Jennifer Ashford of Altar Ego Weddings contacted me about collaborating in a unique styled shoot at the fabulous new D6 Retreat , owned by the dynamic Tara Donahue. I love the rustic casual elegance of D6 Retreat, with its cozy cabins, inviting pool, & open air wedding chapel overlooking miles of sunset views of the Texas Hill Country in Dripping Springs, TX—incidentally, the destination wedding capital of Texas!
Check out the chapel!
I loved the vision that Jennifer & Tara had for the shoot, but when Jennifer told me that she wondered if we could have several cakes hanging in the air, I was all-in! I had been fascinated by the chandelier cake trend anyway, & I had seen many cakes suspended on swings made of anything from plywood to ornate mirrors. This needed to be rustic chic, so I chose to create a chandelier cake flanked by both a round & a square swing painted white & using delicate gold chains to hang them. (Yes, I made the swings myself. I used to own a landscaping company, was in real estate for years, & also was a marketing partner in a construction company. So I know just enough about construction to be dangerous! Haha!)
Jennifer wanted the cakes to have a focus on gold metallic, & since we were going to be using amazing fresh florals from Kelli at Sweetwater Stems, I kept the cakes simple. I hung them in the breezy arbor, between the chapel & the cabins.
The chandelier cake was the most ornate, using one of my favorite techniques, metallic gold cake lace, & placing each tier on a deconstructed cake stand to really give that chandelier effect with dangling crystals.
The round cake featured a hammered metallic gold top tier & a vertical ruffle bottom tier that allowed peeks of metallic gold from between the ruffles, accented with gold dragees. And how AMAZING is the idea of using colorful fall cabbages as part of the florals?
For the square cake, I hand-painted gold metallic dripping down each tier, a simple & dramatic technique that really showcases the spectacular florals. I especially loved the vibrant purple delphiniums, so we surrounded the entire cake in a bed of them.
The vignette of the 3 cakes suspended in the beautiful arbor, with the dramatic Texas Hill Country views as the backdrop, was simply breathtaking. For the bride looking for a unique reception focal point that will leave guests marveling for years to come, suspending the wedding cake is a daringly ROCKING idea!
As obsessed as I am with cakes, they were certainly not the only killer aspect of this shoot! The florals blew me away. Having been a garden designer in a past life, seeing Kelli use ornamental grasses, callicarpa (beauty berry), celosia, & of course the gorgeous cabbages, just made my garden-loving heart sing! LOOK at this arrangement! ***swoon***
The unsinkable Molli Standridge of 10th Collection brought the scene to life with her incredible selection of tables, chairs, place settings, rugs, & other items that truly personalize a wedding. Melange Bridal dressed our bride in a one of a kind gown perfectly suited to the theme of the shoot. And finally, the talented Jessica Frey of Jessica Frey Photography exquisitely captured the details of the shoot & majesty of the surrounding landscape.
EVERYONE pitches in to set up a shoot like this! Jessica sneaked a candid shot of Tara & me helping to set up the beautiful bride’s table on the hillside below the chapel & overlooking the valley. We had so much fun!
Please visit the pages of the vendors in this article! If you’re needing excellent professional people to make YOUR event incredibly special, these people ROCK!!!