sf crushing: wineries and wedding venues

sf crushing- wine country

having lived in the bay area for a month and a half, one of the most popular topics of discussion amongst our friends and the new (wonderful) people we’ve been meeting is wine country. everyone has their favorite vineyard, with great stories about the wine, food, their experiences, and the gorgeous landscapes. i’m very much excited to snag a ride out to sonoma and napa and taste what this california soil and climate have to offer by way of its grapevines. in the meantime, i’ve been pouring over photos, and these are my top picks for gorgeous spots to hold either a big, or intimate wedding ceremony and reception.

 

Scribe Winery

scribe site

as a writer, and a designer, i’m already in love with the name and label that this winery boasts. take a look at their website, read their very personal stories, and that love intensifies by the sheer passion these fellas have for what they do, and where they do it. and then you find photos of their pick-up parties. this past february, they had chris fischer of martha’s vineyard fame (always love a good nod to my home state of massachusetts) come and put together an insatiable array of gorgeously prepared food to pair with their wine bounty. just to be present at one of these events looks like it would be an experience filled with great food, amazing wine, cozy fireside conversation, beautiful views, and fun company. to hold a wedding here would be magic. i can’t wait to visit for a tasting, and am seriously considering joining their scribe viticultural society.

Photo by Allan Zepeda Photography

Photo by Allan Zepeda

Photo by Allan Zepeda

photography by allan zepeda

as featured on Style Me Pretty

 

Gundlach Bunschu

gun bun site

imagine being ushered through a cool wine cave, being handed a glass of authentic sonoma valley wine, and exiting to a breathtaking view of an expansive vineyard under a clear blue sky. this is the experience guests encounter at a gundlach bunschu wedding. it sounds, and looks, incredible. add to it some rustic wine barrels, stone walls, and the natural beauty of vines – everywhere – and this particular winery provides such a light and bright environment to share such a special day with friends and family.

gun bun ceremony

gun bun barrel

photographs by jessica burke

as featured on Style Me Pretty 

 

Annadel

annadel site

this vineyard has everything that i love about infusing different textures, elements, and maintaing the authentic beauty of its location. with old winery ruins and a barn amidst rows of greenery and the most romantic big, beautiful trees, annadel provides so many opportunities for photo shoot backdrops. virtually touring these grounds is making me antsy to get there in person. it looks like it meets all the needs of both an intimate and larger wedding celebration, inviting a great conversation between the outdoor expanse and indoor coziness. bonus – they also provide roses to the san francisco flower mart, so how amazing that the florals might be available right at the venue!

annadel wall

annadel vineyard

 

photographs by collin hughes

as featured on Snippet & Ink

 

excited to start tasting the wines from these gorgeous venues! tune in next when i shift focus over to the amazing professionals behind the wedding lens. have a beautiful week!

 

sf crushing: letterpress letterpress

sf crushing letterpress

my very dear wonderful talented friend, rebecca elliot, came to visit san francisco this weekend, so it seems only apt that my next sf crushing series is focused on letterpress studios in the bay area. rebecca herself is a letterpress maven, with a giant hunk of steel of her own back in chicago, and meekling press as her homestead for printing unique and quirky (not to mention exceptionally well-written) books and story collections. in her honor, here are my picks for this corner of the country’s best handlers of old vandercooks and chandler and prices.

 

Olive Route

 

olive route

 

olivia san mateo, owner of this berkeley based print shop, has such a lovely, natural eye for collection. each piece in one of her wedding suites can stand well on its own, but put together with all the elements, the whole unit speaks clear and well-constructed volumes about the couple getting married. i especially love her use of texture, natural elements, and of course, varied types of type. i really appreciate a designer who can weave a story into their work – and her use of layers, small details, and perfect color palettes does this for everything she prints.

 

Twig & Fig

twig & fig

 

another berkeley enterprise! twig & fig have, first of all, such a quirky and fun website – this tips me off firstly that their work is made up of personalized and unique elements. i love their uncomplicated, slightly edgy, sophisticated, and utterly fresh approach to designing. it’s clear that their inspiration comes primarily from the people they work with. which, when paired with masterful letterpress and design skills, ends up yielding incredibly gorgeous stationery and invitations.

 

Aerialist Press

aerialist press

 

well, apparently i’m in love with letterpress studios based in the east bay. it might be a little biased, since i’m in oakland now, but seriously, when you go take a walk around aerialist press’s website, you just tell me how hard it was for you to leave. not only do they have an abundant portfolio of gorgeous, delicate, type-and-illustration-driven designs, but when executed onto paper, the final product takes your breath away, it’s made so well. i also have a particular penchant for design teams that are motivated not only by their clients’ love, but by their own. alexandra and craig have such a lovely story, and it’s evident that they infuse every project they undertake with the same passion and dedication that they share with each other.

 

 

so much love for these paper wielders. tune in next week for a peek at some of my favorite winery wedding venues in the area!

happy birthday! cards!

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there are a handful of very very special people who have birthdays in march, and this year i decided to make some custom hand lettered birthday cards to send their way. orange and white, with some very cool gold metallic gel ink on the envelopes. these aren’t up in the shop, but if you’re looking for something to help say, ‘hey! you! i’m so glad you were welcomed onto this planet when you were!’ – well, i’d love to help make that happen.

IMG_4252

 

IMG_4255

sf crushing: florists and floral designers

sf crushing- florists

 

if there is one thing i’ve been appreciating like whoa since being out here – especially for the season and how drastically different it’s being represented here versus chicago – it’s the abundance of plant life. honeysuckle practically wraps a lasso of scent around you as you walk by, forcing you to stop and bathe in the sweetness surrounding you on the sidewalk. the flower buds on the tree outside my living room window have blossomed and burst and since given way to small bright green leaves. there’s crazy jurassic fauna and spiky fluorescent flora. everything smells like heaven, especially after it rains.

to celebrate this bouquet of floral inspiration, my next sf: crushing focus is on the floral designers and florists that harness and arrange and display and showcase and set free the plethora of local flowers and ferns and branches and everything else at their disposal.

 

here are my top three for now:

 

studio choo homepage

 

Studio Choo

the name, first of all, is adorable – as is it’s inspiration (i also tend to have a particular penchant for other creative jills or jillians). the work that this duo – jill and alethea – puts together is just breathtaking. all of their arrangements and installations have a backyard cozy comfortable feeling, but with an elevated sensibility. their use of local grown flowers, and the care they take to showcase each bloom, is heartening. i just want to go live in their studio – what a thoughtful and artistic space to spend their days! take a look through their blog – i love how each post not only showcases the stunning visuals, but tells a personal story of each project’s inception.

 

twigss homepage

 

Twigss Floral Design

as soon as i opened up the website for twigss, i fell in love. i’m obviously the target audience for a hand-drawn laurel wreath and hand lettered logo design. and then they’re a mother-daughter team. and then their philosophy is so spot-on, i feel like i already know them. and then their photos and their flowers are just. well, they’re just gorgeous. i love the seasonal influence that takes precedence in each of their displays, bouquets and headpieces. and i also love their appreciation of the entire lifecycle of a flower – from bud to bloom to decay and deadhead. i’ve been pouring over their blog, and i suggest you do the same.

 

chestnut & vine homepage

 

Chestnut & Vine Floral Design

succulents. succulents. succulents. i’ve been looking for a floral designer/florist in the bay area who uses succulents in an artful way, and svenja brotz of chestnut & vine has hands-down the most gorgeous, lush, well-thought out arrangements using these amazing plants. succulents of all different colors, sizes, and paired with the interesting and complimentary blooms – i could look at her website all day. and i love that she’s based in the east bay, just a bit north of where i am, up in quaint and bustling berkeley. bringing a european sensibility to the abundant materials of northern california, she’s got a real talent for combining skill, vision, and resources. i just want to fill my home with her creations.

 

next week in the sf crushing series: invitations and paper goods. this is a special one, so i’m excited to share with you my favorites in the world of paper and design. have a beautiful weekend!

 

a quick gem and giraffe question

dear lovely readers – i’ve decided to spend the next hour and a half drawing gemstones and giraffes. what are some of your favorite gems – cuts, shapes, kinds? concurrently, what are some of your favorite lady and dude names? i’ll be posting some of these sketches later on today, and you might just see a combination of some of these favorites in the mix!

new online hand lettering workshop!

new online lettering flyer

for all of you who have been yearning to learn how to hone your own hand lettering skills, i have a treat for you! i’m running an online 6-week  hand lettering workshop, live via skype. this workshop series is intended to be a private lesson experience, with half hour sessions every wednesday at a particular time slot, giving you ample time throughout the week to practice the skills we went over. there will be fun practice homework, and i’ll be at your disposal the entire length of the program to answer questions, provide feedback, and share helpful guidance.

open to beginners and more advanced students alike. the workshop runs on wednesday evenings from april 2 – may 7. there are 5 time slots available:

3:30pm pst | 5:30pm cst

4:15pm pst | 6:15pm cst

5:00pm pst | 7:00pm cst

5:45pm pst | 7:45pm cst

6:30pm pst | 8:30pm cst

 

you must have access to skype, and a materials list/course syllabus will be provided upon registration. sign up at http://www.jillyink.com/workshops. looking forward to seeing you on the web!

 

Screenshot 2014-03-19 12.14.21

sf crushing: wedding planners

sf crushing- planners

I can’t tell you how excited I am to be in the Bay Area. Seriously. Not only do I get to wake up in the gorgeous Lake Merritt neighborhood, just minutes from nature, culture, urban atmosphere, and farm fresh produce, but I also get to work alongside some pretty talented individuals in the wedding and event industry. So, to highlight my love for this area, I’ve decided to start a new series: ‘sf crushing’. First up, some ladies from the wedding planning side of the industry. From my experience, working with some awesome wedding planners in Chicago (you, you, and you!), these ladies have to be multi-faceted. They have to be organizers, time-table enthusiasts, visionaries, designers, stylists. They have to be able to keep everyone on schedule, in line, and most of all, happy. And that’s just their relationships with other vendors. To the clients, the happy bride and groom, they have to be a mentor, friend, sometimes therapist. I take off my bike helmet to the people in this industry that love every single part of it. So many people think that a profession in wedding planning is just fun. These professionals prove that it takes a lot of work, but when done well, and with love, it IS fun.

stacy mccainStacy McCain Event Planning – http://www.stacymccain.com – San Francisco, CA

- Stacy and her team create timeless landscapes. The whole wedding, from start to finish, is styled with perfection, with the whole event in mind. It’s apparent that she takes the time to get to know what is most important to her clients, without compromising on the other pieces. As a designer, I appreciate how clearly she seems to communicate the vision of her clients. As a person, I appreciated even more how lovely she is in person. She is absolutely someone I would trust to handle the specifics of such a momentous day.

lovely little details

Lovely Little Details – http://www.lovelylittledetails.com – napa, atlanta, new england

Jacin definitely seems like the kind of woman who knows what’s important. She limits the number of weddings she plans to 5 per year, serving couples in the Napa Valley, Atlanta, and my home region New England. I appreciate how much attention to detail she puts into each of the weddings she plans, and adding floral design to the mix just makes me love her more. Plus she seems genuinely enthusiastic about her love for elements both big and small, and having such an exclusive client roster, it’s refreshing to know that she’s willing to go knee-deep into building each and every event.

esla events

Esla Events – http://www.eslaevents.com – San Francisco, CA

I first fell in love with Laurel of Esla when scouring design and newly popped up wedding blogs from my cubicle at Random House. She has a dreamy sensibility, and anything romantic with a bit of an edge captures my attention instantly. I also have an interesting soft spot for anyone who’s lived in New York for a period of time – something to do with surviving and thriving there, and then taking that same work ethic wherever you go – and the fact that she’s lived and gleaned inspiration from the various places she’s resided. Whether her events are indoors or outdoors, there always seems to be an element that’s a little unexpected. In my book, that’s the mark of someone I’d definitely want to work with.

 

Have fun spending the rest of the afternoon pouring over the websites and galleries of these three. And to celebrate my favorite thing about being somewhere warm and sunny (and the faint scent of honeysuckle in the air), the next spotlight in the series will be on florists and floral designers.

 

And as a reminder! To all west coast couples – I’m offering a 10% discount on all wedding lettering services if you book with me by the end of the month. For more information, send me a note at jilly.ink@gmail.com. Cheers!

 

 

 

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