truly shine. While gold, to me, has always felt classic and like it has been around a long time, silver has always felt very fresh and new.
Don't let it fool you though, silver can also go in the more vintage direction. I LOVE working with mercury glass which I consider part of the silver family. Mercury glass is an aged silver that has a total personality all of its own. I have used mercury glass for, I would say, over 75% of my weddings. Like brass/gold, this version of silver is treated as a finish that looks beautiful with any color story.
What about together?
HECK yes you can do silver and gold together! I think its a sort of like "you cannot do blue and brown together" issue that people have. Where just because they are two finishes that normally people choose one of, people get all freaked out when they like both..it's like they are wearing white after labor day lol.
I love the different interpretations that people do of them together. Sometimes you will see silver treated in the form of the color grey accented with a gold finish. Or maybe you will see a vintage inspired gig where they use worn versions of both to create an a old world look.
If you follow me on Instagram you may have noticed me welcoming new couples to the studio!!! WELL let me tell you I am sooo excited about my 2020 couples its unreal.
Starting with Leah & Austin! These two are getting married next May and I am so honored to be a part of their big day. Leah, a total creative herself, has such a beautiful vision and knows her stuff. I look forward to not only working alongside of her but learning from her. In case you didn't already know.....I learn something new from EVERY SINGLE client.
I look forward to coordinating their big day! Did I just say coordinating?? YUP! I will be coordinating Leah & Austin's big day and making sure the day runs smoothly. Leah is not letting any detail go un-noted and I am the person to make sure that it goes off without a hitch.
I look forward to not just the big day but the process of working with this couple.
Thank you both for choosing my studio! Let's do this !
#soontospoon --- This hashtag though!
Now that the ghouls and the goblins are put to rest....The candy eaten, and skeletons back in their coffins... The studio is ready to start sharing in the Holiday cheer that is headed our way!
Earlier this fall I had the opportunity to collaborate with one of our favorite vendors on the west side of the state: Sharon with Pretty Petal Papers. Alongside of Sharon we also paired up with Beth Eggert Photography to photograph the collaboration.
Sharon from Pretty Petal Papers has designed custom stationery for our Studio Holiday Party shoot, while the studio completed the table setting and decor.
With farmhouse Christmas being the inspiration for this table scape, the focus was on a blend of rustic textures, brass fixtures, and the contrast of clean white table settings. Accented with the linen napkins tied with detailed greenery blended beautifully with Sharon's farmhouse designed stationery.
To check out more from Sharon and Pretty Petal Papers Click the Button Below!
To check out more from Beth Eggert Photography Click the Button Below!
So here is what we are going to do.....
I am celebrating this collaboration not just for the opportunity that I had to work with two very talented women; but because it is launching the end of the year special for the studio! With all of the holiday parties, dinners and get togethers, I wanted to offer a service special for my clients revolved around the holidays.
I know that it can be a trying effort to decorate for the season. By the time you bring down the boxes from the attic ( or up form the basement )...find all the ornaments, holiday dishes, and stockings to hang, your staring at a table filled of unpacked items with no energy or creative effort left to put them up.
Here is what I am hoping to do for my clients this season....Do you need some assistance getting ready for a holiday party? What about just some extra hands getting the house decorated for the season?
I would love to offer the studios services in getting you ready for the holiday months. Let's tackle those bins together, lets set a one of kind table for your friends and family to enjoy each others company at, and lastly, lets do it together so you can spend more time enjoying your space then struggling to get it ready.
Want to know what else is great?
If you are hosting a party but lacking the extras to dress your space...We got that too!
We are offering holiday appointments for a special rate!
Appointments start as low as $50!
Send us a note and we can chat about getting you that extra elf this year.
Here is the thing..APPOINTMENTS are LIMITED! So don't wait till its too late!
We are jumping into celebrating another one of our favorite vendors this month because.....we have some exciting collaboration projects that we have worked on that we get to feature later next week! We wanted to take a minute to celebrate her and her work.
We connected Sharon, from Pretty Petal Papers, through a mutual friend ( thank you Lindsay from @sketchandbalance)! We are so excited we were put in touch with Sharon because we LOVE her work! Sharon creates one of a kind stationery elements that are custom to her clients.
We asked Sharon a few questions about being in the wedding/event industry. Check out what she said!
One of the many things we love about Sharon's work is that it's a complete package! When you order a suite you get the right details from start to finish. She offers custom design packages on top of her already beautiful creations. From your save the dates to your table numbers, the consistency that Sharon's collections provide is perfect for any event.
P.S... We are obsessed with the floral outlines in these two collections!!
Check out Pretty Petal Papers site to see more of her beautiful work! Click Below!!
We look forward to sharing more about Sharon later this month when we feature our collaboration project! We thank her for allowing us to pick her brain and feature her work.
Till next time...
Meadow Brook Hall
350 Estate Dr, Rochester, MI 48309
Oakland University Campus
We have been so lucky to be able to tour some amazing venues so far this year, Meadow Brook Hall was next on our list and OH MY GOODNESS did this place not disappoint. When pulling up, the drive into the "campus" of the hall was stunning all in itself: rolling green hills, beautiful gardens, and lines of trees surrounding the area.
When I first arrived I took a quick lap around this very large hall, what I noticed is that this building has no "ugly" side. I can imagine weddings being held on every inch of its property, leading to the conclusion, that this location is very easily personalized to each couple and their desires for their big day.
When meeting with Lori she was extremely welcoming and ready to show me all this venue had to offer. When I say this place had a ton to offer.....I mean it.
Lori gave me a very detailed tour explaining all the options their couples have; inside, outside, tented, multiple rooms and I really would strongly suggest that if you fall in love with this venue spending time with her and work with her on making this day 150% personalized to you.
This venue also has a quite the history, in short from the Meadow Brook Hall website:
"A National Historic Landmark, Meadow Brook Hall is the historic home of one of the automotive aristocracy’s most remarkable women, Matilda Dodge Wilson, her second husband Alfred Wilson, a lumber broker and their four children, Frances and Danny Dodge, and Richard and Barbara Wilson. It exists as an indirect product of the achievements and good fortune of her first husband, automotive pioneer John F. Dodge, co-founder of Dodge Brothers Motor Car Company who quickly prospered in the burgeoning auto industry before his tragic death in 1920, leaving Matilda one of the world’s wealthiest women. This fortune not only built one of America’s finest residences and country estates, it also supported numerous Detroit charities and organizations, and made possible the founding of Oakland University."
One of the best parts of about the venue is the preservation of its architectural and interior qualities.
"Meadow Brook Hall is especially renowned for its fine craftsmanship, exquisite architectural detailing and grand scale. The architecture is the embodiment of enduring quality in both its design and use of fine construction materials.
The exterior combines various textures and patterns using American materials of brick, sandstone, wood timbers and a roof of clay shingle tile. The house also features 39 uniquely designed brick chimneys that distinguish the picturesque roofline.
Interiors of the house are elaborately detailed with carved wood and stone, handmade hardware and ceramic art tile, ornately molded and carved plaster ceilings, stained glass window insets, crystal and art glass lighting fixtures, and gold-plated bathroom fittings. And while the interiors reflect various historic styles, the house is equipped with every modern amenity available in the late 1920s. It was fully electric with a central heating system, two elevators, three kitchens and a full size home theatre.
The exterior and most of the interior rooms at Meadow Brook Hall were designed in the Tudor-revival style. However, a few rooms were decorated in other period-revival styles: the dining room and Matilda’s study are 18th-century Neo-classical, Matilda’s room and the French bedroom are 18th-century French Rococo, and Frances’ bedroom is American Colonial."
Weddings at the Hall
Check out this couples day at the hall! Captured by Captured Couture:
At Meadow Brook the outside of the hall is just as stunning as the inside. One way to enjoy the grounds is by hosting your reception inside the tent provided on the lawn adjacent to the hall. Check out this couples day below captured by Dan Stewart Photography!
One of the beautfiul things about this venue is that they give couples the options to hold their ceremony on the premises even if they do not hold their reception. With the gardens and architecture of this venue being so beautiful, why wouldn't couples opt for this option! The wedding below did just that!
Check out this couples beautiful ceremony at the hall caught by Kari Dawson!
From a designers perspective...This hall does not need very much added. When using the interiors of the hall you need very little decor, and any decor you do use should compliment the space...not fight it... Meaning, traditionally styled, solid or basic patterns, and brass or gold elements would do very well contrasting the wood and blending in with the style of the space. Use greenery and your florals to soften the space.
If you are using the tent, The OPTIONS are endless. You are getting the benefit of a blank slate that is adjacent to a building that already has a view and a strong personality. Any color story, and most styles, would fit into this draped tent very well. Whether you prefer a lighter color story fitting of a garden themed wedding, or a jewel moody toned story that contrasts the white tent, both would look amazing. If you are a lover of both modern and traditional style the tent is your best option to make that come to life without feeling displaced.
Meadowbrook Hall's Holiday Tour
Another exciting element that this venue posses are their holiday tours. . The space takes on a whole new look and feel during this time of year. We look forward to re-visiting later this year to see the displays. Check out some of the images below and click the to check out tour information!
We would like to thank Lori and her team for allowing us to stop and visit their beautiful venue. With so many amazing options for each couple, and just a beautiful historic site for everyone, you cannot go wrong by choosing to visit or book with Meadowbrook Hall.
Check us out next month to see our next stop!
Good Morning and happy October! We are so excited to feature another vendor this month. Jessica Makarewicz is the owner and creator for the Dry Moon Shop. She is an extremely talented graphic designer and has created multiple hand-painted, customized, beautiful signs, and graphics, for couples that we have worked with here at the studio. Anytime we have a couple that asks for a custom sign... we call up Jessica, because we know that our couples will just love her work!
Working with Jessica is always an easy process. She is so creative and has an eye for these types of custom signage. Plus she can create these awesome signs on just about anything! What we love about using Jessica, over pre-made signs for our couples, is that we can have the sign totally customized to the event. Whether its the handwritten signs or graphic creations, Jessica works her magic and fits her designs to each event.
We have asked Jessica a few questions about her experiences doing weddings and here is what she says!
Do you have an Etsy account? Of course you do... Go check out the DryMoon shop and check out some of Jessica's custom prints!
I am not sure if I was inspired by my own sweet tooth this month OORRR maybe it is because we are inching closer to the fall-winter holidays...BUT! This month we are going to check out the different ideas that couples are using to break the idea of a traditional wedding cake!!! This topic is both breaking the traditional wedding rules, while also trending! So this month we are combining the two topics.
A wedding cake does not have to not be a "cake" to break the traditional design of these staple elements...The cake above for instance, non frosted, uneven layered, filled with different syrups and fruits, and for sure a more rustic style. What I am loving about these types of cakes is that they each take on their own personality matching the couple that designs.
When I look at the cakes that are popular these days I do not see the perfectly frosted, cakes that hide their fillings in the middle under layers. I see roughly frosted, or not frosted at all, fillings exposed and left dripping, Or the filling it its whole form ( fruit ) set balanced on layers or the top of the cake. It is really all about TEXTURE! The trend is TEXTURE! While color is always involved, the common theme between all these trending cakes breaking tradition are that they all have a visual TEXTURE!
What about ways to do a cake but without cake?!?? There are soo many options! I am loving this category because just like decor, brides and grooms can completely personalize this delectable detail. The photo about shows layers of cookies and frosting to make their cake.
Look at the slideshow below! Cake Pops-Cookies-Doughnuts-Cupcakes-Cinnamon buns- all sorts of individual serving items that not only break the rules but also are trending because they are easier to serve. No cutting required for many of these examples which is more efficient for your guests, and may even save you some cash on that cake cutting fee.
The last cake I just have to showcase is cake in form but is not a sweet treat at all...IT is a SAVORY tiered choice that I am so excited to have a bride actually use. While her and her fiance get married next year, I have been able to find multiple inspirations of these "CHEESE" wheel cakes!
We here at the studio fully support the creativity of breaking the traditional cake and dessert rules. We love that these styles of cakes are trending, and love working with brides brave enough to mix it up. Until our next post!
CHEERS! SLAINTE! SALUD!
ARC Design Studios
Check out OUR chapters as a growing business! We will be posting where we have been, what we have been doing and what our world is like. All that plus different tips and tricks for the busy brides out there!
September 2019 special: Custom card box display with coordinating table decor! Valued at $150.00!
Special only good with booking of other ARC Design Services.