Divine Diva has years of experience in making any event flawless. From birthdays, to weddings, award ceremonies, graduations and more. Events go extremely well when passionate people drive the motivation behind the event, which is why this month’s blog post covers the Black Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles Foundation.
The Black Women Lawyers Association is anything but new to The City of Angels. As a non-profit corporation founded in 1975 by a small group of African-American women, this community of women have held luncheons since its inception to award brilliant and passionate African-American women who are pursuing their law degree. Having met in 1975 to discuss the representation and needs of Black women in the legal field, The Black Women Lawyers ("BWL") Association of Los Angeles and its foundation have awarded more than $230,000 in scholarships and grants to second and third year law students.
In late May, Divine Diva Events had the honor of coordinating a grand event: The 39th Annual Scholarship Dinner and Awards Luncheon hosted by the Black Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles Foundation. Held at the beautiful Casa Del Mar Hotel in Santa Monica, the venue has an established elegance, perfect for the elite attendees and their cause. In order to keep attention on the elegance of the room and the occasion, we opted for a deep purple and crisp white palette. From the moment guests arrived, they admired the lavish architecture, decor, and intimate surroundings.
As table centerpieces, we had flowers beautifully designed by Christina Bentley of Scarlet Flowers Designs. Guests dined on the delectable luncheon menu and enjoyed libations to get them in the mood for the spirited raffle. Cheesecake de Granger created the decadent cheesecake pops that awaited the guests at each table. We also had the pleasure of designing all of the gift baskets which were raffled off in order to raise money for future scholarship awards.
The attendees enjoyed themselves and money was raised for future scholarship awards. All in all, the event was a success! The memories were successfully captured by Debra Simmons of Diamond Dust Photography.
This blog post goes out to all of the single ladies in the bridal party who truly help make the wedding experience divine for their bride! At Divine Diva Events, we have years of experience in coordinating flawless events. One of the hints that we have gleaned over the years is that when there is a happy, supportive bridal party, then no matter what crisis occurs on the day of, everyone will come out smiling. (Happy Bridesmaids=Happy Bride!)
Yes, we know—it is all about the bride on her special day—but that doesn't mean that the single ladies in the bridal party can’t enjoy themselves along the way!
The best way to make the experience enjoyable for both the bride and her ‘maids is to set the stage with a fabulous Bachelorette Party.
While the spectrum can run the gamut—from a relaxing brunch at the maid of honor’s home, all the way to a wild night in Vegas which would make Beyoncé blush—it is important to somehow pay homage to the sisterhood with a Bachelorette Party. This right of passage doesn't have to include male strippers or a night of debauchery, but it is a way to celebrate the path that you have been on together--which is about to end for the bride. Below are a few fun ideas for how to celebrate, from decor to planning. If you would like assitance planning yoru soiree, just let The Diva know!
A Ladies Tea
For the ladies who want to keep it classy, but add a little something out of the ordinary, a formal English Tea is always an exceptional option. The ladies are encouraged to wear glamorous hats, prim gowns, and of course fabulous shoes. This Bachelorette party screams elegance and something out of the norm. (See below for romantic Tea Party ideas by Inspired by This.)
Mimosa Bar & Brunch
A Mimosa Bar and Brunch is fabulous option for an intimate gathering where you also want to have a little fun! Want to make it special? Hire a small Jazz band to create a stylish ambiance. You can also invite a designer or boutique owner to bring clothing/jewelry to the brunch for a private shopping event. Check out our blog on creating the perfect Mimosa Bar.
For the champagne and wine lovers, this is the ultimate reprieve from the norm. Rent a limo to take the entourage of ladies to wineries. If you aren't near any wineries, you could also host a wine and cheese tasting party at your home or local wine bar.
Who are we kidding? Every lady loves a day of pampering! One can either select a spa to host the Bachelorette Party at, or have a relaxing Spa Day at someone’s home. This party gets bonus points for how fabulous everyone looks after the party! (Need inspiration? Just let us know and we can assist with the planning and pampering!)
Viva la Diva in Las Vegas!
If the pack of Divas is more interested in having a wild night and creating memories instead of reminiscing about them, then we of course recommend a quick trip to Sin City. We have plenty of ways to create a classy night for you all though with our concierge service, just contact us today!
10/21/2013 1 Comment
The Ultimate Swag Bag
Nothing says “Thank You” to a guest like an amazing Swag Bag! Whether you are hosting an event, a wedding, or a networking social, having guests take away a swag bag is the icing on top of the proverbial cake. We often design and create swag bags for our DDE clients. We have come up with a few hints in how to create the perfect gift bag. These tips will help both the DIY bride and the seasoned event coordinator alike.
Have fun with the theme! The gifts in a bachelorette swag bag will clearly differ from those in a wedding swag bag…that said you should have fun with linking the event to the swag bag. For example, if you are planning an elegant beach wedding, include monogrammed towels with the couple’s name, seashells, and saltwater taffy. If you are planning a risqué bachelorette party, put in garter belts, edible chocolate, mini bottles of champagne. Whatever the theme of your event, carry it through to the swag bag.
Integrate the actual container into the theme. The bag does not need to be an actual bag! We recently attended a garden tea party bridal shower where each guest left with a beautiful flowerpot filled with tea, flower seeds, macaroons, and other delights. If you aren’t feeling as crafty, then purchase plain paper or cotton bags in the color scheme of your event. You can then use décor elements from the event to literally tie in the theme. For example, if you are planning a country chic wedding, use colored twine and wheat stalks to tie and adorn the tops of the bags.
Select the contents with care. This is especially important when you are doing a networking event or bridal show. When you have other businesses that are adding gifts to the bag, limit the paper ads/business cards/postcards to a minimum. No one wants a beautiful bag filled with 50 pieces of paper! If you offer your collaborators the opportunity to add something to the bag, ensure that if they add marketing material that it adds something of value to the bag. For example, instead of just a business card, the business could include a specialty item specific to that area (a bag of coffee if in Seattle, a Ghirardelli chocolate bar if in San Francisco, etc.) then tie the business card onto the gift. This will not only make the bag sought after, but will also improve the chances that the attendee will take a second look at the business card.
See below for more inspiration!
Sara and Vito are every bit a couple with a rock & roll edge, and a whole lot of sweetness thrown in! Which is why Divine Diva Events chose a dramatic location, Paradise Point Resort & Spa, with the California sunset in the background, mimicking the bold beauty of Sara’s tattoos, and ensured that there would be an elegant dessert bar for guests to add that touch of sweetness. Tattoos and tennis shoes, Swarovski crystals in the sunset as they said their vows, a menu with candy inspired flavors throughout, and a whole lot of dancing to their favorite music was the spirit of the evening.
Images are by the talented team at Melissa McClure Photography, (All Rights Reserved). (Makeup by Beauty Ever After.)
The gorgeous cake was by Edelweiss Bakery. Florals by Embellishmint Floral brought together the toughness and sweetness that the couple embrace. The favors were of course candy inspired, as was the dessert bar, with an emphasis on their favorite sweets: cookies. The couple’s love for all things sweet is a mutual passion that initially sparked their interest in one another, as was their love of music.
The Diva herself wishes them many sweet years together as they dance off into the sunset.
6/21/2013 1 Comment
Glitz, Glam, and The Great Gatsby
If you are like us, then you donned a flapper gown and saw The Great Gatsby movie premier this spring. Baz Luhrman’s rendition of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic tale did not disappoint. Viewers shared in all that Fitzgerald’s roaring 1920’s novel celebrated: love, fast cars, parties, booze, and the glamorous life. This inspired us to dream up some of the art deco glam and passion of that age into an elegant wedding.
The couple-to-be could have an entire themed wedding, including encouraging guests to wear Gatsby inspired garb, or there could just be simple art deco touches throughout. Either way—there are endless possibilities when tying in the unique design and fashion of the age.
Think feathers, black and white bold lines, pearls, champagne, and diamonds!
Photo Credit: Martha Stewart Weddings
Guys and Dolls: Glamorous Fashion
Photo Credit: Broke Ass Bride.
Photo Credit: Martha Stewart Weddings
Photo Credits: Parekh Cards
4/26/2013 2 Comments
Image: colincalvert via Flickr.
There is nothing that exudes spring more than a backyard wedding!
With the smell of fresh lilacs, mowed lawns, and BBQ, come the hope of spring and the promise of summer. For those of you who are event and wedding coordinators, we know that half of the hassle is selecting a location for your clients. It can be a struggle to find the perfect location with an open date and ability to meet all of your client’s requirements. For those of you who are brides-to-be or someone planning to host an event or wedding, we know that you also feel this pain!
Which is why we decided to highlight the oft forgotten space that most have readily available to them, (minus the cost and contracts, no less!): Your very own backyard.
The humble backyard may seem boring to some, yet they can be transformed into a beautiful oasis for an event or wedding. Whether you are planning an elegant affair, modern wedding, or intimate floral inspired baby shower, you can utilize your yard to create the perfect setting.
A few hints:
Hire a professional landscaper and handyman. In a matter of days you can overhaul your yard by trimming trees, adding plants, building a gorgeous fire pit area, creating a pond or waterfall, or adding a deck, to name a few things. But if you are not a DIY’er or professional landscaper, we urge you to hire professionals! There is nothing worse than spending hours and money on a yard to have all of the foliage wilt away because it was planted wrong! Spending a little extra on a professional not only makes your yard beautiful for the event, but also is an investment in you or your client’s home’s future.
Think outside the box. You don’t need to focus on rustic flowers and foliage just because you are outside and in a familiar space. You can bring in candelabras, hanging chandeliers, modern furniture.
Pretend it is a rented location! Treat the space as if it were rented for the day; hire cleaners the day before and after, especially if you are a bride-to-be. There is nothing worse than having to clean up after your own wedding!
So as the old adage goes, once you are married, things get steamy in the boudoir (if they haven’t yet already!) As a planner you obviously focus on the wedding, however, so much can go into the romance around the actual wedding night. There are boudoir photo shoots, decorating the honeymoon suite, and even honeymoon photo shoots of the blissed out couple! Basically, it is your job to ensure not only that their big day is seamless, but also that they enjoy their wedding night even more!
For example, many brides-to-be feel the best that they have ever felt in their life prior to the big day; they’ve been working out, are in love with their future partner, and feel sexy! Which is why many brides are choosing to get their boudoir pictures done in a classy boudoir photo shoot. This can be a fun activity for their bridal party to do, together, or it can be something that the bride can do alone. Either way, the images from a gorgeous boudoir shoot is the perfect gift a bride can give her groom on the big day. See below for a few of our favorite boudoir shoots. (Images by Laquel Wright Photography.)
At DDE, we also have many special packages for decorating the bridal suite for the wedding night. Something as simple as outfitting the honeymoon suite with the couple's favorite bottle of champagne, late night treats, plush robes, candles and roses, adds that special touch to an already perfect day.
The main things to think about are: the couples favorite beverages (alcoholic and non), simple food (many times they have forgotten to eat all day), something elegant that the bride can slip into, candles and flowers for ambience, and an overall color theme to bring it all together.
And yet another fabulous idea is to plan for “The Morning After” photo shoot, i.e. a shoot of the happy couple on their honeymoon. This is a great way for the couple to capture their beauty after all of the formal pictures and excitement of their actual wedding day. Some of our couples have enjoyed these images even more than their wedding pictures. Partly because they are natural, relaxed, and blissed out from their first night together as a married couple! This takes a bit of coordinating, especially if the couple is going out of the country on their honeymoon. However, it is worth it, and is a way to create lifelong memories of their first night together.
This was a gorgeous wedding that DDE coordinated for Mika and Wes. The bride loved all things purple, so we stayed true to her desire of having a Purple and Lavender color palette. These bold colors never go out of style, they represent royalty, love and power; a great start to a marriage, don't you agree? I've selected some of the best images (Photography by Ryan Bethke) to inspire you in design, decor and beyond!
Below is a color palette we created in our COLOURLovers account to stay true to the bride's wishes. It is always helpful for coordinators and designers to create a few different palettes for your clients to chose from to ensure that you are on point.
We incorporated flowers throughout the decor, fashion, and cake in order to get natural pops of purple in different elements of the wedding.
Adding a metallic like silver to the the tablescape glams up the feel, and gives this classic color an edge.
Using color palettes to gauge your client's exact color desires, incorporating natural elements of the color into the decor, and utilizing complimentary metallics, all are great ways to enhance your use of color as an event designer or coordinator.
After an eventful day, The Diva wraps up another successful wedding with the happy couple.
Location, Location, Location!
The first thing that the bride and groom to be and I talk about is the location of their dream wedding. Sometimes couples may feel overwhelmed because they are unsure of where to start, what location will match their theme, guest limits, available dates, etc. Without having the support and direction of a wedding planner, some couples spend many weekends driving in search of their ideal wedding location. To give you some inspiration, I've come up with my top five most divine locations in the Southern California area: Terranea Resort, Vibiana, Shutters on the Beach, Langham Huntington Hotel & Spa, and Chateau de Beverly Hills
Some of these are hidden gems, while some are well known. I've been involved with many successful events at each location and highly recommend them.
Terranea Resort has the gorgeous backdrop of Catalina Island. This is a location that will blow your guests away. The resort has 102 oceanfront acres that house many different bungalows and casitas. With a feel of the Mediterranean and the convenience of being in Southern California, this resort has it all. They cater to both intimate and large weddings. Below are the three primary locations within the resort.
Catalina Point - Situated on the bluff of the beautiful Palos Verdes coastline, Catalina Point is the premier ceremony location in Southern California, where only the bride, groom and the ocean come between the guests and Catalina Island. Seats up to 300 guests.
Ocean Lawn - Framed by spectacular views of the Point Fermin coastline, few moments are as dramatic as the entrance of a bride at an Ocean Lawn ceremony. Seats up to 500 guests.
The Meadows - Extending from the Grand Ballroom, the Meadows offers an unparalleled venue for grand elegance, California-style. With the sky and ocean bathed in warm oranges, pinks and reds by the setting sun, and the Point Vicente lighthouse just across the cove, weddings on this spacious lawn are unforgettable. Seats up to 1,000 guests.
Vibiana, the formal Cathedral of St Vibiana, is a Los Angeles treasure. It is one of Los Angeles' few remaining nineteenth century landmarks. This location is for the couple that loves history, baroque style architecture, and the glamour of the city. Depending on the style of wedding that you are planning, Vibiana can hold up to about 700 guests. There are grand windows that provide you with a view of the city, and an intimate garden courtyard that can be transformed into whatever your senses desire.
Shutters on the Beach
Shutters on the Beach is the quintessential beach wedding location with a glamorous twist. Shutters is located in Santa Monica, with the sand and charisma of the beach literally at your doorstep. This location is perfect for the laid back couple that also wants to have the world-class amenities for their guests of a resort. There are many different floor plans and locations within Shutters that can accommodate a small or grand affair.
Langham Hotel and Huntington Spa
The Langham Hotel is located in Pasadena in the pristine suburbs of San Marino. This historic location has not only a luxurious history and excellent traditions of impeccable service, but it is located on lush grounds. This space is also perfect for the bride who is a Spa Diva! The lady of the hour can relax at the Huntington Spa the day of the wedding. The Huntington Spa is a world renowned spa and provides all of the necessary amenities needed to look your best on your wedding day!
Chateau de Beverly Hills
Chateau de Beverly Hills, Located in Beverly Hills, is decadent and for the couple that desires an extravagant wedding with an intimate group as capacity is 150 people. The property is 36,000 square feet complete with a tennis court, elaborate pool and a perfectly manicured lawn to provide the ideal grounds for any event. You will feel lie you are at your own estate n your wedding day. This location provides you with an elegant backdrop to create your own luxe atmosphere.
11/26/2012 3 Comments
With the holidays come celebration, family, friends, and of course, home. Just because you are having an intimate family dinner at home doesn't mean you can't create a beautiful tablescape that is worthy of a luxurious wedding! I've come up with a cheat sheet for you, as well as a few inspiring tables we've found. Your family and guests will undoubtedly be impressed with your hostessing skills!
A few easy tips to remember:
Pick a theme...
First off, you must decide what feeling you are trying to evoke: rustic, glamorous, exotic, casual, etc. Make sure that you use this theme throughout your decision making process when selecting your color scheme, centerpieces, florals, etc. For example, if you are aspiring for a rustic feel, make sure to select colors and textures that express that; i.e. think warm color tones and different textures by incorporating burlap and twine. Whereas if you are going for more of a glamorous feel, you would use cool tones, whites, metallics, and clean lines.
Use what you have...
Once you've selected a theme, look around your home and see what you have. Many times, there are great objects in your home that you can incorporate into your tablescape. For example, you may have many unused glass floral vases and/or interesting glass bowls. These can be filled with holiday metallic ornaments, different items in your color palette, branches that you've painted, stones, or floating florals, to name a few ideas. Some of my best ideas have come from using something ordinary that can be found in any home, to create an extraordinary tablescape.
Don't be afraid to step outside of the "Holiday" box...
Even though you may be tempted to use green and red, fake snow, and poinsettias-remember that bold color choices (even a little zebra print!) can still evoke the holiday spirit! I challenge you to stray away from the "norm". You are more likely to wow your guests if you do the unexpected.
There are many ways to put your own personal touch on the table, from the placemat to the napkin rings. For example, even if it is a small event, with just five of your closest friends, you can still make unique place cards with their names. For example, paint five stones a metallic color and then write their names on each stone. The stone can be placed on their respective plates. For more of a rustic feel, gather pine cones (or purchase at a craft store); write each name on a small card and place within the pine cone in front of each plate. Bling out a christmas ball ornament in rhinestones with the monogrammed initials of each guest. There are many simple craft ideas that will add that extra personal touch.
Make sure to HAVE FUN and be creative with decorating your table this holiday season; please share your pictures with us!
Happy Holidays to you and yours,
LaShawn Denise Witt, Founder of DDE
La Shawn is Founder, Head Diva and Coordinator Extraordinaire of events and weddings at DDE. Stay linked to all that fresh and luxe in the bridal industry by following DDE's blog.