West Week 2010

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To start off the week of west week (which is technically only 2 days) I met a new friend. I am in this group called Smarty it is a group of women entrepreneurs and it kicks ass and is a great support system and you meet the best people. Someone from the group introduced me to a member I probably wouldn’t have met otherwise. We met on Monday evening and totally hit it off and are in similar positions right now. Ginna recently launched a custom rug company 27 Ground and it is so cool. She is not only the nicest and most genuine lady in the world she has a great product that is all hand knotted in India and Nepal. They can do it in any size, color combination, and do whatever design you would want and they have a great selection of designs to chose from, maybe one day I will have one made for our house. She has some great designs and I only see this getting better and better.  So you MUST check her out RIGHT HERE!

When we were talking she actually reminded me it was West Week, I had no clue, I have been living in a little bubble lately and was also surprised to realize it was also getting close to the end of March! Wait… where did Feb. go?? So she told me a couple of things she was going to and sent me a couple of invites, I happily looked into the events and decided to head down to the Pacific Design Center Wed. afternoon to catch some panels and attend the One Kings Lane party.

The first panel I went to was Camera Ready: It’s not Complicated

with a panel of set designers James Radin, Beth Rubino, David Smith, who work on Nancy Meyers’ films, such as Something’s Gotta Give, It’s Complicated, What Women Want, The Holiday, etc. All movies that have great set design, but I have never watched any of them, soooo not my type of movie to want to sit down and watch, but that is not the point. They are beautifully designed and the Nancy Meyers treats each set with the detail you would in real life and wants her set designers to work just like interior designers and create a full experience for the actors. The last person on the panel was Brian Patrick Flynn from Movie and a Make Over, he was funny and very upbeat and seemed to add some liveliness to the panel. I stopped in at the reception ate some chocolate covered strawberries and headed off to the afternoon keynote presentation. That one was REALLLLY good. It was hosted by Editor at Large, if you don’t know who they are, you must check it out, if you have an interior project or product you want to get out to many magazines and blogs that is the way to go. I’m planning on using it that is for sure. The panel was Michael Bruno, the founder of 1st dibs, Ronda Carman from All the Best Blog, Vanessa de Vargas from Turquoise, Brian Patrick Flynn from Movie and a Make Over and decordemon.com, Brad Ford of designtherapy.com, and Jillian St. Charles the Vice President and Site Director of HGTV.com. The moderator was Sophie Donalson from Editor at Large and she was HILARIOUS, she really kept it going and comical. They were all discussing how and why they started their companies and how they use the web, blogs, facebook, twitter, and video to keep moving forward and finding new readers and clients. Vanessa de Vargas was saying it has definitely brought her new clients that would have never found her but her blog comes up high in the search engines and because of all the people that have found her she started the e-design service. That is just fantastic to hear. All the people on the panel were just so open and down to earth and seemed to genuinely be open to meeting new people and finding new products and designers. It was refreshing.

My big problem with how West Week handles things is that these keynote panels only have one hour and it is a strict one hour. No going over, so it seems like they should be able to go on if they have more to discuss, but no we were all rushed out of the room at exactly the one hour mark, which was a big disappointment. I think 90 minutes would have been a perfect amount of time, with 6 great people trying to talk an hour goes by very quickly. They had a reception upstairs, but it was packed so you couldn’t really talk with the panelists very easily afterwards. So I ended up going upstairs anyway to see if I could talk with any of them, but it was chaotic up there. I did run into a couple of designers I chatted with, one I had met previously so we talked an chatted for quite a while. They were going to the OKL party also, so we all walked over there together. We got there a bit early and I didn’t realize that they had a “strict” RSVP list and I was not on it. So as the other 2 went in, I just walked in with them, easy as pie just like at the fashion shows. Anyway, we were some of the first people there and it eventually started filling up. I met some great new people and it is always nice to share an evening with people that have similar interests. They had delicious food and wine passed around and it was PACKED in the little Almont Yard where the party was at. One funny thing is I saw Barclay Butera there, he had an art line with Soicher Marin (where I used to work) and I have met him at least 5 times, yet every time I have been introduced to him he seems to think it is the first time we have met. So I was not surprised when he didn’t run over and say Hi to me at the party! HAHA!! Anyway it was one fantastic evening and I really met some great people. I hope there are more of these great parties this spring because the evening was wonderful and it would be great to do that a few more times. Oh yeah, when I was at the party a woman that I have never met in person came up to me and was like are you Tracy? She recognized me from Twitter – we follow each other!! How funny is that?

The next day of West Week didn’t seem to have any thing I couldn’t live without going to, so I didn’t attend any of the events. I was going to go to a coffee and cinnamon toast breakfast at the Suzan Fellman Showroom, but ended up having to help my BF take our 3 dogs into the vet for shots because they were being boarded all weekend. Turns out the editor of House Beautiful was at the breakfast, damn. Oh well. The BF and I got our dogs fixed up and headed up the coast to Santa Barbara for 4 days. We stayed at the Bacara which was absolutely heavenly. We met with a wedding planner there and are now planning on giving up our first born child to get married there. (kidding). It was amazing and I can’t wait to go back. So now I am back trying to get everything done and am 2 days behind!! Gotta work extra hard this week!

The Bacara Resort:

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