Chez Vendor Spotlight: Kate Johnson of Kate Johnson Artistry

collection of makeupName: Kate Johnson

Title/Position: Owner, Kate Johnson Artistry

Specialty: Makeup and Hair for weddings, engagements, television and celebrity clientele.

CHEZ: How long have you been in the events industry?
K.J.: Full time for 6 years.

CHEZ: Describe what you/your company does in one sentence?
K.J.: Creating beautiful and unique looks based on the individual style of each bride, using only the best professional products on the market.

CHEZ: What sets you/your company apart from others?
K.J.: Almost all of our artists have a background in television and celebrity work so we understand that this is not about what our “style” is, but is about collaborating with our clients to bring out the most beautiful vision they have for themselves.

CHEZ: What is your most memorable moment from past events?         
K.J.: I was introduced to a couple getting married that loves Burning Man and all things creative/ music etc. I knew the wedding was going to be unique but I wasn’t expecting acrobatics from the ceiling and “flower girls” whose outfits lit up.

CHEZ: What event trends do you love right now?      
K.J.: I’m loving the veils that go under the hair and showcase the beautiful styles the bride has chosen as well as a bold lip that people are picking up.

CHEZ: What is the most unique request a client has ever had?        
K.J.: To take hair extensions and create a huge rose that would be placed on her head as her hair style.

CHEZ: What does a typical event day look like for you?
K.J.: Well if it’s a wedding we are the first to arrive so that means as a team we are up early, coffee drank and headed to the ready location first thing in the morning. We get to greet the beautiful bride and her entourage while they are fresh faced and wake them up with beautiful styling. My favorite part is that we get to see everyone so relaxed in the pajamas just as a group of ladies having fun before everyone else enters the scene. Its like a big pajama party.

CHEZ: Name three things you couldn’t live without (besides the obvious!) 
K.J.: Red Wine, My dog Honey and One Drop Wonder face oil… its amazing.

CHEZ: Name three things people probably don’t know about you.
K.J.: I moved to Chicago from So Cal to sing Jazz. I have a refurbished 1965 Mustang Convertible waiting for me in California to have a nice garage here.  I’m a brand ambassador to a professional cosmetics company so I get to teach people all over the country how to feel their best.

CHEZ: What is the best piece of advice you can give someone planning an event? 
K.J.: Plan early, communicate openly with/and also trust your vendors experience so it’s a true collaboration to bring your vision to reality.

CHEZ: What do you love about Chez?
K.J.: I love that it’s a blank space you can truly create your own vision in. And I absolutely love the natural light that pours in through the big windows.

Thanks Kate! You truly know how to make a bride look and feel her best.

Photography by Kate Johnston (L), Emma Meyer (R)

Chez Vendor Spotlight: Alexandra Jusino of Exquisite Designs

blog-ready-alexandra-jusinoName: Alexandra Jusino

Title/Position: Boss Lady at Exq Designs

Specialty: We specialize in floral and decor for social and corporate events.

CHEZ: How long have you been in the events industry?
A.J.: I haven’t thought about this for a while but I left my previous job in November of 2004 to start working in the events industry.

CHEZ: Describe what you/your company does in one sentence?
A.J.: Our company provides flowers, props, rentals and design services for both corporate and social events in Chicago.

CHEZ: What sets you/your company apart from others?
A.J.: We don’t like to do the same thing all the time. Some floral designers specialize in one style…. we like to do it all and are not afraid to do something completely different. We also custom build, so dream it and we will build it. You want to have a free standing champagne flutes escort card wall greeting your guests as they walk into cocktails… no problem!

CHEZ: What is your most memorable moment from past events?
A.J.: We loved working for Create and Cultivate last August. We created a ombre wall of cacti that went 30’ up…. we even had to use a lift to get the cacti all the way up. We also got to work with Lush Cosmetics this summer building a living green wall on their pop up shop in Millennium Park.

CHEZ: What event trends do you love right now?
A.J.: Loving an all green event, using tropicals, bright colors, textures and hexagonal shapes. After a few years of white, and all blush events I speak for many designers we are craving color.

CHEZ: What is the most unique request a client has ever had?
A.J.: Less than a month ago we had a client ask us for a white balloon backdrop for their ceremony. It was a tad tricky to keep adding balloons without popping the ones that were already set but we got it done and the client was ecstatic.

CHEZ: What does a typical event day look like for you?
A.J.: We usually start at 9AM (some times earlier!) checking lists, packing items, double checking to make sure that we have everything we need before we head out the door or in case of wedding days to deliver bouquets. We arrive on site and begin setup, wait until the client comes in and we can leave or wait until the ceremony takes place so we can turnover the room. Some setups take longer than others, load ins are not as easy as they sound, but it always gets done and the best feeling is to see your client’s reaction once they arrive to the event. Oh and at 12AM or 1AM we get to go back and clean it all up, load out and back to the studio it all goes. It makes up for a very long day. There is such a thing as an event hangover.

CHEZ: Name three things you couldn’t live without (besides the obvious!)
A.J.: Besides my wonderful family I’m going to say coffee, concealer and my Converse. In that order!

CHEZ: Tell us something people probably don’t know about you.
A.J.: I used to be a construction engineer in my previous life. My last building that I worked on is 520 North Michigan I can tell you stories about that building.

CHEZ: What is the best piece of advice you can give someone planning an event?
A.J.: If this person is in the event field my advice is It’s not about you, it’s about your client….. and remember that you are in the business of service. If you are planning an event, hire professionals and let them guide you.

CHEZ: What do you love about Chez?
A.J.: Besides the gorgeous pilkington stairs (that engineer background coming back!) and it’s great location…. Chez is a white canvas, don’t be afraid to go bold with your event colors. The space can take on colors beautifully.

Thanks Alexandra! We can’t wait to see what designs you bring to your next event at Chez.

Photography by Carasco (L), and Christy Tyler Photography (R)