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Sarah & Ryan

 

 

 

Photo~ Libby Neder | Venue~ Peters Projects | Catering~ Adobo Catering | Floral Design~ Floriography | Lighting & Projections~ Lumenscapes | Calligraphy & Event Design ~ Jessie Baca Weddings and Events

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The HEART of a Wedding

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I LOVE to throw a good party, to put my entire heart and soul into fueling the reasons behind the celebrations: making sure that the people present at the party are thrilled to be a part of such a celebration. This has caused me to look more closely at the reasons we host such events. Weddings have the tendency to be swept into a whirlwind of “supposed to” and “well, So and So did it this way, so shouldn’t I?” I am on the quest to find something more meaningful, more authentic, steeped in truth. Not just a wedding. Not just a party. But what makes it something more?  I find myself asking clients in our very first meeting, “What is at the HEART of your wedding?” What is going to make this event tick, burst with meaning and be memorable for all who take part?

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I received a beautiful book, “The Kinfolk Table” from a dear friend and as I was reading the introduction, something jumped out at me. The author’s purpose is to offer alternative ideas of entertaining.  We can create “casual, intentional, meaningful” parties but the author also tries to question the true reasons for inviting friends to celebrate and references “relationships, traditions, community and conversations”.  While a wedding is not only entertaining, it highlights the aforementioned points.  There is purpose.  There is the celebration of union, tradition and a honoring of one’s community.

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I am honored when I have the privilege to help create such a celebration.  I don’t take it lightly as I understand the gravity of the event.  I particularly take joy in the process when the client and I bond and are able to develop a celebration so unique and so bespoke that it could never be duplicated.  This was the case for Jaimee and Matt.  They wanted a VERY intimate celebration, with only their immediate family, 20 people.  They wanted their guests to truly get away and to enjoy all that Santa Fe has to offer, while also being able to relax and enjoy the beautiful nature that they, as a couple, appreciate so much.

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After much searching, we chose the Hacienda Doña Andrea, a private 9 bedroom hacienda, nestled in the Ortiz mountains.  The house gave everyone their own space, while allowing the community to bond, to share meals, play games and laze about.  Then, on the wedding day it was transformed for a beautiful celebration.  I love that Jaimee and Matt chose an intimate celebration as it allowed them to focus on the tradition and the bonds of their family and gave me an opportunity to create a very dynamic space for them  in which to celebrate.  They wanted to share a multi-course meal with their family and be able to enjoy close conversations over a candlelit table.  We still honored traditions like the cake cutting and the first dance, but it was truly a unique and memorable event, like no other.  Each detail was steeped with intention and thought and most importantly, HEART.

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Photos:  Rick Scibelli Photography~ Cake: Maggie’s Wedding Cakes ~ Floral: Renegade Floral ~ Invites: Friend of Bride

To see all photos from this wedding, click HERE

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Holidays at the Hitching Post

Hi All!  I wanted to offer you a glimpse into the rather colorful holiday decorations here at Casa Baca.  I’m rarely one for a traditional red and green Christmas…unless we are referring to New Mexican chile…I’ve been know to have Christmas trees decked out in ALL orange, or ALL even turquoise!  This year, I wanted to get funky and super colorful.  I was feeling a circus-y, Folk art-y handmade Christmas.  My color palette stemmed from bright orange, pink and turquoise with touches of shiny gold tinsel, natural kraft paper and even neon textiles.

 

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I decided that I wanted Circus Zebras to grace the tree.  “Why Circus Zebras?” you ask; I have no idea.  I’m not sure if a Circus Zebra is a real thing, but for a whimsical tree, who cares?!  I made these by painting and scanning an ink drawing, then printing a bunch in black and white on a thick card-stock paper and then got to detailing.  Oh boy, here’s where the fun is!

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The zebras got neon saddle blankets. So fancy, huh?

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Ohhh, and glittered stripes…my kind of zebra!

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Circus/ Folk artsy fart-sy inspiration is never complete without some crepe paper fringe, right?!

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Neon poms and a backing of soft felt.

Apologies, I forgot to take a picture of the tinsel that was sandwiched in between the paper and felt.  It was just some regular ol’ tinsel form the dollar store, trimmed to edge the zebra perfectly.  (Also not pictured: the hot glue burns that came with sandwiching that bling).

VOILA!  The finished zebras!  They were the perfect addition to this year’s wrapping paper scheme.  Let’s talk about that shall we.

I rarely buy wrapping paper as I’ve had a giant roll of kraft paper hanging around for the last 8 years….I might be finally reaching the end!  But I like to start with a neutral palette and then get crafty with the ties and trim that grace a package.  To me, this is the best part, better than the present itself.  I remember on Christmas asking my mom (I mean Santa) just to wrap a bunch of empty boxes because the unwrapping was the most fun to me!

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That said, the pressies were adorned with fringed crepe paper, felt cut-outs, neon yarn and poms, gold paper disks and more gold tinsel!  Call me a total nerd, but I love when the presents under the tree totally match.  It must be from all those years of reading Martha Stewart and seeing the styled Christmas shoots where everything coordinated.  Dang you Martha, I blame you for my OCD/Christmas snobbery!

So yeah, the ornaments match too.  Luckily, I have about a thousand ornaments and I LOVE them all.  But, I would seriously need at least 7 trees in my Casa to display each one, so every year, depending on the tree theme (Geeze, I’m a “themed tree” person, I want to punch myself…ugh) certain ornaments make the cut.  I recently acquired a collection of vintage yarn ornaments from Equador.  They belonged to the mister’s grandmother, making them the best kind of vintage.  I also had a set of felt doves that I made years ago.  With the colorful lights, they are just happy and perfectly Folk-arty

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Oh, the rest of the house, you ask? Well, my goal was to have a bunch of blooming bulbs gracing every square inch. Needless to say, I started my paper whites about a month too late (I’ll be lucky if they make it here by March), but the green-thumbed-I-sing-to-my-bulbs-and-they-bloom-magic Marsia Millefiori gifted me with the most beautiful Amaryllis, making me jumps and squeal with delight!  I stuck two little Christmas Clowns that I made in the pot to hang out.  I smile huge every time I walk past.

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I hope you all have a beautiful holiday season.  I’ve so enjoyed the crafting and prepping for Christmas.  Hopefully I’ll be doing snow angels in a few days…or at least snuggled on the couch watching a Christmas Story on repeat.  xo!

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Kicking it up a notch

I am a huge fan of printed menus at weddings.  Well, to me, any party seems snazzier with a beautifully coordinated menu offering mouthwatering descriptions of what you’re about to enjoy.

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Not only is it an aesthetic element to punctuate the entire table design, it is also a nice gesture to give guests a sneak peek of what’s in store.  Or, if there are guests with dietary allergies, they can get a jump on letting their server know if there is anything they cannot eat.  I’m gluten-free, so if I can tell my server before my meal comes out, I feel much more comfortable than having something placed in front of me and having to say, “uh, I can’t eat this…” and then sit there awkwardly, wheat-lusting at the plate next to me.

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Back in November I designed an intimate, 16 person wedding.  The focus was on the elaborate meal, so of course I wanted to create a menu that was equally as thoughtful.  I also made place cards that coordinated.  I wanted to share the DIY steps so you too can create these.  But, take note; don’t attempt this if your guest count is over 150…because they are extremely time consuming and you’ll want to stab yourself in the eye after the first 20.

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I found all of the wood at the local craft store…for pretty cheap!

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Leave the stained disks outside for a while, ’cause they will stink!  And nothing set’s off the appetite like wood stain.

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I printed the names and menus on a beautiful opalescent paper.  I sprayed the teal paper that went underneath with a light dusting of gold spray paint…everything had a beautiful glow and contrasted nicely with the rustic wood.

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Because OCD dreams are made of those little details!

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Then add a dib-dab of hot glue to keep everything in place…

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Que pretty, no?

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The nuptial dinner was held in the Piñon Dining Room at the Four Seasons Rancho Encantado.  The extraordinary florals were from Andrea Soorikian Design and the chargers, linens and napkins were from Classic Party Rentals. All dining room shots by Ginger Russell Photography…the rest via the ol’ iPhone!

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