Watercolor Save the Date

We are excited to share these custom illustrated Save the Date designs featured on Oh So Beautiful Paper. To see the full post click here!

blog_4Inspired by the South Texas and the genteel eclectic style of Julia and Vannie’s wedding, we had so much fun hand watercoloring these and pairing them with Tara Jones‘ teal envelope calligraphy.



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Anna’s Bachelorette Beach Bash

For Anna’s Bachelorette Bash on the beach of Port Aransas, Texas, we wanted to do something out of the box (or should I say out of the bag?) that would grab recipient’s attention.

 I stumbled across the story of Kelli Lee, owner of the Barf Boutique (http://www.barfboutique.com). Kelli Lee had experienced a major blow to her head when she was a child and therefore has experienced life-long chronic nausea. Her mother and her had the idea to start selling Barf Bags. They sell classic white bags, what we used for these invitations, as well as some humorous illustrated and labeled bags.
Since I had heard this story, I had been brainstorming how to use the barf bags in an invitation. What better way to tell recipients to prepare for a wild and fun bachelorette weekend? It also turns out that the post office will mail them with out an envelope- just slap a stamp and address on and the next thing you know, people are opening their mail boxes to find goodie filled barf bags!

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Julia + Vannie on JuneBug Weddings

We are so honored to have been a part of Julia & Vannie’s big day. The talented Jennifer Lindberg Weddings Team captured amazing photos of the day and are now featured on Junebug Weddings. Click here to see the full feature.  Thank you Julia and Vannie for letting us be a part of such a gorgeous and joyful event!

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Photography – Jennifer Lindberg
Event Coordination – Verve Austin
Ceremony Venue – University Christian Church
Reception Venue – Hotel Ella
Floral Design – Westbank Flower Market
Cake – The Cake Plate
Invitations & Programs – Pearly Gates Designs
Makeup Artist for the Bride – Cren da la Cren
Makeup Artist for the Bridesmaids – Kiss n Makeup
Hair Styling – James Allan Salon
Wedding Dress – J. Mendel
Bridesmaids’ Apparel – Mata Atelier
Rings – CCC Gems

Calligraphy- Tara Jones Calligraphy 


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Pearly Halloween Playlist

Pearly Gates Designs

From Michael Jackson to Britney Spears, we are spending this work day counting down the minutes to trick or treating with some spooktacular tunes. So whether you are glueing last minute snowflakes on to your elsa costume or baking delicious pumpkin treats, we want to make sure you are jamming to the sounds of the season!

Have a Happy Halloween and a BOO-tiful day!

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Hillary + Christopher

I had so much fun working with Hillary on her wedding paper. Even the planning leading up to the wedding was full of love and joy. When we first met, her mother, aunt and cousins were all there to be a part of the design process. Everyone was so excited to spread the wonderful news of Hillary and Christopher’s marriage.

For her wedding invitations, we fell in love with an elegant satin pewter ribbon and the rest of the suite’s design fell in to place around it. We wanted to stay with the classic style, but kick it up a notch. We chose a whimsical calligraphy by Natalie of Love Letter Calligraphy and had it letterpressed in pewter on a heavy four-ply card. Here is where our hearts really flutter— we had the outer edge of the invitation beveled and hand painted with a custom metallic pewter. The invitations were each wrapped with the luxe satin ribbon and sealed in silver lined envelopes.



For the programs, we used a luxe card stock paper with the whimsical calligraphy adorning each page. Each booklet was held together with Hillary and Chris’ signature sparkling pewter ribbon.




Thank you to Bows and Arrows for the gorgeous florals and photo styling, Love Letter Calligraphy for being so fun to work with and Helen Byrd for never failing to take our breath away with your photos!


Business Bombshell: The Crenshaw Sisters

Cren de la Cren


Why did you decide to start your own business?
K: There were plenty of reasons why I wanted to start my own business but I think the main reason was to have my own independence. As daunting as being on your own is, Austin is an amazing city where local business owners thrive. I wanted to make sure that I could instill authenticity in my genuine interest in what I do and in my relationships with my clients. It’s a constant battle to keep a good balance all around, but I absolutely love my job!

How did you first get interested in the makeup industry?
K: I’ve always loved makeup and what it can do for women but it was around when I first started wearing makeup that I wondered how it was made. The science and technology behind makeup products really peaked my interests enough to admit me into the University of Texas School of Natural Sciences as a Chemistry Major. Even though I ended up changing my major before graduating, I still dream of collaborating my own line with a team in a lab in a few years!

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What is the best advice you received about starting a new business?
K: My best friend’s father told me to treat every client as though they were your first and believe in yourself.

What is it like working with your sister?
K: It’s great! We share a lot of similarities in creativity and our differences in characteristics work well in collaborating. We have a lot of fun working together!

C: It’s very natural. We can see eye to eye more because we’re sisters and it’s more enjoyable to work with someone you’re so close with!

Describe your personal style in 3 words.
K: Comfortable, cool, eclectic.

C: Edgy, fun, ever changing.

What are your favorite tunes to jam to during a makeup session?
K: I change it up all the time depending on my mood or the client but some favorites on Pandora/Spotify: Florence+ the Machine, Mumford and Sons, Kings of Leon, RHCP, Rhye, classic rock, and 90’s are all great stations.

C: Frank Ocean, Lana Del Ray, something calming

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What products do you always have in your clutch for a night out on the town?

K: I at least have translucent powder, Dr. Lipps original balm, MAC kohl liner and mascara on me at all times. For a night on the town, I’ll add my lip products or the colored eyeliner I chose to wear in my purse.

Claire: BareMinerals Mineral Foundation & Blistex Chapstick for reapplying.

What current projects are you most excited about?
Right now we’re in the process of improving the blog. Hopefully we’ll have that content up soon! But wedding season is just around the corner and we are going to be busyyy, we are booked solid!

Any hot new lip or eye shadow colors, we should be coveting this spring?
There are plenty! Bold orange lips are popping up everywhere. Any range of purple from lilac to deep violet can be worn on either lips or eyes. Pastel and metallic eyeshadow are trending along with variations of bright blue/teal liner. Whether you decide to make it pop or mute it, color is in for Spring!

Thanks Katherine and Claire for being this month’s Business Bombshell’s!  Katherine was also the talented make up artist behind my “about page” picture. Katherine was so fun to work with and is amazingly creative in all she does (her at-home studio is so cute). 

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Business Bombshells

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Pearly Gates would not be where it is today if it were not for the super amazing, creative and business savvy women surrounding me. I am eternally grateful to these women- always offering advice, sharing their story, and giving encouragement every step of the way. Let’s be honest- getting to do what you love is the best, but running your own business is hard and so much of it is figured out as you go.

That is why I have decided to start this new blog series- “Business Bombshells”! I am so excited to share these women’s stories, advice and hopefully inspire other women on their journey.

If you have any topics you would like our Bombshells to cover or have a recommendation for someone who would make a great Business Bombshell- let me know!

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Amy Parks Photography

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I am so excited to introduce you all to Amy Parks. She is a very talented photographer that truly pours her heart and spirit in to her work. It was important that her logo design capture the same honesty, emotion and beauty that so clearly shines in her photography. We decided to go with a classic black and white combination that stands out with it’s bold unique typographic treatment. The extended directional lines and playful demeanor of the visual identity, capture the same elements of Amy’s work as they tell the different stories behind each photo.

Capturing Amy doing her thing!

Capturing Amy doing her thing!


If you follow Pearly Gates on instagram, you may have already gotten a sneak peak of Luna and I’s fun photo shoot with Amy. Driving the back country roads of Austin, we were all drooling (not just luna) over the beautiful backdrops of God’s country- breezy wheat fields, deserted barns, the list goes on. I love the old abandoned seed barn we found! See some of Amy’s amazing work from our photo shoot below and on her website.

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Kelly + Harrison’s Save the Date

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Kelly and Harrison were married in a dreamy snow covered chapel in Vail, Colorado. In whimsical watercolor, we made this soon to be home of the couple’s “I-Do’s” the spotlight of the design. My computer and I rarely spend much time apart, so I always look forward to designs where I can unplug and grab my trusty paint brush!

I love how Kelly, the bride, chose the winter wonderland motif of pinecones to be carried throughout her wedding paper and cannot wait to show you pictures of the wedding Invitations and day of paper!


The New Look of Pearly Gates


After many sketch sessions in the park (sunshine is my greatest muse) and late nights at coffee shops, I am finally revealing the rebranding of Pearly Gates! You would think that since my days often consist of designing logos, that doing my own should be a walk in the park. Hey, who knows me better than myself right? Wrong.  My work routine is full of reading and oohing & awing over blogs and social networks of creative people that inspire me. There is so much design awesomeness (no better way to put it) out there and while it is an amazing resource, it is so hard to not let my own visual identity get clouded by something I liked online or trying to create a brand personality around something I’m not. For this design, it was important for me to focus on who I was and what I wanted my brand’s voice to be.

I have always loved doodling, every middle school, high school, college notebook is full of them. There is something so intimate and personal about doodles. They are never created to impress someone or with a final design in mind, but their lines and shapes are grown and formed purely on your emotion in that moment. I went through some of my old notebooks and many of the design elements you see in my logo are pulled from here. Who knew that Mr. Coombes history class would bring me a little logo inspiration 10 years later?

Pearly Gates Designs Logo

I love how everything flows together with the name being the spotlight and the other design elements representing the story behind it. The mix of a classic serif type with my own hand lettering is both classic and personal.  I am thrilled with the final piece. Hope you all are too!

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