The HAVEN Workshop was a dream just 10 months ago and last week it became a magical reality. Truly, magical. Three days of connection, growth, learning, love, and support with 23 attendees, 7 speakers, a handful of beautiful brands who trusted in our vision and partnered with us, and vendors who share the same passion as us—to create events with intention.
There’s so much to touch on from our 3-day event, we decided to break things up and share each day in detail—one week from when it all started last Tuesday. Today, we’re walking you through day one along with imagery by our dear friend, Sally Pinera. Let’s dive in, but before we do, we’d love to invite you to listen to our welcome dinner playlist on Spotify as you experience it behind the screen!
On day one, we greeted our guests for check-in at 2:30 pm. Admittedly, this was the most emotional part of the event (for me)! I held back tears, seeing the beautiful faces of our attendees walk through the door—knowing that they had trusted to invest in this experience (our first workshop!) and let it be a catalyst/reframing of mindset for their businesses and brands. Not to mention, many traveled hundreds or thousands of miles from home, mamas left their kiddos, professionals took time from their current work… all to soak in what we had crafted for them: three days of empowerment, encouragement, and education.
Our Venue & Location
The vision for our attendees was to create an atmosphere and experience that felt like a retreat or vacation; to be inspired not only by our speakers and partners but also by their surroundings. We chose Malibu Farm at Lido Marina Village in Newport Beach, California. It was mid-seventies, sunny and instantly calming. The team at Malibu Farm, along with our planner Tory of Smith + James Events made sure our event went off without a hitch. We transformed the restaurant’s private event space (which is normally their home collection shop!) into a charming classroom-style setup.
The Welcome Gift Baskets
Treating our attendees with gifts and surprises throughout was a big priority (something we learned from our friend, Kaitlin Holland of The School of Styling!). At each seat, we filled beautiful gift baskets with items from some of our favorite brands. The gorgeous white baskets with wood handles are from The Container Store and were the perfect choice to display everything we curated for our ladies to enjoy. The Container Store also provided darling little leather tape measures, too! A stylish must for designers on site visits.
Inside the baskets we included white notebooks and pens from Sugar Paper, which our attendees proceeded to fill up with all the pointers they were taking away from our speaker sessions. It was quite serendipitous that there was a Sugar Paper shop right across from our venue, where we spotted a few attendees popping in to get a look at their wallpaper collection!
We also included our favorite linen hand towels from LinenMe. These towels are pure heaven and after discovering the brand this past year and using them myself, I knew our attendees would love them too.
We had two long shelves on either side of the mirror to fancy up and we knew McGee & Co. would be just the right team to style them to perfection. Danielle and Amanda from the shop graciously came in the evening before our workshop began to pretty up these beauties with new arrivals from the shop. See some of the available items below they used to style our shelves!
Day One Sessions
We chose to start with a day of light learning, so as to not overwhelm our attendees and give them a chance to settle in. After our welcome and speaker introductions, we began with a couple of foundational topics: Systems & Operations: Setting Your Business Up for Success from the Start with Lindsey Brooke Design, followed by Branding: Giving Your Business an Identity with Intention with Anastasia Casey of The Identité Collective and IDCO Studio. They were two very insightful sessions on getting a design business and brand up and running!
We then gave our attendees a little break to freshen up and check-in to our hotel, Lido House, which is a 3-minute walk from Malibu Farm. This gave us a chance to prep our room for the welcome dinner! Yes, we flipped the entire room from classroom-style to dinner in less than one hour and had Sally shoot it. Dream team. This is where my girl Tory of Smith + James Events kept me sane and kept things flowing. I couldn’t have done this without her!
(Still can’t get over the lettered quote below by Paper Cliché! We love Dani and highly recommend her if you’re on the hunt for lettering in the OC area.)
Our Welcome Dinner
Ta da! Talk about before and after… our welcome dinner was breathtaking. We partnered with Jaipur Living, who hosted our dinner and brought in a layer of cozy with their textiles. Guests were welcomed back to a long, family-style table and creamy white throws and a welcome note from Jaipur Living at their seats. The benches used for our cocktail hour were styled with their pretty pillows as well. Our attendees were able to learn more about their trade program from one of their team members, Rumana, who we adore. It was incredibly important to us to connect our ladies with the brands we work with and truly love—Jaipur Living is one of those special brands. We can’t wait to see their rugs and textiles used in these designers’ work in the coming years, knowing we helped to foster that relationship!
Sarah of Mulberry & Moss graced our table with her floral arrangments and styling, using a lovely runner we picked up from Tono + Co. Glowing tapers lit the room and each guest found their seat with lettered place cards and menus designed by Angela of Saffron Avenue (who also designed our website!).
It was a magnificent evening to say the least, as our group got to know one other over a delightful dinner served by Malibu Farm.
More to come from day two tomorrow!