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An Anthropologie Inspired Home in Chickasaw Gardens | Lifestyle | Destination Wedding Photographer

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Lifestyle. This word has many meanings, but in the photography world, lifestyle is a type of photography. For example, Lifestyle family photography is a style that documents candid, unposed moments. These sort of sessions can also be quite “styled” as well! They can happen outdoors or indoors, however, I personally love shooting lifestyle family sessions in a family’s home.

Lifestyle photography is also capturing still images and details that speak of “style” and “design”. I absolutely love creating with lifestyle photography. I love the fine details that tell a deeper story and all those images put together tell one lovely story. My sweet friend AK (Anna Katherine), lives in one of the most beautiful and oldest neighborhoods in Memphis — about 10 minutes from me. Her home is stunning, full of old character and personality. She has gorgeous taste and has decorated her home in the most lovely way. She gave me a tour of her home this past week and I was in awe. Her style along with the style and character of the home go compliment each other perfectly. I felt like I had stepped into an Anthropologie magazine. AK has beautiful plants in every corner of her home, which is no surprise, since she has her own floral and event business. Photographing her home was so good for my heart and creativity — and so is her friendship in my life. <3

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Meet Kelly - Southern Bloom - Floral Design, Wedding Coordination and Event Planner | Vendor Highlight Mini Blog Series | Tennessee and Pennsylvania Wedding Photographer

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I am so excited to introduce you to this next vendor as part of my Vendor Highlight mini blog series! This little project I’ve started has given me the fun opportunity of getting to meet one on one with each of these vendors. There’s a handful of these incredibly creative and awesome vendors I have followed on social media for a long time, but never had the pleasure of meeting in person until now! I really enjoy meeting and getting to know friends over coffee or a drink, learning more about them, their business and what inspires them!

This week I met up with Kelly of Southern Bloom! Kelly and I have had some of the same brides - I’m obsessed with her work - so it was fun to finally meet her, chat about her business, life as women entrepreneurs, owning small businesses, the wedding world and styled shoot dreams. We have very similar style taste and both have a desire to dive more into the Fine Art Wedding world.

Mary Kate: Tell me about your business. What do you love most about your business?

Kelly: “I would describe Southern Bloom as southern, elegant with some edgy. Southern Bloom has been around for five years, I’ve been full-time for three. Growing up I have always loved flowers and entertaining. My Grandma loved flowers, too! About five years ago, one of my friend’s was getting married. Knowing that I love flowers, planning etc, my friend asked if I’d like to help with the reception table centerpieces and decor. This was my first gig and was excited she asked! Long story short, my friend had hired a florist to design the bouquets and boutonnières. She ended up not liking them at all and asked if I was willing to take them and create new ones. So I helped create new florals for her wedding - one her wedding day, and the rest is history! Southern Bloom was created and through word of mouth, mostly, I booked more and more weddings. My business grew very organically.

I absolutely love weddings - have loved them since I was a child - and I love details. I also love to help people! I love that having my own business gives me the freedom to make creative decisions, put creative things out in the world and make someone’s day! Another thing I love to do is volunteer in the city. Having my own business allows me to give my time doing that. I volunteer at the Make A Wish Foundation! I am a Wish Granter and also serve on the Associates Board. It is so rewarding and has helped me network and connect with people!


Mary Kate: What inspires you? What inspired you to start Southern Bloom?

Kelly: “Colors, patterns, and textures inspire me! Bouquets are my favorite thing to make! My bouquets have a lot of texture and color! I love to help people and I saw a need and ran with it. I love bringing prettiness into the world and a bride’s wedding day vision to life!


Mary Kate: What are some goals you have for Southern Bloom - this year or in the future?

Kelly: “I am in the beginning stages or rebranding. Southern Bloom is floral design, wedding coordination and event planning. I want to bring those things together and have a cohesive look! Another goal I have is to offer my clients a product! I’m not sure what that is or what that will look like, but I am excited to see where that goes!


Mary Kate: What tips do you have for future and current brides?

Kelly: “1. I really encourage brides to be more open minded to including more colors to their wedding color palette. I think brides fear adding too many colors, but I really encourage them think about expanding their palettes. Colors really add to wedding design and as you know, photos. So tip number one, don’t be scared to explore more colors!

2. This is a big one, but hire vendors you trust. When you trust your vendors and give them the reins, you can truly enjoy your day!

3. I encourage brides to be realistic about their day. Truth is, hiccups happen. That’s where hiring good vendors is important. When a hiccup happens, you can trust that your vendors will do whatever they can to help fix whatever the hiccup is! Also, bonus tip: don’t sweat the small stuff and have fun!”

I hope you all enjoyed getting to know about Kelly and her small business, Southern Bloom! Thank you 17 Berkshire for letting us shoot in your beautiful store front! Kelly, thank you so much for meeting up with me! I’m so glad we finally got to hang out and get to know one another!

xoxo, MK

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Kelsey & Evan | Engagement

It is really amazing how social media allows us to connect with people all over the world. Kelsey reached out to me through Instagram when she randomly found my work! It didn't take long for me to realize Kelsey was going to be a dream client, a bride that I would adore working with. Not only does she have the sweetest, dearest heart, but she was so complimentary of my work and knew right away she wanted me there on her wedding day capturing all the precious moments. 

It truly means the world to a creative, artist, photographer and any other vendor when a client hands you the keys to their vision and dream for their wedding day and says, "Run with it; we trust you!". 

Kelsey and Evan are from Pittsburg, PA and will have their wedding in the gorgeous Excelsior venue in Lancaster, PA! When we initially started talking about their engagement session, we knew we wanted to shoot somewhere grand. I threw out the idea of shooting at Longwood Gardens (secretly hoping they would be up for it!). Not only did they quickly reply back saying "Yes, we love it!", but they drove all the way from Pittsburgh to Philly so we could shoot at Longwood Gardens. 

Kelsey & Evan were an absolute joy and dream to work with. The sweet love they have for each other is contagious and so precious. They are the happiest couple ever and it overflows from their hearts. While they danced during their session, I kept thinking about that sweet song in the Disney movie "Cinderella". 

Mmm...
So this is love, mmm...
So this is love
So this is what makes life divine

I'm all aglow, mmm...
And now I know
The key to all heaven is mine

My heart has wings, mmm...
And I can fly
I'll touch every star in the sky

So this is the miracle
That I've been dreaming of
Mmm...
So, this is love

 

xoxo, 

Mary Kate

Vendors: 

Venue - Longwood Gardens, Hair & Makeup - Unfading Beauty by Kristen, Photographer - Mary Kate Steele Photography