Food. A four-letter word synonymous with love.
On Saturday, November 7, 2015, we held our first-ever Food Styling Workshop at our co-founder’s house and it was nothing short of a foodie’s dream! We took over the kitchen and the backyard (thanks again Lorena!) and had Constance Higley teach the lessons in the kitchen while the styling and photographing area was outside in the backyard.
Before we officially started the workshop, Chestnut AZ brought two immaculate charcuterie boards with a variety of cheese, meats, crackers, toppings, and some truffle salted nuts that people could not stop eating!
The day was broken down into three separate teaching then styling lessons. Constance Higley, a local food stylist, photographer, and all-around sweetheart, led the discussions with food styling assistant Becca Robson, and gave our students her secrets to styling food and taking amazing pictures. The one thing we learned that was absolutely life-changing? Coconut oil spray. According to Constance, it’s like makeup for food.
After each lesson, students took homemade food and dishes prepared by chef of the gods, Brendan McCaskey. Thanks to UrbAna, students had plenty of kitchenware (including napkins, plates, silverware, dishes, aprons…the list goes on) to style their roasted veggies with cheddar fondue, Korean-style barbeque chicken, and assorted mini pies, tarts, & galettes!
During the styling sessions, students stood on chairs, crouched on the ground, kneeled in the grass, and styled alongside new friends, old besties, and their partner in crime (shoutout to the hubby and wife couple that made everyone melt as they styled and shot each dish together *sigh*).
At the end of the night, everyone sat down to a candle-lit nighttime dinner with wooden tables and benches from Dang Fine Rentals, elegant florals from My Little Posy, and a gorgeously laid tablescape fashioned by Matiana Mitchell Design.
We were treated (seriously, TREATED) to a 7-course feast put on by the one and only Crêpe Bar. Chef Jeff Kraus gathered fresh ingredients from Steadfast Farm and whipped up one heck of a meal. Deviled eggs, smoked olives, seasoned dates, and a whole other host of dishes accompanied uber savory vegetarian crepes that were paired with an assortment of wines from ONEHOPE Wine.
Because we always like having our students leave with goodies, we put together one heck of a giftbag thanks to our tremendous sponsors! Each student received a Make & Stow wooden cutting board, a Standard Wax candle, mini wooden bowls from Wind & Willow Home, cloth napkins from UrbAna, French sea salt from See Salt, a set of Edible magazines, a ONEHOPE Wine giftcard and bottle of wine, and an Arizona pride button from Jar of Buttons (aka Chef Brendan McCaskey’s small biz).
We left with full tummies and a camera full of fantastic food shots! Thanks to everyone who sponsored and attended for making our first food styling workshop an absolute success!