a floral and event design studio

Costa Rica Day 5 – la Finca Caballa Loco

Yes. That’s right. The Crazy Horse Farm – which couldn’t be a better name for our Friday shoot location. We started our day painfully early, loading up our three-car caravan to drive an hour and a half to Ciudad Colon. Aryn, Max and I drove with Larry from Stay In Costa Rica and I spent the whole (bumpy) ride making bouquets in the back seat of Larry’s SUV – at least until we reached the base of the mountain and started our ascent. We drove up past coffee fields and through the jungle, over washed out, narrow roads until we reached the summit, where we found my idea of paradise – an open-air home (with a tree growing right through the middle of the kitchen) in the heart of the rainforest.
While DD Nickel started working her beauty magic, I went to work painting Navajo, the sweetest horse I’ve ever met (yes, i said painting), while Magan stood guard to make sure he didn’t swat the wet paint with his tail:

While I worked on Navajo, more of the crew headed down the path and into the jungle to scout locations. You’ll note that even a dirt path into the rainforest is a fashion runway to this crew:

Beth from The White Dress by the Shore dressed our model Nicole in a black and white gown by Modern Trousseau with a full toulle skirt. I whipped up a bouquet using plumes from the tops of some sugar cane that was growing on property – I don’t know that I’d ever seen sugar cane fully bloomed before. Our lovely hostess, Kreysha, peeled and cut some for us – it was perfect on such a hot day. Carla first shot Nicole on a hammock on the downstairs deck – a cozy spot with a 75 foot drop and no railing.

This is Pinto – and he seemed to know that our color story for this shoot was black and white because he followed the camera around EVERYWHERE:

Our next order of business was to shoot the invitation suite and other tricky paper items created by Nichole of Coral Pheasant. Seriously, this stuff was some sexy paper and we had to do some work to do it justice. So we made our way over to the green green grass with a machete and a typewriter so Candice and Carla could do their thing. Yep. A typewriter.

After a bit, Nicole and (our groom) Oscar joined us. Then Kreysha arrived with a beautiful grey horse. After some coaxing, the horse cooperated and Carla, Katie, Sarah and Jim got to work:

After this, the rain started, so Beth quickly changed Nicole into the Augusta Jones that we’d already gotten wet on Tuesday, we hitched 3 horses to the back of a pickup truck and went for a ride up the hill to a nearby waterfall. At this point we were working fast, trying to get as much as we could in before the sun set. So we got to the waterfall, threw Nicole in the water (not literally), brought the white horse over and Candice, Diana, Lindsey and I tossed 600 orchid blooms into the waterfall. The crew shot here for only about 10 minutes and we loaded the crew up and drove back to the ranch for the last shoot of the day (sorry, I left my camera behind and don’t have a single image of the waterfall shoot).
Nicole got a new dress on, DD changed her look and they took off up the hill to join the horses. Aryn and I hung back for a few so I could put the final touches on a riding crop I was making. When I’d finished and we came up the hill and saw Nicole on the back of the horse, my first thought was, “centaur!”

It happened that Nicole had been riding horses since she was a little kid, so she was perfectly comfortable taking the horse for a spin. Bareback. And at some points with both hands free. The sky was dark and moody — it couldn’t have been more perfect.

In my downtime (ha!) all week, I’d been creating necklaces for Max to wear and the brilliant and hilarious Katie Slater obliged me by shooting them. (How hard is Max flexing here?)

All in all, it was an incredible day. Each member of the team had a chance to flex their own creative muscles and I think we all left feeling like superheroes.

6 responses

  1. Wow Tony! What an adventure for you all!! Thanks for sharing and Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family : )

    November 25, 2010 at 10:39 am

  2. casa wassa! Tony your posts have helped me realize that our trip was not, in fact, one big dream but a reality that we were all so incredibly lucky to experience together! you never cease to amaze me with your floral genius and, lest we all forget- singing talents! I miss you and love you and wish you a happy day filled with turkey and laughter and apples!

    November 25, 2010 at 11:58 am

  3. dd

    YES…LOTS of apples!:):)Happy Turkey day!

    November 25, 2010 at 12:22 pm

  4. Oh man. Loving it!

    November 26, 2010 at 12:49 pm

  5. What a wonderful crew to work with, it took me back to my days working in the fashion biz in Toronto.Finca Caballo Loco seems boring without all of you bustling around here. The horses did do a good job, didn’t they? I have to attribute part of that to the whole team working so well around my animals and I know that Mariposa, Navajo and Carbolino really enjoyed the experience. I’m looking forward to seeing you all again soon, hopefully joining me on a fabulous trail ride through the jungle.
    Hasta pronto mis nuevos amigos……
    Krysia Peterson AKA Jungle Rider
    Finca Caballo Loco, Costa Rica

    November 26, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    • Krysia!
      I can’t wait to come back – I was looking through your website — you have some great rides available and your food sounds marvelous!
      Soon, I hope!


      November 26, 2010 at 6:08 pm

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