I'm not the best at keeping secrets {if you follow along on my Instagram, this you already know ... #sneakpeek} but thankfully I don't have to keep this one any longer. Thrilled to be part of the #MEETOURMAKERS series from one of my truly favorite brands, FRYE.

FRYE MeetOurMakers

I got the chance to share my studio and some of our designs in a series of photos + a video for the campaign that celebrates designers, makers, artisans and their craft. I love a good behind-the-scenes look and meeting some of the other Atlanta makers and entrepreneurs that took part in the series was truly the best. Take a look over on The Love List for the full story, and over on the FRYE Instagram to see our maker video.


Now, I'm no stranger to boots, being from the South. But THESE boots have been a part of my style staples for as long as I can remember. Some well-worn, others with a little more shine, if you meet with me chances are I'm either sporting boots, a hat or an apron. And that's just what I love most about them - they can effortlessly take me from carpool to meetings to the studio or warehouse and back to chasing my three littles. I can pull them out year after year and they never go out of style. It's a collection I keep adding to, and now with my post-kiddo commitment to a new capsule collection AND the new FRYE store at Ponce City Market one I'll certainly be updating even more frequently.

Thought I'd share a few of my favorite FRYES. In my closet currently on go-to rotation ... Harness 12RPaige Tall RidingBilly Pull On.  I've included a few I have my eye on for Fall as well.

Hope you'll pop over to FRYE's Instagram and check out some of what Atlanta had to share.

Big thanks to this super group for including me in this truly special opportunity ... Cool Curator: Jess Graves @ The Love List / Writer: Laura Scholz / Photographer: Caroline Fontenot / Videographer: Ben Brinker

{Thanks to Caroline for capturing a little behind the scenes that day. These boots chase my littles around the studio daily so this is a pretty accurate look!}

{Thanks to Caroline for capturing a little behind the scenes that day. These boots chase my littles around the studio daily so this is a pretty accurate look!}

Why I Embrace Messy Styling

Because my work is a simple reflection of how I live my life, my self-professed "messy styling" approach is the only way I'd have it.

As a mom of (now) three little ones three and under, a small business owner and serial entrepreneur, a wife and all the other duties that come along with - time is certainly a luxury and one I don't take lightly.

After my last photoshoot, which had a lot more food styling duties than I am typically used to integrating, I truly realized just how messy I need to be to get the kind of shots I want. After a lot of research Pinning and a new "Well Styled" Board, making my shot lists, gathering props and my grocery list and some great advice from my longtime photographer friend Heidi, I am totally digging everything about the messiest shoot to date.

cheese board gathering

To me, messy styling means the photograph has movement and depth. It leaves you not with a stark feeling of emptiness, but feels social, lived in and totally alive.

Here are a few tips & tricks to messy styling:

Plan! Set the Scene Beforehand

Envisioning what you have in mind for the photoshoot ahead and time will help you ensure you have everything you need to pull off a messy shoot. For example, while we were shooting our feast boards, I realized that I really wanted this to feel like we had hosted a fabulous, casual gathering of friends and I needed some hands in the scene to give it a little life. Hands to pour wine, dip a cracker and feel like we were truly sitting around the table. These hands were the missing element that truly brought this shot to life.

Over Prep on Props

Just when you think you have gathered everything you'll need for your photoshoot, keep adding more. Doing a quick prep set up before your shoot or sketching out composition of a shot or two will help you to see how you're filling your space and what holes you may have. Make sure you have a happy balance of shapes, textures & tones to balance out while still allowing the main thing in your shot to shine. But, if there is something you think you may need, be sure to pack it just in case.

Then again, you never know what little accent will add the finishing touch to your shot. Here, it was a few things that really helped make this shot feel authentic. A bite out of a cherry, a wine stain on the cloth, giving the honeycomb a little time to sit and ooze, and a few scattered wine corks all helped to bring the party to life.

messy styling

Keep it Casual

Because by my definition, "messy" doesn't mean it looks like chaos, it means you have purposely planned it so you can keep things causal, not pay attention to every detail (the devil IS in the details for this girl) but still totally pulled together at the same time.

In interiors and personal style, I tend to use neutrals to accomplish this look. It's easier for me to grab from a wardrobe of blacks, whites, camels & nudes because they all pair together simply and quickly for any occasion with no competing prints, patterns & colors to coordinate. And, even when our house looks like a tornado just went through, picking up is easy because I've scattered large baskets around to dump blankets, toys, bows and pacifiers into at a moments notice.

A messy styling trick I love to use is two-fold. One, having a large amount of one thing to make a statement. For example, the crackers. We just got a huge package of these beauties and kept piling them up and up, spilling over and falling around until a little pile had formed in and out of the bowl that was meant to contain them, making a solid statement in the photo. It gives texture, perspective, makes you feel like there was ample food to go around and keeps it welcoming, like there are so many you can just dig in and nibble all night long as you chat. I love the message.

pile of crackers


Really Do Make a Mess

Really do make a "mess." Don't feel like you have to work to hard to visually tell the story, just make it beautiful and give it some room to let it happen and be open for interpretation.  Like with the blackberries. These are so rich in color and full in visual texture in the photograph, especially against the wood of the feast boards and the light colored muslin cloth. Having them neatly stacked or contained just didn't make sense, so we piled them on and let them spill everywhere, like someone dug in and left them where they fell. The bottle opener isn't perfectly placed next to a bottle of wine. You get the picture. Someone grabbed it, opened a beverage and set it down and left it - going off to enjoy the party and leaving the next guest to have to hunt for it. Nothing wrong with that, that's authentic and casual and messy but it just makes sense.


I'd love to know some of your favorite messy styling shots, tips & tricks!

Southern at Heart.

It's no secret that Food Network is a go-to staple in our house ...

One of my favorite shows is Southern at Heart, with host Chef Damaris Phillips (also a Food Network Star winner!) and if you've tuned in before you certainly know why. First, you know my Southern roots loves someone like Damaris who cooks authentic Southern recipes with her sweet Southern charm! And second, because she's been a huge supporter of our brand and wearer of our aprons since the very beginning.

damaris phillips aprons

For FOUR seasons, Damaris has worn one of our aprons on nearly every episode of her hit show. I think she's worn through nearly every piece in our collection and I love seeing how she brings them together in the kitchen.

I'm thrilled to share the exciting news that she's currently filming SEASON FIVE, and we are so excited to be a part of her wardrobe once again! Keep your eyes peeled to spot them for yourself, and tune in for some of the best Southern recipes around.

{ Click here to shop some of the aprons that Damaris has worn on past seasons }

damaris apron
damaris phillips aprons

Share Your Family Heirloom.

We're trying out a little spin on #throwbackthursday {or #TBT as the cool kids call it these days} over on our INSTAGRAM account {@heirloomedcollection}.


Share one of your favorite family heirlooms on Instagram and give us a tag + follow today and you'll be entered to win one of our new Society Handkerchiefs! Your heirloom can be anything from a handwritten recipe to jewelry to a photo and beyond - be creative.

Oh, and here's a little look at some of the things we've been 'GRAMMING about lately.