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Orcas Island, Washington
Making it pretty and keeping it real.
Interests: life. happiness. dogs. good wine. simple friendship. my husband. and of course design.
Recent Activity
Nothing like a before and after to see how much work has been put into a place when being decorated or renovated. Nothing like a before and after of some of the locations we have dressed for Wedding Receptions. When the magazines starts off with the landscape as dump site and shows the fantastic Victory Style garden as the after, it is just fabulous and fun to look at. Well Snippet and Ink is posting a really spot on series Snapshot of a Marriage offering advice from those who have been married to those who are looking to get married.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
So very excited about the new website. So very grateful to everyone who helped in large ways and small ways. It just feels better to have a contemporary site that can fit in with the pantheon of other beautiful wedding sites out there. We are very excited to see what Snippet and Ink has in store. John and I were interviewed for a great series they are doing on giving any advice to those about to get married. As a long married couple, 28 years this February, they wanted to know if we had a secret. Respect and magic were... Continue reading
Posted Dec 10, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
The website is almost ready. It has been a bit like making decisions, choosing photos, designing pages, offering ideas; which way do we go. But we are almost there. And we will let you know. Then it's time for the Blog to be put through the same process. So greatful to all those who have helped make this possible. Annie Sparks-Dempster of Annie Sparks-Dempster fame rules and Dan Burke is wizard infront of the curtain, Thanks guys. Oh and Affinity Photography gave me this fabulous and illustrative photo of our most wonderful Orcas Island. Continue reading
Posted Dec 4, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Hello out there from the mysterious hidden wonder in the fog that is Orcas Island. When I started this blog I made the mistake of not being consistent in my posting and when I did post I went musing on all sorts of things that were fun or interesting to me but were not necessarily pertinent to why you dropped by to read me. Further musing on my part, insights from my extraordinary team of designers, and planners, Annie and Stella,A Magical Place to Stay Patty and Sarah , Kimaya Cloud Nine and Janet McCarty a superlative Fine Artist have... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
I found a photo today that is helping me set an emotional goal. I figure if you can have weight loss goals and health goals and money goals and every other kind why can't we have an emotional goal. Here is mine. Pretty simple. Susan Slapin shared Quan Yin's photo on Facebook and made my day. Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
It is true. During my Zumba workout today my ankles turned a simple ball change step into an act of folly. I forget. I deny. I fall down. Today I had to face it on the floor. I have week ankles. Weak ankles are a peculiar malady. I have friends with a bad knee or hip or both and they schedule a procedure to get a new one. Like buying new tires. Chipped a tooth? Get a crown made of gold or porcelain -elegant elements. Squinting at the large print? A new pair of fantastically chic edgy glasses are waiting... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Handfasting was the original way in Medieval Britain that couples joined in what we know as matrimony. By handfasting (actually placing of the couples palms in a way to signify the infinity sign) a couple was joined for a year and 1 day whereafter they could renew the handfast or not as they chose. Since access to clergy was not all that easy this made a great deal of sense. Today handfasting is used symbolically as a portion of a wedding ceremony. It is a lovely ancient (some say Celtic) tradition being kept alive. I am glad I came across... Continue reading
Posted May 21, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Hunting Hippopatumi in Paris. Chocolate. A very dangerous medium. Not to be taken on lightly. Yum. Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
I was feeling a bit stale from a long winter and from staring out at all this natural beauty. Seriously, sometimes you really can't see the forest for the trees. So my husband and I packed up and went on a trip from which we have just returned. We struggled at first to decide where this much needed break would be, friends in the Caribbean, friends in Bali all tempted us but we realised pretty quickly it was a big dose of City that was needed. My first post (in forever I know!)is about why that was a good choice,... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
DIY is the watchword trend for this years weddings. I am seeing some fantastic results out of the efforts some of my clients are making. Really fantastic ideas. There is also a trend towards the vignette centerpiece such as this one. Vignettes tell a visual story about the couple. Vignettes can create moods of joy, inspire fantasy, express ideas whether lofty or not. There are some fantastic blogs out there that inspire and inform vignette design? This is a new favorite. This is an old favorite both of these blog spots have provided me and many of my clients with... Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
The snow was falling this morning. I woke up late a bit annoyed because I was behind. Behind on not much of importance but behind nonetheless. Sipping coffee and staring out the window into the falling snow made things much better. And then, I read this and my day went on into Happiness. Happiness Raymond Carver So early it’s still almost dark out. I’m near the window with coffee, and the usual early morning stuff that passes for thought. When I see the boy and his friend walking up the road to deliver the newspaper. They wear caps and sweaters,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 16, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
This last weekend was the 2012 Seattle Wedding Show. It is our second year doing it. It was intense, fun, demanding and very hard on the feet. Fruitful? Well, we'll see. I want to give a big shout out to Rosario Resort and Spa for including us in their booth. There is no doubt from the looks on so many faces as they passed by the booth and read the banner, the name Rosario holds powerful memories. Memories of romance, childhood, a first kiss, family time, whales and eagles, all that Orcas Island has to offer. It was lovely to... Continue reading
Posted Jan 10, 2012 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
I don't have a clue. I have an opinion, I have a hope but I don't have exclusive knowledge. If I followed Jung I would draw from the collective unconscious, and perhaps that is what we do when we find ourselves defining the next thing and we end up being correct. Last night I went on line to see what was being said about next year and though "faux vintage farm" is not being touted any more (the old Underwood typewriter next to the crate of oranges and the hemp laundry line of place cards) Vintage is still the parameter... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
There is an article from Huffington Post that is being shared on Facebook by Heather Sharpe Senior Editor of the fabulous Style Unveiled wedding resource (I feel like I need a geneology tree to track back)about the End of the Vintage Wedding. If you feel a wind blowing it is the collective sigh of relief from many designers and artists in the wedding world. But not from me. Oh yes, I agree the vintage typewriter as a prop is as conceptually bruised and wilted as the wedding flowers with which it once shared space. But the authentic country wedding or... Continue reading
Posted Nov 23, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
I am looking outside my window out into the clouds that surround my home on this wet chilly November day. It is lovely in it's own wrap me in a blanket in front of the fire with my book lovely way. It also helps to know that just about when this lovely becomes loathsome, sometime in March, I will leave Orcas Island for my friends new home in the magical world of Lovina Beach, in Northern Bali, in the nation of Indonesia.Lilin Beach Hotel is the result of the efforts made by Heather Stansbury and Bryan Benepe and I can... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
I am thinking of a big garage sale we just held. Orcas Islanders love garage sales. Furniture and rugs and decor accessories. Most new and lovely, that came from the end of a staging gig we did. The sale was held out of our storage space which was chock a block with great stuff. It was interesting to watch people as they 'experienced the stuff'. Some chemistry begins and the energy shifts when you put people in a space that has stuff for sale priced way under retail. I know it has had it's effect on me. There was an... Continue reading
Posted Oct 27, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Doing a destination wedding requires a trust between the planner and the couple. It is a leap of faith that is made when a couple books a vendor to help them make their dream come true. (Just remember the leap that got you here: the question that was asked and response of yes has been the biggest leap of all!) For some, it turns out their leap is made a bit too early. The vendor is booked and they are not a good fit. It happens. I get that need that itchy scratchy feeling urging you to pull the trigger... Continue reading
Posted Sep 20, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
As my previous post indicated I am already nail biting about next year. A bit of worry is apparently a great motivator for me as it got me posting (hallelujah) and I did some homework. I belong to a few online groups, tweeting clans etc. And it was through one of those that I found a grand list of links of preferred wedding (planning) vendors. My first click through brought me to a very impressive site with interesting and smart information so I book- marked it. I wondered how do I get considered for this list? Looking for a way... Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Well, this is the last week of my wedding season on Orcas Island; that is the time between May and September when we bring to life those notions and dreams that grew up between October and April. It is a relief in some respects because mounting a perfect day every week is daunting and not a little exhausting. Being able to maintain the level of caring required to attend to the unseen but yet always felt details becomes harder as the months of hardwork pass by. But then, it is really now that we hit our stride; remembering all of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Oh my. It has been a very long time since I last posted; even my husband noticed. Before I had a blog I had all sorts of things to say that seemed terribly important. After the first flush of blog ownership those feelings waned. It is easy to have courage when what you fear is not nearby. It's when it is right in front of you where the real test begins. It has been a wonderful wedding season for Patina mostly because we have had the most wonderful clients. Really, every last one of them. Truly lovely people who were... Continue reading
Posted Sep 1, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Wedding Season is here and I thank the mysteries that we did not have June-uary this last weekend. It was gorgeous. It was perfect. We were able to do our first Hindu Wedding Ceremony this past Saturday at the Inn at Ship Bay. It was immense work, immense fun, incredibly beautiful, very complicated, a bit messy, and fascinating. I won't say we are experts yet at Patina but I will say our learning curve was huge and we are so wanting to do more. Check out these photo's provided by Kimaya Lutz who did a wonderful assisting job for us;... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Kate and William. As a planner and designer it is an interesting exercise to imagine what working a Royal Wedding would be like. Impeccable staff helps. A full wallet doesn't hurt. But the pressure of it all requires a very strong stomach. Like as not, I will not have to test myself on that scale. Loved the hats! I think that was my favourite part. Did you see them? If not check out this slide show link Royal Hats on the NYTimes. Some of the hats look like they come from Yves St. Laurent via Dr. Seuss. Some went in... Continue reading
Posted Apr 30, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
Back from the hot sun of the caribbean. Back into the soggy saddle of the Pacific Northwest. Hmm...Going to Chicago and NYC next; feeling gratefu since I am not quite ready to come back in full time. Guadaloupe FWI. Lots of people think we went to Mexico but no, we went to the island known as isle de papillion(as the butterfly island) because of how it is shaped. It is between St. Martin and St. Barths. Cases et Jardin where we stayed is a collection of the sweetest bungalows set in a lush garden. Our friends built this up as... Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
The New York Times has before and after pictures, these types of photo assemblies always please me, today they opened my heart. Northern Japan satellite photos comparing April 2010 to March 2011. They made me understand in a 3 dimensional way what the people of Haiti, Chile, New Zealand and now Japan have faced and are now facing. When I say 3 dimensional what I mean is intellectual astonishment, emotional compassion and now the added sense of the physical. My body literally hurts for these people. I feel the fear that such devastation can cause. I am not there but... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style
When I was a little girl living in NYC I would periodically (read 10x in a year) rearrange my bedroom. Today, when stressed or feeling out of sorts I will get myself sorted by rearranging the living room furniture. I wish I could do our bedroom but it doesn't offer much in the way of alternatives, that is without expense. I wish I known about staging homes to sell sooner. It is the perfect other hat for us to wear. Weddings in the summer and staging for the rest of the year. Perfect. Our most recent staging project required furnishing... Continue reading
Posted Feb 24, 2011 at Orcas Island Wedding Style