Archive for the ‘Parties’ Category

Mystery Gate Revealed

Monday, August 19th, 2013

We were invited to a Fourth of July party in The Malibu Colony. We didn’t realize what a treat this was until we arrived at the gate and chose to walk in instead of using the valet service. We immediately spied wildly expensive cars and unbelievably amazing homes. Although we tried not to be star struck, we were!

20130819-093323.jpg
Without being too obvious I snapped a pix of a stunning gate.

20130819-093530.jpg
And a few of the stunning party house, perched on the Pacific.

20130819-093745.jpg
The tv room had walls that opened wide to the courtyard. I wanted to immediately repaint our house the same color.

20130819-093934.jpg
And buy all new furniture and change windows and moulding. I have never wanted to redo my house top to bottom, but suddenly I did. One can dream!

20130819-094102.jpg
Dinner was served buffet style. We had the most delicious salmon cooked on a salt block and grilled lobster. I was photographing this from a deck suspended over the sand and facing the ocean. Wish I had taken pictures of the bar, powder room, living room, master bath and rooftop deck. I couldn’t find fault with anything but I couldn’t pull out the phone constantly.

20130819-094439.jpg
We were treated to three fireworks displays, including the private one put on by the Colony residences. The evening was incredible from beginning to end and such an unexpected treat. Today I was surprised to see the house behind the turquoise gates featured on Hooked on Houses . The house lives up to the gate, that’s for sure. Take a quick peek.

Very soon I will post about another party and what “casual elegant” attire means in Malibu. Let’s just say it is something else entirely in my world.

Hanson Wedding

Friday, October 26th, 2012

This post isn’t about Santa Barbara or our house.  Instead it is about Ojai and an unbelievable wedding that was at my brother and sister-in-laws house.  Friends of our family asked if they could have their  wedding at the ranch in upper Ojai.  They have a beautiful piece of property over-looking the Topa Topa mountains that they have been transforming for ten years.  It really is an idyllic spot for a wedding.  Combine that with the extended Hanson family talent for all things crafty and my sister-in-laws incredible eye for all things entertaining and you have something worthy of any magazine.  If only I were a better photographer.

Guests were treated to cookies and chilled water at the Welcome Table.  A large wooden W served as the guest book.

An adorable bird-cage held gift cards.  A table draped in burlap and a crocheted table-cloth was available for gifts.

The ceremony was held on the big grass field below the house.  The Hanson’s brought a  trailer full of every imaginable wedding paraphernalia, including the double doors that greeted the guests and wedding party.  On a clear day this field overlooks the Topa Topa Mountains, but the clouds moved in to hide them.

Hors d’oeuvres were served up by the house on the patio while pictures were taken.  I don’t have any pictures because about that time it began to drizzle.  Everyone carried on as if it were dry and sunny.  The reception was held back down on the lawn next to the ceremony.  Lights were strung for the evening. Four long rows of tables were perpendicular to the head table and surrounding the dance floor.  The D.J. was AMAZING not only playing music, but singing every imaginable genre of song.  He was so good we forgot that our hair was limp and our pant bottoms were soggy.  Luckily he brought his own tent!

This is where I come in. Earlier in the day I received a 911 call that they were running short on time.  I often consider setting up for parties more fun than the actual event, so I jumped in the car.  They had table cloths, boxes of decorations and tableware waiting to be laid out.  The flowers were arranged in a myriad of glass containers.  Our only instructions were that no two tables should look-alike and then we were off.  Grandma had provided 150 vintage white napkins wrapped in ribbon.  There were antique books, bags of vintage off-white buttons, crushed shells, silver paper  flowers, clear and mercury glass votives, wide silver ribbon and burlap bags of coffee as favors.  The colors were so perfect.

Some of the Hanson decorations.  Amongst them is a pigeon crate symbolic in that our families once flew pigeons together.  The Hanson family still does more than thirty years later.

The head table was a master piece.  Who has moss-covered barn siding?  They were seated at a church pew and surrounded by their bridal party.

The cakes were loving made by grandma.   They were purposefully made to look homemade in a ruffly style.  Her specialty, coconut, was especially delicious.  They were supplemented by Lavender Brule and S’more cupcakes from Ojai Pixie Cakes.  Yum Yum Yum!  I loved all of the various collected cake stands.

Pre-wedding nap time.  My nephew was the adorable ring bearer.  He couldn’t get dirty while sleeping.  You should have seen him later.

I didn’t take many pictures after the drizzle although it  didn’t dampen our spirits as we danced well into the night.  They even paid for an extra hour with the D.J….he was that good.  We danced until our knees were sore.  They finally left in a beautiful 1934 car through rows of guests waving sparklers.  I was passing them out and didn’t get that picture either.  By then we were having too much fun to stop for photography.  Thanks Hanson’s for counting me in, it was truly an amazing evening.

Donna