Styled Shoot Sneak Peek

April 9th, 2015

Last September, I flew down to Georgia to spend three days at a conference that I had no idea would be as life changing as it was.  I kissed my kids goodbye and got on the plane with a lacy white dress safely zipped into a garment bag for a styled shoot at the conference […]

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Last September, I flew down to Georgia to spend three days at a conference that I had no idea would be as life changing as it was.  I kissed my kids goodbye and got on the plane with a lacy white dress safely zipped into a garment bag for a styled shoot at the conference that I had reached out to the planners of on a whim, asking if I could participate.  The friendships that I made there are life long relationships that continue to inspire me and encourage me, and I cannot wait to head back down south this coming fall.  I met Katie there, she’s a Navy wife who had flown out from San Diego for the conference and she had just launched the Vows and Valor military wedding blog.  I was so happy to be able to meet up with her again when we spent a few days in San Diego last fall for a conference Guillaume was speaking at, and then I got a text from her a few weeks back asking if I might have a dress available… Vows and Valor was about to do their first styled shoot for the blog and they were looking for a blush wedding dress to complement the groom’s dress whites.  And thus began a hectic but oh-so-much-fun collaboration to get a dress out to San Diego almost immediately.  I love this girl, and I love everything about the blog and vision she’s running, so it was such a pleasure to participate.  Here’s a few sneak peeks of what I worked on, the full post is coming in May! (yay!!!)

A Blush Silk Wedding Dress with Ivory Lace by Katherine Bignon for a Vows and Valor Styled Shoot

For those of you who are new to this creative industry, just starting out and trying to find a way to get your name out there, don’t be afraid of participating in styled shoots!  Put a list together of your favorite established brands, the people in our industry who inspire you and who you would dream of working with, and then reach out to them, don’t be afraid!  Ask if they have any upcoming shoots that you can participate in.  If you’re a stationary designer, reach out to a wedding photographer you love and ask if they’re doing any styled shoots that you could create an invitation suite for.  If you’re a florist, a calligrapher, a cake designer, (anything really!), reach out to that planner, photographer, etc. that you love and who inspires you and ask if you can participate!  Maybe it won’t work out the first time around, but you’ll never know if you don’t reach out and take the first step to ask.  We work in an industry full of amazing woman with amazing hearts who would love to collaborate and dream with you, so don’t hesitate on whether you should send that email or not, just do!

xoxo, Katherine

A Blush Silk Wedding Dress with Ivory Lace by Katherine Bignon for a Vows and Valor Styled Shoot

A Blush Silk Wedding Dress with Ivory Lace by Katherine Bignon for a Vows and Valor Styled Shoot

 

 

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Measuring Cups

April 8th, 2015

Two cups is the general equivalent of 400 grams, at least when it comes to flour.  The measurements are relatively interchangeable, depending on whether you’re cooking a metric recipe or an American one, but the difference can also be just enough to make sure your cake never quite sets, or your bread turns to brick. […]

 

Two cups is the general equivalent of 400 grams, at least when it comes to flour.  The measurements are relatively interchangeable, depending on whether you’re cooking a metric recipe or an American one, but the difference can also be just enough to make sure your cake never quite sets, or your bread turns to brick.

If we ever move back to France, the first thing I’m hiding in my suitcase is a set of measuring cups.  Ones that will let me still cling to some of my favorite foods in moments of desperation.  Ones that will let me still smell my mother’s zucchini bread rising in the oven; 3 cups of flour, in order to keep the bread just moist enough. Ones that will still let me make waffles from scratch for my family on Saturday mornings; two cups of flour, plus a dash of sour cream and coconut oil.  And ones that will let me still get a sugar high from my chocolate chip cookie recipe that made my husband fall in love with me; 4 cups of flour for a firmness that’s just so and lets them melt in your mouth like butter.  God forbid we cook those on the French system, he won’t know who I am anymore.

It’s funny, my attachment to these little white stacked cups, with their handles and red numbers engraved on the side, because I learned how to cook in France, without them to guide me, yet I feel like I’m not quite at home without them now.

The difference between two cups and 400 grams is what keeps me from finding a home in my mother’s kitchen, and what stops my mother-in-law from inviting me into hers.  It’s a difference that can’t quite be explained, because there’s no way to make it equivalent.  It’s simply what makes me different.  I can copy their recipes, but I can’t quite duplicate them.  There’s always something just a little bit off.

I will always speak just a little different; my children will always speak it too.  Our accent, our cadence, our choice of word order.  None of it is equivalent, yet similar enough.  We are understood, but it is not always correct.  It’s two cups in a recipe that really wanted its 400 grams.  I will always dress just a little bit off, I will always parent slightly outside the lines of their culture and what they expect.  It’s simply me trying to find a balance between my cups and your grams, and knowing that it doesn’t always exist.

According to someone, I will always be holding two cups instead of 400 grams, or grams instead of its’ slightly off equivalent of cups.  Yet if I can learn to take the forthcoming questions and eye-raising with a grain of salt; whether it’s the 99 cent box from the bodega or the lavender fleur de sel at the supermarché that’s a little out of my reach, my cups and I might just be able to make it through, knowing that at least if all else fails, I still have my little white handled safety nets, and those chocolate chips, four cups of flour, and a man who loves me for them every time they melt like butter in his mouth.

I’ll always be working from the wrong side of the system, trying to find the middle ground and which recipes will work there; buy maybe we simply need to expand our palette a bit and steer clear of the cakes that don’t set and the loaves of gluten brick.

2015-04-08_0001

As I’m finishing up my last semester at the Fashion Institute of Technology, I found out right before the semester started that I was short one English class, so I’ve been able to spend the semester taking a creative non-fiction writing class.  It’s my favorite genre to read, and I think I finally found my writing niche; I can get lost with hours and hours of journaling for the class… This is an excerpt from one of the pieces for class, and it’s the inspiration for a longer piece due in a few weeks that I’m currently working on.  This course ranks high in the top 3 I’ve taken at FIT, and it’s not even related to my major!!  But, I have a feeling it will be related to future projects… My professor is trying to talk me into writing a book about all of our French family experiences, and I have a couple other projects up my sleeve too!

xoxo, Katherine

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Styling for Creatives, A Lingerie Photoshoot with Angela Friedman

April 7th, 2015

I’ve had the pleasure of both interning and working this semester with Angela Friedman, an independent lingerie designer based out of New York City.  I have learned so much from her about running a design business from the ground up, so many new sewing and designing skills, and we’ve had so much fun together!  A […]

 

I’ve had the pleasure of both interning and working this semester with Angela Friedman, an independent lingerie designer based out of New York City.  I have learned so much from her about running a design business from the ground up, so many new sewing and designing skills, and we’ve had so much fun together!  A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of collaborating with her on a styled photoshoot of her Spring/Summer 2015 collection.  We had so much fun that we ran out of garments in the collection before we were ready to stop shooting, so we threw in a few favorites from past collections, as well as sneaking a couple shots of the coming Fall/Winter 2015 collection (I can’t show you those ones quite yet, but just wait til September, because this new collection is BEAUTIFUL!)  It was such a fun and inspiring day, and I have a feeling it won’t be the last time we work together.  If I wasn’t pregnant, I would spend my summer living out of half of these pieces…

From Angela’s blog: “Spring finally seems to be here!  The temperatures are warming up, the sun is shining more and more each day, and all the windows are full of light colors and soft fabrics just begging to be worn.  So in celebration of all things warm and sunny, we thought we’d share a little spring inspiration for some of the things we think pair best with our spring collection!

 Imagine sitting next to the window on a vintage velvet lounge in a delicate bralette and bedjacket, sipping tea, trying on pearls, tasting macarons and perusing your favorite book, getting ready for a makeover and an afternoon luncheon with your best girlfriends, and you’ll be all set for what we have in mind for this spring.”

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

Those bralettes… They pair perfectly with a pair of high waisted silk shorts!

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

Yes, in the end we got to eat the macarons!

 

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

Her lacy eye masks are perfection, I love how they pair with the pearls and the makeup!

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives CollaborationA Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

Those are my great-grandmother’s vintage lace gloves, it was so much fun to be able to use them!

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

We’re both in love with this striped set, I took way too many pictures of it!

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

Did you know that little dried flower is part of a cotton plant? It’s gorgeous right?!

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives CollaborationA Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives CollaborationA Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration 

A Styled Flat Photoshoot by Katherine Bignon for Angela Friedman, Styling for Creatives Collaboration

I loved being able to throw in old prints from a Paris on Film photoshoot I did a few years back.

Here’s a link to a post by The Lingerie Addict, with even more pictures of Angela’s gorgeous Spring/Summer 2015 collection!

This is just the first of a few Styling for Creatives collaborations I have had the opportunity to do recently.  Working with designers to help them style their pieces, and then give them a folder of images to use for their marketing needs has been so much fun, and both an incredible learning experience and inspiring at the same time!  It’s been an interesting avenue of my business to explore, I’m loving that I’ve found a way to get back behind my camera again in a way that’s directly relevant to my business and everything I love doing!  I hope you enjoy these images, and there’s definitely more to come soon…

xoxo, Katherine

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A Pavlova Recipe

April 6th, 2015

This was a busy busy weekend!  Passover and Easter fell on the same weekend this year, so it was chock full of good food, good company and good worship.  We started celebrating Passover years ago with some good friends of our and it fast became one of our favorite holidays, and this year we did […]


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This was a busy busy weekend!  Passover and Easter fell on the same weekend this year, so it was chock full of good food, good company and good worship.  We started celebrating Passover years ago with some good friends of our and it fast became one of our favorite holidays, and this year we did an Easter potluck with the same family.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have my camera with me during Passover prep (we spent the ENTIRE day in the kitchen!) But maybe next year you’ll get a full menu with pictures!  I sat there the whole day remembering back to last year, snuggling with a two week old baby and being a bit more on the fringe of the event.  And here we are one year later; Eaden is walking and almost one, number three is on the way and I worked all day long! It’s amazing how life changes and grows from one year to the next.  A few years back, I started making the dessert for Passover, and it’s such a big hit every year that I thought I’d share the recipe. (I did snap a few pics of this one.)  Have you ever had Pavlova?  It’s so simple to make, incredibly beautiful, and even more delicious and I KNOW you’ll enjoy it!  This recipe is adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Mini Pavlova recipe in her book “How to Be a Domestic Goddess” (One of my favorite cookbooks!!)  (recipe below)

A Pavlova Recipe from Katherine Bignon

For Easter dessert I think I made 21 crème brûées… And then I ate a leftover one for breakfast this morning!  Maybe, just maybe we’ve had enough sugary goodness for a while… We’re all looking forward to a delicious plate of leftovers tonight though…

 

Passover Pavlova Recipe

Ingredients for Meringue:

8 large egg whites

shake of salt

1 ½ cups sugar

2 teaspoons potato starch

1-2 teaspoons Vanilla extract

2 teaspoons White Wine

*Your meringue will be stiffer, and hold better if you use organic eggs for the egg whites.  The egg whites in organic eggs are thicker and sturdier than in regular eggs, leading to a much better meringue!

Set your oven to 350 degrees

Put the salt and egg whites into a mixer and whisk on high until the egg whites start to hold firm peaks, then slowly add in the sugar.  I usually put the full 1 ½ cups into a small bowl, and then slowly pour it into the mixer while it’s still going on high.  Once you have all the sugar in, your meringue will most likely look like it’s about to take over the entire bowl (I usually mix mine in a KitchenAid Stand Mixer), and it will be nice and stiff and snowy white.  Turn off the mixer, remove the whisk, and add the potato starch, Vanilla, and Wine to the top, then gently fold it into the meringue with a spatula.

Next you’ll need two large cookie sheets.  Line them with parchment paper, and take a large plate (about 10-12” round) and draw a circle of their outline on the paper.  Use a spatula, and put half of the meringue into each circle, spreading it out so it reaches to the edges of your outline.  Use the spatula to shape the edges of the circles up a little, so that there is a slight ridge which will help hold all your berries and cream inside.

Now the meringues are ready to bake! Slide them into the oven and when you do, turn it down to 300 degrees so that the temperature gradually cools a bit as they cook.  Bake them for 30 minutes, and then turn the oven off and let the meringues sit inside for minimum another 30 minutes.  (I like to cook this recipe the night before I need it, and then when I turn the oven off I let them sit in the oven overnight cooling.  This lets the meringues dry out, giving them a crunchy outside and gooey inside, exactly the texture you want for the Pavlova!

Preparing the Pavlova to serve:

Ingredients:

3 cups heavy cream, whipped

Fruit and Berries: Some of our favorites are strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries, plus chopped kiwis and fresh figs.

  *If you put the bowl for your mixer in the freezer an hour or two before you need to whip the cream, your cream will hold better when it’s whipped, and stay cooler longer!  Add a little bit of sugar and vanilla to your cream while it’s whipping and it’ll sweeten it up a bit too.

To assemble: Peel the parchment paper off the bottom of the first meringue and place it on a serving dish.  Put half the whipped cream onto the meringue, and smooth it out.  Then cover with berries.  Peel the parchment off the second meringue and layer it on top of the first, then cover with the remaining whipped cream and pile with berries.  Slice, serve and enjoy!

A Recipe for a Delicious Pavlova from Katherine Bignon

Xoxo

Katherine

 

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6 Ways to Know Your Bra Doesn’t Fit Right!

January 22nd, 2015

If you’re anything like me, then you’ve most definitely made the mistake of seeing that perfect shoe, or dress, and deciding that you MUST have it, but then you realize it’s not available in your size… oh no!! So you fudge a little, and buy a “close enough” size and decide it’ll be fine, because […]


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If you’re anything like me, then you’ve most definitely made the mistake of seeing that perfect shoe, or dress, and deciding that you MUST have it, but then you realize it’s not available in your size… oh no!! So you fudge a little, and buy a “close enough” size and decide it’ll be fine, because it just looks so good!  But, the shoes are never quite wearable because they hurt like crazy, and the dress is a little uncomfortable because you’re always tugging on it… Sound familiar?!  And, if you’re even more like me, you’ve done this once or twice with a bra!  It’s just so beautiful, it’s ok that it’s a little tight, or doesn’t fit quite right… I look good so I’ll still wear it!  I’ve ended up throwing away all my bras that don’t fit perfectly, I got tired of telling myself I would wear it because it’s pretty, when in reality it just doesn’t feel right.  I’ve seen SO many girls in bras that don’t fit right, and it’s made me realize that maybe they just aren’t aware that there is a better option for them out there!  So I thought I’d share six simple tips that will let you know if a bra just isn’t fitting you right… Let’s get you into something that feels and looks perfect!

1. When you put your bra on, and then put your shirt on top, can you see a line where the top of your bra runs across your bust?  This should be completely smooth with a well fit bra.  The bra shouldn’t be sagging out a little (it’s too big!) and your bust shouldn’t be squeezing out of it, creating a ridge (it’s too small!).  Almost any lingerie store will measure you to get you into a bra that fits perfectly, and even if you’re in something that’s your size, it could simply be the wrong style for your shape…

2. Does your upper back hurt?  Your bra is not giving you enough support! Try one with wider straps, fuller coverage, and a wider band around the back.  It could also mean that your bra is too small: the band is too tight and the straps are pulling much too tight on the cups, giving you too much support, and working too hard to do the job!

3. Is your bra creating unnecessary cleavage when you put it on?  Unless it’s a pushup bra that’s squeezing you in and pushing you up, and completely adjusting the way your breasts sit, a well fit bra should not add any additional cleavage than your natural shape allows for.  In a well constructed bra, the center gore (the area between the two cups) should be an average of 3/4” wide.  This can change slightly in the sizes that are at the far end of the spectrum, but not by much.  This space allows the proper support, and placement of your breasts.  If your center gore is much wider than that, you are most likely in an older bra that is stretched out and has seen better days, it’s not providing the support you need. And if it’s much narrower than that you’ll be squeezed together too much, a bit uncomfortably so! (It could simply be due to putting your bra in the dryer and it shrinking, or it could be an issue in the bra itself.)  (Obviously if you’re wearing a bra that’s intended to provide you extra cleavage, then go for it!!)

4. Do you have to stretch your bra to the tightest clasp on the back for it to fit?  If so, most likely you have stretched the band on your bra out too much, and it’s no longer giving you good support.  When you purchase a bra, it should always fit you best on the middle clasp, providing enough support without stretching the bra to it’s max and starting to destroy its ability to hold it’s shape.

5. When you look at yourself straight on in the mirror while wearing an underwire bra, can you see the underwire the majority of the way around the cup, or are your breasts covering it at certain spots? (ex: Are they hanging down and covering the bottom of the underwire? Are they not being pulled together enough and covering the outer sides of the underwire? Are they being pulled together too much so you can’t see the center sections of the underwire?)  To know your bra is fitting right, you should see the underwire all the way around; this means that your bra is giving you enough lift to not hang low, and enough support to stay centered, and not be too spread out or crammed in!

6. When you look at yourself sideways in the mirror, when you don’t have a shirt covering your bra, is the band around your bra relatively even and level around your body or is raised higher in the back, and falling lower in the front?  Another way to look for this problem is by asking yourself if you’re constantly tugging on the back of your bra to pull it lower because it’s riding up.  If it’s falling lower in the front, you are either in an older bra that has lots its ability to give good support, or you are in a bra that doesn’t fit properly and can’t balance your support around your body.  You can fix this by searching for bras with wider support bands around your back, and wider, higher quality straps, or simply by updating to a new bra!

 

These are just a few easy descriptions for knowing if you’re wearing the right fit or not, some of them are based on aesthetics and some based on feeling, but they’re all good signs for knowing when it’s time to switch!  A bra doesn’t last forever, it will slowly lose it’s support, and shape, and it’s important to stay in one that fits you just right, because it changes the way everything feels!!  Good luck, and if reading this makes you realize it’s time for a shopping trip, I hope you have so much fun!! (And maybe ask someone to measure you while you’re in the store!)

xoxo

6 Ways to Know if Your Bra Doesn't Fit Right by Katherine Bignon

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French Cooking: A Simple Rice Salad

January 20th, 2015

We go back to France every year to visit my family that I lived with over there, and my husband’s family, and one of my favorite parts of the trip every year is the FOOD (I mean, why wouldn’t it be?!), and the way mealtimes are cherished and enjoyed! I learned how to cook when […]


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We go back to France every year to visit my family that I lived with over there, and my husband’s family, and one of my favorite parts of the trip every year is the FOOD (I mean, why wouldn’t it be?!), and the way mealtimes are cherished and enjoyed! I learned how to cook when I lived there, which is probably where my love of all things fresh, and organic/non-gmo comes from, along with mixing foods and seeing what you come up with! (The mom I lived with was a total GENIUS at combining foods!)  And my mother-in-law is an absolutely incredible cook!  I come home every year with a list of all the foods she cooked so that I can add them to my running list of go-to meals for our family.  So, in honor of my venture this year into the French cookbook, (the one passed down in my mother-in-laws family!) I thought I’d share one of the recipes I learned from her.  It’s a simple one, with so many ways to modify and spruce it up, the possibilities are completely endless!  It’s a perfect recipe for those days when you make way too much rice to go with your meal (if you’re like me anyways!) and have a ton leftover in the fridge for the next night…

A Simple Rice Salad

2 cups rice, cooked, chilled or still warm (I LOVE the salad when it’s still warm from the rice!)

3 hardboiled eggs, peeled and diced

1-2 tomatoes, diced

swiss or gouda cheese, diced

ham (or other deli style meat), sliced or diced

Raspberry or Balsalmic Vinegar

Olive oil

Dijon Mustard

Garlic clove

Salt

 

Toss the diced ingredients into the rice, and mix

Dressing: The “official” dressing for this salad is based off of raspberry vinegar, which is something I have been unable to find in the US.  It’s different than raspberry vinaigrette’s, it’s an actual vinegar, that has a lighter flavor than balsamic.  So, if you get lucky and happen to find it, yay!! but the salad also tastes great with Balsalmic!

So, equal parts Raspberry or Balsalmic Vinegar and Oil, and then add an additional dash of the vinegar just to top the flavor off.  (Use olive oil if you want a stronger oil flavor, or avocado or canola oil if you don’t want to taste the flavor as much!)

Add a spoonful of a spicy mustard, a crushed clove of garlic, and some hearty shakes of salt.  Mix it all up, pour over the salad in the desired quantity and enjoy!

This recipe works great as an entire meal in one, or as a side to another dish! And because it’s served warm or chilled, and can be pre-made and sit in the fridge for a day (if you do this, save a little extra dressing to put on it again before you serve to freshen it up), it makes a great picnic meal!  It’s one of our favorite summer beach meals!!

This isn’t a recipe you’ll find when you sit down at a fancy schmancy French restaurant, and if you never venture into a dear friend’s house while you’re in France, you’d probably never see something like this, but it’s a lovely, simple, home cooked meal that is served to us almost every time we go back, and I love it!  Cold mixed salads, of all variations, are the heart and soul of many a family-style sit-down lunch in France.  Imagine this one, or one based on corn filled with shrimp, tomatoes and peppers, or one with a base of tuna with a little rice, cucumbers and tomatoes, all topped with a vinegar dressing and served with baguette on the side and a lovely glass of red wine.  I love that mealtimes in France are something to be cherished!  The whole family sits down together to a fresh cooked meal, for lunch and dinner, and it’s not an “eat as fast as you can and run back to your other stuff” type of experience, it’s a chance in the middle of your day to enjoy food, enjoy conversation, and rest together.  These are the type of memories I want my children to grow up with!

I hope you enjoy the salad, we’re loving it at our house today!

Chopped Tomatoes

Chopped Gouda

We chose to use Gouda for this salad, instead of swiss, I like the flavor a bit more!

Prosciutto

I used prosciutto instead of ham this time

Eggs Chopped Eggs Rice Adding the Ingredients Dressing Pouring the Dressing Simple Rice Salad

Bon Appetit!

 

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A Styled Valentine’s Mini Session in Richmond, Virginia

January 19th, 2015

Good morning girls! There’s a fun project in the works and I’m SO excited to share the details with you, and invite you to be a part of it!  Remember in Friday’s 2015 goals post, I mentioned the Lingerie Library I’m creating and the events I want to put on?  Well the first one is […]


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Good morning girls!

There’s a fun project in the works and I’m SO excited to share the details with you, and invite you to be a part of it!  Remember in Friday’s 2015 goals post, I mentioned the Lingerie Library I’m creating and the events I want to put on?  Well the first one is already in the works!  I have teamed up with Ashley of V.A. Photography and Kat of Dear Sweetheart Events (dream team!) to put on a pre-Valentine’s event in Richmond, Va for all you girls out there who have ever been interested in Boudoir-type photography and are looking for an amazing styled experience with an incredible team there to cheer you on!

We’re setting up in the Parlor Suite of the Linden Row Inn, in downtown Richmond, Virginia, for the day on Saturday, February 7.  Kat is putting together an amazing styled set-up, (think girly, peach, and fluffy blooms!), and we’re welcoming girls in for a 30 minute mini-session, to be photographed by Ashley!  There will be a rack of one of a kind lingerie provided for you to play dress up in during the shoot, champagne and chocolates to add a little extra fun, and you’ll even have your hair and makeup done, so you’ll be ready for date night come evening!  All you have to do is show up ready to be loved on and dressed up, and you’ll be perfect!  You’ll have the gallery of your images back to you in time for Valentine’s Day!!

We’ll be there to cheer you on, help you pose, and fit you into the clothes that perfectly flatter you, and we would LOVE to have you there with us!!  If you’re interested in more information, and booking, send me an email at katherine@katherineelizabethbridal.com, I can’t wait to hear from you!

 

When: Saturday, February 7

Where: The Linden Row, Richmond, Virginia

What: A 30 minute styled Valentine’s mini session, with lingerie, hair and makeup provided, along with Champagne and sweets!

Lingerie: Think tulle skirts, silk robes, soft bras, and lots of pink!

Cost: $300

 

Here’s a peek at our inspiration board to get you even more excited…

An Inspiration Board for the Valentine's Mini Sessions in Richmond, Va, by Katherine Elizabeth Bridal

An Inspiration Board for the Valentine’s Mini Sessions in Richmond, Va, by Katherine Elizabeth Bridal

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2015 Goals | Bridal Design, Custom Lingerie, and Personal

January 16th, 2015

2015 is off to a pretty amazing start here in our house, with lots of fun adventures, and lots of busy-ness!  I’ve already been off to one conference and had a weekend away, and Guillaume is gone this weekend to Atlanta for one for him!  My business is growing, his ministry is growing, our kids […]


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2013 Shay Cochrane

2015 is off to a pretty amazing start here in our house, with lots of fun adventures, and lots of busy-ness!  I’ve already been off to one conference and had a weekend away, and Guillaume is gone this weekend to Atlanta for one for him!  My business is growing, his ministry is growing, our kids are growing… you get the picture!  And… I’m GRADUATING this year!! Woohoo!! So before we get too far into the year, I wanted to be honest, and vulnerable, and share my vision for and biggest goals for myself, our family, and this business for 2015!

Without being cliche or planning it, the list I sat down and typed has 15 things on it, and I want to share them with you!

1. Clean, Purge, and Stop Spending! Manage to run a consistently clean house, filled with only the essential, and meaningful things.  We have so much extra junk floating around in our house, and I think it’s a huge reason why we struggle with keeping things put away and clean.  (That’s a huge thing for me to be willing to say… I have a huge pride issue with keeping a clean house, and I make it spotless before someone shows up at my house, but on a day to day basis, it doesn’t stay that way, and that’s not the life I want to live!)  So purge the unnecessary, and live a simpler, more intentional life inside our house.  (It naturally follows from this that I need to cut out unnecessary shopping, and filling our house up with these pretty, but unnecessary items, so I’m considering a contentment challenge…)

2. Wake Up! For me, personally, I would love to be better about having a consistent morning routine.  I need time to get my day going before the kids wake up.  Time to drink a pot of tea, read my Bible, and get a little blogging and writing done.  And I have never been one to respond well to the alarm clock in the morning… This is probably my biggest personal goal for myself for this year!

3. Start using essential oils!  I’ve been talking about doing this for so long, I need to just place that order, do a little research, and go!

4. Blogging! Along the lines of the previous goal, one of my goals for 2015 is consistent, and frequent blogging.  I love to write, I love to pour my heart out on paper, and I love the business that I’m growing, I just need to be better about sharing it!

5. 6 new bridal clients.  This is one of my growth goals for the year!  My dream is to work with a bride that lets me create her wedding gown, and then a lingerie collection for her honeymoon (which leads into the next goal!) I want to know her from the beginning of her marriage, and form a relationship that will last well into her marriage, because marriage, and encouraging the growth and development of strong and beautiful marriages is a huge passion of mine!

6. 6 new lingerie clients!

7. A rebrand and a new website!  I have been “not in love” with my site for too long now…  And I can see my new brand so clearly in my mind, I just need to get it onto paper and screen!!

8. Marriage Mentoring! I would love to have the opportunity to mentor a couple going into marriage.  Our pre-marital counseling is one of my best engagement memories, the couple we worked with was amazing, and they helped us start our marriage with an incredibly strong foundation.  Since then, and every time I hear a couple struggling and having a rough time, I get this urge to take them to coffee, and sit down and chat and pray and help them work through it!

9. Business Mentoring! As I grow my business, I would love to work into the opportunity to mentor other small business owners.  I know I am not at a point professionally to offer this yet, but I want to be honest, and up front that this is a dream of mine, and whether or not I get there in 2015, I want to at least be working towards that!!

10. Portraits! We’re coming up on our 5th anniversary this year (woohoo!!) and I would love to book an anniversary/family portrait session to celebrate that.  I know this may be a weird list to put that on, having that as one of my official goals for 2015, but this is something that I’ve talked about doing for so long, and have never actually taken the time to make that dream happen, so here it is, in writing!  (And along with a portrait session, a little getaway would be pretty nice too!)  I didn’t end up designing my own wedding dress, but I would love to design something for this!

11. A Shop! Once I finish the rebrand process, I want to open up a small online shop with a few standard lingerie pieces for clients to order without going through the entire custom process.  Silk robes, tulle skirts, some sleepwear… things like that!

12.  A Lingerie Library and Events! I am in the process of developing a “lingerie rental library” with pieces for someone to rent if they’re doing a boudoir photoshoot (Read Wedneday’s post for an amazing boudoir photography experience!!).  It gives women an option in between paying the price for something custom, but not having to resort to something that every other woman could buy at Victoria’s Secret.  So, with the development of the library, my dream is to host at least two “events” of my own this year with the pieces, pairing with a photographer and a planner to offer a boutique type photoshoot experience where women can put together an album for a wedding gift, or anniversary present, or something like that!

p.s. One has already been planned!! Did you see yesterday’s Instagram invite?  More info coming to the blog on Monday!!

13. Cooking Natural! Cooking is a huge passion of mine, in case you didn’t know!  I love cooking from scratch, playing around with foods, and one of the best parts of my day is when Guillaume gets home and plays with the kids and I close myself in the kitchen and have time to myself to cook.  (The beauty of these vintage houses is that the kitchens have DOORS on them!)  I have a list of cookbooks I want to read this year, all along the lines of getting back to the basics of cooking, and cutting out all processed foods.  I would love to live a consistent farm-to-table lifestyle, with no processed foods, and everything from scratch.  Will I succeed 100%? Probably not!! But I would love to be able to do as much as I can towards this, for the beauty of the food, but also for the health of our family!  There’s so many things I think we could fix health-wise with just some simple diet changes!!  So books like, The Nourished Kitchen, The art of Fermentation, and Nourishing Traditions are high on my list for this year!!  We have a local farm where we can get most of our meat, and all our dairy products delivered to us weekly (how fun is that?!), and we already get a huge chunk of our meat from my dad’s hunting adventures and summer fishing in Alaska, so we’re well on our way to a good start, but I know there’s more to be done!

14.  Cooking French! Just to warn you, this one’s about food too.  And quite possibly the next one…  Like I said, it’s a passion!!  We were given a French cookbook as a wedding gift by an old college professor of mine, and I’ve used it over the years, but never really dove into it.  And then I found out this past summer, that this cookbook was actually a family tradition on my husband’s side.  It was given to his grandmother when she married, and then she passed it onto Guillaume’s mom when she was married, and she still has it and loves to cook out of it!  How sweet is that?! So my dream for this year is to cook through it, learning the art of French cooking and turning those recipes into regulars in our household, all the while applying the principles from the previously mentioned cookbooks!

15. A Family Cookbook Memoir! Last food one, I promise!  I want to journal/blog my way through this and begin to create a cookbook for our family that I can pass on to Piper one day.  All of our favorite recipes, our journey of learning how to cook from the basics, and our journey of cooking French!

So, in a nutshell, my dream for this year is intentionality.  Intentionality in my business to keep it growing, intentionality in our home to keep it a healthy and peaceful environment, and intentionality with our family, to be there, and be present, and do the things that matter most.  This isn’t on the above list, but I would love to live a life where social media is only used during specific times of the day, where it never comes between me and my marriage, and me and my children, so that I have the time to do the things like teach my daughter how to cook and write about it for her to have the memories later.

So, there you have it!  Help me stay accountable!!

xoxo

 

p.s. Aren’t Shay Cochrane’s Stock Shop images always so stunning?!

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Boudoirathon | A Richmond, VA Styled Shoot with Custom Lingerie

January 14th, 2015

There’s something so incredibly beautiful when someone is willing to take a chance on you!  When they say, hey, show me what you can do, I KNOW it will be amazing!  That’s the moment where some of the deepest friendships are formed, and the sweetest memories are made.  I’m still stunned, and honored, when someone […]

 

There’s something so incredibly beautiful when someone is willing to take a chance on you!  When they say, hey, show me what you can do, I KNOW it will be amazing!  That’s the moment where some of the deepest friendships are formed, and the sweetest memories are made.  I’m still stunned, and honored, when someone reaches out to me and says that they would love for me to create their dress for them for their wedding day, or their lingerie for their honeymoon!!

I had one of the best “take a chance on you moments” ever a few months back when two girls who I had never met, got in touch with me asking me to design a few pieces for a styled shoot they were doing.  Kat, with Dear Sweetheart Events is a dear friend of mine, and she was styling the shoot for them, and when she heard it was lingerie, she suggested they reach out to me for a few custom pieces, instead of using something off the rack!  (I LOVE that girl!!) We started chatting, and turns out the shoot was so much more than just a styled boudoir shoot… These two girls, Annmarie and Jessica, were in the process of launching a new photography adventure, entitled “Boudoirathon”, a concept so fun I IMMEDIATELY fell in love!! In their own words, this is who they are:

Boudoirathon with Jessica and Annmarie is a boutique experience intended to empower women and instill confidence in them. By combining glamour, styling, and photography, Jessica and Annmarie highlight both the inner and outer beauty of their clients. Together, through a boudoir marathon, they provide women the experience of shedding vulnerability and expressing their most honest self.

 I LOVE this!! These girls travel around, and host two day long “Boudoirathon’s” shooting the girls in gorgeous hotel rooms, mainly in Massachusetts but they have the dream to be doing this all around the country! The girls are encouraged, empowered, and made to feel extraordinarily beautiful in their own skin.

The styled shoot they were putting together with Kat was for their website launch (and you can find a couple of the images from the shoot scattered around their gorgeous site!! ) and what started with asking for 2-3 pieces turned into an 11 piece collection that we all fell in love with!!  I can’t wait to show you all the stunning images, but for now, here’s a little peek and there’s more scattered throughout my instagram!  The girls are waiting to hear back on a blog submission before we can show you the rest!! (Woohoo!!!)

Putting this collection together stretched me like nothing else has, I learned so many things, and honestly, gained so much more confidence in myself! (It was like they were photographing me or something!!  These girls just have that effect…)

I am SO grateful that they were willing to take that chance on me, and trust me to create their vision for them, and I’m so grateful for friends like Kat who believe in the work I do and are willing to help put my name out there!  I had the amazing opportunity to meet Annmarie last week at Creative at Heart in Virginia, and she is just as sweet in person as she looks!!  I hope you have the opportunity to meet her one day too!

The shoot was at the gorgeous Paisley & Jade studios in Richmond, Virginia.  Kat with Dear Sweetheart Events did all the styling, Calligraphy was provided by Taylor Sites, (who also modeled!), Hair by Brianna Adams, Makeup by Nikki Benedikt, and Bonnie of B is for Bonnie Design shared a gorgeous gold foil print for the styling!

Katherine Bignon Sketches for Boudoirathon Styled Shoot

Floral Bralette and Tulle Skirt Custom Design by Katherine Bignon for Boudoirathon

Custom Floral Robe and Bustier for Boudoirathon by Katherine Bignon

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Custom Lingerie and The Heart Behind It

November 12th, 2014

I have this old book, one of my favorites from years ago, way before I even considered venturing into lingerie design.  Imagine the late 1800s, the girl in the story is married, but didn’t have a mother who had made her any lingerie for her to save in her “Hope Chest” to take with her […]


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I have this old book, one of my favorites from years ago, way before I even considered venturing into lingerie design.  Imagine the late 1800s, the girl in the story is married, but didn’t have a mother who had made her any lingerie for her to save in her “Hope Chest” to take with her into her marriage.  When her closest friend realized this, she spent hours and hours hand making something special for her dear friend, to bless her and give her something that she could cherish for the rest of her marriage.  The idea of “custom lingerie” isn’t a new one, but that also doesn’t mean it’s something outdated and ancient.  It is a long history of the people who know you best, and hold you dearest, pouring hours and hours of their time and love into a beautiful work of art, something for you to carry with you into your marriage and to truly cherish.  It was their way of praying you into marriage, and blessing you when you got there.  I LOVE this idea!  I love that it makes lingerie into something more than just beautiful lace and silk, and more than just flipping through hangers at Victoria’s Secret to find the piece you like most, and buying it with the simple swipe of a credit card.  Working with a client to create custom lingerie for them is the building of a dear relationship.  It’s the chance to sit down and share coffee and dream and chat and get to know each other, to see their heart and hear their story and find their style, and create something just for them.

I know the word custom can be overwhelming, and while one of my favorite things to do is to sit down and create an entire honeymoon collection for one of my brides, custom can also be much simpler than that.  A silk robe in a beautiful hand chosen print, or even a beautiful print exclusively created for you.  A silk and lace slip designed to go under your dress for the next wedding you’re invited to.  A bra created to fit underneath that dress you just can’t find anything for.  A gorgeous set for your next little vacation away.  There are so many fun options!  At it’s heart, custom is simply saying yes to trusting someone with hearing a little of your heart, and knowing some of your story, and letting them take the time to bless you with something beautiful, completely and only for you, that you can cherish forever.

I LOVE being able to offer something handmade and custom designed, that is relational at its heart, and not simply transactional,  and I love being part of an amazing community of artists who have chosen to do the same!  I’ll be starting a new blog series soon featuring some of the incredible artists who are out there, creating the same atmosphere in their own fields, and I’m SO excited!!  But for now, thank you so much for letting me share a little of my heart behind why I do this with you!  The idea of “praying someone into marriage, and blessing them when they get there” speaks straight to my heart, and all of the reasons why I do what I do!

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Let’s share a cup of coffee and dream together, I’d love to hear your heart!

xoxo

K