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Black and White Photography

The art of black and white portraits has been a favorite of CCE for years. B&W portraits are a timeless record of something personal, and black & whites styling  is always associated with timelessness. Even plain, clear skin can look better in black and white. Although considered old fashioned, these photos are immune to changes in fashion. It’s as if it will always last. Flattering portraits – more than anything – are the kind photos which people want to endure as they are. Your own face may age (apologies for the reminder), but you don’t want your portrait to do the same. As the saying goes “fashion may come and go, but only style remains”. CCE believes this truth applies directly to the enduring style of black and white portraits.  Cheers, CCE Ladies Photo Credit: Kent Drake Photography

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Celebrating Valentine’s Day With Style

Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve had my personal love affair with Valentine’s Day. Every year on February 14th, with enthusiasm, I watched my mother stage our kitchen table with velvet heart-shaped boxes filled with chocolates. I’d set out my crafty blush & glittery mailbox to collect all my Valentine cards and have my miniature envelopes ready to hand out at school. I typically handed out pink heart-shaped suckers to my friends with a “meme” Valentine’s card. Fast forward to years later, I still look at Valentine’s Day with the same enthusiasm. I start planning my gifts for my family and coworkers as early as January 14! I enjoy being the Cupid! Here are a few gift ideas: Fondue Set Framed Instagram Prints Cozy PJ Set Donuts Handmade Valentine’s Day cards Heart shaped hot cocoa bombs Spa treatment products Mini heart shaped waffle maker Valentine’s Day doesn’t necessarily need to be celebrated at a fancy restaurant with a bouquet of red roses. Personally, I like “At Home Date Night” with my husband. We like to make a cozy dinner followed by a chocolate fondue.  Afterwards, we sip on our hot tea or wine while watching rom com movies. I like to add touches of pink and white floral with candles to my tables all around the family room. A few heart shaped treats add to the decor and are fun to snack on during the movies. Have fun celebrating your love for family, friends, spouses and pets.  XO,

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New Year & New Trends

We made it to 2021! What now? What will weddings, celebrations and corporate events look like for 2021? For one, they will continue to look smaller and at the same time offer more intimate details. One of the biggest 2021 wedding trends will be an interest in more intimate ceremonies. Also known as ‘micro or mini weddings’, these occasions tend to have a smaller guest list of up to 25 – 50 guests. They can be formal or informal, and keep with tradition, or take a more modern approach – however, they tend to be a fusion of both. Also, since there is more budget per head with a less guest count, they lend themselves perfectly to bespoke soirees, which are remembered for personal touches throughout. This can range from private wine tastings and interactive chef demonstrations to personalized favors and curated stationery suites as part of the big day celebrations. Most importantly of all, they also allow the host/hostess to spend quality time with each and every guest – just one of the reasons for its surging popularity. Small celebrations set over longer periods are increasingly becoming the go-to for many people and we certainly don’t see this slowing down into 2021 and beyond. With intimate milestone celebrations on the increase, our clients will look for extra ways to impress and spoil their smaller guest list and what better way than celebrating for multiple days. Some of our clients are looking to bring their guests over the pond to Europe for their celebrations! Can you imagine celebrating your birthday in Iceland or Italy? A new trend from 2020 will carry over into 2021, virtual events. The physical distancing required by the pandemic will continue at least through the summer of 2021. One aspect of the virtual renaissance you might

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Holiday Bar Carts

The holidays are my absolute favorite time of year and with 2020 being such a challenge, this winter I couldn’t wait to add some Holiday Cheer to my home! Decorating a bar cart is an easy way to transform a space in your home from everyday life to fun and festive. Welcome guests with a bar cart right at your entrance filled with a display of holiday cocktails and/or mocktails.  You can also pull up your bar cart alongside a sofa  for an added side table.  In my formal living room, I created a Holiday Champagne Cart to greet guests. I arranged an array of delicate crystal glassware and tall pillar candle holders and accented it with a touch of silver sparkling branches.  By placing a Holiday Wine Cart in my family room, I had a fab new space to display a variety of gold, red and glittery holiday pieces. My cart is decked out with shimmery trees holiday stemware and my favorite Cabernet and Chardonnay. Such an elegant and easy way to add some holiday cheer! You can purchase bar carts just about anywhere these days! From local shops to online stores, you’ll find the perfect bar cart that fits your home. Your cart can also be a great place to display your favorite hot chocolates and teas! The ideas are endless! Happy Holidays and Stay Safe!

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Thanksgiving-ish 

When you look back at photos from Thanksgiving gatherings of the past through the lens of 2020, things that might have seemed charming suddenly appear horrifying. Such as: Everyone is sitting so close together!  Grandma and Grandpa are kissing everyone! Aunt Lorraine is drinking from everyone’s wine glass! And, why is the turkey so huge?    Whatever your version of a “traditional” holiday is, it might not be happening this year. Thanksgiving-ish might start new traditions. The pandemic is keeping apart many families and friends who would typically gather together. That might be painful, but there’s a good reason for it. Public health experts are warning that indoor get-togethers, particularly for the holidays, will be major drivers of a deadly spike in cases this fall and winter.  At CCE, we are taking a different approach. We’re slating, “We’ll miss our family and friends, but maybe this is going to allow us to create some new traditions.”  Let’s get creative! You can still get festive with Thanksgiving Day. Even if it’s just your immediate family (or your extended “Covid bubble.) Spend a little extra time decorating your house and add a few extra special touches to your table setting. Whether your decor is simple or elaborate, your everyone will definitely notice the extra mile you took. Here are few ideas to try: Add a fall wreath to your doors inside your home. This way you’re able to enjoy them all throughout the day! Add extra candles to the home that give off a cinnamon scent Tablescapes can be budget friendly  Start with a clean foundation by adding a table runner such as burlap or a simple white cloth Add assorted mini pumpkins and votives throughout the center of the table Add embellishments of sage and rosemary sprigs Stationery Have your local

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Styling Bar Carts!

When it comes to summer entertaining, I love to jazz up my bar cart with a mix of festive decorative items and of course, delicious cocktails!  Remember, first you eat & drink with your eyes! For my family and friends, I like for them to admire my bar cart as they lounge on the patio for happy hour. I am in love with my Z Gallerie bar cart. You can also find these beautiful carts at Target, William Sonoma, World Market and Wayfair. I always start with styling my cart by adding decor, and finish with adding the cocktails. The decor for me is just as important as the actual drinks! I am always a bit obsessed with all the fun decor details! I also like my decor to transition from daylight to evening. It’s simple with candles and/or twinkling lights. I found all of my candles and outdoor twinkling lights at Target. My finishing touches are always the glassware and garnishes for the cocktail! Since being in isolation, I’ve started to be adventurous with my cocktail recipes. Unlike my husband, I am not a skilled mixologist. I typically take the simple route and work with pre-mixed cocktails that I’ve found at World Market and William Sonoma..  However, my newest favorite cocktail to make at home is a Lemon Drop Martini. I use the fresh lemons from my Meyer lemon tree, Tito’s Vodka (because it’s gluten-free), triple sec, and simple syrup. It’s festive and refreshing, especially with a garnish of a lemon wheel! If you don’t have a bar cart, no worries; any small cocktail table will work just as well! Happy Quarantine Hosting!

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Boozy Summer Cocktails

From quaran-tinis to frosé, to icy margs and tropical mixed cocktails/mocktails there’s something for every mood! Whether there’s 2 or 10 people, summer happy hour is here to stay, in the safety of our own homes! All of our lifestyles have changed due to the world-wide pandemic. However, we should still be celebrating life! A simple fun cocktail or mocktail during Happy Hours, Thirsty Thursday or Sunday Funday can help keep our spirits up high! I like to use the freshest ingredients for my summer cocktails. Anything from fresh mint leaves or rosemary sprigs to muddled strawberries and citrus zest. Pretty much anything fresh will help jazz up your beverages! There are only so many weekends for our Chicago summer months and yet so many fun cocktails! I suggest making a bucket list! Here are a few of my favorites: Rosemary Gin Fizz Classic Strawberry Daiquiri Rum Sunset Rainbow Sangria  Mimosa Margaritas (Why choose between the two?) Frozen Dark & Stormy Black Berry Mojito Layered Lemonade Drops (Don’t be fooled by it’s cuteness, it’s potent!) Sweet Tea Sangria Strawberry Frosé (I have a crush on this one!)   If you are interested in one of the drinks above, please send me an email for the recipe. Cheers and Happy Summer!

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Mother to Mother

I love that we set aside a whole day to honor and celebrate the women who raised us. My mom is an amazing mother who dedicated her life to me and my sister.  She is selfless yet strong- and the most beautiful woman I know. Mother’s Day holds a special place in my own heart because of my own two daughters who made me a mom.  Every year as Mother’s Day gets close, I get a little nostalgic about my girls and how much celebrating them in the day-to-day means to me. Especially during these self-isolation days. I wanted to share this note to all moms, encouraging you to fully appreciate the season you’re in. Whether your child(s) are infant/toddler stage, teenager or adulthood, take the time that was handed to you by COVID-19. You are enough. I think at times all moms get this insecure feeling of “I’m not doing enough.”  As a working mom for years,  it was the hardest when my girls grab onto me as I’m walking out the door and say, “let’s go swimming, let’s play a game”. I would try to explain that I have to work just like they have to go to school. I also let them know what I’m doing at work that day—whether I was with a client or going to an event—and what time I’ll be home. Taking a few minutes to let them in on this other huge part of my life helped them understand and navigate through their day.  Taking the time. As a mom, sometimes I have to change my mindset and remind myself what’s important. I only have so many hours a day to spend with my daughters. During these isolation days I’ve learned to slow down (well, was forced) and it has allowed me

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Barrington Fête

Quarantine Celebrations with Style! While you may not be able to throw the celebration you had planned, there’s no reason to skip the festivities altogether. CCE Ladies are working with local Barrington area businesses to bring interactive, experiential celebrations into local homes! We’re coordinating and safely bringing everything right to our client’s door including decor, catered meals, cute cocktails, personalized favors & stationery, outdoor signage, photographer, etc. For each party booked 5% of your proceeds would will be donated to Let It Be Us, to help fund the foster care program. Here are 5 easy (and trendy) at home celebration ideas: Create a “Happy Birthday” montage video with all your friends! Host a virtual birthday party on Zoom! Setup the background to something festive, grab your cocktail and a bit music! Bubbles! Deliver champagne to your friend’s doorstep to help them celebrate! Leave it with fun glassware! Send desserts or flowers to your special friend to help them celebrate! Decorate their yard with balloons and signs!   The CCE Ladies are here to help personalize your micro-mini party! We’ll start with designing an inspiration board, finding the chef that best meets your needs, and deliver & setup safely in your home! Remember to stay strong and positive! With Love – CCE Ladies              

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Hope – The New Normal

Hope – “a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen”. Today, we can all relate to this term of Hope. We’re all hanging onto HOPE. These challenging times with COVID19 have allowed us to feel vulnerable and confused. It did not matter what or where you were in life with work, family and friends. You were left with a sense of emptiness especially with the lock down.  CCE’s clients were left with uncertainty about their events moving forward. Addressing each client’s needs was and is always our #1 priority. We provided information about the event industry dealing with the pandemic as it became available to us. We played a game of chess together while moving their events to where we felt it was safe for them AND their guests.  Since March 16, we’ve put newer guidelines together;  health & safety clauses to our contracts. We spent hours talking with each client about their event options while walking them through each of their fears. We will continue to be there for our clients. It’s always been about the relationship. It’s always been about making sure everyone is happy. We’re learning together how to navigate through this pandemic. As we move forward, we’re all hanging onto HOPE, because that is something we all have in common and it makes the most sense.  CCE Ladies are working together to make sure your event moves forward and more beautiful than you ever imagined!

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Designing a Destination Celebration

Mexico? Europe? St. Thomas?  Belize? Where will your next milestone birthday take you? Christina Currie Events’ expertise will point you in the right direction AND take care of all the details. From invites to travel arrangements, itineraries and everything in between. So, you and your guests can relish in the accolades without worrying about a thing. Happy Birthday to you!  Destination celebrations should be elaborate and so is the planning process. CCE makes sure  to be with you every step of the way. The event journey begins with a consultation party at CCE’s office. We get to know our clients’ needs and likes to design a dreamy getaway. We make sure that everything is customized to your milestone affair. Personalized invitations get the party started for all guests! Upon arrival to your chosen location, imagine a birthday toast with a signature cocktail in hand, welcome bags with goodies delivered to your room, and many surprises in place that continue throughout the celebration. Fun filled games and local entertainment complimented by lavish dinners will have you and your guests laughing and dancing each night away! There’s no greater pleasure than seeing the birthday boy or girl and their closest friends and family jumping for joy, (inside and sometimes out). 🙂 We visit places abroad and tour accommodations all around ahead of time to understand the local culture and hospitality offered.  Let’s get our bags packed and celebrate! With style,  

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A Toast to Tasting!

  Food and libations are a big part of your big day, so make sure you prepare properly when planning the menu. Have a tasting event with your caterer or venue in advance to ensure that day of delivery is flawless and flavorful! In addition to you and your loved one, find a few close family members or friends to offer their advice. Not only does this provide more than one palette, but it is a fun outing for everyone involved! Before you begin, it might be helpful to the chef if you offer some direction on the type of meals or packages you’re interested in. Have an open mind when it comes to menus, because chefs are trained in flavor and food pairings. And, while creativity can be intimidating, it should be welcomed. Come hungry! Everyone knows food tastes best on an empty stomach. Leaving room for many courses can leave your body and mind satisfied. Also, consider the whole day when mapping out the menu, so that the same type of fare isn’t offered at cocktail hour and dinner. Always include options. Options should be an assortment of fare and include dietary restrictions. Do you have guests that have allergies, dietary preferences, or children? Providing everyone with their desirable meal is thoughtful and necessary for friends and family to have a great time. Don’t forget about drinks! Beverage choices can be just as important as the food when it comes to variety in order to be crowd pleasing.  Take notes and take pictures! Since there are always different courses and options, it can be difficult to remember all of the plates being passed around. Taste and presentation need to be in line with the tone of your affair. By being specific, you can ensure that the chef will

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