Alchemy Chatter

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Our Weddingful Summer

September 28, 2017

Long time no blog! It’s been a crazy wedding summer for us Alchemists and frankly, it’s been a bit difficult to find the time to write anything other than proposals for new clients and revisions for existing clients. This summer we were thrilled to work on five amazing weddings and we are over the moon with each and every one of them.

Variety is the spice of life and each wedding this summer was very different from the next. Three of our clients requested dramatic color palettes for their weddings, while two brides preferred soft neutrals. We went from tight and structured arrangements with no greenery and masses of red and purple blooms to pink, coral, and purple tones, a very natural look, and touches of greenery. Then to a bride requesting cascading lush greenery with deep jewel toned flowers and fruit to accent a virtual forest of leaves. We only had one request for white flowers with just a hint of blush and one request for soft greens and whites for a garden look. We don’t know if bold color is a trend, but our fingers are crossed.

Two of the weddings we worked on this summer were out of town. One at The Grand Bohemian Hotel Mountain Brook in Birmingham, Alabama – Olivia’s hometown – and one at the gorgeous Old Edwards Inn in Highlands, North Carolina. Four weddings had big bands for their entertainment, while another hired a DJ. We worked at hotels, event venues, and a private home. One wedding of 300 guests declined to do any assigned seating and it worked out perfectly, but four-fifths of the weddings chose elongated estate tables for the bride and groom and the full wedding party. Two couples elected to hire videographers and three declined to video their weddings. Two brides wore strapless gowns while the others eschewed strapless. Two gowns were made of romantic intricate lace while three were made in classically gorgeous rustling taffeta. There were white bouquets, colorful bouquets, and even a bouquet with a photo charm we created on-site to the teary surprise of both the bride and her mother.

Photography: (Left Photo) – Virgil Bunao Photography, (Right Photo) – Reichman Photography

We’ve truly had a busy and creative summer and we couldn’t be happier with the challenging work, the exhaustion, the constant laughter, and the results. We already miss our clients. Cheers to each and every couple who chose to work with us Alchemy gals and thank you for allowing us to be part of your big day. Now, back to work!

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Taking It On The Road

August 9, 2017

We’ve been making our lists and checking them twice. Actually, we’ve been making many, many lists and checking them over and over again. The Alchemists have been hitting the road this summer and a lot like the late great Johnny Cash*, we feel like we’ve been everywhere, man!

*Actually, Johnny covered “I’ve Been Everywhere” which was first recorded by an Australian singer and then later adapted by Hank Snow, known as the “The Yodeling Ranger.” Must be accurate and honest – no fake news !

We Alchemists crossed the desserts bare, man, for work in Las Vegas. We also breathed the mountain air, man, for work at North Carolina’s gorgeous Old Edwards Inn. And to round out the summer fun, we also headed to the Yellowhammer State for a fabulous wedding in Birmingham and swam in the Atlantic during downtime for events at The Cloister.

Venue: Old Edwards Inn | Photo: Lady A Photography

Left Venue: Callaway Gardens | Right Venue: The Cloister

We really do enjoy taking our party show on the road. We are all ready to fly into the wild blue yonder, but more often than not, Ashley gets behind the wheel of the big rig and Olivia plays passenger and navigator. The rest of the team travels behind at a safe distance. There are snacks, laughter, and a lot of camaraderie. There is also a bit of carsickness upon occasion and we’ve been ranking rest stops and roadside attractions all along the way.

 

Where will we be this fall? Much is still to take shape, but we do have some fun excursions planned. That being said, we’ll be happy to stay put and create some gorgeous affairs in the ATL, at least for a little while!

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Be Our Guest

June 16, 2017

We decided to mix things up this week at Alchemy Event Studio and call on linen and drapery extraordinaire, Sanders Hulsey of Party Tables. The Alchemists know ALMOST everything there is to know about him, but we decided to dive a little deeper and introduce him to all our loyal readers…you know who you are!

Now welcome to the Alchemy Stage – Mr. Sanders Hulsey:

Alchemist – “Tell us a little about yourself.”

Sanders – “Well I have been in the industry a long time. My Alchemy Jersey number is 97 if that gives you any hints…I started at C & A Signature Events as an Event Designer and I just had a flair for decorating. I have now been with Party Tables for 9 years and the title I have given myself is ‘Sales and Marketing’ but I do everything from selling and designing events with Party Tables inventory, to totin’ and schlepping. All in all, I make things pretty!”

 

Alchemist – “What is one thing that people don’t know about you?”

Sanders – “I am a stand-up comedian in my spare time, but I don’t perform nearly as much as I’d like however…mainly cuz it don’t pay the bills.”

 

Alchemist – “If you were requesting your last meal, what would it be?”

Sanders – “Since I’m boujee, I would like some ceviche and some fresh fish from the Caribbean Islands with pizza on the side. Who cares about being healthy at that point?” (In case this made you as hungry as it did us – we have a ceviche recipe handy!)

 

Alchemist – “How did you end up in the event industry?”

Sanders – “Very much by chance. It was one of those things where I was a part time set up person at C & A Signature Events. I went on to be part owner and that is where it all began.”

 

Alchemist – “What is your ‘typical’ day-to-day routine?”

Sanders – “Routine – that’s funny! The only thing that stays the same each day is my coffee intake…other than that, emails, trying to get the new show room ready for this Summer’s open house (Be on the look out for the date!), and putting out fires – you never know when there will be a linen emergency! (At this point in the interview, Sanders saw something shiny. ROUTINE. OVER.)

 

Alchemist – “If you were given the opportunity to have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?”

Sanders – “Charlize Theron because she’s hot, kickass, and funny – everything we all strive to be!” (We get to eat with Sanders often, so we aren’t offended it isn’t us!)

 

Alchemist – “What do you find is the biggest challenge in the industry?”

Sanders – “As a creative partner, I think one of the biggest challenges is getting everyone on the same page before the event. There are so many events that you get on site and vendors don’t know what part everyone is playing. Having detailed pre-con meetings to figure out the event logistics before day-of is always helpful, but it doesn’t always work that way.”

 

Alchemist – “What did you want to be when you grew up?”

Sanders – “I always wanted to be an actor or a pilot…certainly not a one-armed drape hanger!”

 

Alchemist – “What is your favorite hobby when you aren’t working?

Sanders – “Volleyball. I may eventually hit the court with my walker and an oxygen tank in tow, but I’m gonna play until they cart me off!” (BUMP, SET, SPIKE?)

 

Alchemist – “What is your favorite part of an event?”

Sanders – “Each event is so different and I have had so many memorable moments in my 20+ years in the industry, but my favorite part will always be when everything is set up, the client walks in and says ‘OH MY GOD. This is so beautiful!’ You know it was exactly what they were expecting and that is why I love doing what I do.”

 

Alchemist – “If you were stuck on a deserted island and could only have 3 things, what would they be?”
Sanders – “1. Snips 2. Zip Ties – so I could build a hut 3.Wifi – so I can check Instragram. Okurrr.” (Channel your inner Kardashian)

 

We really enjoyed sitting down, Barbara Walters style, to learn the inner workings of Mr. #PTFab! Thank you Sanders for agreeing to lay it all out for us over one of our favorite meals of the day (well…they are all our favorite). Since social media is all the rage these days, we encourage you all to go…right now…and follow Party Tables on Instagram! And if you aren’t friends with him already, what are you waiting for?!

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Our Holiday

June 1, 2017

Don’t get us wrong, every day at the Alchemy Event Studio is like a fantasy vacation. It’s like smooth sailing on a chartered Caribbean yacht vacation with Ben in the kitchen and Rocky in a mermaid tail on the deck. That being said, we all needed a break this Memorial Day. We are gearing up for some out of town events, a few fantastic weddings, and – as always – some creative problem solving for all of our clients, so a little recharging of the event batteries was just what the doctor ordered.

Bravo’s “Below Deck”

Alchemist Olivia took her talents to the beach with her posse of party girls. Two members of her squad are also official members of the Alchemy Foraging Team, so we were all for the ladies surfing and sunning. We may even allow Olivia to expense a round of drinks. Maybe.

Lady Kate also headed to the water, but Mrs. Stone was attending a wedding rather than working on a wedding. Congratulations to the happy couple and bonus points to Kate who (we hope) didn’t try to micromanage the wedding installation. It would have been good if Kate had applied sunscreen…really…

Sassy Ms. Miller enjoyed an Atlanta staycation. She was a pupsitter to Bulleit– we’re actually ready for her to take the poodle plunge and get one of her own – and she relaxed with friends. Ashley enjoyed some pool time and caught up on her TV viewing. The lady relaxed !

Ms. Saltzman’s Memorial Day was spent with master-level chess and reading Plato. Actually, Amy’s holiday weekend included lots of laundry and dishwasher unloading – bliss – along with friend time at various dining tables and swimming pools and a side of live music thrown in for good measure.

All in all, it was a great holiday for all of the Alchemists and we hope it was a wonderful weekend for our friends and clients as well. Let’s not forget that all of this fun and relaxation is made possible by those who do the hard work so we can reap the rewards. A heartfelt thank you goes out to all of those in uniform. We do not lose sight of the sacrifices many have made and continue to make…

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Singing the Blues

May 2, 2017

We Alchemists love flowers. There really isn’t a flower we don’t love. It makes us sad to hear someone disparage Carnations – we say Dianthus – because we love their smell and en masse they are frilly fragrant gorgeous things. We love to create with Baby’s Breath – we say Gypsophila – because it’s light and unexpected and can be unpretentiously chic.

Left photo – Photography: Rebecca Yale Photography – Right photo: Photography: Drew Newman Photographers, Gallery: Bubble Bash

There is, however, one thing that can get florally tricky for us – the color blue. Blue is just tough… Scientists say that the color blue reduces stress, creating a sense of calmness, relaxation and order. That may be true when we ladies are on a beach looking at a clear sunny sky, but when a bride wants her wedding’s signature color to be blue, we tend to take a deep breath…

If not done well, we Alchemists feel that blue flowers can look “forced” and sadly a bit FTD. Truth be told, there aren’t a lot of gorgeous blue options in the flower world. There are certainly Hydrangea and Delphinium – tried and true – in a variety of shades, but other than these two blue beauties, it’s seasonal slim pickings…

So, what to do when blue is the request and it’s time to change it up from the usual? How do we make the client happy and keep from singing the blues at the same time? How can you use blue when it needs to be more substantial than the last “something” in the famous rhyme that begins, “something old, something new, something borrowed?” Well, sometimes you look elsewhere…

Left Photo: “Lady Sings The Blues” Poster – Right Photo: Lady Sings in Blue

We are currently designing a wedding for which we have purchased a good deal of beautiful blue Transferware vessels and accent pieces. Ask Alchemist and Warehouse Master Ashley how she feels about ALL of the new inventory! Blue and white pottery has been popular since way back when and it’s still fresh and on trend today. It will never go out of style. For this upcoming event, the beautiful color and classic look of the porcelain allow us the opportunity to open up the floral playbook while still delivering that blue “message”…

Sometimes we can best bring blue into an event with linens or stemware. Whether in a gorgeous tablecloth, pretty napkins, or a statement water glass, a little blue can go a long way. With amazing purveyors like Party Tables, I Do Linens, BBJ Linen Rental, La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, Wildflower Linens, Southern Vintage Rentals, and more, there is something for everyone’s taste and budget to let the blue shine through.

Photography: 2 Young Birds Photography

Requests for blue weddings are never going away and why should they? A company named Spoonflower conducted a long term study which determined that blue is by far the most popular color in the country, despite the last election results. It is here to stay, and when we Alchemists get requests from excited and eager brides who want their wedding to reflect America’s favorite color – their favorite color – we take our cue and find that “something blue”.

Photography: GK Photography – Gallery: Nuptials in NOLA 

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Coffee or Tea

April 18, 2017

Can one underestimate the importance of coffee and tea in the life of event folks? We think not. It starts the day, it’s a much-needed boost during event set-up and strike, and party guests always request it when clients have said there’s absolutely no need whatsoever to have coffee on hand! It’s heaven when it’s good and it’s a headache – literally – when you don’t have it.

The days here at Alchemy Event Studio always start with either coffee or tea and sometimes both. Baristas Olivia and Ashley have been honing their craft with our sassy Tassimo machine, but when their coffee stylings just won’t do, we love a run to uber delicious Dancing Goats Coffee Bar. We can’t recommend their coffee highly enough…

Atlanta also has a number of companies who provide upgraded and delicious coffee service at events. Bean in the Borough is one such company who can cappuccino with the best of them. Add branded coffee cups and sleeves and your event experience is that much more personalized. We Alchemists love the idea of a mobile barista ready to assist guests at the valet line as they retrieve their cars after a great party. People often talk about providing an exciting entrance for parties. Don’t forget to also make a memorable exit!

Let’s also not forget that even in this world of Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts, the most popular beverage on the planet is actually tea. From Afternoon Tea at The St. Regis Atlanta to icy cold sweet tea at our favorite barbeque places, tea in the South is not playing second fiddle.

Marietta’s Vintage English Teacup pays homage to the world’s most popular beverage but their beautiful china, platters, and stands will add a pop of color and pattern to any tabletop. Their Instagram hashtag is #jewelryforyourtable and we couldn’t agree more. Don’t equate tea with fussiness. We have a tea drinker among us at AES – a heavy duty tea drinker – whose presence is often signaled by a trail of green tea and oolong cans left in her wake. Now that these little cans of unsweetened tea can be ordered on Amazon Prime, lives have been made easier and anti-oxidants abound.

Photography: 2 Young Birds, Linen: Party Tables, Design and Floral: Alchemy Event Studio, China: Vintage English Teacup

Years ago the Florida Orange Juice Growers came up with the slogan, “It’s not just for breakfast anymore,” to promote their signature beverage. The same can certainly be said for OJ’s caffeinated cousins. Coffee and tea are for any time of day, make everything easier to muddle through, and should be given the fanfare they’re due. And if your day starts to drag and there’s no caffeine in sight, you may try another Alchemy Event Studio pick-me-up. It’s “Coffee Or Tea” by songstress Lisa Gail Allred. Enjoy. And don’t say we never gave you any good advice!

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Elvis Has Left the Building

April 5, 2017

“Elvis has left the building,” is that fantastic, now famous phrase used at the end of Elvis shows to alert concertgoers that The King had departed the premises and they shouldn’t be far behind. It’s also what we jokingly say when a wedding reception is over and the bride and groom have made their exit. These days the newlywed getaway can certainly be as unique and creative as the couple.

Many venues lend themselves to dramatic exits down beautiful staircases with petals tossed and friends lining the walkway. You’d be hard pressed to find a more spectacular shot than one taken of Four Seasons Atlanta’s grand staircase. The St. Regis Atlanta is another wonderful option for the photogenic staircase petal toss. We Alchemists are natural born fallers – sad, but true – so we passed on this type of exit for our own weddings. We do, however, love the look of it for those more graceful than ourselves!

In recent years, the confetti exit has become a fun way to send a couple off into their brave new married world. The photographs convey a real sense of energy and excitement and if your wedding has a particular color palette – say, blush and bashful – you can now even choose confetti in only your favored shades. We happen to love the fun whimsy of a real multi-color burst after a night of cream and bridal white, but it’s not up to us. Either way, do check with your venue first to see if they will allow a confetti exit. Confetti clean up can be a bit drastic!

Photography: Scobey Photography

A few years ago we participated in a wedding where the groom was an avid sportsman and hunter. At the couple’s send-off, beribboned duck calls were distributed to the guests. The bride and groom were not met with confetti as they departed, but instead they were met with cacophony. Duck calls are not inexpensive things – look at what they’ve done for the folks from “Duck Dynasty” – and this was an investment by the bride’s family to celebrate their new son-in-law. That evening we also learned that duck calls are things that take practice. The sound created was nothing that would attract a curious bird, but it did attract an unhappy visit and chat from hotel security. Live and learn!

Once out the door, the last step in a bride and groom’s picturesque departure is their choice of getaway vehicle. Some couples choose vintage Rolls Royces or Bentleys, some choose to get into adorable balloon dressed pedicabs, and still others may opt for more Elvis-like vehicles in which to make their departure. Either way, when it’s time for Elvis to leave the building, brides and grooms should always do it in their own style. Duh!

Photography: Derek Shane Fotos

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On-site Style

March 22, 2017

It’s a glamorous job, this event planning and event designing. Every day is different and every day is nothing like what we thought it would be! It involves hanging out alongside nasty reeking dumpsters and grease pits on venue loading docks. It involves crawling on all fours in ballrooms, backyards, and boardrooms. Sometimes it even involves scraping dirty dishes in hastily rigged prep tents and then frantically searching the scrap bins for lost client jewelry. That being said, we also have to speak with clients and potential clients while looking like professional women and smile as gorgeous brides float down aisles. It’s yin and yang. So, what to wear for such dichotomous duties that often times mix the sacred and the profane all in the same day? Well, it can be a conundrum.

We Alchemists have a few “uniforms” but our on-site style is still evolving. All black is the gold standard, but we wanted to mix it up a bit. We took the advice of our clever friend and fashionista Sanders Hulsey with Party Tables when he suggested we get shirts with our “Class Of” on the back. People often ask what the numbers on the back of our shirts mean, and here’s the scoop – each Alchemist’s number is the year she first got into this business. Now you know. High numbers mean old knowing event hands at work. Low numbers mean youthful energy!

Alchemy Jerseys

Now, those in the biz know that nothing can cramp your style on event day quite like when your dogs are barking. We don’t mean when Stella and Samson are barking like they do at the FedEx driver, but when your feet really hurt. Working a party you can easily log 10,000 steps before lunch. Smart and comfortable footwear is a must. We love our teal colored Converse. We love simple black Yosi Samra flats. We even love our black Frye boots in winter and a super sassy pair of Birkenstocks with a good pedicure in summer. Variety is the spice of life, but comfort is our watchword and everyone’s feet are different. Kate would also remind everyone about arch support. She has arch issues…

Once the body and the feet are covered, the remaining details for our on-site dressing are really all about semi-stylish task efficiency. We Alchemists used to carry a bag with many MANY pockets for all we thought we might need on-site. The bags looked OK, but we were forever misplacing things inside the bags. You might be shocked at how many times you can you lose your phone while actually having your phone. Our new on-site tool belt – a small black Baggallini – seems to have helped a bit with that issue. The bag is very lightweight and can carry our pins, laser measurers, gaff tape, etc., but is it our last stop? Will this change again? Very possibly. Probably. If you have ideas for something else, the suggestion box is open!

So, are there any other Alchemist demands for on-site preparedness? In the end, it all comes down to the honest and cheesy truth that the best thing to wear on event day is a smile and an air of confidence from knowing that you’re prepared for whatever might come your way. The only way to get those things, however, is to do all the work beforehand and behind the scenes. You have to walk the nasty crusty loading dock before you get to welcome the client into the gorgeous atmosphere you created for them. If you do it right your feet won’t hurt in the process.

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What Happens When Things Happen

March 7, 2017

We Alchemists love our job for all the wonderful moments. You really can’t beat watching a bride’s father as he sees his daughter in her wedding gown for the first time or that moment when a groom sees his bride for the first time. It’s great stuff. But what about when things just don’t go as planned? That’s what separates committed and experienced teams – the real Planners – from what the great Marcy Blum calls “The Planettes”.

We can recall a wedding weekend with relentless rain. Really. It was a non-stop, canoes in the streets, Noah-like, deluge. Thank goodness there was a well thought out rain plan in place. That forethought provided the bride and groom with one of the most romantic ceremonies we have ever seen. We can also recall – still with a shudder – a ceiling treatment that seemingly didn’t want to be raised to the ceiling at all. It was just stubborn (and heavy). A ladder here and a hoist there, just a few more muscles, and we got it done. We were simply not going to be denied and experience taught us how to troubleshoot the challenge. Tablecloths on fire? It has happened. Medical emergencies? Check. A guest arriving with a large cooler of breast milk that needed to be stored? That too… Seen it, done it, waiting to resolve the next one!

First Image – Planner: Ashley Baber Weddings, Photography: The Scobeys, Gallery: Intimate in Autumn

Prospective clients often ask us to explain our pricing and many of them ask if they need a professional planning and event décor team at all. We always want to answer those questions with our own question, “What happens when things don’t go as planned?” It’s how those unanticipated issues are actually anticipated and fixed that earns event teams their stripes and that’s why the best teams may cost a bit more up front. We can save the day. What’s that worth to you?

Photography: NJM Photography, Gallery: Rise Up

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Four Legged Stars of the Show

February 21, 2017

Our Alchemy dogs are so important to us that we can’t imagine a special occasion without them. Actually, we can’t imagine a general run of the mill Tuesday without them, so here at the Alchemy Event Studio we have a “Dogs Welcome” policy. Samson Gray Stone and Stella Saltzman are in the office everyday greeting and growling at visitors, stealing each other’s toys, and generally keeping us happy and calm as we design our events. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that we love when pets are part of a bride and groom’s big day.

1st Photo: Photography – Laura Negri Photography, 2nd Photo: Photography – Denis Reggie Photographers, 3rd Photo: Photography – David Christensen Photography, Guido the Pug on Instagram

The question we always ask when a couple wants Fido in on the fun is, “How does your dog respond to strangers – lots of strangers – all at one time?” Some dogs love the attention and some pooches just have eyes for their biped parents so they don’t even notice the other guests, but for some dogs a wedding is a very stressful occasion. If that’s the case, perhaps you’ll want to find other ways to include your pooch in the festivities.

Planner Lindsay Sims of Toast Events worked with the geniuses at Hinote to design beverage signage to honor her clients’ dog. What about personalized canine coasters or take-home gifts for the guests’ pets who missed the party? The only limit is really your imagination!

Sign Design: Hinote, Photography: Almond Leaf Studios

Thanks to Invision Events for these precious dog treats!

However you choose to include your four-legged loves into the “Big Day”, know that the ladies of Alchemy are in full support. Samson Gray and Stella dig it too…

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Belly Up To The Bar

February 7, 2017

All respect to those teetotalers out there, we Alchemists like a cocktail. Accordingly, we love when clients embrace upgraded bar designs, interesting beverage packages, and clever bar accents and garnishes.

At a recent event, we were excited to debut the new oversized bar created by our friends and event partners at Collection Event Furniture Rentals. The bar made a serious statement – it’s more than 16 feet in diameter – and we knew that no one would ever have to wait for a cocktail. You may consider it Event Planning Rule #1, “Guests Shall Not Wait For Their Libations.” To that end we have used rustic carts, barrels, and even old doors to create fun and functional bar experiences for guests.

So, what to serve from these sassy bars? We have to say that the “signature beverage” at weddings and galas often tends to be too sweet for us, but that certainly doesn’t have to be the case. One bar-venturous couple with whom we had the pleasure to work had a beer brewed specifically for their big day. A heart on the bottle’s label marked the spot where the two tied the knot. Another client had their venue’s mixologist create something tasty with a boutique whiskey, which was decidedly delish and not at all cloying. Add a cute straw or garnish and who wouldn’t have a great time?!

1st Image – Photography: Rebecca Read Photography | 2nd Image – Photography: Robin Nathan Photography, Whiskey: American Spirit Whiskey | 3rd Image – 100 Layer Cake

For liability reasons and things our lawyers tell us, we have to go on record as saying that happiness can’t be found in a bottle (blah blah blah) but a great cocktail hour or a great cocktail party certainly can go a long way to creating a lively atmosphere. Take the edge off, put the edge on, relax from your work – whatever the case – at Alchemy Event Studio we fully embrace bellying up to the bar! Cheers!

Corporate Events, Alchemy Chatter, Eventologists

Eight New Rules of Revelry

August 8, 2016

   Excuse us while we revel in the spotlight for a quick moment, but we can’t help but enjoy our five minutes of fabulous in print.

Sized-Connect-Cover

We were honored to be included in the latest Connect Corporate feature on what’s trending in event design along with such rockstars as Justin Bolognino (founder and creative director of Meta) and Revelry Event Designers’ president and CEO Edgar Zamora.  A few tidbits to share:

It’s All About AR, Not VR

Sized-DecorFeature_Justin

“Everyone is in a tizzy over virtual reality, but augmented reality is the real game changer,” says Justin Bolognino. As you may know, AR is projecting digital information through a device, like a smartphone or iPad, so people can engage with each other. “You use your community to connect, and it’s way more powerful and ultimately the end goal,” he says. For more techie wisdom from Bolognino, click here to read more.

Old is New Again, But Only in Good Taste

Sized-DecorFeature_Zamora

Zamora stresses the art of presentation and the use of classic trends paired with something new, like a neon sign from the ‘80s with custom floral designs to create a sexy, moody affair. “You can have an event [with] the most expensive and luxurious [decor] in the world, but if you don’t display it correctly…forget it,” he says. Zamora shares a few other design mantras here.

When It Comes To Food, You Can Go High and Low

Shape-the-Seson-Rolling-Donut-Tree

Although one of our favorite party moments involved a 6 ft.-tall fir tree made from dowel rods filled with hot Krispy Kreme doughnuts, we also love to customize our menus to fit the occasion. For Krug Champagne president and CEO Maggie Henriquez, we asked the chef to create a lobster arepa, a nod to the classic Venezuelan dish. Why? She’s a fascinating woman from Venezuela who went to Harvard, lives in Paris and runs a classic European vintner, and this was her first visit to Georgia. It wasn’t a place for collards or pimento cheese. Want more? You know you do, so click here.

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Who needs sleep ?!

March 21, 2016

And the beat goes on…

It has been a doozy of a week and it doesn’t seem to stop, which is exciting and a great deal of fun for us ladies of Alchemy Event Studio. Sleep ? Who has the time for that ?

This past week allowed us Alchemy gals to wear so many different event hats ! For our client who asked for “classic and traditionally pretty,” we created a gorgeous wedding prototype with our friend and uber-planner Helene Popowski. On the other end of the spectrum we were proud to be part of the team that put together a small 1500 person affair for the Atlanta Hawks. The weekend then finished up with a combination of hip food trucks, Dennis Dean Catering, an amazing eleven-piece Cuban orchestra, and a lot of wonderful people contributing to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta in a never before used warehouse which needed a big facelift to get her ready for her party debut.

United Distributors Beer Well

With just three of us in the AES office none of this could be done without our amazing friends and partners who literally do all of the heavy lifting… literally. What do you do when you need almost 600 linear feet of black taffeta hung from the 40 foot ceilings of the United Distributors beer well ? We called our sweet Sanders Hulsey with Party Tables who said, “no problem”. When we needed multi-dimensional graphics with built in light elements, Cross Creek stepped up and made amazing things happen for us and for our clients. Looking for creative menus, fun and talented bartenders, and delicious sweet and savory treats ? Dennis Dean Catering made our clients so very happy… All in all, this week alone allowed us to partner with sixteen different companies in order to make our events exactly what our clients expected. That’s a lot of organization, but that’s also the result of a great deal of relationship building and nurturing. Thank you everyone !

This week we’re taking the Alchemy magic on the road to execute events for another of our fantastic clients. We’re very pleased to have the business. We’re also pleased to be able to make connections with other event professionals and expand our circle of partners. It’s what allows our events to be ever-changing and exciting. It also keeps the Alchemy life interesting. We’ll sleep in August !

 

Healthfest 2016, Alchemy Chatter, Chinese New Year, Party Tables

Happy Chinese New Year!

February 11, 2016

We know that Sunday night was Superbowl Sunday and we certainly enjoyed the nachos and the sliders and the cheese dip and the pigs in a blanket and the empanadas — BUT Monday was something else… It was Chinese New Year and the Year of the Monkey!

We take lunch very seriously here at Alchemy Event Studio. How can one be expected to be creative and detail focused without a healthy and delicious meal come mid-day ? That is why each day we begin discussing lunch around 10:30 AM. As we select linens and talk through color schemes and floral designs, lunch suggestions just get seamlessly woven into the event design chatter. When all is said and done we very often pile into Kate’s car and make a big dumpling run…

We love Polish pierogi and Russian pelmini and Japanese gyoza and we LOVE Chinese dumplings of all shapes and fillings. Have you had the soup dumplings on Buford Highway at Chef Liu? Amazing. How about shrimp filled Hargow at Canton House? Delicious. Steamed pork buns almost anywhere? Perfect. We love them all. And we love them all with a good dose of hot chili oil.

It’s never too late to wish everyone a Gong Xi Fa Cai (gong-zee-fah-chai) and suggest you all do what Alchemy did – go eat some dumplings to celebrate. We enjoyed them with one of our favorite industry peeps, Sanders Hulsey, from Party Tables at another one of our favorite dumpling spots, Hong Kong Harbour.

Cheers to Chinese New Year and all tasty foods stuffed into delicious wrappers!!

The Year of the Monkey

The Year of the Monkey

Parties, Dennis Dean Catering, Alchemy Chatter

A Night of Hip-Hop

January 25, 2016

Because of last week’s interview with uber talented Shawne Jacobs of Anne Barge, we missed an installment in the ongoing chronicles of life, love, and event design at Alchemy Event Studio. It was a busy week with prototypes and new client meetings, but the most remarkable part of the week may have been a dinner we helped to orchestrate for the founding men of hip-hop. We’d love to share the VIP guest list with you, but we don’t take confidentiality lightly here at AES ! Nevertheless, the host did give us permission to write about the evening.

Guests for this never-to-be-duplicated gathering came from California, New York and points beyond. While everyone knew one another, an evening like this has never before taken place. Everyone was treated to a delicious Southern-inspired meal by Dennis Dean Catering and over food and drink amazing conversation (and rhymes) started to flow.

Mini Chicken & Waffles with Jack & Coke Handpass

Mini Chicken & Waffles with Jack & Coke Handpass

The banter that night ran the gamut from the artists’ early days – friendships, rivalries, and the like – to current projects, favorite songs, and vivid memories of the beginning days of hip-hop and at around midnight, the discussions really started to deepen. Guests didn’t get back to their suites at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead until the wee hours of the morning. A Peabody Award winning film crew from the Big Apple shot the entire evening so our fingers are crossed that one day everyone will hear what we heard. Our lips are sealed, however. These little birdies don’t chirp the chit-chat.

Dinner Decor

Dinner Decor