Friday, November 7, 2008

{Q&A's with Author: Kimberly Schlegel Whitman}

Tablescapes and The Wedding Workbook
Author: Kimberly Schlegel Whitman
Published by: Gibbs Smith Publishing

Define the word “Tablescape”

A Tablescape is a table setting with style! I am a frustrated artist who can not paint or draw so I express myself thru creative tablescapes. The empty table is my blank canvas and I create my works of art (some are better than others!) by preparing the table for a meal.

Where do you find your influences for your tablescape projects?

I am influenced by things all around me all of the time. Sometimes my inspiration is found in a certain flower that has caught my eye. Sometimes by a centerpiece or container for those flowers. Other times I am inspired by a garden I have visited or a photo that I have seen or fashion. We should all keep our eyes open all of the time because there is inspiration everywhere around us!

Name 3-5 places you love to shop for fabulous tablescape pieces.

Antique Stores, Auctions and Garage Sales are really my favorite resources. I also love Madison, Porthault and At My Table (all in Dallas). My mother's china cabinet is not a bad resource either!!!

What, in your opinion, are the 3 most important elements to a good tablescape?

I don't think that there are really 3 essential elements for every table but I do think that careful and thoughtful consideration should be put into each one. Really think thru your meal and consider what will be needed. What plates will you need, silver, glasses, etc. Once you have the essentials taken care of you can play and have fun with the rest. I think that color schemes should be playful and fun. Not everything needs to be perfectly matched either. Use your imagination!

Why is it important to create a theme for your event?

I love themes because they help me make decisions. I have very eclectic taste had love so many looks and styles so a theme is a helpful tool to keep my look cohesive. Your theme can be as simple as a color or two colors or it could be as imaginative as a Winter Wonderland.

What did you learn about yourself, while writing and creating this beautiful book?

I learned that I have an even more wonderful husband than I realized! We were having a blast working on all of these tables together because I was pregnant and could not life anything heavy! He did so much work! It was a great reminder to really put your heart into the things you do for your family and friends, even setting the table.

As a design expert, what advice would you give to someone just starting out in the event
design business?

Work hard and be organized. It is important to get as much experience as you can. Help other professionals who you admire and learn from them. But...above all...don't be competitive with your peers in the industry. Putting together a great event takes teamwork!

Why should The Wedding Workbook be a must-have for every bride?

It is a great tool for staying organized and it is pretty enough that you can pull it out in years to come and browse thru it...almost like a scrapbook.

Besides being organized, what is the best piece of advice you could offer to a newly
engaged couple?

Stay calm and have fun. Remember that the wedding day is not only about you but also about your family and friends. Also...make a pact to hold hands and not separate at the reception. I am so sad when I see a Bride on one side of the room and the Groom on the other. They always say..."I hardly got to see you or dance with you!"

What would you recommend a bride to splurge on and where to scrimp back?

This is different for every bride. You should always select one area that is especially important and splurge there. Be dramatic with this one area and spend an extra special amount of time on it's preparations. For a foodie, this might be the meal. For a more visual person this might be the flowers. For a person with a passion for music, it might be the dj or band. Let your own personality and passions shine thru.

How can a bride create a luxury look without the luxury price tag?

Keep your eyes open for great values. Getting married can be very expensive so always look for bargains from the location to the dj... You can always ask for a better price too! Do not ask your guests to pay for anything more though. A Cash Bar is a no no! Your guests have already purchased you a gift and possibly travelled to celebrate with you.

What style trends do you predict will be popular in 2009?

I love color and would love to see the popular lavenders and plums that are so prevalent in our fashion choices show up at Weddings.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a "hair cutter." I still think that would be fun!

When did you first realize you had a passion for parties?

When I was planning my Idlewild Debutant party I fell in love with the process of planning a party. It satisfies my Type-A desire to organize things and my creative side too.

Who inspires you?

My parents are a great inspiration. They love to celebrate in style and love to socialize. They get great satisfaction out of spending time with their friends and meeting new people when they are attending or hosting events. My mother-in-law lives in Paris and has great style. She is always telling me about the next big trend or the most fantastic party idea.

What is the greatest aspect about your career?

I love the idea that I am helping create memories for people and celebrate the special moments in life.

How do you stay organized in your busy life?

I am a Virgo...super organized! I am also a "do-er" and I love to just dive in and organize. Being bossy doesn't hurt when it comes to organizing either! I love to organize and can't stand it when things are out of place so it comes very natural to me. Don't get me wrong though...there are many days when I am a mess and I will just stay up until three in the morning until I can get my act together and organized!

Does Lola keep you company during the day?

Sweet Little Lola follows me everywhere. She is ten years old now though so I don't travel with her as often as I used to. She gets uncomfortable sitting in the little bag on the plane for too long.

{Kim's Book Reviews}

I was truly honored to not only receive these absolutely gorgeous and extremely inspiring books, but to receive the time for this gracious Q&A session with Kimberly.  

Tablescape:  From the moment I laid my eyes on the front cover, I knew I would fall in love.  The pictures in this book are so rich and the writing style is so eloquent. It's definitely a must have book for every event planner, designer, stylist, florist, etc who truly enjoy being inspired by beautiful pictures and intimate details.  Every time I open up the pages, I see something new that I keep in my "some day to do list" for a client.  There are so many wonderful features, beautiful pages, and great inspirational pieces.  I know I'll use this book at many future appointments with clients when they are looking for design and color help!  The things that are showcased are also very practical and not super over the top to where it can be recreated affordably.  I adore it!!  As a matter of fact, it's going back on my coffee table right now!!

The Wedding Workbook: I was really excited to see why this book was unique in comparison to the other "planner" books out there.  Once I popped it open, I quickly figured it out.  It's beautiful, it's practical, and it allows for expansion of more, more and more!  The three ring binder part makes it very efficient in the fact that other pages, documents, or folders can be added to this book.  We all know, brides need the room for their own thoughts and organizational tools and this book allows for that necessary expansion.  The checklists and timelines are very helpful, but most importantly, I adore the pocket that accommodate each section.  It's the perfect resource as well as organizer to help a bride feel less overwhelmed! Again, a must have!!

Next Must Haves on my list: 
Dog Parties
The Art of the Party {by Renny Reynolds and Elaine Louie}

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Antique stores do have some wonderful centerpieces.

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