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Serving Up in Style

Food is for more than just nourishment! It should taste good AND look good. Like the stunning detail of this gorgeous painted plate, for starters.

It’s spring party season, with celebrations and gatherings a-plenty.  Time to express your unique style with a colorful table.  Why not mix all of your favorites?

Don’t forget the china…pick handmade pieces and blend patterns!

 

Or step out with some serious whimsy…

 

 

Whatever inspires you, go above and beyond at your next soiree. Wow guests with plating and spectacular food displays!


We’re Having ‘Tulle’ Much Fun

Leap into spring and embrace the warmth! We are loving everything tulle and getting very inspired by the contemporary ballerina. Embrace your inner pink self and start pulling inspiration for your wardrobe, your food, and even your home decor.

Take, for example, this truly stunning wedding dress…

 

Or perhaps add some tulle to your flowers…

 

And even add it to your table decor for a nice spring outdoor evening.

 

Make your flower girls feel even more like princesses than they already are.

 

And we never forget about shoes…

 

Happy Spring!

 


Our Current Crush: Velvet

Winter weather is making an exit, but there’s still a bit of a chill in the Spring air… and while the lines have been blurred between what is socially acceptable in what season (I’m talking to you “White after Labor Day”) – we like to think VELVET can work in any season if done well. Here are some examples to inspire your wardrobe, your wedding, and your life!

Have a fun and fresh outdoor party and line your table with velvet for some texture

Add a velvet bomber to your springtime wardrobe

Are you redecorating? Think about adding some velvet touches to your living room.

You can even walk on velvet!

And how can we talk about velvet without talking about red velvet CAKE!


LET THEM EAT CAKE!

No for real… No one should be denied dessert.

We at AE Events have been diligently attending tastings with our clients in anticipation of their spring events. All of the discussion of: Which salad? Should we serve beef or fish? Do we even know any vegans?! – comes to a screeching halt when dessert is served. Even though everyone has claimed up to that point, “OMG, I’m so stuffed!” somehow, there is always room for dessert.

I could probably talk about dessert for hours – and while Italian pastries (cannolis, eclairs, and cookies, etc…) are never wrong in my opinion – I am going to focus this particular blog on Celebration Cakes.

When I turned 30 my husband did not heed the advice of the bakery and ordered a cake way too big to serve the 35 guests we had in attendance. I still appreciate that he took the effort to get the cake, but I think we ate that cake until I turned 31. Regardless, it was delicious and from Konditor Meister.

Rule #1. Consider exactly how many guests might eat cake. If you’re serving other desserts in addition to the cake, you can often cut the number of slices down. Ask the bakery what they recommend based on your guest count and mini pastries…. I mean “other desserts.”

 

We had a client who really wanted a personalized cake to celebrate her birthday. We turned to Cakes to Remember and Ellen was able to turnaround sketches for approval and then baked and hand-painted the details on this cake.

Rule #2. Don’t be afraid to personalize. It’s your celebration and it should reflect you! This goes for wedding cakes too!

So many fillings! At a recent tasting we tried 4 different fillings for the cake. Discussion turned to which tier should be what… what will people like? What do we like? While a crazy cake that looks like the DeLorean from Back to the Future is really cool (see Rule #2) – if the inside is some bizarre flavor like roasted artichokes with chocolate sprinkles* – you’ll probably have a lot of leftover cake. *note, I have never seen this flavor, nor do I want to. However, I had a bat mitzvah client who wanted a rainbow cake – it totally fit her theme and crowd and everyone thought it was awesome.

Rule #3. Know your audience. You can personalize the interior to a point, but if this is your only dessert and you’re hosting 250 guests for your wedding, think about “majority rules” for at least one tier.

Some of our clients get overwhelmed with all of the options out there for their celebration and when it comes to the cake, they just… can’t even. So in those moments of despair, we remind them that keeping it simple is always elegant, always chic and always beautiful.

Rule #4. When in doubt, simple always works. As long as the cake is delicious, who says it has to be a thousand tiers high with edible gold paint and alternating layers of special cherries flown in from Turkey? (yeah, google “largest cherry producing country” – fun fact!) If that’s your thing, we understand, but sometimes a simple cake like this can make an equally delicious statement, like this one from the Dominican Republic

In the end, even if you don’t follow the rules above, cake is delicious.


Stepping Into Spring Like…

We’re in love with all of the floral patterns that have been blooming in anticipation of spring’s arrival.  Whether for your home, your spring wardrobe or a celebration you’re planning, these fresh ideas will make your world blossom!  Check out some of our faves…

 

1. As we step into warmer weather, lets start with the shoes… you can paint the town floral in these stilettos we found on Easy.  A great excuse for a pedi, as if anyone needs one!

2. Add some splash to an invitation or personal note cards… we’re obsessed with DIY envelope liners.

3. Shed that coat and curate a new look celebrating the season.  Sometimes mixing patterns – a floral with a stripe – can add an air of sophistication!

4. Vintage china patterns can be a great source of inspiration too.

5. For more subtle patters check out laser-cut or lace, for us it’s the bolder the pattern, the better!


Bloom on!!


What I Learned from My First Week of Work

Hello world!  My name is Phoebe Allen, the most recent addition to the AE Events team and I could not be happier about it.

Since my graduation in 2015, I have been working part-time jobs and trying to figure out this thing called life. When I accepted the offer to join the team at AE Events, it was my first full time ‘big girl’ job…and I knew my life was changing for the better.

I grew up in Brookline, right in Washington Square.  I went to Skidmore College, and graduated with a major in economics and a minor in business and management. What you would not know about me from my resume is that I have an English springer spaniel whose name is Tucker who may or may not be my best friend.

 

Other interesting facts about me are that my favorite color is light pink, mint green, or olive green depending on the day, and I have a major sweet tooth.

I had been in the job hunt for a very long time, so when the position at AE Events worked out, I was through the roof and decided to take some time to reflect on my first week here.  The first thing that made me smile when I walked through the door was that I had my very own desk!  As you can tell this was very exciting for me.  After the paperwork was signed I got to work; and I was actually already busy, which I didn’t mind one bit.  I definitely thrive off of a busy schedule with many projects going on at once.  I went to Paper Source and bought a planner that came with stickers, which genuinely made me so happy.

I also created this list of tips to help me navigate my first week:

8 Tips for Your First Week of Work:

1 – Dress so you feel like the best version of yourself

2 – Get to work early no matter what

3 – Pack a really good lunch, you’ll look forward to it, and bring snacks

 

4 – Get a cool water bottle and drink up

 

5 – Don’t be afraid to dive in

6 – Buy things for your desk that make you smile and excited to be here. It could be as small as a fun stapler!

7 – Re-read your first couple of emails more times than normal

8 – Breathe, everyone was new at one point in their lives

My main message to anyone out there trying to figure out your career, is that there is no straight path.  You make a road for yourself and follow it.  Never compare yourself to your friends.  Always be willing to try new experiences, and give yourself time to reflect and understand what you like and don’t like; because at the end of the day this is your life.

Five months ago I was so miserable trying to find a job, that at Thanksgiving my cousin asked me why I looked so droopy…but everyone has to go through those low moments to catapult them into a new direction.

Go find your catapult and trust it.

 


Flipped

From the desk of Christine Altieri…

I have been feeling a bit upside down lately. So much happened in 2016…some wonderful, some not so wonderful…2017 will be a year of seeing the world a little differently.

I thought I would take that feeling and “flip” it around as a topic for my blog. Event design is all about the plan: What is the mission of the event? Who are the bride and groom? What is the company brand? When designing events, we ask perhaps the most important question: What is the look and feel for the event? Are we looking for symmetry, or non-symmetry? Are we working with perfect lines, or meandering aisles? What shall we put on the tables, the floor? But sometimes we like to flip the event world on its head, and design from above.

Negative space is what we like to call it…high ceilings, tent peaks, heavy ceiling beams…the open sky. Filling in negative space with what feels right, and takes what is below and brings it above. I practice yoga, and joke that my best poses are on my head. But standing on my head, or my arms, gives me a different perspective…it makes me look at what is possible.

 

Here are some samples of filling negative space, and turning the event on its head:

Creating a Beirgarden inside, and giving it a modern twist with a chandelier made of hops.

Cyclorama 1

Since a tent can very cold and have hard edges, fabric can make the tent feel softer and more approachable. Filling in the ceiling with fabric can warm the space and add softness to the tents hard edges.

2014-04-05 22.24.36

Or Lighting can create a sky above, perhaps a canopy of trees.

2012 tent

Or what about an upside down marsh along the Charles River, and then dance under it?

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An organization that is all about reading and books, let us create book sculptures that created an interesting visual and carried their message through out.

NP 826 Boston 2012

These are just a few examples of bringing the design above, there is so much you can do if you just take a moment to look up!


Meet Ronnie!

 

We are thrilled to introduce you to our newest team member – Event Assistant, Ronnie Ayers! 

What was your life like before AE?

I am originally from Seattle, WA (Go Seahawks!) and attended Boston College. After graduation I began working in Human Resources at a Financial Firm in Boston while occasionally flying to Seattle to help with weddings. Best way to compile frequent flyer miles!

seattleseahawks22012

What was it about AE Events that appealed to you most?

I appreciate the wide spectrum of events that AE covers. I have planned weddings and smaller non-profit fundraisers in Seattle, so I saw this as an amazing learning opportunity to expand my experience and soak up all the knowledge of the Boston event-planning world.

If you could plan any event in the world- what would it be and why?

A Royal wedding – it is the perfect balance of tradition, romance and extravagance. There are limited events in which the whole world is on the guest list! Plus – who wouldn’t want to be a part of a real life fairytale?

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 29: TRH Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge smile following their marriage at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London, England. The marriage of the second in line to the British throne was led by the Archbishop of Canterbury and was attended by 1900 guests, including foreign Royal family members and heads of state. Thousands of well-wishers from around the world have also flocked to London to witness the spectacle and pageantry of the Royal Wedding. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

What are your hobbies outside of AE Events?

I enjoy finding difficult hikes with rewarding views at the top, cooking, taking a spin class, or relaxing with a nice Netflix binge.

What are three words to describe AE Events?

Innovative, reliable, passionate

What is your favorite thing to do in Boston?

Strolling through the Public Garden and down Newbury Street. There is always something new to see.

boston-public-garden

What is the #1 thing you can’t go into work without?

Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. When in doubt, there is always a cup of coffee glued to my hand. I also must have a rockin’ playlist to start my day off right on my commute into work! One go-to song: Geronimo by Sheppard.

ronnie-pic


As Crisp and Golden as an Apple

From the desk of Event Manager, Elizabeth Boates… 

“Autumn seemed to arrive suddenly that year. The morning of the first September was crisp and golden as an apple.”
J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

With another Labor Day weekend under our belts, it’s official – we say goodbye to the blissful long days of summer and hello to fall fashion, football and back to school! I personally have always loved fall and am consistently inspired to find new ways of incorporating autumn inspiration into our events. Some of my favorite events we’ve designed have been for schools. So we figured, what better way to kick off September than to highlight some of the fantastic events we’ve done that put a special spin on education…

Untitled826 BostonNight of 1,000 Stories
Artists for Humanity Epicenter

It seems so simple, but there is so much you can do with books as decor. For 826 Boston’s annual fundraiser, stories were literally cascading from the ceiling! With strands of book pages hanging from the rafters and a little mood lighting, we transformed the room.

We’ve also used books as table decor. For Excel Academy’s annual Celebration of Excellence, we brought the “tools of school” onto the dinner tables in a clever way, covering old books with a new cover to create the table number and wrapping beautiful sunflower centerpieces with a row of pencils for a unique, academic look. The books were then used in the classrooms and library, and the pencils were given to the students.

RCP-150617-017Excel AcademyCelebration of Excellence
Exchange Conference Center

The following year for Excel Academy, we added a fresh spin by creating table runners made to look like oversized rulers. Not only is this a great way to change up your typical table décor, but the runners also served as an excellent branding piece.

160602-0014-2Excel Academy – Celebration of Excellence
Exchange Conference Center

A clever centerpiece I loved were the collegiate pennants we used for the Boston Collegiate Charter School. The pennants each represented a college and were added to the floral designs at each table.

IMG_3931[1]Boston Collegiate Charter School – Collegiate Trivia Cup Challenge
Dorchester, MA

Whether you use them for a table number or to a create a sculpture like the example below, books represent a timeless piece that can immediately add beauty to the table.

Untitled2826 Boston – Night of 1,000 Stories
Moakley Courthouse

So welcome back to all of the students in the Boston area – we can’t wait to see what new and academic event design you inspire this year!


Long Awaited Days of Summer!

From the desk of Senior Event Manager, Chrissy…

After living here for almost 5 years, I’ve become a true believer that after our long, cold winters no one appreciates the warm weather more than New Englanders. The moment the thermostat hits 75 degrees patios and decks open around the city and fill with eager Bostonians soaking up every ounce of Vitamin D they can before the leaves start to change a few short months later. That being said, we wanted to take this opportunity to share some fun ideas on how to celebrate the summer in style!

The summer is a time to embrace being outside, so don’t be afraid to incorporate all that the outdoors have to offer. Maybe a small petting zoo or pony rides are the perfect way to have your guest interacting with both each other and nature!

IMG_1855
Farm animals not your thing? Keep it simple and set up classic lawn games for your guests to play – corn hole, can jam, and croquet are all great options!

When thinking through food and beverage, try to keep things seasonal and fresh. Traditional BBQ fare set up as a buffet will always be a hit at a backyard bash, but maybe switch up a classic dish or cocktail to make things interesting. At an recent event, we served a watermelon, strawberry sangria using rose wine rather than the traditional red or white – to say the least it was a hit!

BBQ
Finally, don’t be afraid to embrace the one-of-a-kind look and feel that comes along with outdoor, summer events in your décor. Imagine picnic tables adorned with local wildflowers in mason jars, or food served on blue speckled dishes and tea towels being used as napkins.

Table decor

Table w umbrella

Cheers to an amazing summer filled good times, great food and lots of events in the sun!

Special thanks to our friends at Forklift Catering, Sperry Tents, and Be Our Guest Rental for partnering with us to execute some of our fun, summer ideas! 

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