The wedding invitation….a creative, collaborative journey

Thinking back on all of the wedding planning last year, I have to say one of the wedding details we spent a lot of time and effort on was the invitations. They were definitely the biggest DIY project of the wedding and were a true product of collaborative creativity! We were inspired by our friend and artist Manami‘s painting titled “Origin” with the translation, “We are standing on where we are coming from and where we are going.” This painting became the overall inspiration for our wedding theme and was seen in the invitation and our decor.

The invitation journey started at Manami’s dining room table where we got the image file for the painting as well as some yummy homemade Miso soup and a couple of rounds of Just Dance on the PS3. So much fun!

The next step in the process was to use the image to create the invitation design. My best friend Christy (Bridesmaid of Honor and woman of many talents) took the creative reigns and designed the invitation and all of its components working in the image of the painting throughout the design.

She did an amazing job! We definitely could not have pulled it together without her. The back of the invitation was the image of Manami’s painting. She also designed the map and reply card to match the design which you can see below. I wish I was a better photographer and the images were more clear. I’ll add photography to my future educational endeavors!

After all of the components of the  invitation were designed, I formed the idea of how I wanted to “package” it. I found these great chocolate-brown folders online from Keeping with the colors of our wedding that were inspired by Manami’s painting—brown, turquoise/teal and mustard yellow— I chose a teal color for our outer and reply card envelopes also from To seal the brown folder, I made a trip to Sam Flax and thanks to one of their helpful staff, came up with a wax seal with a swirly design that was similar to the branches on the tree of Manami’s painting. So this is how it all came together…

Joe and I printed and assembled everything on our own. It was a tedious process filled with paper cuts, several trips to Office Depot to replace toner cartridges, moments where I had to stop being controlling and relax my need to be a perfectionist and many, many, many hours pulling it all together. It was a long, tedious process for the two of us but in the end we were so proud of the way it turned out. It was the perfect way to set the tone for our wedding. Big thank you to Christy for all of her hard work on the design and to Manami for providing the artistic inspiration!

My Latest Craves – Friday Edition

Happy to be wrapping this week up and looking forward to the weekend! In addition to volunteering at the Art Papers Auction, Joe and I will be working on getting our Save the Date cards out which I can’t wait to share with our friends and family. Our photographer, Hollie from lytle {foto} did an amazing job! I also plan on finishing the Hunger Games trilogy this weekend. I have been obsessed with this series the last couple of weeks. If you haven’t already read it, BEWARE! It is really difficult to start reading it and put it down. I read it at any free moment I have thanks to the Kindle app on my iPhone. It is such an easy read and now I can’t wait for the movie to come out this March. I just need to finish the series so I can move on with my life! Seriously, I am that glued to it right now.

Here’s a rundown of this week’s latest craves:

TOMS Ballet Flats
I love TOMS! Now they have ballet flats!! Woohoo!! What could be more awesome! Gushing aside, I have been an advocate for TOMS shoes for a while now and their One for One Movement, where they match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. I think they are a great company and an example to others to be socially responsible. I own three pairs of TOMS currently. Now that they have ballet flats, I know my TOMS collection is going to grow.

Revlon Lip Butter
Last week I stumbled across Revlon Lip Butter in my local ULTA store. Of course, as usual, I went in there to get shampoo and came out with a few more items that were not on my “need” list but hey it happens. I am not a big lipstick person. Rarely do I remember to wear it but I do love tinted lip balms. Some of my faves are from Burt’s Bees but when I saw the display for Lip Butter, I was intrigued. I mean doesn’t butter make everything better? I know Paula Deen feels that way at least. Anyway, I had to try it so I left ULTA with a Revlon Lip Butter in Pink Truffle. And, I love it. Just the right amount of color, no nasty taste/flavor, not sticky and it glides on really smoothly….like butta…ha ha ha, I’m such a dork. Loved it so much, I have since purchased another in Sugar Plum. So there you have my product endorsement for Lip Butter!

The latest albums I have on constant rotation this week are Gotye’s “Making Mirrors” and Ingrid Michaelson’s “Human Again.” Check them out.

I’ll leave you with the cool video for Gotye’s Somebody that I Used to Know. Happy Weekend!

Dinnerware with tattoo designs? I had to check it out…

You never really think of dinnerware as having that cool factor. When your friends get married, you rate their dinnerware choice on their registry and sometimes wonder what they were thinking when they picked that awful floral design…but I don’t think I have ever used the adjective cool to describe a plate. However, Ink Dish may make me change my mind. One of my daily blog reads is USA Today’s Pop Candy with Whitney Matheson. Yesterday, she wrote about Ink Dish, a small indie company that creates cool dinnerware with designs from contemporary underground artists. One of their first collections features designs from the tattoo artist Paul Timman. Have you ever thought “wow that’s a cool tattoo, wish I had that design on a plate?” Well, now you can. Other collections feature designs from Austin artist Alyson Fox and the Japanese style of tattooing known as Irezumi. Here’s a glance at some of Ink Dish’s cool dinnerware.

My Neighborhood is My Own Personal Art Gallery

Driving down Dekalb Ave. toward home, I am always surrounded by impressive street art. To some, it’s all just graffiti. But to me, if you stop and take a look, it is possible to find something beautiful and unique among the incessantly vain tagging. A couple of weeks ago, less than a block away from my home,I noticed some new street art on an abandoned building. It was a breathtaking sketch of a woman and finding it very intriguing, I grabbed my dog Daisy (my partner in crime for all neighborhood snooping exploration) for a walk to get a closer look. The artists responsible are known as The Paper Twins and this particular piece is called Nica. Their motto is “draw paint cut stir paste smile.” My J found an album of their work at flickr and it is very impressive. I love the whimsical nature of their sketches and can’t wait to see more as I drive around the city. Art should be shared with the world and I am glad “The Paper Twins” decided to share their art in my ‘hood.

More French Inspiration

Whimsical folk art always seems to catch my attention. It usually happens in the spring when I am browsing through the artist market at one of Atlanta’s neighborhood festivals like my favorite festival nestled in Inman Park. Imagine my surprise when I discovered the French artist Nathalie Lete while “window shopping” on the Anthropologie website. Not sure how long Anthropologie has been doing this, but you can now read about featured artists in a section of the website called “The Gallery.” Nathalie Lete lives and works in Ivry-Sur-Seine, a commune in the Val-de-Marne department located just a mere 3.3 miles from the center of Paris. She studied fashion design at the Art Appliques Duperre and lithography at the Beaux Arts de Paris and was a member of Mathias et Nathalie, a duo reknowned for their cardboard paintings and expressionist sculptures. Now a solo artist, her work includes paintings, ceramics, textiles, jewelry, books and toys that are fantastically colorful and humorous with a composition that is inspired by her travels, vintage toys and old engravings of flowers and animals. Anthropologie has some of her work featured on their website now. Here are a few of my favorite pieces…