21 April 2014

lettuce entertain you

I've been working on more food-centric styling projects lately, which I LOVE to do.  the days feel exciting and creative, especially when the team is enthusiastic and trusts each other.  a couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of working with Paige Fletcher, who is an incredibly talented food stylist and what she did completely blew my mind...(yes, that was a jab at those horrible, leading headlines that litter my Facebook feed).

but seriously.  she is like a magical culinary wizard that makes food look SO gorgeous and SO delicious, even when it's not at allllll.  I don't want to spill any of her secrets, but I learned more than a few tricks that day...not that I plan to add "food stylist" to my business card-- I'm always down to lay out a fancy cheese platter or set up a dinner party or stage a bar for a photoshoot, but when the food is the actual star of the shoot...I fully bow down to Paige.



I provided all the props, the textures, the backdrops, surfaces, etc, and what you see is literally like 2% of what I had available for the day.  you really never know what is going to work, so I had TONS of options for glassware, napkins, accessories, bowls, plates, vessels, tabletops, etc.  some of it is borrowed, some of it is rented, but a lot of it comes from my prop library-- in the first photo, that little cutting board is one that I found at an estate sale...if you look closely, you'll see "1955" carved into the handle; it says "LILA" on the other side.  

prop & set styling is probably one of my most favorite things to do, especially when the photographer is as fantastic and fun to work with as Anjali Pinto is.  seriously, guys, she is the best and I'm super excited that I get to work with her again on a wedding in June.  

these images will be used in summer promo for a pretty major restaurant group-- can't wait to see 'em out and about around the city!

16 April 2014

salad daze

I posted this photo of my breakfast salad on Instagram this morning and a few of you asked me for the recipe, so I thought I'd share the concoction that has become my new morning obsession.


- handfull of greens
- beans 
- pickled red onions 
- other veggies
- toasted tortillas 
- eggs
- dressing 
- hot sauce 

this is not rocket science, y'all, nor are there any rules whatsoever to making a breakfast salad. also, I am most certainly not Joy the Baker (hi, Joy!) or Tracy Shutterbean, the queen of delicious breakfasts (hi, Tracy!)  

I use organic baby mixed greens, but you can use spinach, arugula, butter lettuce, chopped romaine, or whatever suits your fancy.  the next step is the beans-- I'm lazy and use canned beans (rinsing well, of course) and any type will work: black, pinto, garbanzo, Cuban, mixed, etc.  

I have recently taken to pickling a big red onion and keepin' it in my fridge to add to, um everything.  soups, salads, tacos, pizza, Indian food, sushi...it's all better with picked red onion.  I also always have stack of those cute little palm-sized corn tortillas in the fridge and I toast one of those till it's crispy and crunch it over the top.  then I drizzle on a little homemade dressing (always a combination of a bit of Bonne Maman, ground mustard, vinegar, and a little olive oil, shaken in a jar), put 1 or 2 (oh who am I kidding, it's always 2) sunny eggs on top, and shake on the hot sauce (I'm a Cholula or Tapito girl).  

Then I just mix it all up and eat it.  And then soooometimes I crave the exact same thing for lunch.  after you try it, you'll probably see why.

the end! 

14 April 2014

totally aced it


remember when I did one of the best weddings ever at the Ace in Palm Springs?  I do, because I wish I were there right now, instead of in Chicago, where it's currently threatening to snow.  the photographer,  Ryan Flynn (who I cannot wait to work with again) just posted a ton of photos and I thought I'd share 'em here as well...maybe after we look at all of the sun-soaked smiles and desert joy, we'll feel like we've been whisked away to Coachella.  right?

thanks again to Justina for recommending me to John & Samantha-- they are easily one of the sweetest, most genuine couples I've ever worked with (and also major party animals) and I was so honored to be a part of their amazing wedding weekend!  









































24 March 2014

mixing it up

I have some crazy talented friends, but y'all already knew that.  pretty sure I've already bragged on one of my nearest and dearest, Martha Mulholland, but her latest project is so stupid-pretty that this post is just one big love-fest for my favorite tiny designer.  

all of these photos (which I snagged from Remodelista's post today) were taken by the one and only Laure Joliet, who knows how to manipulate natural light in the most magical way possible.  she's a genius and if I could, I'd have her document my entire life, so that in 100 years, people could look through books of photos and wonder how it was that I was constantly bathed in a flood of sunlight like some cosmic queen.  

back to the house-- it's the perfect balance of minimal and pulled-together.  it's warm, inviting, and has a touch of quirk, just like Martha and just like her clients (who are also friends of mine).  MM really knows how to mix eras-- she brings in antiques, vintage, and modern without calling attention to any specific time...wandering through homes she decorates is like finding yourself in the most amazing shop or museum, where you want to take everything home with you.  she makes fancy pieces feel relatable and low-brow treasures feel unexpectedly posh...it's truly a gift.  

and now for the good stuff...
















what an inspirational way to start the week, right?  bravo, Martha and Laure!