Sam Allen Creates: October thru December 2018

I really love the end of the year! October and November are such crazy busy months but I just love my job so much! And then by the second week of December, everything just slows down and I can enjoy that special time of the year with my family! This year was just the best yet, hope you enjoy this glimpse into all the fun projects that crossed my desk this fall and holiday season!

View Part 1 of my 2018 Review here.
Part 2, April–June 2018 Review
and Part 3, July–September 2018 Review


October

The month started with an order of handpainted wedding placecards and table numbers. I adore these photos supplied by Kaitlyn’s wedding photographer, Lyndsie Smith.

Dusty blue envelopes for the win! This shade of blue has just been so popular. I was pretty excited when the inquiry came in! Plus, I LOVE addressing envelopes!

When Kayla Denae told me she was going to do a giveaway for a styled engagement session, I jumped on board to create a special calligraphy piece for the couple. But then when she shared her ideas for the shoot, I couldn’t decide which quote to go with so I just made them both! Please go take a look at Kayla’s blog post, it’s so full of woodsy inspiration and a gorgeous couple!

The letter C made of a sweet little miss’s favorite shades of purple with a neutral green background all ready to be hung in her bedroom! Custom painted letters, created in the color scheme of your choice available here.

A lot of the latter half of October was spent creating an extensive watercolor line… I’ll be sure to post more about this soon, but the basic idea and goal was to create a full package extending from my popular watercolor tags! So those looking for placecards can find matching table numbers and menus too! Oh and bridesmaid proposal and thank you cards! Whew!

As I was working on my product line to be sent to the amazing Stephanie Weber to photograph, I also created her family a watercolor portrait as a thank you! Aren’t they precious?!

Part of my watercolor line includes these table number cards and I love that this bride also ordered matching handpainted signs for her cards and gifts table along with her dessert table! Thanks Eva Lin Photography for the images!

As the month closes, let’s start to turn toward Christmas! Eek! I absolutely adored getting to work on these custom stamps for omslag.se! These photos they’ve shared are just GORGEOUS! Take a look at their Instagram for even more beauty!


November

If the year wasn’t crazy enough, in the month of November, it really picked up (as it usually does).

First up, a styled shoot in Joshua Tree! If you love this peek, take a look at the full blog post here. Photos by Lisette Gatliff Photography.

Just in the nick of time, I created some “fill in the blank” menus for Thanksgiving… a gift for those who signed up for my newsletter! (and I started a newsletter this month too, because I just needed to add more to my plate!).

Another one of the “big” items that I launched this year were these little “thankful for” tags! They were an unexpected smash hit!

In addition to creating tag placecards, I also painted names on these gorgeous marble tiles for a Friendsgiving!

Earlier in the month, I painted a new logo for Harper and Grace Photography! Rachel had it up on her site the very day I sent the final files! Interested in having me write out your business name, take a look at my shop here!

I loved this spin on my usual Floral Lettered last name signs. This customer wanted me to paint more tropical flowers as a gift for a friend who was married in Hawaii last year! I really loved mixing it up!

November is really my busiest month for creating Christmas gifts! This painting was made as a gift from one sister to the other, created from a wedding picture! Watercolor portraits available here.

Creating custom Christmas cards usually starts in November, and sometimes even October! I loved creating this year’s set of cards and am already dreaming of 2019 designs. (this first card is my very own with my guys! at Disneyland!)

In September, one of my forever friends had her first baby, a gorgeous baby girl named Lennon! I loved getting to design little Lennon’s birth announcement as a gift to the new sleep deprived parents, with photos taken by the happy-as-can-be daddy! (See a behind the scenes video of my painting in progress on my Instagram!)

And of course, we must circle back to the happenings in the wedding world…

The first of many vow book sets were made for my friend and fellow creative, Stephanie Weber. I love her welcome packages for her clients. You can see the passion and care she gives her brides right away in these packages! See more on her blog here.

These placecard tags were painted during an Instagram LIVE, during which I answered questions about my process and viewers got to watch me paint in real time! After the LIVE was done, I painted some more for a video which I posted on Instagram here…. But best of all, I got this gorgeous real wedding photo back from their photographer, Darla Winn Photography! I just LOVE getting real wedding photos back from my customers!

A succulent and greenery watercolor painted wreath for an April wedding! Painting in green is my favorite since it’s my favorite color! Custom paintings available in my Etsy shop here.

A watercolor painted Floral Letter H, painted with a touch of gold for a May wedding along with a large poster of song lyrics. I can’t wait to see these wedding photos!

Adorable boutonnieres made for the men at this wedding photographed by Montana Crumlish! I love it when my tags get used with gorgeous florals (San Diego florist, Janna Hatch)!


December

Here we go, rounding the final corner into the end zone of 2018 (I think I may be mixing sports metaphors here, but you know what I mean!).

The month started with not only designing these Christmas cards but also in taking the family photos myself!

And I also got to design this Christmas card for my bestie, there was definitely a theme in all of these cards! They’re still hanging in my house and I feel like you can really tell they were all designed by the same person!

For this year’s annual ornament gift for our family and friend’s, I created these clay ornaments using air dry clay and cookie cutters! Each person or family received a letter to represent their name painted in either pine tree branches or floral leafy vines!

One of the last projects I tackled before Christmas was creating these Friends themed baby shower invites! As a diehard fan of the show, I definitely felt the pressure in designing them but truly love how they came out!

And of course, we can’t let the month go by without some wedding details!

A beautiful boho inspired styled shoot, full of rich detail and even handmade macrame! Photos by Melissa Fe Chapman.

December wouldn’t be complete without sharing some Christmas gifts that I got to work on!

Hand drawn Papercut Silhouettes…

Watercolor portraits…

And of course a personalized ornament for one sweet little girl’s first Christmas!

And finally, just days before Christmas, I got this Kraft paper roll sign finished for my new friend Caitlin who I met while working on this styled shoot. I’ll be updating this soon with photos of it hung in her home, so excited to share with you!


And with that, the year 2018 ended. Looking back on all the marvelous work I got to do, I feel so blessed and so thankful for each and every customer, friend, and collaboration! Thank you for taking a look, I appreciate your love and support!!

Sam Allen Creates: April thru June 2018

The craziness of 2018 continued through the spring… what can I say, I absolutely LOVE my job!

View Part 1 of my 2018 Review here.


April

Rapunzel is my favorite Disney princess so I was ecstatic to be chosen to participate in a Tangled themed photo shoot! You will definitely be seeing more of this shoot with a full blog post soon! Photos by Jess Palatucci

While crafting an adoption party invite for one of my besties… I tried my hand at making a watercolor portrait of their growing family. It was just the perfect touch to commemorate such a joyous occasion!

At this time, I created these navy watercolor tags and cards for a custom Etsy order—without knowing at the time what an impact these would have on my shop! Prior to this, I hadn’t made much of my watercolor work easily available to purchase but after sharing these watercolor tags and bridesmaid thank you cards later in the year, they became a big seller and kept me pretty busy in the fall!

Oh my, when this bride wrote me about needing day of stationery for her elopement in Greece, the answer was a BIG YES! And I’m so glad we got to work together because these photos from her photographer, Allen Tsai Photography, are such a dream!

And then a past bride wrote me about needing place cards for her child’s first birthday! I just LOVE when my brides turn to moms and come back for more. It’s just about my favorite thing EVER!

To close the month of April, take a look at this little cutie! Papercut silhouettes available for purchase here.


May

What comes to your mind with the month of May?! First up for me is Mother’s Day!! Here’s a couple pieces made for some amazing mothers!

The month of May also includes the anniversary of Pixar’s movie Up! This is such a favorite of mine so I had to paint up a little something to commemorate!

Remember that watercolor family portrait I just mentioned in the April section? Well I never had a shortage of friends who are willing guinea pigs for my new products? Thanks friends for helping me build my portfolio for your adorable families! Watercolor Portraits available for sale here.

In addition to the above watercolor portrait, in honor of my bestie Amie’s birthday, I created a Floral Letters Paper Cut Silhouette as I shown in my last blog recap post!

Another past customer of mine reached out as well but this time for a calligraphy tattoo!! Oh yes, please!! And I just adore the photos that Kacie Deale captured of the beauty!

This was a favorite project of mine, AND BIG!! These Rascal Flatts song lyrics were painted for an old friend to commemorate his mother’s passing , are so near and dear to my heart because of my own little boy! Due to a small mistake, I ended up redoing the whole canvas for them and kept the original in my office! So now I get to look at it everyday!


June

To start this month, we celebrated my baby boy’s 2nd birthday with some fun on the farm!

And then a couple days later, I made the drive down to Ramona to bring my handlettered goods for Janita Mestre’s styled shoot at Milagro Winery! This is another one that really needs a full blog post to share all the lovely vendors! But for now, here’s a small peek!

Next up, a twist on a previous suite I made to have a “Twilight” theme for KSS Photography. This shoot was so amazing and I feel so lucky to have a small part in it… and a short time later it was published in Contemporary Weddings!

The month also included creating the placecards for this absolutely breathtaking wedding in Yosemite! Annie and Corey also had me write out the Irish Blessing on handmade paper to be read during the ceremony. Wedding tablescape photos by Kyro Digital.

How cute is this escort tag display?! Each table was named after a different Maine lighthouse and then little buouys attached! Photo by Sharyn Peavey Photography.

And then to close the month of June and this post, I worked with one of my favorite returning customers, Karianna, on her wedding invitations!

First step was creating a digital mockup of the invitation and then painting the pieces at a larger scale. These larger paintings are then scanned into Photoshop and composited for the final invitation!

And then the amazing photographer, Jessy Herman, professionally photographed the suite! Love!


Thanks for reading through! Hope you enjoyed a sneak peek into my creative life!

Sam Allen Creates: January thru March 2018

I’ve been working on this post for a year, adding to it over the year but never finishing it. I hope you enjoy a peek back at some of my favorite projects from the beginning of the year!

A lot of these will just be a glimpse into the project, like for the styled shoots… as I plan to post more in depth about them at a later date.


January

January kicked off with a mighty bang! Right off the bat, I spent the first morning of the new year painting this GIANT painting!

And partying for this little guy’s 2nd birthday!!

Most of January was spent working on styled shoots, one that I got to attend in San Diego and one in Joshua Tree for a photographer coming in from Arizona.

The following photos are by Carsten Tice Photography, will share a full post soon with full vendor credits.

And from Joshua Tree, by Molly McElenney

The year also started with the creation of a housewarming party invite for a good friend of mine here in California! I created the art for the invite in such a way that I could frame the original painting as the housewarming gift! Win!

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Painted Housewarming Party

February

Once those January shoots were done, I went right on to work with Abbe Foreman on her blush pink and gold shoot…

And went on to work with Emily Sallach on this boho shoot at L.A’s Frogtown Magical Cabin, photos by Jenn Spain

Along with this handpainted gold and emerald suite for a flat lay conference on the east coast.

Sam Allen Creates Emerald and Gold Wedding Invitation Suite

And I also celebrated my shop’s 5 year anniversary!! This was such a big celebration as it coincided with my 10,000 Etsy sale!!

February is also a big month for Disney animation anniversaries! And of course I had to celebrate!! First up is my favorite: Peter Pan! And then keep scrolling to see the Cinderella inspired piece that went on to spark a whole invitation suite…

And to finish off the month, some envelope addressing!




March

These Disney inspired pieces were created for the AMAZING Michelle Santiago to photograph. It was magical collaborating with another Disney nerd to create these suites! Will be posting more about these soon!

Another style shoot, this one photographed by Danielle Unger… love that fabric hanging and the fabric menus! Oh my! Held at the Woodshed in Vista, California.

In honor of my Etsy shop’s anniversary in March, I did a giveaway for shop credit! One of the winners worked with me to create this custom piece, the solution to her problem of having to pick the Floral Letters or the papercut silhouettes. Such an an amazing idea, I just love how it came out! Find out more information to create your own custom piece in my shop here.

When I saw Christine Pegany post about needing a calligrapher for her upcoming shoot, I jumped at the chance! She’s such a talented photographer and stylist! In a few weeks, I’ll be sharing more on this gorgeous shoot!

And to end this first quarter review, a REAL wedding suite created for Kate Vennergrund (photo by Carmen Soares). More to come on this as well…


Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post and for making it this far! I enjoyed going back over these projects that seemed to have taken place so long ago but as if they were yesterday!