I am over the moon that our “Mexi-Modern” Wedding Inspiration shoot is featured on 100 Layer Cake! I am excited to share some more pictures as well as the original sketches for the design. The inspiration for this photo shoot came to me when I stumbled upon a book cover I found in my grandmothers library. The spine was color-blocked with teal, French blue, terra cotta, bubblegum and citron green. This unusual combo surprisingly worked, and I knew I wanted to bring this palette to life with a modern yet crafty design, but needed the perfect opportunity. A few months later, I received an email from Tim Mannle, a Connecticut based wedding photographer who was going to be visiting New Mexico. He asked if I would put together an inspiration shoot at a venue in Santa Fe. Coincidentally, the Center for Contemporary Arts was interested in highlighting their modern space as an event venue. The perfect opportunity had presented itself!
Using geometric design cues and throwing a touch of neon in to the color palette, the theme Mexi-Modern was born. The handmade elements of painted terra cotta, yarn crafts and thread tassels are reminiscent of Mexican folk art and these were paired with patterns of ikat and geometric motifs. The clean setting of whitewashed brick walls and raw concrete was the ideal urban space to allow this modern mixture of craft and contemporary really pop. This modern shoot blended the perfect amount of craft and contemporary.
The concept for the ceremony scene was a bare tipi structure made of large wood poles. I created “Ojos de Dreams;” a melding of the Ojo de Dios Mexican yarn crafts and the Native American dreamcatcher. The result was a graphic and bold design, and paired with rustic wood and yarn, these magical pieces embodied the “Mexi-Modern” theme perfectly. Our “tipi” was decorated with geometric garlands in teal, blue and citron and the “Ojos de Dreams”.
The metal, industrial chairs were also decorated with tasseled garlands and hand-embroidered pillows. Embellished maracas and tambourines rested on the seats for the guests to cheer on the bride and groom as they walked down the aisle.
The bridal bouquet created by Melissa Paquin of Renegade Floral was lush and textural with blooms in peach, pale yellow, coral and ivory. Cascading ribbons with geometric patterns paired beautifully with the thread tassels in neon yellow, coral, teal and blue. The grooms unique orchid boutonniere even had a few tassels on it!
To juxtapose with the lush bouquet and to keep with the contemporary space, my wing-woman Johanna Frenz took on the wardrobe styling and she put the bride in an ivory jumpsuit! It was fabulous with a pair of cobalt J.Crew pumps, a woven sash of Ecuadorian fabric, and a hot pink peony in the bride’s hair. This unexpected look fit right in to our Mexi-Modern scene.
Bringing the design for the tablescape to life was one of my favorite things to create. A weathered wood table was topped with ikat fabric runners and edged with blue, teal and neon tassels. Set diagonally on the runners were long wood boxes filled with sand, a spot for the punch of whole citrus fruits and fresh flowers to gather.
Hot pink taper candles, set in brushed gold candlesticks brought a festive vibe. I painted terra cotta chargers to echo the geometric motif and keep the color palette alive. Individual place settings were kept modern with clean lines of the flatware and place cards made of laser cut wood. We had the ikat fabric to match the napkins and stitched geometric hems in neon thread.
Of course, we had to include the tequila shots, poured into classic Mexican glassware, and accented with key lime slices and salted rims.
The tequila also made another appearance on our Paleta Bar. Johanna also happens to makes a mean popsicle and to spin-off the classic Mexican paleta, she made them a little booze-y; the “Tequila-Limon” and “Guava-Colada” pops. What a great alternative dessert or even a signature cocktail for a summer wedding!
We collaborated with Cassie Templeman of Peanut Press for the print elements. She knocked it out of the park with her design and we were over-the-moon thrilled! It was clean and modern but still carried the thread of our Central American folk-art motif.
To complete the invitation suite, Cassie wrapped it up in neon cord, made custom laser-cut wood elements, and sourced the perfect vintage stamps.
To think that this idea first began with an arbitrary mix of colors on a book’s spine…and the result was a photo shoot that combined handmade folk art and modern neon. We were blown away that it worked! Every element added a particular touch that helped to create this cohesive and distinct mash-up, Mexi-Modern!
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Concept + Art Direction ~ Jessie Baca of Jessie Baca Weddings and Events / Styling, Paletas~ Johanna Frenz of Jessie Baca Weddings and Events / Photographer ~ Tim Mannle / Stationery ~ Cassie Templeman of Peanut Press, / Floral ~ Melissa Paquin of Renegade Floral / Make-Up ~ Svetlana Britt / Models ~ Nicole and Kai Kuller / Venue ~ Center for Contemporary Arts
Dreaming up unique ceremony altar spaces is one of my favorite things to do. When Carrie and John asked me to design something crafty, yet modern, I was totally on board! Their save the date had a palette of burnt oranges and turquoise with a Southwestern geometric motif. I wanted their backdrop to mirror this with dramatic scale and a contemporary design. I also wanted to bring in native succulents and dried Cholla cactus.
It began with a sketch and then I needed to brainstorm what it would actually be made of. I wanted to use lightweight materials like paper for an airy and delicate garland. I cut different sized triangle and diamond shapes in varying shades of orange, and to bring a little depth and a contrasting pop of color, I made geometric boxes out of turquoise and aqua paper. I cut out feather shapes from a scrap piece of leather and painted one side of them with metallic paint in gold and copper.
I went out into the New Mexico hills and foraged fallen Cholla cactus. Luckily, once it has dried, the skin and very sharp spines fall off, making it a wonderful, natural material for a Southwestern installation! The groom’s mom had a perfectly complementary rug to place under the altar and I just love how it tied everything together!
The ceremony took place at the Center for Contemporary Arts in Santa Fe. I am in love with the way the garland’s geometric shadow played on their beautiful white gallery walls! After the ceremony it became the backdrop for the photo booth; I love when installation pieces serve double duty during a wedding.
It truly was a joy to custom design something so unique for such a wonderful couple ! I am so glad it was part of a beautiful wedding day!
I am over the moon! Sabrina and John’s spectacular wedding day is featured on 100 Layer Cake! This was one of my favorite weddings of 2012 and I’m so excited to finally share it with everyone. Working with Sabrina and John was a dream…we hit it off right from the start and our collaborations were fueled with some serious creativity!
Sabrina designed her invitation suite and the contemporary aesthetic and neon palette served as the inspiration for the rest of the wedding. The Center for Contemporary Arts, provided the most incredible raw, urban backdrop with it’s high ceilings and exposed brick walls. The fact that guests were able to mingle and dine within the actual art exhibit was so unique!
Sabrina and John got down with some buttons! Instead of traditional escort cards, the created a pin for each of their guests with a fun fact. They were great conversation starters and provided such a unique and personal touch from the bride and groom.
Since the meal was being served family style, we didn’t want too much on the table. I made cement-looking vessels out of hypertufa and planted them with succulents (if you missed the tutorial, it’s here). Accented with a script table number, the settings were simple, urban and threw a nice little wink to the Santa Fe landscape.
To soften things up and to bring the ultimate marriage of modern and organic was the living wall that I built for Sabrina and John’s ceremony backdrop. Combining elements of rusted re-mesh grids, wire, moss and muslin, we gave a nod to the Southwest with Choya cactus, air plants and succulents. This was by far my most favorite project of the season. Here’s a fun lil’ behind the scenes video for you!
Living Wall from Jessie Baca on Vimeo.
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Photo one, Karen Kristian, All others: Articulate Photo
The backdrop for the ceremony was a living wall that I built for Sabrina and John. It combined urban elements of rusted re-mesh grids, wire, moss and muslin and we gave a nod to the Southwest with dried Choya cactus that I gathered form the hills, air plants and succulents that I had been harvesting all summer.
A very special element to their ceremony was the music. Contemporary songs like Heartbeats, by The Knife, On Melancholy Hill, by the Gorillas and Ceremony by New Order were played on Spanish guitar by the talented Yves Lucero. It was so wonderful to hear the songs out of their original context and with a acoustic sound.
Cocktail hour took a step out of the ordinary too. To honor Sabrina’s love of synchronized swimming, classic Esther Williams movies were projected over the bar while guests enjoyed the delicious passed hors d’oeuvres. Instead of traditional escort cards, Sabrina and John created a pin for each of their guests with a fun fact. They were great conversation starters and provided such a unique and personal touch from the bride and groom.
Food was also extremely important to Sabrina and John. They wanted their guests to enjoy a fulfilling meal that had cues from the ingredients of New Mexico while still maintaining a unique direction. Guests dined on a stellar family-style meal designed by Marja Custom Catering which started off with the most amazing yellow tomato gazpacho with a red tomato sorbet and a shishito pepper. The main course included Red Chile Calabacitas Enchiladas, Flat Iron Steak al Chipotle and Poblanos Rellenos filled with grilled shrimp and Arroz Verde. The dessert was my favorite part; we served mini churros with local Kakawa dipping chocolate and a blood orange sorbet with sage syrup.
It was a magical night!
This wedding is featured on 100 Layer Cake.
Photographer~ Karen Kristian, Supplemental Photos (one, twelve, thirteen, fifteen, sixteen, nineteen) Articulate Photo / Invitations, Programs, Place cards, Menus,~Designed by Bride, Printed by Smudge Ink. / Hair and Make-up~ Jess Evans / Ceremony and Reception Location~ Center for Contemporary Arts, Santa Fe, NM / Rentals ~ Classic Party Rentals / Catering~ Marja Custom Catering / Bridal Bouquet and Personal Flowers~ Artichokes and Pomegranates / Ceremony Backdrop Design~ Jessie Baca / Ceremony Musician~ Yves Lucero / Lighting Design~ Santa Fe AV / DJ~ Celeste Worl