Pattern Play – A Hot Event Trend for 2014 posted in: Decorating Ideas, Events, Inspiration, Trends


Today’s events are really taking shape! Gone are the days of solid, stark, single color stories.  Well, not totally, but you can expect to see a continued rise in the use of patterns in event concepts this year. Fun geometric patterns like Caspian and geometric shapes, floral prints and polka dots and even wild specialty patterns in saturated in a multitude of color are being incorporated into events. You’’’ see patterns used in beautiful linen, worked into backdrops, in fun accessories and event cast onto dance floors.

pattern play in events

As Event Designers, we work to personalize events creating a bespoke experience reflective of our clients’ objective, theme, brand or personalities, and using patterns can be a great way to make a statement or evoke a specific ambiance. The picture below shows how we incorporated patterns to give a modern take on an event theme that gave a nod to the ’80s  through linen and event logo design.

gala images from mac

The thing to keep in mind when using patterns is volume and placement. Strategically placed patterns really add interest, but if one’s not careful they can become “too loud” per se in the overall concept. Certain patterns if not used in too great a volume, can even make guests feel dizzy (so choose carefully 🙂 . If you see a pattern that you like, share it with your designer, so that they can work with you on the best ways and areas the  implement them print or formation into your event.

What do you think about incorporating the use of patterns into event design? And what patterns are you loving right now?

Wishing you an inspiring day!

Signature Tanja & Co. Events




Would you like to use this article in your e-zine or on your blog?
Fantastic! Please do, as long as you include the following complete information along with the article: Tanja Lynn is The Party Maven. She is a designer, event planner, etiquette consultant, lifestyle expert and founder of Tanja & Co., a boutique event planning and image management event firm based in the Virginias that serves client worldwide.

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This One Takes the Cake! posted in: Events, Food and Beverage, Inspiration, Weddings

Have you seen this confectionery masterpiece? It is quite the showstopper!

This masterpiece is actress Kaley Cuoco’s upside down wedding cake that she and her new hubby, Ryan Sweeting served at their recent wedding reception. The sparkling sugar showpiece was created by Kimberly Bailey of the Butter End Cakery and was installed installed with the help of production pros at RrivreWorks. In a word – STUNNING!!!

Chandelier Upside Down Wedding Cake

But this gravity-defying dessert  wasn’t simply some gorgeous to look at it – it was literally good enough to eat! The rhinestone adorned cake which boasted a grand 27-inch bottom layer (or top depending on which end you consider is up) consisted of two-flavors —almond with toasted almond cream cheese buttercream frosting and chocolate almond cherry with cherry cream cheese buttercream frosting—sounds as good as it looks!

As you can imagine, the display for this creation required a little…OK, a lot more than a pretty cake stand. Pulling off this presentation required a few trips to Home Depot, custom rigging, several sandbags and a lot of creativity and can-do determination! A gorgeous example of the benefits of having pros at the helm of your event!

We think this daring display takes the cake! What do you think? Love it or leave it? Share your thoughts below in a comment.


Signature Tanja & Co. Events

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Wedding Inspiration: Radiant Orchid posted in: Decorating Ideas, Events, Trends, Weddings

If you’re tempted by purple  – with Radiant Orchid (check out full color review here: Official Color of 2014) being all the current color rage, but “go bold or go home” is not your style, not to worry all is not lost. You can use bold tones in your color story without having it overpower you and everyone else in the room. The trick is in “how” and “how much” the hue is used in your design.

Consider pairing radiant orchid with lighter and more subtle tones from a close color family, such as a soft ballerina pink and blend with an ombre effect to achieve a softer and inviting feel.

Radiant Orchid Wedding Inspiration

Here’s how:

To achieve the overall desired look, use neutrals or again the softest whisper of pink as your base (this will be the most prominent color in your palette) and accent with radiant orchid blending with mid-tones to soften the transition between colors.

*Ambiance: A soft wash of color with special lighting will do wonders! Seriously – it’s totally worth the investment. Plus, pink/ soft purple hues of lighting are lovely and universally flattering.

*Decor: Create focal areas with colorful decor (such as oversize round balloons), using varying shades to achieve a “quieter” so to speak effect. Colorful stemware or glassware is also another way to incorporate an elegant infusion of color.

*Flowers to carry: Here again it’s all about the mix. A long, flowing ombre effect for the bride’s bouquet would be gorgeous and would have an overall softer effect on the eye so as not to overshadow, but rather complement the bride’s beauty. Attendants’  bouquets could have more of a blended look (smaller bouquet pictured above).

*Centerpieces and floral decor: Lush runners created of varying shades of fresh purple and soft pink blooms flowing along the center of long dining tables accented by soft candlelight would be quite stunning.

*To wear: Pinks and purples are beautiful in makeup. You could wear a bold lip, colorful shoes and jewelry. Selecting a max of three areas to infuse this color so as not to have too many areas competing for the eye’s attention.

*Favors: You can also have fun with color in guest gifts or favors. A personalized bottle of bubbly with a vibrant label would be fun and would double as a nice pop of color on dining tables.

So, by pairing a bold tone with softer colors and being careful with the amount of the color in any given area, you can achieve a strong, yet soft feel for your wedding or special event. Do you have additional ideas? If so, please share with us in a comment below.


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It’s 2014 – Happy New Year! posted in: Events, Society News

Happy New Year, Readers!

We sent the 2013 out with a Bang! Bang! (Gatsby fans will recognize this nod to the soundtrack)  and rang 2014 in just the same – with a party, naturally! The photo below is from our most recent event which had a fabulous bespoke theme and design, Gatsby Goes Rock-n-Roll. What a fun event for our last hoorah of the year. There’s more eye candy to come from this one, so stay tuned!

What a year it has been here at T&Co.! We’ve had the good fortune to have designed and produced a wide range of events from social soirees and weddings to charity galas and corporate events.  On this note, I would like to take a moment to say, “THANK YOU”. Thank you to our clients for appreciating our talents, entrusting us with your events, embracing our creativity, and challenging us to continue to be innovative in our field of expertise.  It has been a pleasure to be a part of your special moments and successes. I would also like to express my appreciation to our online community here on our blog and on our social media pages. The team and I enjoy sharing our thoughts, works and inspirations, and we love hearing from you!

On behalf of the team here at T&Co., our sincere wishes to you for a healthy, happy and blessed New Year!

Happy New Year 2014 R


We have some great things to share with you this year, more to come on this at a later date. Right now, I’m going to slow the pace for a few days before I head off to scope out all that’s new in events. I stay in tune with the industry, always learning and checking out the latest services to ensure that our clients always have the best within reach when working with Tanja & Co. So be sure to check back for news on the wow! and now trends in weddings and events.  By the way, is your event on our books?!

We’re here to help you celebrate your special moments and milestones in you-nique and true style!

Here’s to a happy, healthy, peaceful and prosperous 2014 for you and yours.


Signature Tanja & Co. Events

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2014 Color of the Year: Radiant Orchid posted in: Events, Fashion, Inspiration, Trends, Weddings

The 2014 Color of the Year is Radiant Orchid (PANTONE 18-3224), a shade of purple that’s a real attention-getter.

Radiant orchid is one vibrant gal in the colorwheel – uplifting and bold. She is expressive, energizing, original, and blooming with confidence, yet in a totally embraceable way.

Pantone 2014 Color of the Year Radiant OrchidThis color is a blended harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones which is said to emanate great joy, love and health. With these attributes, what’s not to love? Who wouldn’t want to invite greater joy, love and health into their life?!

While Radiant Orchid is unique and bold, it’s also surprisingly versatile. This color has range! It is a nice companion to pastels, makes a statement as the bold counterpart to a lighter shade of purple such as Violet Tulip (another hue from the spring 2014 palette), and also plays nice with other bold colors such as teal for a totally vivacious look. This is one shade that you can take almost anywhere this year!

The color hit the runways during the spring 2014 fashion shows incorporated into collections by designers such as Emerson, Stella McCartney, and Juicy Couture, to name a few, and has been reported to be making its way to the red carpet. This particular blend of fuchsia, purple and pink has both cool and warm undertones, making it flattering to many hair, eye and skin tones. So dare to be radiant in this haute hue!


In the world of events, this eye-catching color is as adaptable as it is beautiful. Create a totally radiant event in monochromatic tones using this shade, or use it to create ambiance through lighting, make a statement with bold florals, create a focal using unique furniture pieces or to add a splash of color in accents and accessories. Radiant Orchid livens up neutral gray, beige and taupe palettes, creates a striking combination when paired with turquoise or teal, complements deeper tones such as olive and navy, and is chic with red or even muted neon or light yellow tones. So whether you decide on a little or a lot, this color definitely knows how to dress a party!


 Radiant Orchid Collage. Events

So what do you think of Radiant Orchid – love it or leave it? Would you use if in your event or wear it to a party? Have any other pairing suggestions? We’re dying to know, so leave a comment below.


Wishing you an inspiring day!

Tanja Lynn, The Party Maven



Images Courtesy: Tanja & Co. Studio 109, Colin Miller, Colin Cowie, James Michael Photography, Cheryll Gillespie, Aileen Tran, David Tucker Photography and Shaadi-Bazaar

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Rhythm and Booze posted in: Entertaining Essentials, Events, Food and Beverage, Great Products, Uncategorized

Drum up a little fun at your next party with these fun cocktail stirrers. I’m talking about Rhythm and Booze stirrers – swizzle sticks that can be beat.

rhythm & booze stirrers

Mix your drink, garnish and then hit it up with these cool little sticks, and let the jam session begin! A little boom boom, tsk tsk on your hi-hat…err highball as you stir it up. Play percussion while you drink your pomegranate pompom.

At only $10.95 for a set of 8 drumsticks, the price can’t be beat.

So go on, rock out your next party or jazz up happy hour with these fun stirrers!


Signature Tanja & Co. Events


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Celebrate World Kindness Day 2013! posted in: Etiquette, Events, Holidays, Society News

Wednesday, November 13th is World Kindness Day!

World Kindness Day offers an opportunity to highlight goodwill in our world. It’s a day that brings people from all walks of life together for a common goal – to show kindness to others.

Celebrate World Kindness Day 2013

While an excuse is never needed to be kind, World Kindness Day exists as a reminder encouraging us to be courteous to others, to lend someone a helping hand, to show compassion or do something to brighten someone’s day. At Tanja & Co, we’ve created an online party, and would love to have you join us in celebrating World Kindness Day this year! By joining together we can see how as individuals focusing on the common thread of  kindness which binds us as one people regardless of race, religion, gender, politics or zip code,  we can effect and propel positive change in the world around us.

Another wonderful thing about World Kindness Day is that it can be celebrated anywhere and in so many different ways. Participation doesn’t have to be costly (be it time or money) to mean more than you may ever know to the recipient. You can do something as simple as invite a single friend to join you for a family dinner, set out and return an elderly neighbors garbage cans, leave a family in your community an anonymous a gift card for a ‘Nite at the Movies’. For more ideas for inspiration keep checking ourCelebrate World Kindness Day event page, or turn back to our recent National Courtesy Month blog post to get you thinking, and we would love to hear your suggestions on ways to spread kindness on this day.


world kindess day celebration ideas

If you’re wondering how World Kindness Day got its official start? It was introduced in 1998 by the World Kindness Movement which is comprised of about 20 different organizations across the globe.

The day is observed in many countries, including the USA, Canada, Japan, the UK, Australia, The United Arab Emirates Italy and India to name a few. Schools are also beginning to formally observe and participate and some also work with awesome kindness outreach programs The Be Kind Project and Life Vest Inside here the USA. If you have interest for schools in your area to join the movement, contact us at for more information.

So,  join us to celebrate. Be sure to check back here and on our facebook event page often for additional ideas.

Oh, by the way, share this post with your friends to invite them to join the movement and spread kindness!


Signature Tanja & Co. Events




Would you like to use this article in your e-zine or on your blog?

Fantastic! Please do, as long as you include the following complete information along with the article: Tanja Lynn is The Party Maven. She is a designer, event planner, image consultant and founder of Tanja & Co., a boutique event planning and etiquette consulting event firm based in the Virginias that serves client worldwide.


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A Beautiful Bridal Brunch posted in: Events, Party Ideas, Uncategorized


Hosting the perfect bridal brunch can be easy. Once you have spent time with the guest of honor carefully crafting the guest list and determining desirable date options, you’re ready to spring into action.


celeb worthy bridal brunch

Here are our top tips for hosting a bridal brunch for your BFF:



Be it a favorite color, era (the ’20s are roaring once again) or style, select a theme reflective of the personality of the bride-to-be.


I recommend serving small bites – mini stacks topped with berries, assorted petite quiche, ricotta souffle muffins, fresh fruit skewers & individual desserts.


Instead of dealing with the hassle of stocking and managing a full bar, serve a feature drink – a creative twist on mimosas works wonderfully. Not only is offering a specialty cocktail festive, but will also help you save on the budget.


Consider hosting a jewelry styling session with an independent consultant where guests may be fitted for accessories that best suit their style and person. Having pictures of  this special time is always appreciated. Hire a photographer, setup a backdrop and have photos of each guest snapped with the guest of honor as they arrive to the party! You can also create a hashtag on Instagram and ask guests to share their favorite photos of the day tagging them to the event.

However you choose to celebrate, it’s always a fun time when good girlfriends get together!

Do you have great recipes or other fun ideas to share? Leave a comment below sharing your ideas.



Tanja Lynn, The Party Maven


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The Oscars: Black Tie Affair Anywhere! posted in: Entertaining Essentials, Entertainment, Events, Food and Beverage, Uncategorized

There are many awards shows today but none compare to The Academy Awards with all their glitz, glamour and of course, gold! From decadently dressed stars to sentimental speeches, the Oscars are a favorite among movie buffs and fashionistas alike. This year, don’t just watch this 85 year old tradition alone in your PJ’s-have a glamourous black tie party with your friends instead!

It’s All in the Invite

Setting the mood for any party starts with the invitation. Show your guests what to expect by incorporating your color theme and any specifics like what to wear or bring. Get them excited with your choice of words and attention to detail.

MFC-Solid-Gold-CompositeDress To Impress

Encourage your guests to dress for the occasion! That means suits for the guys and cocktail dresses or evening gowns for the ladies! State in your invitation that you will be giving a “Best Dressed” award to get the excitement going and allow your guests to vote. Who doesn’t love a little friendly competition?



Red Carpet Ready

Whether you live in a million dollar mansion or a quaint little condo, welcome your guests in Hollywood style by having a red carpet at your front door! These can be rented from party supply stores or can of course be purchased if you plan to make your Oscar parties a tradition. If you REALLY want to go all out, hire a professional photographer and have them snap pictures of your guests as they arrive like the paparazzi. This will instantly set the mood and have your friends feeling like they are the true stars of the evening!

And the Winners Are…Red and Gold!

Continue the theme of your invitations throughout the party by adding decorative touches of red and gold everywhere. This color combo is very Hollywood and will instantly transform your home from homely to glamorous. Use red roses for centerpieces and gold place settings and napkins to tie it all together. When paired with inexpensive sparkly fabric and your best china and crystal, the glitzy atmosphere will be sure to impress!


Eat, Drink & Be Merry!

Now that you’ve wowed your guests with gorgeous invites, decorations and a red carpet, keep the surprises coming with the perfect treats and drinks. Since you want the focus of your Oscars soiree to be on the Oscars themselves, keep your cocktail and drink menu simple with decadent finger foods and a signature drink. And if you really want tokeep the theme going, name the drinks you serve after the evening’s nominees. After all, who wouldn’t want a tall glass of Bradley Cooper? 😉

Here’s one of our favorites that’s both simple to make and gold in color to blend perfectly with the rest of the decor!

brandy-cocktail-ck-1853933-l (1)

Gingered Pear and Brandy Cocktail


  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup chopped peeled fresh ginger
  • 3 cups pear juice
  • 1 cup cognac
  • 10 lemon rind twists


  1. 1. Combine 1/4 cup water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat. Add ginger. Cover and let stand 15 minutes. Strain sugar mixture through a fine sieve. Discard solids. Chill sugar mixture 30 minutes or until ready to use.
  2. 2. Fill a large martini shaker half full with ice. Add sugar mixture, juice, and cognac; shake until chilled. Strain 1/2 cup mixture into each of 10 martini glasses. Garnish each serving with 1 lemon twist.
Have other party ideas you’d like to share? Feel free to leave us a comment!

Tanja Lynn, The Party Maven


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Cupid’s Cues: Valentine’s Day Etiquette posted in: Etiquette, Events

Unsure how to handle Valentine’s Day dating and gift etiquette? Fear not, we’re here to help with advice for gift giving and celebrating this day of love in such a way that would make Cupid proud.

They Call it Puppy Love There is nothing wrong with giving someone a Valentine’s card or even a small gift of friendship on this day. The key is to keep the card light-hearted and the gift appropriate – nothing extravagant or too personal. A simple gesture of friendship shows you care, think candies a something small that they might find useful or fun in day to day life. This is not the day to confess your undying love. Your sentiment could be taken as creepy rather than caring.

We’ve Only Just Begun
When getting to know someone, it’s OK for one person  ask if the other would like catch a movie or try the new bistro in town. If the other person accepts, great! ”However, if the other person stalls, let them off the hook easily, and schedule a date for another day (could be as  simple as they already have plans). If they say “yes, what about the gift? It’s fine to give something small. For example, if you know your date has a ridiculous sweet tooth, a bag of their favorite candy would be appropriate, or if they love butterflies, a small crystal butterfly would be thoughtful. And remember, you shouldn’t give a gift with the expectation of receiving one in return. Be prepared for the possibility that the other person may not have a gift for you, and make sure you can handle that before offering up your gift.

Love is in the Air
If you’ve been together for a few months, it is reasonable to expect that you’re going to make plans for Valentine’s Day. Broach the subject lightly, you could say something like, “Valentine’s Day is in a couple of weeks, would you like to do something, or would you prefer to pretend the day doesn’t exist?” The person’s response will tell you all you need to know (and will take the temperature of your relationship). It may be a beloved holiday for your sweetheart, or just another day on the calendar….and should you have differing views, compromise out of respect for one another. If you feel like giving a gift, choose something meaningful but not extravagant. A nice idea would be to think on the path of experience. Something such as tickets to an event or concert – something you know they like and that you also enjoy together.

Steady Rockin’
A funny thing happens as the years go by in a relationship— people tend to take the emphasis off of holidays such as Valentine’s Day…not taking time out to remind that special someone just how special they are, but rather treating it just like any other day. However, it is my personal belief (and studies back it up) that this is where we can go wrong in our relationships. Not making an effort to do something special is a mistake. This is a perfect time to share words of love and affirmation – to remind that special someone just how much they mean to you. Take the opportunity to celebrate together. It doesn’t have to be a candlelit dinner or a grand gesture…though a romantic weekend getaway would be nice. Maybe it’s a hike to your favorite spot and a picnic (if you’re somewhere warm) or a quiet evening cozied up by the fire with champagne and chocolate truffles. Plan whatever suits you as a couple so long as the time is about enjoying each other’s company. The etiquette here is to remember that this is not the day to discuss your relationship and what isn’t working well.

When Considering Popping More Than Just Bubbly
Probably the biggest landmine of all? Proposals. When couples have been dating for awhile, the questions running through many a lovers mind is whether or not to get engaged on Valentine’s Day. While it is a popular time for ‘popping the question’ along with some bubbly, a word of caution – If you know you’re with ‘the one’ for you and are feeling the time is right, then by all means, make the day extra special. However, if there is any doubt in your mind about whether or not proposing is appropriate, choose another day to ask this question. And if you’ll be on the receiving end of the proposal, do not become too focused on the possibility…so much so that if it doesn’t happen, the evening is a disaster and you end up in the “where are we’ conversation. Just because the love of your life didn’t choose to get down on bended knee on this day, is not a reason to doubt your entire relationship and love. So be prepared for a wonderful time together regardless.

Above all, however you celebrate the day, do it with full consideration, respect, and honesty. This is what etiquette is all about.

Do you have a tip to add to the list, or a great and/or horror story to share about any of your own Valentine’s Day experiences? We’d love to hear – leave a comment here.


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