the new & improved Claremont Collection

Perhaps this will help to explain my quietness this summer.

When I haven’t been fawning over my new niece, my partners and I have been busy making over the Claremont Collection website — and the collection itself!

beautiful photos by Trevor Dixon, styled by Susan of Fleurishing

Since the collection originally launched last year, we’ve evolved and grown, and it was time for Claremont Collection to do the same. As such, we have retired a few designs, added four fresh new designs, made over the identity, added even more ink colors for couples to customize their unique invitation suite — and wrapped it all up in a shiny new website. We’ve worked really hard, and we’re so happy with the final outcome.

Oh, and the cherry on top of it all?

One of our new designs can be seen on page 122 of the new issue of Martha Stewart Weddings! Can you hear me squealing? Because I am. You can also see our design included in the magazine’s online edition, but I recommend getting your hands on the real thing :)

For those of you who have already heard the news via Twitter, Facebook, and our Curious & Co. blog, thanks for bearing with me as I get all of my excitement out!

what’s so wrong about a fairytale?

Early Friday morning, I was glued to my television as I watched a “commoner” become a Princess.

images via

I also saw a range of responses across Facebook and Twitter — from people who woke up at 4am to watch (I wasn’t quite that committed!) to people who were tired of hearing about a wedding of people they don’t know.

I do not know them, nor do I live in their country. Every move of the day was a carefully calculated (and timed) one, and it was far from being the kind of laid back affair where the couple express their emotions through tears; they took great care in behaving like royals should. Millions of dollars (er, pounds) were spent to be sure that every detail was up to royal standards, at the wedding itself and throughout London.

It is far from normal… and that is what makes it so appealing to so many of us.

In the US, we don’t have a royal family. For us, princes and princesses were people (or cartoon characters) we watched in Disney movies. So to be able to witness a real prince marrying his princess after years of courtship, regardless of where they live, well… it’s easy to get caught up in it all. Not to mention, with all of the wars, natural disasters, political controversies, and crime we hear about on the news day in and day out, it’s refreshing to have a distraction in two beautiful people celebrating a momentous day, and watching an entire nation join them in celebration. Happy news is still news, and I don’t see a thing wrong with the excitement surrounding it.

To the cynics, I ask: what’s so wrong about getting lost in the fairytale of it all?

Curious & Company in Southern Weddings Magazine

I posted about this on the Curious & Company blog a few weeks ago, but realized I never mentioned it here! Since many of you have followed me here by way of Weddingbee, this will certainly be of interest to you.

Several months ago, my partners and I had the pleasure of designing a 6-page spread for Volume 3 of Southern Weddings Magazine, which just hit newsstands a few weeks ago. When Emily first contacted us, she told us about the unique idea for a “Choose Your Own Southern Wedding” feature, and left it up to us to perfectly execute the concept with illustration and design. It was a challenge, but we could not be more thrilled with the outcome.

This issue of Southern Weddings is truly one of the most beautiful magazines I have ever seen, and I am so honored that my partners and I had the opportunity to be a part of it. Be sure to buy a copy if you see it on newsstands, or order a copy here to check out the rest of our spread and a magazine filled with some amazing eye candy!

Introducing Claremont Collection

You may have noticed that I’ve been a bit quiet over the last few weeks, and my blog posts have not been as frequent as usual. Well, I promise that I have a very good excuse for being otherwise preoccupied lately.

Wondering what it is?

Today, my colleagues and I are extremely proud to announce the launch of Claremont Collection, a line of delightfully distinctive letterpress wedding stationery from Curious & Company!

Claremont Collection has been my baby since partnering with the other four designers who make up Curious & Company, and I’m so thrilled with what we have created. We currently offer ten designs, each customizable with any of our 25 ink colors, three paper colors, and twelve envelope colors. Each letterpress suite comes complete with your choice of invitations, save the dates, response sets, celebration cards, detail cards, menus, thank you cards, escort/place cards, and favor tags.

The designs are available exclusively through our website, and nowhere else — that means when you place an order, yours truly will be seeing it through from design to completion! We offer samples of each letterpress invitation design, as well as each of our 25 ink colors printed on all three of our paper colors — so there is no guessing what your final design may look like in person.

I hope you love the collection and will share it with all of your soon-to-be-wed friends. If you feel so inclined, please do head over to our website to check out the designs!

a sunny wedding

Even though I love Boston, Philly is my home; I love seeing my city on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (even though it usually means the gang is doing something illegal/offensive with the city as their backdrop). I came across photos from the wedding of Glenn Howerton (also known as Dennis) on Green Wedding Shoes today, and it’s kind of funny to see the gang looking dapper and somewhat normal — with the exception of Danny DeVito, of course.

photo by Natalie Norton

Head on over to Green Wedding Shoes to see the rest of this gorgeous (and totally non-offensive) wedding. Dennis cleans up nice!

spreading the wisdom: “DIY is not ‘Duplicate it Yourself'”

I have seen this article linked on a few other blogs in the last few days, and I usually don’t like rehashing what I know is already out there… but I think this article is important enough to continue spreading around in case you haven’t already seen it. It’s a great article from Decor8 entitled Real Talk: DIY is not Duplicate it Yourself!

I see a lot of personal interpretations of DIY ideas, especially in the wedding world, but for every unique interpretation I’d bet there are ten more blatant rip-offs. As a designer, I have most definitely been asked to replicate something another designer has created, and my answer has always been a resounding “no”; after all, I hope that other designers would do me the same courtesy if someone asked them to replicate one of my original designs. When it comes to individuals replicating something for themselves, though (meaning they do not intend to resell it), it is still a slippery slope — particularly when those projects are blogged about. Even if “inspiration” credit is still given, that doesn’t necessarily make it okay to have stolen someone’s design.

Inspiration and copying are two very different things, and I’ve seen a lot of copies in blogland that have made me really uncomfortable.

Here’s an excerpt from the post on Decor8 that I find particularly notable:

“Perhaps some people feel like their homemade invitation (or cake or dress or bouquet or centerpiece or curtains or pillow…) that looks exactly like the original couldn’t possibly change anything in the world or hurt someone else. While I think that the vast majority of bloggers understand the difference between inspiration and copying, and act professionally and ethically, I’m not sure that many are doing an excellent job of pointing out the difference—and the real effect that copying has on the people behind the businesses that supply creative content and products—to readers. The simple fact is that when somebody decides to “duplicate it yourself” (instead of getting inspired to “do it yourself”) it hurts a real person.

Check out the original post on Decor8 to read more.

What is your stance on “Do It Yourself” versus “Duplicate It Yourself”? Do you think anything is fair game, or do you make sure to put your personal spin on any ideas you use as inspiration?

hi-fi weddings

Have you heard of Hi-Fi Weddings? Why someone hasn’t created a blog like this sooner, I’ll never know, because it is simply brilliant. It’s all about personalizing the playlist for your wedding day, and it’s chock-full of fantastic recommendations. From Ashley, the author:

Here at Hi-Fi Weddings, we understand the importance of music at your wedding. From the song that you walk down the aisle to, until the very last dance we invite you to share your wedding playlist…or to gather ideas from other like-minded brides and grooms. And while we love music of all sounds and notes, we’d like to focus on those that want their wedding mix to be less “Top 40” and more of music that is true to the soul.

A resource like this would have been amazing to have when planning our 2008 wedding, though I am still proud of the playlist we were able to pull together. Ashley recently read about our wedding day playlist over at Weddingbee, and she asked if she could feature it on her blog. Check out the lovely post she put together!