Sunday, June 4, 2017

my fifi and me

Image credit: @vintagefarmhome
Image credit: Hollie @vintagefarmhome
Seven years ago Fifi O'Neill arrived at my house for a photo shoot and my life hasn't been quite the same since. I alternately refer to Fifi as my fairygodmother, my French mommy, my Fifi, and she calls me sweet names like Cupcake Girl and Baby. Just last week Fifi returned as my home had changed enough to get the editorial green-light for a second round of styling and shooting for an upcoming publication.

Fifi and I are in touch regularly. We chat about life and new ideas. I write for many of the magazines for which she is the editor-in-chief and founder, and occasionally I develop DIY projects as well. Some location scouting has lead Fifi and her stellar crew of longtime photographer Mark Lohman and his son Taylor, to photograph the homes and businesses of my friends where I'm sure to visit, generally with cupcakes in-hand! I drive to meet her for dinner (she loves to have lobster when she's in New England) and it's always so much fun.

Fifi sets a "let's all flourish" and pay-it-forward example by her actions and I'm compelled to do the same. Her work ethic of "the more you work the more you learn" has helped me reconcile the many jobs and chapters of my life when I felt a lack of direction but now see the bigger picture of how all of these experiences have lead me to the person I am today and the skills I offer.

And don't let the ruffled frocks and hair ribbons fool you, Fifi is a bad-ass. She works harder than anyone I know and is no chump. I love that her mind is always racing with new ideas on which she doesn't hesitate to act -- um, just like me!

Fifi has graciously opened doors for me, introducing me to who would become my first book publisher. She's believed in me and encouraged me from the start. Fifi offered me my first feature writing assignment the day after I'd received the worst call a person could ever get (details). I mentioned nothing, accepted the work, and have always considered it a sign, a blessing.

I've spend the entire weekend assembling images to share about Fifi's return last week after all these years for a second photo shoot here at my house and the things done to prepare, but as I started to write instead the words began to flow about Fifi and I just went with it. So I'll save this stuff for next time:

Click to enlarge

Thank you for reading! If you're not familiar with Fifi O'Neill, below are some links to get you started. Tell her Cupcake Girl sent you.  ;)

Fifi's Florida home in Country Living
Fifi on Instagram


Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

I love Fifi and I am so happy you have becomes such good friends!

Unknown said...

Thank you Cupcake Girl. This is much too nice. I don't deserve all the praise. Nothing would have come from our relationship had you not been the fabulous creative and dedicated person you are. You have helped me more than I have helped you.
I look forward to many more years of friendship and collaboration. xoxoxox

FrenchGardenHouse said...

You cute cupcake girl, you! Your Fifi is the best, I agree. A perfect mix of sweetness, friendship and badass, as you say. No one works harder than Fifi, or is as generous. She is an inspiration!

Diane Mars said...

Sounds like a lot of fun you two girls have when you get together... wish I had a Fairy godmother coming to my house!
I bet it's just wonderful! You both are very talented.

Theresa said...

Beautiful post about a beautiful, talented and creative woman... make that TWO:) Enjoy your day dear Elyse, HUGS!