Avant Garden

So... yesterday was my best friend's birthday. She is one of the greatest human beings that I have eve known. Always beautiful, supportive, and genuinely happy for other people—she finds the simple things in life (tents, pizza, and friends) the most meaningful. How do you throw a birthday party for someone like that? Oh... you build a tent, make oversized, giant paper flowers (see above), order pizza, and have a gypsy get together. I am calling it Avant Garden.

This is our initial setup. Danny and I began at about 5:30, and we put up the rope, the tent, the carpet, the tables, the decor, etc. I made the tent the day prior by combining 4 queen size sheets (all different designs and fabrics) into a giant square. Then, we hung the sheets from the rope that was tied in between two trees (with some serious help from Danny), and the camp was ready (almost.. two hours later)!!! For the floor (because nobody likes sitting on the wet, itchy grass), we layed down four of my favorite blankets (my grandma made them). This is Danny just as we finished Phase 1.

These are some inside shots of the tent. You can see that the tables are made from normal tabletops (thank you Elyse) and some cinderblocks. After we set those up on top of the blankets, we arranged flowers in several mason jars, lit candles in our votives, and waited for the sun to set.

These are some exterior shots. The party was held at Reservoir Park, just near where we live. The paper flowers were inspired by my friend Caitlin Watson, who just got married, and whose sister, Brittany, made AMAZING paper flowers for the reception. I could not resist trying a few of these myself for Sierra, because I knew she would just die when she saw them. A real life fairytale. So I attempted to create some. What do you think? I think they turned out preeeeeeetty well!

The guests finally arrived!! We set up coolers (filled with mormon and non-mormon beverages- thanks Todd), and waited for Sierra's arrival. If anyone would like a date with Todd, I can also be contacted for matchmaking services. The next photo is one of my favorite, with the paper flower and the tent at twilight. And finally, we have the birthday girl herself, in her cute freaking tent.

I am obsessed with my husband. Thanks for helping me with everything, Danny. And look how hot he looks in his brand new glasses (Glasses.com just came out with this sweet app that some designers at my work collaborated on, so if you get a chance, check it out. Also my sister-in-law works there and she's the best), which only took TWO DAYS to get here in the mail. Modern technology, my friends. Then we have more paper flowers, Sierra looking at pictures of herself, and my personal favorite, the donut birthday cake. Everyone likes a good Banbury doughnut.

Huge shoutout to Taylor Hoyt, who entertained Sierra all day, and even managed to help us set up and get all of the food. Taylor, you are a man among men. Also, Taylor is single, so if you need any matchmaking there, I can do it! Of course, we had the Pie for dinner. Only the finest catering for our girl. We had about a million different kinds of pizza, which we demolished in a scary way. These next 5 that show everyone eating dinner together in the tent are my favorite shots from the night. It just looks so cool, with the sunset and the candles and the tent and the trees and the rug—i die. This is what it's all about. A good time was had by all.

OKAY I LIED. THESE ARE MY FAVORITES. The first is Sierra as she arrived (which i love), but the series of 4 when we lit the donut cake is the bestBeStBEST. Not only is it really fun to look at, but the memory is great. I bought what I thought were normal candles from Smiths to put in the donuts, but i accidentally bought trick candles (which turned out to be great so i could take so many pictures). This resulted in a lot of laughter and confusion as to why the heck Sierra could not blow out the candles. And, of course, I always love the shots of people on their phones :)

Just some normal guest shots. The first one is logan, who was my very first friend in college ever. I am so glad he and Sierra are now friends. That picture encapsulates Logan's personality completely, and anyone that knows him will agree. Then we have Chris (he did our wedding video) and Kent, who I just love (even with those faces...), and Sierra model posing while those two photobomb her. And of course, D + K.

I just had to have one with the creators!!! I couldn't have done it without Danny, and it turned out so cute!!!! Thanks to everyone who came out and helped, you are all amazing. And here's a group shot (again, thanks to kent and chris for their faces). Lastly, to my baby girl Sierra, you're the baddest bitch I know. xoxo.


  1. oooooookay this seriously looks amazing. i'm envious of everything. the tents, flowers, candles, pizza..

  2. i love it all! these photos are my treasures.

  3. ps i could not love that photo of Lo more. that happy little fish!