Tips for A Successful Event
Shari Lebowitz of Bespoke Designs has created a unique paper business in the heart of downtown Westport.
She nicknames herself “the paperpreneur.” With today’s Internet and technology driven society the lost art of handwritten notes and appropriate etiquette could be easily on the demise. To bring awareness to Lebowitz’s craft, Images and Details recommended hosting an informative Q and A with luxury design blogger Stacey Bewkes of Quintessence and Heather Wise Alexander of Bell’Invito invitations.
We envisioned a discussion on the new internet-driven event planning—which we deemed, “netiquette.” We wanted to give listeners a chance to understand the importance of traditional handcrafted paper goods that proves to be elegant and personal in a world where online work can seem so distant and impersonal.
“In this digital age, there is nothing as warm and personal as a handwritten note on an exquisite piece of brightly colored, beautifully textured stationery,” says Lebowitz. “It takes an ordinary gesture and makes it a celebratory one. How wonderful it is to reach into your mailbox to find that gorgeous handwritten envelope.”
It was just the right recipe for success. The audience was comprised of, wedding and event planners, caterers, florists, hoteliers, and media. The result: new clients, engaged audience, and media coverage in both print media and online.
At this year’s LCDQ, Images & Details brought together five of LA’s top interior designers, Jamie Bush, Amy Meier, Christo Prevazanos and Todd Nickey & Amy Kehoe for a roundtable discussion of their custom fabric collaborations with our client Peter Fasano, hosted by Domino editor Robert Leleux at the new Hollywood at Home showroom.
The west coast-based designers shared the inspiration behind their individual patterns and what it was like to work hands-on with a guru like Fasano, who has been creating fabrics and textiles for over 30 years. Guests were able to examine the custom fabrics close-up, which provided a distilled version of each of the designer’s personal styles.
A slide show, created by Fasano about his 30 years in fabrics and textiles, played to laughs and gasps from the audience, and afterwards he talked about the satisfaction he feels in helping these talented artists bring their visions to life in a medium so integral to the creation of a room’s aesthetic. The designers agreed that although challenging at times, the rewarding experience allowed them to capture their personal style in a new and different way.
For the past five years, Images & Details has conceptualized and overseen the production and press for one of metro New York’s most successful charity events, the RED CROSS Red and White Ball . We take over the Net Jets hangar and in 24 hours reimagine it as a design lover’s Shangri-La. It’s one of our favorite events and this year was the best yet—40 leading designers creating one-of-a-kind tablescapes for 500 guests to enjoy over dinner and dancing. This year’s event was co-chaired by world-renowned designer Mary McDonald of Bravo’s Million Dollar Decorator. That’s Mary looking glam, below center with Giovanna Miller and Mary Young. Nearly $1 million was raised for the Red Cross, a charity we love to support as we know they are always there for us.
Carey Karlan‘s table was transportive. Inspired by the Jardin de Luxembourg, it came complete with cherub statuary by Pennoyer Newman and almost indecently luxurious platinum petaled plates by L’Objet. The best part of this table, though, was Carey’s unabashed celebration of something from nature, the divine yet fleeting peony. She served up a single, extravagant fuchsia bloom at each place, floating in a silver champagne coupe. So simple. So swoony. So superb. So Parisian.
With charming themes of leaves and hearts and heart-shaped leaves, interior designer Francine Gardner of Interieurs created this glittering table using china, crystal and flatware in various tones of gold and anchored her vision with a custom tablecloth of fabric hand-blocked by legendary fabric designer Peter Fasano.
Peter Fasano’s own table, which he co-created with designer Ondine Karady featured a whimsical Lego red cross “sculpture”, complete with little Lego Red Cross workers, a Lego Red Cross ambulance and helicopter. The very pretty red and white napkins on Peter’s table were made of hand-screened fabric by Elizabeth Hamilton. The overall effect was charming, ebullient and celebratory of an organization that does so much for so many.
Designer Darrin Varden‘s “Ripple Effect” table represented how the good deeds of the Red Cross can spread across a community following a disaster. He centered a gloss-lacquered red cross on a custom tray with red sand raked in concentric circles Zen-garden style, echoed by the circles in the tablecloth. Each guest received a miniature Zen sand garden complete with rake and a heart to place in the center filled with the message “Your heart may seem to be one drop in a sea of humanity, but its intention can be felt throughout the world. Thank you for your generosity.”
Jeweler extraordinare Simon Teakle, who was also the evening’s auctioneer, had a table that was widely touted as one of the most clever and sophisticated. A silver model of an R.A.F. F.E.2B plane, Hallmarked in London in 1917-18 by Edward Dime, soared above guests, who were invited to “enjoy the parachute gift” – the undisclosed treats were in jewelry boxes suspended from “parachutes” of billowy, white hydrangea blooms. The crowning touch was Mr. Teakle’s take on napkin-folding, in which white napkins were fashioned into classic nurse’s-hats.
So many more lovely tables were on display, and we are very grateful to all of the designers and design brands that made this magical evening possible. Everyone seemed to have a wonderful time, including, left to right, below designer Darrin Varden with event co-chairs Liz Boutry and Jennifer Madrid:
Some photos in this post were generously shared with us by Quintessence.
This year’s Holiday House featured many great and talented designers and friends of Images & Details. It raised over $500,000 for a great cause, too. Our client Rachel Laxer brought her extraordinary taste and imagination to Holiday House this year with a room themed around Valentine’s Day. Our friend Stacey Bewkes of the fabulous Quintessence blog wrote a lovely 3-part piece on the art installations in the house, including Rachel’s, and the room design has also already been featured on Forbes.com and Houzz.com, among others.