Hi all…I’m a bit behind on my everything, due to life.
This week has been a touch of a challenge, but I am anxious for many good things that are just around the corner! Workshop attendees know what I’m talking about and they should all be getting prepared to receive some homework from me! HAHA!!! I’m not the sweet and kind teacher you thought I would be…
Just the other day, I had to try and explain to Alice that her Kindergarten homework will be fun. (apparently someone has already drilled her on how terrible all homework is and how all fun ends immediately upon receipt of it – not sure who this was – possibly big brothers, or some television show?) Anyway I found myself struggling to ensure it would be ok, not necessarily fun but something she would learn from, and feel accomplishment from. But secretly I dread the homework too! I love our hours of eazy breeezy play time, time where we can choose to wander over to the park, collect sticks, build “squirrel traps”, paint, draw, cuddle, sing, tease, tickle, dance, dance, dance and dance some more, and just generally BE. Hoping we can find a way to let Alice have her kid-dome, and plenty of time to dream and imagine after school begins.

Because truly, play and exercise of the imagination leads to the best experiences an creates the strongest minds.

I’m revisiting this beauty today because the old blog just didn’t do it justice. I love the simplicity of this shoot. All images by Jose Villa for Mag Rouge.
Hair and Makeup by Mar of Team Hair and Makeup
STUNNING Gowns By Claire Pettibone

5 Responses to The Adobe

  1. ken holt

    – I’m your biggest fan.

  2. Meg

    Wow. Beautiful as always Kate.

  3. Vanessa Watters

    STUNNING! Cant’ wait for the next round of workshops so I can attend this time!

  4. Carol

    Think I might have to attend one of the Workshops some day soon. Lovely!

  5. Zachary + Wendy Stowasser {Stillwater Cinematography}

    So glad you are giving it a fresh post, it’s Classically Romantic and oh-so-lovely. Love is good.

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Two gorgeous people, one stunning location, add flowers, have photographed by Gia Canali… Poof! Makes it (my job) seem pretty easy, and great, and beautiful, and all that good stuff…

this one’s up on snippet and ink today.
Check it out and if you feel so inclined, leave us a little note…I would really like that.
Have a lovely monday!


Joni Mitchell is a genius.
Just contemplating that this morning…and the depth of patience and practice people have to go to to create such beauty.
I got in a ton of practice this season, but I ALWAYS feel like there’s room for improvement. Room for me take my work to another level. I’m just not always sure how to actually DO that. I think the answer is more practice, more studying, more experiencing other forms of art and beauty. Openness, honesty, less holding back, more leaps of faith and challenging myself to try new things, use new materials, approach things from different angles, less cheating, less quick fixes, more looking, more shaping, more appreciation of composition, light and texture.

Joni Mitchell’s lyrics are a level of amazing-ness that is all too rare and it makes me realize – I don’t know life at all.

Bows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
I’ve looked at clouds that way

But now they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way

I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down, and still somehow
It’s cloud illusions I recall
I really don’t know clouds at all

Moons and Junes and Ferris wheels
The dizzy dancing way you feel
As every fairy tale comes real
I’ve looked at love that way

But now it’s just another show
You leave ’em laughing when you go
And if you care, don’t let them know
Don’t give yourself away

I’ve looked at love from both sides now
From give and take, and still somehow
It’s love’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know love at all

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say “I love you” right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I’ve looked at life that way

Oh but now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads, they say I’ve changed
Well something’s lost but something’s gained
In living every day

I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From WIN and LOSE and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all

I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From up and down and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all

7 Responses to Swimming in Flowers -part II

  1. sherry

    I love that even at your level of artistry you say the same words I was saying this morning…I want to take it to the next level….figuring it all out….and I grew up listening to Joni..big fan of her and you! Parking Lots was my fav…

  2. amanda bevington


  3. Carol

    The flowers are breathtaking, a beautiful way to begin my day. Thank you!

  4. […] beautiful floral images in this blog post from […]

  5. Lena

    Joni is a genius, and these flowers and photos are a perfect compliment to her beautiful poetry.

  6. Vicki

    I’d say you are a genius!!! There are days I feel as if I’m approaching such an illusion but other days life pretty much lets me know “I really don’t know” flowers at all;) Thanks for sharing your inspiring work. I learn so much from your works of art!

  7. Nichole

    Hi Kate – Pics are gorgeous!! I need get a new camera desperately & just wondering what kind you have?Thanks,

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I enjoy looking back at all this loveliness so much. This is a portion of our spring work from last season…behind the scenes. We were pretty much everywhere in California. Santa Barbara, Sonoma, Napa, Carmel (LOVE), Big Sur. All with flowers and my favorite people in tow. I am reminded how amazing the landscape and diversity of California really is.
It was a whirlwind and I almost thought that one of our many drives down the coast from Big Sur would never end. Each turn winding round into yet another turn (I get so motion sick…blah). Even the breathtaking view can’t save a girl from the panic within her own mind. HA!
Today is the kiddos’ first day back at school and my first day back to real work…which means a full studio clean up, so we are ready in spring for all the beauty yet to unfold.

all images by moi.


6 Responses to Swimming in Flowers- part I

  1. ken holt

    wow ..

  2. Kim | Art with Nature

    absolutely stunning! i’ll never get tired of looking at your work…ever! 🙂

  3. angel swanson

    completely magical, kate. your work is so perfectly balanced with nature. timeless & inspiring. miss you! xox

  4. Gwen

    Oh, these pictures cheer me. So yummy. Thank you Kate and Ken. (Take Dramamine for those hair pin turns.)

  5. Laura

    gaaaa, your blog makes me so happy! Your florals are to die for!!!!


  6. […] Totally drooling over these beautiful florals. So much inspiration; Flower Wild […]

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The Shakers always made such beautiful things. Their floors, banisters, chairs, quilts, even their boxes are something remarkable. My parents took me once, when I was very young to see an old Shaker town. Not even sure where it was? Smoky mountains? We walked though a house. My memory is foggy to say the least…but I remember so many clean corners, tender and thoughtful joints of wood on the chairs which were carefully hung up in the hallway, a white quilt with a tree softly patterned out and stitched together with almost invisible thread, no mess, no jumble, everything in it’s place.

It seemed a simpler life. But I know as I look back on these memories, it really wasn’t. It was probably very hard, but quieter. With many more moments for reflection and maybe a preponderance of intentions. In a way, that’s what I want for myself and my family this year. Time to dream. Time for intent. I need not elaborate on that. Dreaming is big. Dreaming is everything. Intentions make life fuller.
My intentions for this last year mostly just “happened”…not exactly perfection but full of fun, lots of giggles, and sometimes utter silliness. This is our quilt of 2012…
(sort of Alice heavy, mostly because she allows me to photograph her most of the time) a floral version to come!

One Response to Tapestry

  1. Carol

    Very lovely post! Happy New Year to all at Flowerwild.

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A quick and pretty post from a wedding this summer at San Ysidro Ranch with my friend Jill LaFleur.
Up on Once Wed today.

Loved all the herbs and am always a sucker for the fringed tulips.

All images by the super talented Lacie Hansen. If you are hunting for an amazing photographer, I highly recommend you check out her work. So romantic and timeless.

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man oh man…
There were days and moments where this really seemed impossible. But it really happened and we really went on a plane over the icy part of the planet to a green place called Ireland…
For a WEDDING. We worked and we played, and we played and we worked, and it was darn good fun. Ken drove fast on the wrong side of the road, with only minor curb hiccups right out of the gate at Cork airport. No one really seemed to care but me. I was gripping the seat tightly, screaming a bit and getting as close to the middle of the car as possible, cringing, maybe even closing my eyes now and then.

We learned the positive attributes of roundabouts. “and then, there’s a roundabout”, “Lucy” our aptly named, sugary-sweet and almost never wrong, navigator, computer-woman would tell us. Always listen to Lucy! She knows what’s best and if you get lost, well, there’s ALWAYS a pub to be found and a pint to be had (in my case this was most certainly a half pint.)

And you WILL get lost. I should note…there are no addresses there in Ireland, at least not in West Cork and the ring of Kerry – which was the rural and gorgeous landscape we were sourcing all of our product from. SO you can’t just type an address into your gps and follow it to your destination. You MUST have land coordinates. We didn’t have these. How was I supposed to know? Live and learn.

We had three stops I had meticulously researched months in advance of our job and we needed to find and cut flowers from all three of them in 2 days, with one more day to prep and build everything after that. Not a lot of time, but it did seem doable.

Well, our promised navigator was missing in action the first planned day of harvesting materials. That was a shitty deal, and the stress mounted as I realized we had no way of finding these way out places without a guide and our guide was obviously dropping the ball. Phone calls were made, stern discussions were had, and eventually the groom saved the day! He was going to be our new navigator with one day lost, and 2 days to get it all done, harvest, forage, prep and install! YIKES! My husband was my only assistant on this wedding and I must say, he endured some high stress moments with me well. Without his help, advice, and prodding I am almost certain we would have had some problems on our hands. (while we waited impatiently the first day for our escort who never arrived we explored Cork a bit and stumbled across this old prison (below) and a few places that would become our favorite spots in Cork in the days to follow…)
It was creepy and beautiful at the same time.

Day 2 in cork we set set off into the countryside on a gloriously beautiful day to find all our flowers. 2 cars, empty buckets, and some clippers in hand. This was the most magical day I could have imagined. We were welcomed into people’s homes, allowed to cut from their private gardens, shared our universal passion for growing, living, flowering things and just were in awe of everyone’s generosity and candor. It is a side of Ireland I never would have experienced if we went to just trot around the country seeing the sights. Castles, castles and more castles….It was and remains a truly unforgettable day and the people who made it possible hopefully know what that meant to us.
(below you can see us at the wonderful Ruby Harte’s farm and home and then close to Dunmanway at the cottage and private garden of Chris and Leslie. Lunch in Bantry on the coast. LOVE!!!!!)

I can’t show you any of the pictures of the wedding…as it is slated to be in a publication next fall. Bit of a wait:( But it will be worth it, the sneak peeks I’ve seen of it are sort of other worldly.

In the meantime, I hope you enjoy these snaps of what our travels were like. It was so so fun! We rode bikes across Inis Mor, the largest Gaelic speaking Island off the Eastern coast. What a day! No rain, fluffy clouds for miles. We laid on our bellies hundreds of feet above the Altlantic on the edge of an ancient cliff. This was the high ground and fort for some of the earliest tribes on the island. This was where they lived and fended off attack from the tribes across the the bay in Connemarra; A beautiful mountainous region we did not have the chance to explore this time. Such a long and amazing history and a place that really allows you to imagine the world as it once was. Rugged, and mostly untouched. Majestic and totally brutal.
I hope we will get back there again one day! But I promised Alice Paris is next. Can you blame her?

Happy New Year.
all images here by Ken Holt…my wonderful husband.

7 Responses to The Green Island

  1. megan

    magic! high-stress magic, but magic nonetheless 🙂 You are brave.

  2. ken holt

    what an experience!

  3. Ciara

    So lovely to see a glimpse of Cork through your eyes, and can’t wait to see what you did with all those gorgeous flowers!

  4. Bev

    Thanks for sharing – beautiful scenes and a bit of the adventures I wish we could have had on our brief visit there!

  5. Sherry Donnelly

    Oh so Lovely…thank you for being so generous!

  6. Carol

    Ah, Ireland…your grandmother smiles upon you two, Kate! Quite beautiful to behold…

  7. Gwen

    These are absolutely gorgeous pictures and I’m sure the wedding was amazingly beautiful. How fun to get your flowers from homes/farms. I can see that this was a special trip for you and your “best ever” guy. Thanks so much for sharing. It really brightened my day. Love you Katie and best wishes for 2013 for you and yours. Aunt Gwen

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I’m not up for rehashing this entire year quite yet…mostly because it seems daunting, and then partially because I’m unprepared and without images from many many events that are pending publication. So we wait on that.

I’ve never really shown this wedding in it’s entirety and feel compelled to share it.
It was hard. I sweated and cussed a lot, lost many many nights of sleep, tossed and turned, had terrible allergies during the entire prep and install, fretted over whether I had enough staff, counted stems and petals in my head repetitively, added, subtracted, multiplied, divided by 30 a lot, and accumulated so many crystal vases and candelabras they basically overtook our entire home and property. It’s not necessarily a healthy way to live – surrounded by cardboard boxes and foam peanuts; but the outcome was pretty beautiful.
As a perfectionist, it’s pretty routine for me to walk away from a completed job and review all the myriad of things I could have done better. I nit pick myself, and all the glorious details and it’s hard to turn off. After this wedding though, I was amazed…I had some of those feelings with regards to small stuff; but overall I was proud. Proud of my team, proud of myself, proud of my family for seeing me through it. (I was pretty distracted and clearly pre-occupied for about 2 months leading up to the big day – maybe not the most fun mom/wifey in the world.) Balance is something I have to work at hard and very consciously during the heaviest parts of the season.
But we emerged on the other side of it eventually! We always do!!!
Can’t wait for the next big challenge like this. Already wondering what it will be…

Warm wishes for a lovely final week of 2012. may it be filled with good things.


all photos by Jose Villa
coordination and planning by Jill LaFleur
film by joel serrato

7 Responses to The Ultimate Barn Wedding

  1. Sherry Donnelly

    AH-MAZING!! Thank you not only for sharing your talent and the beauty you created, but also the mental gymnastics we artists put ourselves through…. rarely are we honest about that outside of our intimate group of trusted professionals.. xo…and of course Jose Villa is out of this world!

  2. jen

    AMAZING work!! LOVE all the bouquets, the branches along the aisles, the individual flowers on the napkins & the amazing amount of lights over the reception tables. Beautiful day you put together!!

  3. Kate

    Mental gymnastics is right! Hard to shut it off sometimes…we wear many hats when we run a business like this and have to juggle creativity and what’s practical. Usually this means doing lots of math and sometimes engineering too. thanks for the comments ladies!

  4. Rosemary

    Great work Kate. Love that you described the real story of your life and work leading up to it. I definitely can relate. Balance is key… just sometimes hard to achieve. Hoping for some new work together in 2013 and more balance. xo Happy New Year!

  5. Amy

    Breathtaking! It is so comforting hearing that balancing this profession and everything that goes with it is normal and that even the best of the best work through it with much success. I admire your work and love following your lead in this field. So excited to see more in 2013.

  6. Christy Hulsey

    Okay, this is my fave. wedding. EVER!!!

  7. Jessica

    OMG I remember this wedding and the barn!! I had always wanted to see the barn in its full splendor. You had so many people working on it and so many logistics. It was crazy looking back on it but the finish product that you designed and created was just beyond. Unbelievably beautiful!

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I know it’s Christmas week and I should be posting something festive here, and in all likelihood I will after the fact. We’ve all been sick over here (uhg), and a touch housebound; which in my case, leads to cabin fever. Which explains why I’ve got Mexico on my mind…

Last November I was honored to be a part of the team and lovely group of people who came together to create some of the magic at Jose Villa’s annual workshop in Mexico.

It’s an experience I learned a great many things from. If you are open to bettering yourself, watching Jose work will show you what being a good business person is, and even deeper; what it takes to be a good PERSON all-around. He is modest, giving, patient, positive, encouraging, and truly generous. More than all that, he is passionate about his art. Creating images is an unstoppable passion for him. I feel like sometimes we all need a reminder to get in touch with our craft and to focus on how we can better our talents. Mexico was one such experience for me.

I know I can’t always be all of these things but seeing someone else practice such evenness and calm in the midst of a very demanding task is a great compass I carry with me for future use.


warm wishes for a lovely holiday to you all…k

Photography by Jose Villa
Film by Joel Serrato
Hair and Make-up by Mar of Team Hair and Make-up
Event Coordination by Jill Lafleur
Floral and Styling by Flowerwild
Invites and Paper by Ceci and Pitbulls and Posies
Calligraphy by Mara Zepeda of Neither Snow

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I’m a touch behind on sharing this exciting news…
Abby Larson, of Style Me Pretty has just released her first book, which we were so honored to take part in creating. One of the small vignettes we designed alongside the Legendary Lisa Vorce and Jose Villa is here for you to see. More goodies in the book! A definite must read for all new brides out there. The perfect gift for a friend who is newly engaged…hint hint.

Even the New York Times says it’s a MUST! That seems so strange to me, to actually be a part of a book that’s on the NY times must read list???! What is
happening? Whatever it is, it’s good and I’ll take it!

You can purchase advance copies of the book here

Seriously bonkers!


5 Responses to Style Me Pretty’s New Book

  1. CAROL

    Wow! Congratulations!

  2. ken holt

    amazing .. as usual.

  3. Cassie

    Ofcourse your part of this “best seller” book…. your beyond AMAZING!!! Congrats!!

  4. Natalie Brooks

    Your designs are absolutely stunning! Your work is portrayed because of its gift; its excellence is found in what it evokes.

  5. Gwen

    Grandma Mary is smiling.

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