Category Archives: Self Reflection


I’ve been talking about it for weeks and the day is finally here. My beloved BT&B blog is officially transferring over to a new, simple, clean & perfectly SCOUT. blog. After much contemplation and hours and hours of design conversations with my dear friend Amy, I made the decision to start up a new blog (new domain too!

I made the leap for many reasons, but the most pressing reason was that I wanted a place where I could really feel free to blog about ANYTHING I wanted. Because of the name of Bow Tie & Bustle I always felt that everything had to revert back to a “wedding” focus and to be honest it was kinda making my creative energy for blogging go down the gutter. Even in just the past couple days of getting the new blog ready for its launch I felt my “blogging love” come back in full force and I couldn’t wait to wake up each morning to blog, blog, blog! It feels a bit like an end-of-an-era scenerio but I really believe the transition to the new blog is the best decision for me and my business at this time.

Thanks to everyone who has followed me here at BT&B for the past couple of years. I hope you’ll continue to follow my new adventures and inspirations over at SCOUT.. LOTS of Europe travel posts coming in the next couple weeks…don’t miss it!

photo cred : {moi iPhone via instagram}


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Filed under Bow Tie & Bustle, Business, My Life, Personal, Scout Vintage Rental Company, Self Reflection

what a night.

It’s unbelievably amazing to think that a year ago I was sitting on a bench on Pont Louis Philippe in Paris gazing out across the glistening Seine and wondering what my life could be. I wondered if my life could be all the things I wanted it to be: real. honest. full of whimsy and colorful happiness. And despite the grey dreariness that completely engulfed me on that chilly fall day, I still felt a warm, completely comforting goodness that I couldn’t quite put my finger on. It was a goodness I attempted to laso, one I gravitated towards, one which made me feel like there was something bigger out there for me. Something I just needed to believe in. I felt a feeling that made me feel like I could come home and really do something. Something BIG.

Last night that something big came to fruition. My launch party was the biggest thing I have probably ever tackled. Really. After hours and hours of prep, many all nighters, sore knees & ankles, buckets of love and support from my friends and my husband, my dream of owning my own business REALLY came true. Last night I shared my business ventures with my community and it felt all the things I wanted it to feel: real. honest. colorful. and every bit of the whimsy I could have ever imagined.

I can’t thank the team of Trophy Cupcakes and Jennifer Shea enough for their generosity. Allowing my launch party to take place in their gorgeous party room was such a delight. My vintage pieces felt so at home against the cool dark wood floors and stark white walls. I ended the night never wanting to leave their space and wished I could have opened up shop right then and there. It was such a pleasure to work with such an amazing company and I am so grateful for Trophy!

Thank you to everyone that came last night and shared in my joy of a dream come true. Thank you for showing love to my pieces and making them feel important and valued. Thank you to those of you whom I’ve been dying to meet and were generous enough with your time to stop in and say hello – it was such a privelage meeting you! Thank you to my friends (Heather, Kate, McKenzie, Hadley, Emma, Monica, Christa, Maggie, Steve & Jason) for spending many hours helping with prep, set-up and tear down. Thank you to my husband for always being my knight in shining armor and for believing in me – having you be proud of me is my greatest accomplishment. Thank you to my family who despite being far away were there in my corner – I felt your love and presence. And thank you to Paris for being that place that makes me feel like anything is possible.

Here’s to scout. … my newest business baby. I am so proud of what you are, what you’ve become and where you are going. I loved every last bit of last night and I have my charming vintage collection to thank for that.

photo cred: {moi iPhone}


Filed under Antiques, Art, Bow Tie & Bustle, Bow Tie Wednesday, Bride & Groom, Business, Color Obsessed, Decor, Decorating, Design, Details, Local Happenings, Parties, Party, Party Color Palette, Prop Rentals, Prop Styling, Scout Vintage Rental Company, Scout Vintage Rentals, Scout., Seattle Event Design, Seattle Prop Rentals, Seattle Vintage Rentals, Seattle Wedding Coordinator, Seattle Wedding Design, Seattle Wedding Designer, Seattle Wedding Planner, Self Reflection, Tabletop, Vintage, Vintage Finds, Vintage Rentals, Wedding Event, Weddings

when i grow up.

A couple month’s ago I received the most amazing email.

Michelle Ward of When I Grow Up is a career coach for creatives…in other words: she’s this super kind, caring and hilariously funny gal who supports, guides and inspires others to pursue their own creative dreams. My dear friend Maggie referred me to Michelle for her “grown-up gig” series and I was flabbergasted when Michelle said she was interested in featuring my journey.

I feel so crazy honored to be sharing my story on Michelle’s blog today, and was even more excited to see my vintage pieces gettin’ some blogging love. Thanks so much for the feature Michelle!

photo cred: {screen shot via when i grow up}

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Filed under Bow Tie & Bustle, Business, Inspirations, Journey, My Life, Personal, Press, Scout Vintage Rental Company, Scout Vintage Rentals, Scout., Seattle Event Design, Seattle Vintage Rentals, Seattle Wedding Designer, Seattle Wedding Planner, Self Reflection, Vintage Rentals

a year gone by.

I cried when I realized it this morning.

I cried from exhaustion. Joy. Remorse. Excitement. Relief. Complete astonishment.

Today marks a year. 365 days ago today I said goodbye to the only career I had ever known. I spent 6 years in school to become a registered nurse and a year ago today I walked away. The decision has not been an easy one, and there isn’t a day that goes by when I’m not really scared and frightened by that decision. I left stability. Colleagues. Security. A routine. But for a really really long time I knew that nursing, although incredibly rewarding, was just not where I wanted to exist. Was I happy? Kind of. Was I satisfied on more days than not. Sure. Was I comfortable. Pretty much. But was I the real, true me? Absolutely not. And THAT didn’t sit well with me.

On the day I left nursing I honestly had no idea what the future held for me. I knew I needed something different, but I didn’t really know what that might look like. I knew that my creative ambitions were screaming from my insides but translating that into something successful and just as rewarding seemed like the impossible. 2 weeks after I made the decision to not settle until I found that certain something that fed my soul in an honest and truthful way I took a trip. I packed up a crazy large backpack, said goodbye to my husband and puppy dog and left for 7 weeks. At the time the decision felt really selfish, greedy…maybe even wrong. But my intention was simple: find me. Find what really makes me happy. Find out why for so many years I’d felt hopeless, sad and lost. I set out to open my ears and my eyes to all the things my heart had been saying for so long, to really listen. To really see. And this I felt was a selfless decision, because in my gut I knew it would make me a better person not only for myself but for those who loved me.

I slept in. I watched French music videos to the point of verbal and choreographic memorization. I ate an amazing amount of pastries. I stared at art. I walked and walked and walked. I teared up at the beauty that is Europe. I sang. I grocery shopped. I rode trains. I drank yummy wine. I explored. I laughed with friends and family who visited me. I spent money. I wrote a travel blog. I practiced my French. But mostly I took pictures and wrote. I used my camera to open my eyes to all the things that really inspired me. The things that made me feel alive. And I wrote to hear what my own voice had to say.

Writing and photography never were as important as they were during those 7 weeks. I honestly and miraculously found myself while looking through my camera lens and while writing til’ the wee hours of the morning. I had found the answer I’d always been searching for for so long, and although it scared the crap out of me, I came home and pursued that answer. I started my own business and leapt into the craziness of being an entrepreneur. For the first time in my ENTIRE life, I listened to what MY heart was telling me. Not what anyone or anything else was telling me. And today, I celebrate that. I celebrate being me and for the first time really living.

Thank you to everyone who has supported, pushed, and loved me during this past year. Thank you for not calling me crazy to my face, or telling me to run back to a career that seemed a lot more logical. Thank you for loving me enough to wish the very best for me and for my future. Thank you for cheering me on and for hugging me during those moments when I was really scared. Thank you for being proud of me – this life alteration would not have happened without your support. Thanks for celebrating with me today!

P.S. How crazy fitting is it to have Vanessa & Tony’s wedding featured on SMP today to mark the occasion?!?! So proud of where this past year has led me!

P.S.S. If you’re interested in following the travels the helped me find my way start by clicking here.

year gone by photo captions:

september: moonlighting with paper. realizing that i was suffocating without a creative outlet. jb papier was born.

october: my trip to europe began. i snapped pictures of everything i could. big ben was one of my fav shots.

november: being alive in paris.

december: when i really started carving out my new business. took the leap of faith and admitted that i was ready to start a new journey.

january: bow tie & bustle was born. participated in my very first styled shoot. bun in the oven concept.

february: gathered an amazing team of wedding creatives for montmartre shoot i dreamed up while in france.

march: very first big time feature for my lil’ business on green wedding shoes.

april: vanessa & tony’s wedding in cabo san lucas. my first BIG design and first international destination wedding all wrapped in one.

may: drove a farm table from denver to seattle. started thinking about launching a vintage rental company. scout. was officially launched on august 6th.

june: headed to beverly hills to get my learn on at coordinator confab.

july: felt like a full fledged blogger after attending blogshop in the bay area.

august: one of MANY projects in august: ann & jon’s wedding day.

photo cred: {personal pics and mo hines photography}


Filed under Anniversary, Bow Tie & Bustle, Bride & Groom, Business, Cabo Surf Hotel, Cabo Wedding, Decor, Destination Wedding, Journey, Just Because, My Life, My Photography, Personalized, Photography, Prop Styling, Real Wedding, Scout Vintage Rental Company, Scout., Self Reflection, Travel

a tuesday reflection.

I’ve spent the morning reflecting on self care vs. the big “G” word: Guilt. For me the two go hand in hand. On the days when I take a break, set personal boundaries, even go on a run, I usually have this overwhelming sense of guilt – a guilt resulting from the feeling that I’m not fulfilling the need of someone or something else far more important.

Example 1: You may or may not have noticed, but for the first time in 22 weeks there was no Sunday dreaming post on my blog on Sunday. Why? I was quite simply too darn tired to post. And guess what I ended up feeling? Guilty. Yep, I woke up this a.m. feeling absolutely horrible. I had made a commitment to myself and my short list of followers to post on my blog everyday except Saturdays, and for the first time in a long time, I failed. AND instead of being proud of myself for listening to my personal needs and resting, I ended up feeling guilty.

Example 2: After spending the entire month of August pouring my heart, soul and personal energy into my business and the lives of others I felt it imperative to celebrate my husband; the man in my life who often gets little praise or celebration even though he is the backbone of my life. I took him on a whirlwind 30th birthday surprise this weekend to Vegas, while also making a commitment to myself and to Adam, that minus a little instagram play I would avoid my email and social media at all costs. Well, little did I know the biggest cost would be my sanity this week. My inbox is ugly (pressing deadlines, missed party emails, a feeling of being WAYYYY behind), forcing me to run screaming in the other direction and rationalizing another day of vaca. All of this despite a 72 hour period of straight fun was overshadowed by recurring feelings of guilt for not responding to my emails and voicemails while on vacation.

Example 3: On Saturday my husband turned 30. On Saturday I also had a horrific stomach ache – too much fun, too much casino smoke, too many buffet like meals…too much Vegas. Sooooo I ended up leaving the partying early (2 am), heading back to our hotel room to crash and nurse my nagging naseau. Instead of being proud of myself for saying “you know what I’m not feeling well, so I’m gonna leave and allow my hubby to end out the night having fun instead of worrying about me” I left feeling like the worst party pooper of all time AND surprise, surprise! Feeling guilty.

Example 4: My sister is turing 25 tomorrow. She lives in Denver. I live in Seattle. Her birthday card is currently suffocating under the massive pile of papers and miscellaneous things on my desk. Her birthday card and gift will never make it to her by tomorrow. Feeling? You guessed it: Guilt. And LOTS of it.

Example 5: I haven’t worked out in a LOOOONNGG time. Enough said.

Example 6: Dinner should technically be in the works in the next hour or so. Problem? I can’t cook worth a darn and we are out of groceries. Yep…G-U-I-L-T. Guilt that I’m a horrific housewife, and guilt that I didn’t grocery shop today, but instead caught up on work/sleep/Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

Example 7: I woke up this morning to a “less than happy” email from our landlord. Our surrounding neighbors are mad because we park in front of their houses even though there is little street parking and no where else to park. I felt angry/frustrated/annoyed this a.m. when I read the email. Now? Feeling guilty that I haven’t been more considerate. Is it really that big a deal to park around the corner and walk a bit to our house? Probably not.

Example 8: I’ve wanted to change up the look/feel of my blog for a really long time. I haven’t recorded business receipts in my darn quick books for more weeks than I’d like to admit. I still have a pile of thank you cards that need to go out to clients, colleagues, friends etc. Laundry? What in the heck is that? My dog needs her teeth brushed…really bad….guilt. guilt. guilt.

Example 9: I have no idea what is really going on in the lives of my 3 closest friends. The worst kind of guilt.

Example 10 – 3,000: Believe me. The list could go on that long.

I’m beginning to REALLY wonder where all this guilt comes from. Was I born with it? Do I purposely allow it to follow me around in my life like a lost puppy begging for a home? Do I secretly enjoy the feeling (god I hope not!)? Is it because I’m a woman? Is it because I’m an oldest child? Is it because my parents are good people who ingrained good morals and values in me? Is it because I’m a perfectionist? A worry-wart? An entrepreneur? An overachiever? Is it because I’m a wife? Or is it because at the heart of it all I’m a nurse? Or is it just a simple characteristic of being an adult?

Why the heck do I feel so darn guilty all the time!? And how the heck do I solve this problem?!?!?

For those of you who read this entire post to the dreadful end…thank you. To those of you who struggle with this feeling as much as I do, I feel your pain. For those of you who have the answer to the big “G” word, WHAT IN THE HECK ARE YOU WAITING FOR? S-H-A-R-E!

In all honesty, I’m beginning to realize that my guilt is distracting me from enjoying life to its fullest. I used to laugh a whole heck of a lot more, taking things a lot less seriously…I got best sense of humor in high school for crying out loud!!! Now my face is overrun by worry lines and constant assessment and scruitinization of every action I make. Good grief….it’s exhausting!!! Who the heck cares if we have pizza 3 nights in a row (Adam enjoys this anyways!). Who the heck cares if I respond to an email in 36 hours vs. my goal of 24? Who the heck really cares if I choose to sleep in vs. run at the crack of dawn? And who the heck really cares if I wash my hair only twice this week? I’ve gotta set myself free from all this guilt all the time.

As with any problem the first step is acknowleding that you have a problem, right? So here I am acknowledging my issue with guilt. Next step?? Your guess is as good as mine.

photo cred: {UUPP}


Filed under Personal, Self Exploration, Self Reflection

sunday dreaming / 22.

dreaming of…

living in the now.

Something I’ve really been struggling with over the past couple years is living in the present. I’m constantly (in every moment of every day) looking to what comes next…what now. AND it bugs me. A LOT.

I’ve always dreamt of being one of those people that can really breath in the current moment, lock it up in their memory and retrieve it in the future to share or use in times of needed comfort. I, on the other hand, am a person that can remember only the most minuscule things from the most precious times in my life (which is probably why I’m addicted to taking photographs – the memories tend to last longer), and I’m beginning to chock it up to my inability to REALLY be present.

I seem to be able to reign this desire in a bit during my travels, but I want it to become part of my everyday living. My goal this fall is to really live and breath the “here and now.” To put down my iPhone; to stop checking email; to really stop and LISTEN when someone is speaking to me; to open up my senses;  to stop frantically looking for what is to come next; to read a book or flip through a magazine without becoming instantaneously bored; to sllllooooooowwww down. To really just BE.

I had the most amazing dose of what this could be like last night as I warmed my tootsies next to a bonfire my husband made, poked marshmallows in the flames, gazed up at the stars and soaked in the precious moment with my sister and our dear friends Emma & Jason. These are the moments – the “here’s and now’s” that I don’t wish to forget because I was too busy looking for what is to come next.

Dreaming of living in the: HERE AND NOW.

photo cred: {katiedaisy}

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Filed under Self Reflection, Sunday Dreaming

right hand man.

Going into this new adventure of mine I never really contemplated the fact that I’d need an assistant. I’ve always been one of those gal’s that is incredibly challenged in the “delegation” department, and will do everything in my power to do, do, do prior to EVER asking for help. But, what I’ve learned over the past few months is that delegation is an imperative, and necessary part of being an event coordinator and/or designer. And, as much as I would love it, I am admitting here and NOW that NO, I can’t do it all on my own…and yes, this is actually a BIG shocker to me.

Lucky enough for me, and unfortunately not so lucky for him, I have a man in my life that supports me 100 bagillion trillion gazillion percent (yes…I’m aware that that number does not actually exist…but if it did it would describe the love my husband provides me everyday without pause, hesitation, or question). He is my rock. He’s supportive. Selfless. Patient. Comforting. Encouraging. Loving. Never pushy. Rarely lazy (okay that’s the wife talkin’ there). Generous. Kind. Personable. And a million other things that will bore you to pieces. Long story short, without Adam I have no idea where I, OR my business would be.

He’s the guy that woke up with me at 4:45am this morning to drive 2 hours to catch a ferry boat ride to Orcas Island for a wedding I’m coordinating. He’s the guy that helps load a car full of the bride’s gear even when he hasn’t been asked to do so. He’s the guy that will sit on Saturday for 3 hours alone, just in case someone needs something at the reception site while I am away. He’s the one who will calm me, when I’m wild with fear that this just might be the wedding that I screw up, or forget something. He’s the one that lugged my entire inventory for scout., taking a day off of work and renting a U-Haul truck for me so that one of my dreams could come true. He’s the one that will remind me to charge my phone. And drink water. And eat. And all of those crazy important self care activities that my self-care challenged self always forgets. And he is certaintely the one that will smile at me, and tell me I did an amazing job after a 16 hour wedding work day, even when he’s already worked a full week at his own job prior to the wedding madness.

My right hand man, my assistant, my husband-in-tow, my business partner, my hauler/loader/schlepper/trash picker -uper, my best friend, my biggest fan…is simply amazing. And I have no idea what I would do without him.


my right hand man getting some much deserved zzzzzz’s on our way to orcas.

photo cred: {moi iphone}


Filed under Bow Tie & Bustle, Personalized, Scout., Self Reflection, Weddings

mount si and my nifty 50.

Last week, me and the hubs decided to spend the afternoon of the 4th of July hiking Mount Si. I’ll admit it wasn’t a well thought out plan, but rather something that popped into my mind, and immediately sent me babbling into excitement all the while frantically loading a paper bag full of snacks, water and sunscreen.

Despite our bag full of hiking necessities never making it into the car, and that I spent the majority of the descent down the mountain whining about how those cheese-its would have been the perfect addition to the hike, we had a great time!

The one thing that I didn’t forget to pack was my new “nifty 50” lens. Every flower, leaf and fallen tree took immediate surrender to my camera as I merrily snapped away. My need to capture every detail, turned what would have been a relatively short hike, into a VERY lengthly one. Poor Adam was left to ponder if we’d ever actually make it back to Seattle in time for hot dogs and fireworks.

I continually ignored his ginourmous sighs, instead frolicking to and fro, soaking in every last drop of inspiration I could get my eyes on. It’s truly astonishing how many different shades of green actually exist out in nature when you take a moment to acknowledge them…moss, ferns, canopies, leaves, weeds, blooming flowers…the inspiration is never ending!

Oh and of course we couldn’t resist ending our “healthy” hike with some less than healthy bites. Onion rings, a chocolate shake and an ice cream cone from twede’s cafe – yum!

photo cred: {jenn elliott blake}


Filed under Inspirations, My Photography, Self Reflection

friday find: just a spool full of memories.

I grew up with a grandmother who was crafty. And not in a devious, wily kind of way, but in the crazy creative – knock your socks off -“how the heck did you make that?!” kinda way.

I remember spending hours watching her craft the most adorable things from the simplest of supplies. Her tins of buttons, layers of fabric and spools and spools of thread all seemed like the most invaluable treasures any girl could ever wish for.

To this day, I still credit any crafty tendency or creative bone in my body to her.

So, when I found some adorable wooden spools (these in fun shades of red, green, black and khaki) I couldn’t resist buying every last one.

Put simply: wooden spools make me: oh so happy.

Happy friday friends! *JB

photo cred: 1 & 2 {moi iphone}

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Filed under Antiques, Details, Friday Find, Self Reflection

pep talk.

This weekend was one of those weekends when you give yourself the talk. You know the “pep” kind?

The kind that tells your brain…”come on keep at it, it’ll all turn out great!” or “stop being so wishy-washy and just do it” or finally when you’ve resisted to the extreme: “get up off your dairy-air and get er’ done!”

Yeah, one of those talks.

Without these little pep’s, things like: fear, apprehension, resistance, an inability to see what the future could hold and enthralling episodes of Mad Men could easily be the types of things to hold me back from accomplishing some really amazing things.

Well, lucky enough for me this weekend consisted of: personal pep talks, a friend named Emma, YUMMY YUMMY food and this poster. ALL of which led to some serious progress on my latest project. Thank gosh.

Happy Memorial Day ya’ll! Hope you all had a great weekend!

photo cred: 1 {ffffound} kick in the rear end cred goes to: {my friend Emma – thanks Em!}

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Filed under Just Because, Self Reflection

friday find: the $5000 globe.

I married a man who loves globes.

On one of our very 1st dates I remember him telling me how much he wanted one of those really big globes – you know the one’s that are like 5000 buckaroos and take up half the living room? Yeah, one of those ones.

I also vividly remember him once telling me on a shopping trip in Vegas (our 1st vacation together) that he wanted one of those marbled globes – you know the tiny, but SUPER heavy ones that appear to hold ZERO purpose except to sit on your desk and take up space? Yeah, one of those too.

Clearly globe investments are not something I particularly value.

In reflecting on his many globe “requests,” I find my lack of interest in globes particularly peculiar for a number of reasons:

1. World traveling is something I breath for. If I could live out of my suitcase 24/7 I would. Gross and unimaginable to most….fantastically scrumptious to me.

2. Globes are pretty (or at least most of them are). I like pretty things.

3. I suck at geography. Therefore wouldn’t I want something around that could help me become more geographically sound than I actually am?

4. I love my husband (this should probably have been #1 on the list, so I italizied it to award it for its importance). Shouldn’t I at least try to love the things he loves too?

5. I’m classic for having random junk (in my eyes UBER amazing antique knicknacks that others classify as “junk”) around my home. Why wouldn’t I want a pretty globe to add to my gorgeous array of junk?

6. Globes spin. That’s cool.

7. I’m obsessed with details. What could be more detailed than a round ball with dots and cities plastered all over it?

8. Globes remind me of all my nerdy science professors. I like nerds.

9. I love spending money on stuff. I’m really good at it actually, so why not buy a globe?

10. Globes are really, really rad (clearly this is something I’ve come to realize after our 1st year together).

Well lucky for him: his parents loved him enough to buy him one of those really heavy globes because his wife was too clueless to realize how awesome they really are. What’s NOT so lucky for him? He dropped the increadibly heavy, minimally purposeful globe on the way to work. He intended for it to sit on his desk. It never made it. Instead? It cracked. Bad. He tried not to cry. He said he didn’t. But I knew he must have wanted to. He loved that globe. A lot.

A few months ago, I was on one of my usual antique scouting trips and I spotted it. I knew I had to have it. Selfishly, I wanted it because it was one of those antiques that just made my heart flutter. Lovingly, I knew how much it would mean to him. To have a globe again. In our home. Globe for him. Pretty for me. Something that we could both love.

It didn’t cost me 5000 buckaroos and it’s not heavy. But it’s a globe. A really pretty one at that. And it lives at our house.


Happy LONG weekend friends!


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Filed under Antiques, Friday Find, Love, Self Reflection