An Evening in Slovenia

October 25, 2013

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Last month, I once again had the pleasure of styling the latest Cleveland Flea Pop-Up Dinner Party, which was appropriately dubbed “An Evening in Slovenia” (I also styled the Summer Pop-Up Dinner Party held this past July, and hope to share photos from that soon). The dinner was held in the courtyard area behind the Slovenian National Home on East 55th, which is a hidden gem if I’ve ever seen one. The purpose of the dinner this time was not just to eat great food, but also to meet, connect, and converse with local creatives. We even provided a place for guests to drop their business cards; at the end of the night, everyone was able to take home a bag filled to the brim with cards and contact info so they could reach out to the people they connected with to continue the conversations. The evening turned out beautifully – there was a great crowd made up of talented Clevelanders, awesome food provided by Clark Pope Catering that was served family-style, lovely fall weather, BYO wine and beer (as well as a specialty cocktail that was the bomb) flowing, and a ton of inspiring conversation all around. It was an honor to both style and attend the event, and I don’t think I’m the only one who walked away with some new friends and good chats under my belt.

For the decor, we wanted to take inspiration from Slovenia in it’s current state and do a mixture of old and new, neutrals and brights, simplistic and artistic. We use this photo as a starting point, and decided to try our own take on the idea of creating a laser effect with bright cording. We were really thrilled with the result. As per usual, I really wanted to bring in a lot of handmade elements, even if they were quite simple (that is my thing, after all). I made a black and white striped table runner that ran down the length of our dinner tables, as well as whitewashed reclaimed wood boxes that held greenery and paper flowers which were made by Cleveland Flea intern Christen – aren’t they adorable?. (Quick shout out to my husband, who played a huge part in getting those boxes made; he worked well into the night in our poorly lit garage drilling and hammering and sawing away. He deserves major props for always taking on the random projects that I give him!) I also crafted some small details, like neon-painted canvas nametags for guests to wear (I’ll be showing you how to make these in my next post!) and tags for the BYO wine and beer bottles that went into community buckets to chill. I think my favorite project of all, though, were the wooden signs that I painted to direct guests; there were signs pointing toward the parking lot and dinner area, and the fun one you’ll see below. I had these signs left over from some previous weddings, and was so excited to find a new use for them. It’s amazing what a little craft paint and creativity can do!

The beautiful dinner tables, chairs, and cocktail tables were provided by my awesome friend Ann from Borrow Rentals (who provides vintage rentals for weddings and events – brides, go check out her site immediately; I guarantee you’ll find some gorgeous pieces to incorporate into your day). Christen helped me with the overall design and styling, and Suzuran Photography was there to capture the evening, which Suzanne and Dan did SO well. I can’t wait to see this idea expand and grow – be on the lookout for the next dinner; I promise you won’t want to miss it. Many thanks to Stephanie of The Cleveland Flea for having me and organizing such a fabulous event!

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Katie October 26, 2013 at 1:31 pm

You guys did such an amazing job with this event. When I saw the name tags for the beverages I remember thinking “Wow, they thought of every little detail!” I also thought the hanging bags for business cards was genius!


Josh October 28, 2013 at 4:16 am

This looks incredible, Janelle. I love all of your hand-crafted touches, it makes everything look very special. Maybe I’ll have to get funds together to get you over to Scotland and we can put on an event together. ;-P


Pamela Lewis November 7, 2013 at 1:46 am

Everything looks beautiful! It’s all in the details. I’m looking forward to attending one of these.


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