DV.

This song has been buzzing in my ears this week. I like little ditties that make you stop and feel something.

Something else I’ve been enjoying this week:

Diana Vreeland’s book: Memos.

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It’s no secret how deep my girl crush goes for this woman. Not so much for her contribution to fashion (which is significant and undeniable), but for her energy for revolution. To change what was before with such a force that the world followed after.

[If you haven’t found yourself in acquaintance with who DV was, watch ‘The Eye Has To Travel’ on Netflix.]

Diana had this unique relationship with the human language that made everything around her fit into a new box. And Memos are just that: memos she sent out to the magazine everyday. And what would normally be a strictly informative note everyday was this quirky (sometimes even slightly poetic) insight into her creative process. She has inspired me to see every little thing as an invitation to be creative or intentional- and it does make like quite a bit more interesting, no?

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Happy first day of school. And to every one else in the real world, I raise my second cup of coffee.

XO, Ken

It’s been a minute.

Well, it’s been a while. *cue staind song to now be stuck in your head all day*

My absence has been related to: (since I know you all care soo much and all.)

1. Business has been insane. Like… I’m crying from both joy and sleep deprivation kind of insane. You see all those big princess cut halo rings on your facebook feed? Those are my beautiful brides. And they put food on my table with their gorgeous weddings that need to be documented. And let me tell you- prime wedding season had me living life out of my little duffel bag and using the word “Starbucks” as a holy word. And I have been loving every minute of it.

2. Somehow in there I squeezed in moving. We packed our 3 bedroom, 3 bath home in 48 hours. People, I don’t know how it happened. Or how I’m still married. But it happened. And then we moved to our little one room warehouse loft. But more on this later.

3. Oh, and then I got poison sumac on my… face. This produced a selfie I took and sent to a very select few that I trusted wouldn’t sell it to the magazines if I ever decided to run for president. Eyes swollen shut. Lips blistered. And I wish I could prove to you that I’m not over exaggerating- but I’m not that brave. And you don’t want to have nightmares of the Quisimido I looked like. The doctor gave me medicine and put me on complete house arrest for 5 days. And I went a little coo coo and started talking to my plants as I watered them.

How did I get poison sumac on your face, you might ask? Oh, you know. I saw this pretty little green berried plant I thought would be just perfect for a shoot.

If the devil himself had a physical form- it would be the picture below. (The plant, not my hubby.)

View More: http://cottonwoodroadphotography.pass.us/kendallandclint

P.S. Shout out to Cottonwood Road Photography for taking our anniversary pictures!

P.P.S. Book us for your wedding. I’ll film. She’ll photograph. Or we’ll both photograph. And we’ll throw in a free choreographed dance if the reception gets a little stale. We haven’t learned the dance just quite yet- but we will if this is something you and your future hubby/wife agree on.

4. Oh, and I spent about 3 and a half weeks in South Africa playing on a beach with penguins and learning how to surf after my husband sailed across the world for 9 weeks for work. I’ll post about this later as well. Jeez, we have a lot to catch up on. Pull up a chair.

5. Free People. Oh, that beautiful, inspiring brand that has been letting me run free with my camera. You know how when you were a little girl, you would dress up and put all your friends in your clothes and take pictures with those disposable cameras? (Was this just me??) Well- this is the adult version, where I get to style up outfits of whatever is trending in the fashion world and photograph pretty women wearing it. And I got to “suggest” we have the shoot in the “woods” across from my apartment this morning so I could walk to work. 🙂 But really, I am so crazy blessed to work for a company that allows such creative freedom that I can totally pull out some crazy idea and run with it (and sometimes it looks completely ridiculous- but they somehow still trust me). And I can’t get enough of it.

6. And a whole lot of back and forth with a long distance marriage. So- pretty much 2 weeks of editing until I see the sun rise while he’s gone (+totally considering popcorn a meal) (or getting the irrational, but totally wonderful grocery items that he eye rolls at: organic produce and individual waters) and then two weeks of dragging him around Texas for shoots and binge watching Scandal.

So, here I am, breaking the seal- and writing something down so that I can actually get back on this blog I love so dearly. Plus, far less people are brave enough to get married in the heat of July or August, so work life has finally (and temporarily) slowed down. And thank you [no, really. THANK. YOU.] for those of you who have recently pushed me to get back on here. Sometimes I wonder if putting my words out in the world even matter- or if I’m just jabbering on to myself. So I appreciate those of you who have encouraged me to start again- and that creating just for the pure enjoyment of creating is something worth sharing.

 

XO,

Ken

 

when I can’t sleep

I am a night owl. I do my best thinking, writing (and sometimes self destructing) in the night. Tonight I decided to journal and put together a few of the pictures I’ve been virtually collecting of what’s been inspiring me lately: flowers.

I tried my hand in floral arrangements lately with a few styled shoots/weddings and I am hooked. Line. Sinker.

Sometimes I don’t understand how nature has the capacity to be so awe inspiring.

 

 

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XO, K.

rad menswear shop + interview with store owner// MAVEN

Last week, I was in the 214 at a creative conference called Circles. It was one of the most inspiring few days of my life- but post to come soon about that.

This week, I’m in Lafayette, Louisiana and had the opportunity to photograph and interview some pretty awesome store owners/designers. So, if you’re ever in the neighborhood, here’s one of the shops to stop in.

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Definition: (as described on their business card)// Someone in the know about all things fashion; Someone that people look up to for their fashion sense and expertise; (a person who has special knowledge or experience in life; an expert at “winning”; the guy that gets the girl at the end of a movie, never taps out, and always knows when to hold’em and fold’em.)

This vintage inspired menswear store was one of the coolest (in every sense of the word) shops I’ve been in lately. To be honest with you, I was quite surprised to find so many gems tucked away in Lafayette, but the store owners informed me that this city is up and coming in the creative scene.

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Daniel co-owns the store (as well as the new installation of the women’s version across the street) with his wife, Christina. He was gracious enough to answer a few of my questions and let me photograph his wonderfully worn and inviting shop, even getting a chair for me to get some better shots of the decorations that were high up (#fixedlensproblems).

If I were a man, this would be my store. With everything from wooden bow ties to vintage guitars- it’s a candy land for men who appreciate quirk, nostalgia and culture of the visual.

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“We’re one of the only stores… really the only one I know of… that sells menswear alongside vintage musical equipment” Daniel offers, “and we’re the only store that can sell American Apparel clothing by itself. Other retailers have can sell it with a screen print or design, but we’re the only ones that can sell them like they are straight out of the store.”

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Walking around, I kept finding more and more details that I loved, the interior begging me to move in. The sentimental touches really inspired me from the selling of local music to having a personal connection to the brands that hand craft their jewelry.

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“There really wasn’t a market for this type of store, so we decided to create it”, Daniel tells me as he explains that they opened their doors about 2 years ago, and then recently opened their women’s store after the success they found.

I love all of this, not just as someone who designs stores, but also as a lover of stories. I love seeing the heart and passion behind shop owners and hearing how a dream came to life. It doesn’t hurt that the dream they had was beautiful enough to photograph either.

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A big thank you to Maven for talking with me and letting me borrow some of your inspiration behind my lens. For those of you who can’t make the trek to LA, you can check out their online selection of goods here.

xoxo, k.

hanna(h)’s closet.

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Hannah of Cottonwood Road and I have teamed up together to bring you Hanna(h)’s Closet! Where Hannah and myself (Mrs.Hanna), will be taking one piece of clothing we both own (and love) and styling it our separate ways.

H- Fall is (hopefully) around the corner here in Texas and I am dying to start wearing scarves and sweaters again. This season I will be living in my boyfriend jeans. Perfectly slouchy and comfortable yet can be super chic paired with the right combination.

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I have been inspired by one of my favorite bloggers and style experts Beth Jones of BJones Style for today’s outfit.  I love that BJones calls them her “grandpa” jeans, might have to adopt that one. If only I knew how to do my hair like that… hanna(h)scloset1

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o u t f i t

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Mossimo Black & Tan Wedges

Celebrity Pink Boyfriend Jeans (similar)

Old Navy White Button Up (2009 – SO old)

Lost In Art, Texas Autumn Ikat Infinity Scarf

Kendall’s Inspiration

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I have been really digging the trend of mixing masculine pieces with feminine flare. As a tom boy at heart, I love anything oversized and rough around the edges. Boyfriend jeans are my go-to to make a polished look feel a bit more casual without losing it’s personality. – K

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o u t f i t

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BCBG Heels

Free People Boyfriend Jeans

Urban Outfitters Striped Top

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Tell us what you think! Taking suggestions for the next style post!

Happy Friday!

XO, K.

published shoot!

I told you that Cottonwood Road and I are doing alot of work together. I am so excited to share a few snap shots from a collaborative shoot we did. WHICH WAS JUST PUBLISHED ON THE LOVELY FIND! Whoo! Check it out here. I think they turned out so very lovely.

Stats:

Photos: Cottonwood Road Photography

Styled by: Kendall Hanna

Dress: Free People (you can find it here)

Clint’s Pants/Shirt: JCrew

Flowers: Bouquet and Flower Crown both made by me- DIY tutorial coming soon

Location: Houston, Texas

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Continue reading

introducing WCW// shop owner + kendallhannaphotography

I have been extremely excited about some recent projects I’ve been working on- including partnering up with other creatives to produce some things I’m pretty smitten over.

Recently, I have had the absolute pleasure of working with Hannah from Cottonwood Road on some styled photo shoots. It has been so fun to team up with another woman who has a similar creative dream and have the freedom to make our visions for business and art a working reality. So, she was a natural candidate for a new bi-weekly segment that I am starting called “Woman Crush Wednesday”, where I will be interviewing women from all walks of life that have a skill, advice or passion that inspires me. And I believe their words are worth passing on. I am hoping to help women (and men!) find advice and inspiration from other women and promote the vital need for us to be a gender that encourages each other (and not to be jealous or backstabbing of other women’s accomplishments). These women will be everything from entrepreneurs to public speakers to the makers of the most delicious pies who are ready to share their sugary secrets. May you find the strength to follow your dreams from these warriors.

Hannah Hagaman | Shop Owner | Photographer | Creative Partner

Photography by yours truly. 


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K: What was the inspiration for the name of your blog?

H: The house my hubby and I live in was once Preston’s grandparents home.  They built the house on a beautiful piece of land when there weren’t many other homes yet in the area. The street was originally named Cottonwood Road. I’m not sure why I fell in love with it when I heard the name but I knew I had to use it. It reminds me of old times, beautiful trees, dirt roads, and new beginnings.

K: So I know that you sell handmade goods on an etsy shop. Mind telling me a little about it, and what led you to start it?

H: In June of 2012, American Flag shorts were all the rage, so I decided to make myself a pair. My sister actually loved them and insisted that I make her some and suggested that I sell them. At that, I just jumped in! I made and sold over a dozen pair in only two weeks. It was hard work and I learned a lot that summer but it created in me a new desire for making things with my hands and selling to folks who loved my work.

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K: What advice would you give to people trying to sell their own handmade products?

H: To those trying to sell handmade things: QUALITY. That’s the one word I will leave you with. Do things the right way, with integrity and make a fantastic product. Make it well, don’t skimp on materials or time making it. Make sure you price it according to the work you’ve put in too. If what you make has great quality, it will be worth every penny.

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K: So, you’re not the only Hagaman that loves making things with their hands. Tell me a bit about your hubby, Preston’s, hobby/business in woodworking and how he started in that. 

H: My sweet hubby has a new found love for building things. Right now it is just a hobby, though he has a few things featured on my etsy shop.  He’s made me some wonderful things for our home! What started this love was my asking him to build me a wooden canvas made of pallet boards for me to paint Texas flags on. From that time forward, he is always thinking of new things to build, for himself, for me or for our home.  He’s made me a kitchen island, benches to create a breakfast nook, a bath caddy and a huge outdoor party table complete with ice buckets for drinks. He’s extremely talented.

K: Okay, you know my love affair with reading, so I must ask: what are your favorite books?

H: My favorite books. That’s a tough one. I used to be an avid reader and now I rarely have a book in my hand. Someone get me hooked again, give me a great book to read! No judging allowed, but my favorite book series will always be the Harry Potter series. Adventure, fantasy, drama and magic. Another one of my favorite books is Redeeming Love. Everyone needs to read this book. The perfect love story.

K: I will always shamelessly love Harry Potter. Outside of your growing business, what are your hobbies?

H: I really enjoy photography. Though this is slowly becoming my job, it will always be a hobby as well and I rarely am seen without my camera. I love being behind a camera, capturing the world around me and the people I encounter. It truly brings me a sense of joy like nothing else. It allows me to see God’s creation in new light!

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K: What was the last project you worked on, or currently have your hands dirty with?

H: Thanks to you, my sweet friend, I now have the new A Beautiful Mess book and I am looking forward to diving in and experimenting with photography in new ways.  I am also looking forward to collaborating with Kensfolk to give young women new style ideas and hopefully a sense of confidence that goes beyond what they wear.  As for my etsy shop, well, it’s almost fall here in Texas and I am hoping to get two new lines of gorgeous linen scarves out there soon!

K: I actually own one of the scarves you made for last fall/winter and always get compliments on it. As for you, how would you describe your personal style?

H: My personal style is an eclectic mess.  I honestly wear what fits my body type well and the way I’m feeling that day. If I’m feeling carefree I’ll grab my floral skirt and silk top for a boho look. If I’m feeling up for casual dressy, I’ll immediately grab my dark skinnies and a blazer. My go to clothing item might be my little black romper for days when I just don’t have a clue what to wear. I have a lot of vintage and many garage sale treasures and I rarely go out and buy clothes from a store. Because of this I have a wide variety of styles and staples to choose from and get to experiment with style every day.

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hannahshoot-0445K: What have been your favorite pieces of advice or inspirational quotes you’ve loved?

H: “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life” – Pablo Picasso

“Embrace the current season of your life” – Gabrielle Blair

“All I need today is a little bit of coffee and a whole lot of Jesus” – UNKNOWN (this is one for every single day)

I also really love words. I love finding new words, I’ve never heard before and finding their meaning.  There are some really beautiful words out there.

My favorites today are: “meraki (v.) to do something with soul, creativity or love; to put something of yourself into your work” and “redamancy (n.) the act of loving the one who loves you; a love returned in full.”

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K: What is your dream job?

H: I would love to be a full time photographer.

K: What do you find to be the most challenging part of being an artist? Blogger?

For me, the answer to this question is a lack of confidence. There are many times when I simply don’t have confidence in myself or in my work and this tends to lead to less work rather than trying harder.  Sometimes all it takes is one person’s kind words about my work and other times I have to suck it up, fake confidence, and continue practicing and putting myself out there by myself.  The only way that I will ever improve and do things with excellence is by doing what I love a little bit every day.  Thankfully I have an awesome hubby who supports me and encourages me daily!

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K: What/where do you go to find inspiration for your work?

H: Thanks to Pinterest, inspiration is pretty easy to come by. Reading and viewing fellow photographer’s/blogger’s work is also extremely helpful and gets my creative juices flowing. But sometimes, I just get so sick of looking at a computer screen and that’s when I go on adventures.  I like road trips and taking long walks in the woods. Even simple, gorgeous morning light and the smell of good coffee is enough to inspire me for the day.  Seeing God’s beautiful creation, especially at the golden hour entices me and excites me.

K: What’s your advice to new aspiring photographers?

H: I still see myself as a new aspiring photographer, so this advice is for myself as well.  Take photos every day. Try out every kind of photography (couples, seniors, landscapes, food, etc) before choosing what direction you’d like to take.  Try new things and see what works for you. Make yourself get up early and take photos at sunrise, then test your knowledge of your camera and try to shoot at night with a single lamp or even the moon as your light source.  Remember that it takes time, don’t get frustrated with yourself because you’re not Richard Avedon overnight. The more you shoot, the more you will learn and the better you will be.

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K: Favorite blogs?

H: Chalk White Arrow, Kensfolk (duh), Local Milk, The Wiegands, The Daylee Journal, The Day Book , Kelli Murray, Treasures and Travels

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K: Thank you! If you could conquer any talent you don’t already have, what would it be? (ex: being a surfer, able to cook really well, be a marathon runner, etc.)

H: Oh goodness, there are lots of talents I wish I had, but almost my whole family has some kind of musical talented, except me. I can carry a tune, but my sister has the pipes (aka she’s moving to New York to pursue a career on Broadway). I think I’d like to be able to play the guitar and sing. (cliché? Maybe.)

K: Learning how to play the guitar has been on my bucket list for over 10 years, so I relate.

What is your advice for newly married couples from your own experience?

H: Yea marriage!! Oh my, I have lots of advice. I’ll try to stick to just a few things.

1) Learn how to resolve conflict well. Figure out what your conflict language is and conquer that sucker. Timing is everything. Don’t argue if you’re hungry, angry, lonely (or lost, in my case), or tired (HALT).

2) Be in community.  Have other young married friends to live life with. Not just for the bbq on Saturday but really being in each other’s lives. Digging in, getting your hands dirty, asking the really tough questions and allowing accountability in your life.

3) Last one, GO ON DATES! Make one night a week date night and go have a sit down dinner and some kind of fun. Talk, laugh, cry, whatever but just make spending time one on one a priority. My hubby and I, once a month, challenge each other with our dates. We give the other person a word, color, phrase, numbers, anything and they have to come up with a date night surrounding the topic. See HERE on my blog for ideas!!

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K: Thank you so much for taking the time to interview with me! Is there anything else you would like to add or say about yourself?

H: I have a slight addiction to coffee and popcorn. I love me some Jesus and get excited His creation and His people. I have a passion for light. Not just the light from a gorgeous sunrise that touches the earth in the morning or the soft, dreamy light that comes only after a heavy rain but a light that is within people. The kind of light that brings smiles to faces and joy to the bones.

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How great is she?! A huge thank you to you, Hannah, so spending the time to interview with me and for picking me to photograph some head shots for your blog! You are truly beautifully stunning, inside and out.

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Check out Hannah’s photography blog HERE tomorrow for the unveiling of the bohemian bridal styled shoot that we collaborated on!

XOXO, K.