Amber Housley

2011 : Year in Review

Can you believe it is already time to package up 2011 with a pretty bow? This year went by in a whirlwind with so many wonderful memories both big and small. I’m SO excited to usher in 2012. I feel that this next year is full of so much promise and I can’t wait to greet each milestone. Here are a few favorite personal and business highlights of this past year…


Amber Housley Fall Mini Session Sara Rose Photography Nashville

1. Our little dude continued to grow like a weed. He is 110% ALL BOY and pushes me outside my comfort zone to have more fun, play and be on the go a whole lot more than I ever thought I would be! I can’t believe he’ll be three years old in just about six weeks…sniff sniff…

2. 2011 held a lot of trips to the zoo. Some of my favorite family time is there. Nothing beats strolling through the pretty park-like grounds on a weekend afternoon. This December, as all the craziness of the holidays started to set in, and I was feeling like my work and life was overflowing with to-do lists and activities, I had a breaking point in the car with Colin. We were in the parking lot of daycare and he was telling me he didn’t want to go to school. He wanted to go to the zoo. My eyes welded up with tears because all I wanted to answer was “me too, buddy. me too.” I’m vowing now in 2012 there are going to be a lot more fun days of no school and no work. Lots of trips to the zoo. :) This moment in time reminds me of my friend Emily’s “Grace Not Perfection” mantra. There will be a whole lotta grace in 2012… :)

3. Early in the year, I squeezed in some long overdue girlfriend time with my college sorority sisters and best friends for a long weekend in San Francisco and Wine Country. I love how we all live in different places and get busy with our own lives from time to time to actually catch up and check in with each other…but when we’re back together again, you would have never thought any time passed at all.


4. In August we started a new vacation tradition with the Huber Family. Our trip to Seagrove/Seaside, Florida with my best friend Lauren (we met our freshmen year of high school) and her family was awesome. Who would have thought 15+ years ago we’d live across the country and be vacationing with our families? Already can’t wait for next year!


5. In 2011 we had two amazing (childless) mini-vacations – Negril, Jamaica in March and Charleston, SC in October. So lucky to be able to have one-on-one quality time with each other for a few days. Also thankful for the in-law’s babysitting so we could do such fun trips! ;)


6. In January, I went to Making Things Happen in Atlanta. That one event kicked off a whole new year for my business. I think the best word that sums up 2011 is “ready.” After MTH, I was just READY to start laying the foundation for where I wanted to take my business, my brand and myself into the future. I was ready for all that the future held for me and was leaving all previous notions, limitations, and obstacles behind. MTH really gave me that strength and courage. It’s awesome to reflect how that one day in Atlanta was the catalyst for other amazing adventures in 2011.

7. So in May, I headed to Engage : Grand Del Mar. I remember registering…I didn’t know a single person going (I think I may be the very first wedding professional from Nashville, Tennessee who ever attended an Engage conference!)…I didn’t know who I was going to room with or how I was going to muster up the courage to act like I had any business being there among so many seemingly amazing other wedding industry professionals. But I went, and I met new friends, and I loved every. single. minute. of. it. One of the best things I did for my business, hands down. It is there I met Cathy & Kathy and a dozen other new friends. Most importantly, it is there that I had a ten minute conversation with Lara about a *gut feeling* that led to the kick off the new AMBER HOUSLEY brand.

8. In July, I concepted, designed, styled and coordinated my first ever editorial photo shoot. Go high or go home I think was my motto as I collaborated with some AMAZING friends. It was a long, hot summer afternoon with a half dozen models and dozens of details. While it didn’t make the cut for a magazine that I had hoped it would be intended for, I learned SO much during the experience and was entirely grateful for it and all the contributors. Excited to collaborate on some more amazing shoots in 2012

My “612″ girls – Amber, Courtney and Ashlee

9. In August, I headed to Pensacola, FL to attend the Stationery Academy by Emily Ley and Whitney Kolb. So grateful for this experience and meeting new paper-designer friends with dreams and hearts and goals as big as mine. I can’t wait to show all that I’ve been working on for my new wedding collection that will debut in 2012 using knowledge I gained at this conference!


10. The year contained many published highlights. (Yippee!) I was proud to see my work featured in some of my favorite magazines such as Southern Living V4 where I was a featured Southern wedding expert, and also  here, here and here.

11. On November 3, the new AMBER HOUSLEY brand launched. What an exciting moment when I pushed the “publish” button on the new site and then announced it to all my friends and family via Facebook and Twitter. After you put SO much time, money, soul and heart into something, you just pray and hope that others are excited about it too. The feedback that I continue to get daily affirms that we did everything right. There are still things that have yet to debut as part of the “launch” and I’m excited to share them soon in 2012!

December Christmas Table Setting Floral
12. Right after the launch, I was able to shout from the rooftops one of my most proud accomplishments – being published in Southern Living magazine’s December 2011 issue! I loved designing and styling this shoot, and what an amazing opportunity for what I consider my Southern living lifestyle “bible” that I read every single month.


13. I can’t also forget another proud highlight – being featured in the weekly Martha Stewart Dreamer Into Doers email and website! Of course, I’m a natural fan of Martha Stewart and the business empire she has built. I’m really excited about heading to New York City this Spring to attend the Dreamers event. It’s been a long time dream of mine to do all the NYC tourist cliche’s while I’m there. :)

14. I had the opportunity to design and style weddings for SO MANY AMAZING clients. I love the work that I do, and I love the clients who really *get* what I can offer them. From classic Southern plantation style weddings, to beach destination weddings, to traditional weddings, to modern affairs, and even a few social parties and events…such a wide variety I was able to dabble in for both paper goods design AND wedding style and design. I’m already hard at work on a half dozen brides for 2012. Ready to make more magic happen! :)

Amber Housley Fall Mini Session Sara Rose Photography Nashville

What a whirlwind and amazing 2011. This girl is *incredibly* humbled and thankful for every opportunity that has come my way. I have some of the best family, friends and supporters here in Nashville and beyond! I CAN’T WAIT for all the awesome 2012 has in store.

I love to tell my 612 girls to remember to “Be Brilliant” or “Be Awesome”… here’s to wishing YOU a BRILLIANT and AWESOME NEW YEAR!


Housley Family Christmas Card 2011

Happy Friday everyone! Today I’m going to spending some quality time with my parents who are in town for their very first Tennessee Christmas! We have some gifts to pick up, packages to mail, and groceries to buy to get ready for my 5th Annual Cookie Party this Sunday. I look forward to sharing with you all the fabulous cookies and treats that 15 of my closest baking friends are bringing.

Today I also present to you our Housley Family Christmas Card 2011! We were soooo lucky to snag a mini-session spot this Fall with one of my bestest and sweetest friends Sara Rose, who also happens to be an amazing family photographer! Colin wants nothing to do with the camera these days. Usually when I pull it out he completely ignores me and wants nothing to do with it. Except for the iphone…when I have that he immediately wants to see the result! (such my little techy-toddler!). When I got our pictures back from Sara, I wanted to cry because they really captured so many sweet happy moments. You would have never thought Colin didn’t like the camera by the fun smiles and laughs she caught. I’m really looking forward to having a few canvases made with these photos to hang around the house.

To create the cards, I used some adorable downloadable graphics and patterns by Erin Bradley Designs. I went with the untraditional Christmas colors of greens, pinks, reds and browns two years in a row! The card above was sent to all of our friends & family out of state. I had an alternate version that said ‘Holiday Cheer & Warm Wishes!’ for all of our local TN friends.

It’s hard to believe that Christmas is just about a week away! I’m looking forward to spending some much needed R&R with the family this next week. After the holiday I’ll be jumping headfirst into so many exciting things that are coming in early 2012. I want to wish all of you friends a very happy holiday!

Amber Housley Fall Mini Session Sara Rose Photography Nashville

Amber Housley Fall Mini Session Sara Rose Photography Nashville

Amber Housley Fall Mini Session Sara Rose Photography Nashville


Amber Housley is a Southern Weddings Blue Ribbon Vendor!

Nashville Tennessee Wedding Planning Design Style

Today is the launch of the Southern Weddings Magazine Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory  and I’m so thrilled to be the the first wedding stylist and designer from Tennessee included in the launch! Southern Weddings is one of my favorite magazines, and I’m so honored they extended the invitation for me to join this top notch guide for Southern brides.

You can check out my featured portfolio here or start searching now for some of the best wedding vendors in the South.

Nashville Wedding

Featured in Wedding Planner Magazine


I’m excited to report that Jennifer & Armand’s wedding is featured in the current issue of Wedding Planner Magazine! The editors of WPM were looking for some of the top design trends we are seeing in wedding design and our predictions for how those trends will continue in 2012. I submitted Jennifer and Armand’s wedding with it’s bold color scheme of peacock blue and blends of tangerine and magenta, as a perfect example of the unexpected but beautiful color combinations that I’m seeing with my clients.

Wedding Planner Magazine is published by the Association of Bridal Consultants that I am an active member of and designated a professional Wedding Consultant.

Jennifer and Armand’s wedding has received so much love! You can view their feature in Munaluchi and also on Southern Wedding blog here and here.

Photography of Jennifer and Armand’s wedding by Kristyn Hogan