A few weeks ago, I hopped on a 6:00 am flight from Grand Rapids, Michigan to Austin, Texas y’all. See, a lot of you thought I was headed to the Southern Weddings launch party. Which, admittedly, would have been so much fun! But instead I was off to Austin, where my sweet friend, Shay was meeting me for a weekend full of surprises, blooms, engagement photos and cake. If you know me well, you’ll know I have a thing or two for surprises. No surprise is too big or small to take on. I live for those sweet moments and will have photos of how this particular one unfolded soon.

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But for now I wanted to share a little bit more behind the days leading up to the surprise itself, namely the fun I had putting together the bouquet mock up for my bride. Sara and Austin are having an incredibly darling Southern glam soiree next September, full of bright hues, black and white stripes, a little bit of rustic and a lot of gold. I wanted to make sure now only did she see some florals in person but that she’d be able to see how her florals photographed professionally (by no other than my gal pal Shay who not only hosted me while I was in town, but who is also photographing the event next fall. Yay!) While I worked on the blooms the day before the session, Shay snapped some shots of me in action, which despite my hot mess appearance (come on, look at that hair), I will treasure forever.

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Prepping florals sometimes takes just as long, if not longer than the actual arranging and designing.

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Furlee, one of the Nelson’s sweet pups had to watch the whole ordeal go down; what a sweetie.

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And now for a few ingredients; garden roses, sweet peas, veronica, anemones, box wood, stock and callicarpa.

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That black and white striped ribbon is perfection for this event and color palette.

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My favorite moment is starting the bouquet; it’s like a blank canvas of goodness….

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Et voila! Be jealous of my socks. Actually they are Shay’s socks. Who knew floors could be so cold in Texas.

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Big thanks to my friend, Shalyn (and her sweet husband Drew) for not only taking these photos for me but for hosting me, chauffeuring me around, letting me eat six cinnamon buns for breakfast, treating me to Olive Garden and being very sweet and accommodating. Our friendship is a true testament to the power of social media and how wonderful friendships can be even from a far. Love you sweet, Shay! And Sara and Austin, I cannot wait to share your beautiful engagement photos with the world soon (oh and my adorable floral apron is from the amazing McKay of Oatmeal and Lace. You can contact her here to order your own). Happy Tuesday, friends. Make it count xoxo