I61studio Blog
  • *INTERVIEWS*
  • June27th

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    The White Dress is an amazing two story wedding dress boutique in Corona del Mar owned and operated by Marlis for the past 10 years come December. The boutique interior is both chic and welcoming, and the dress selection impressive to say the least!

    wedding dress Corona Del Mar, CA

    I61studio: How would you describe your boutique’s signature style?
    Marlis: It’s very…myself. It’s clean and it focuses on the dresses and the space. I love big dressing rooms so we have very big dressing rooms to offer the brides.

    I61studio: How long have you been interested in bridal fashion in general?
    Marlis: So I created the name “The White Dress” right after I graduated from USC business school but didn’t really know what to do with it until I was shopping for my own bridal gown. I went shopping and the store let me down. I worked for Nordstrom going through college so I have a Nordstrom philosophy as far as the way a customer should be treated and handled.

    I61studio: What were you doing before running your own business?
    Marlis: I was in technology. I worked at a facility called Equinix. It was a 90 million dollar facility that housed Fandango’s web servers and all their internet sites, and Charles Schwab and all the high-end companies that needed to be online. That was a neat thing to be a part of.

    wedding dress Corona Del Mar, CA

    I61studio: Did you always have an interest in fashion?
    Marlis: I think fashion is just beautiful. I think: “How can these designers come up with something new every year?” but they do, and they get better and better and better. It’s always evolving. It’s wonderful to work around these dresses every day.

    I61studio: What introduced you to the world of bridal fashion?
    Marlis: It was purely a want to get into my own business and finding a niche for myself. I always have dreamt of it but never realized that I could do it. I started very very small. The square footage was tiny when we first started, and we’ve expanded four times since.

    wedding dress Corona Del Mar, CA

    I61studio: What did you want to be as a kid?
    Marlis: I wanted to fly airplanes. Or be a teacher.

    I61studio: Where there telltale signs while growing up that you’d become a boutique owner?
    Marlis: I was more of a tomboy growing up, so I kind of wasn’t that girl that dressed in dresses. I still don’t. I love high heels, so I’m a shoe lady… and more of a slacks-and-suit lady. But I would say that I appreciate dresses. I appreciate the construction and the fit and everything like that.

    I61studio: Who is your biggest inspiration?
    Marlis: My mother. The one that always tried to get me to dress up. She was very helpful with me starting this.

    wedding dress Corona Del Mar, CA

    I61studio: Who is your favorite designer?
    Marlis: I have to say my favorite is Elizabeth Fillmore. But as for a new up and coming designer – his dresses are so beautiful – Jorge Manuel. He’s got these architectural designs in his dresses. He’s from Miami so he has a lot of art deco in his designs.

    I61studio: What is your favorite bridal dress trend?
    Marlis: I do like color in dresses. Just an off-color, a touch. I really love fitted dresses and I love the fit of the dress. If a dress is not well fitted – if the designer doesn’t have good slopes to their lines – it’s hard for me to see past anything else.

    I61studio: What dress did you wear on your own wedding day?
    Marlis: I wore three wedding dresses. I had a rehearsal dinner dress that was a wedding dress – it was an Elizabeth Fillmore. It was more sheath-y and a cocktail type wedding dress. And then I wore for the ceremony a dress that was a halter with lots of lace and a separate detached train. For the reception I completely changed it up, I did a corset dress that was really fitted, with a blue sash in the back. That was really fun.

    wedding dress Corona Del Mar, CA

    I61studio: What do you like to do in your free time?
    Marlis: Well the mom thing is a pretty big thing. That’s pretty much all I do right now because I have a 16 month old and a three-and-a-half year old. Two boys. My first son was actually really scared at first because he thought the dresses were all ghosts, because they’re all white! He’s over it now.

    I61studio: What do you love most about doing what you do?
    Marlis: I just love working with the girls that work here. I love seeing them every day. And then it’s always so wonderful to see someone happy – when they’re trying on a dress and they find “The One”!

    Company Name: The White Dress
    Services: Wedding dresses, bridesmaid dresses, debutante dresses
    Phone Number: (949) 723-0121
    Website: http://www.thewhitedress.com
    Address: 2853 East Coast Highway, Corona Del Mar, CA 92625

  • June13th

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    Mark is a wedding DJ for over 27 years with an education and background as a radio DJ personality in numerous radio stations prior to amassing his vast wedding DJ experience.

    Music Man Event Professionals
    I61studio: How would you describe your signature style?
    Mark: I don’t really have a style…What we try to do is adapt our style to what our clients are trying to accomplish. So we learn about our client, what their goals are for their wedding – elegant and fun, or nightclub/high energy – it all depends on what they want their outcome to be.

    I61studio: How did you go from being a radio DJ to mobile wedding DJ?
    Mark: It got to the point where I was going crazy because I’m a people person – I love talking to people and meeting people – but when you’re in radio you’re in a 6×6 room by yourself, talking into a microphone. While I was in radio, some friends came up and asked me to be their wedding DJ. I wasn’t at that point too familiar with doing weddings but I ended up putting together a wedding that blew everybody away. I had so much fun doing it too, that I wanted to do that more often and started marketing it and here were are today.

    I61studio: How did you transition into owning your own company?
    Mark: When I first started with mobile DJing I was 16 and working for another [DJ] company. I hated the fact that I was so restricted by the management and wanted more freedom, so I started my own company. That allowed me to build a brand and a family of people here that does business the way I like it to be done.

    I61studio: How do you get a party engaged?
    Mark: We never go in there with a preconceived judgment. I’ll engage guests by just walking around talking to them at the tables when they first come in. And then I get a feeling for what kind of people are out there and what kind of songs would work and we adapt.

    Music Man Event Professionals
    I61studio: What did you want to be as a kid?
    Mark: I wanted to be a singer.

    I61studio: Do you also sing on the side?
    Mark: No, just in my car.

    I61studio: Who was your biggest inspiration or influence?
    Mark: My wife is a big inspiration for me— without her support and understanding behind me 100% I couldn’t have done this.

    Music Man Event Professionals
    Event lighting photos sourced from Music Man Event Professionals website: http://orangecountyweddingdj.co/

    I61studio: What is your favorite type of music?
    Mark: I don’t have a favorite type – I like all kinds. I’m a big hip hop person, I guess – Hip hop and pop. But I also listen to country, rock, and everything. I grew up in the 80s so I love 80s music. I just love music in general.

    I61studio: What do you like to do in your free time?
    Mark: I brew beer – I’m a home brewer. I have a brewery in my garage with different beers on tap. I won a national championship for it in 2009 – that was exciting. My nickname is “the beer-man”. I’m not an alcoholic though, I hardly drink at all – I just like making the beer.

    I61studio: What do you love most about doing what you do?
    Mark: I love the creativity. I’m not a person that likes getting caught into doing the same thing every time. I like that each couple is different and wants different things and that there’s a challenge in putting together an event in the right way.

    Company Name: Music Man Event Professionals
    Services: Wedding DJ and lighting services
    Phone Number: (949) 940-8998
    Website: http://orangecountyweddingdj.co/
    Address: 19 Spectrum Pointe, Suite 607, Lake Forest

  • June6th

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    Carina is a makeup artist now for eleven years and is owner of a truly one-stop makeup and skin care lounge in Costa Mesa that provides not only wedding and event makeup, but skin care, hair styling, botox treatments, and tanning, among many others.

    Flawless Faces Costa Mesa CAt
    I61studio: How long has your business been in operation?
    Carina: It’s been three years on July 1rst. So we’re having our three year birthday party on June 29th from 5pm-8:30pm. We have local vendors, makeup demos, raffles for free facials and free yoga – just a fun girly party.

    I61studio: How would you describe your signature makeup style?
    Carina: Our style here is really fresh— Fresh and youthful with emphasis on the eyes and really smooth skin.

    I61studio: How did you get into the field of professional makeup?
    Carina: I was in fashion design school and I was getting frustrated because I wasn’t that good. My friend suggested I go to makeup school and I was like: “How would make a career out of that?” But then I went, and it kind of all just clicked. I loved it. I became obsessed.

    I61studio: How was the transition from the fashion field into the makeup field?
    Carina: It really happened fast. Once I made the decision and put my mind to it, literally doors just flew open for me. I got hired at MAC right away, I met a celebrity artist that asked me to assist – he took me to the Grammy’s in ‘99 for my first job. It just happened really fast and once it did, I was just obsessed. I loved it.

    Flawless Faces Costa Mesa CAt
    I61studio: How long have you been interested in makeup in general?
    Carina: I was a late bloomer – I was 22 when I first started wearing makeup. It’s been around 13 years since I started really looking at magazines and staring at the faces.

    I61studio: What did you want to be when you were a kid?
    Carina: I always knew I was going to own my own business. I just was always coming up with ways to earn money. So I would wash cars, vacuum cars out, and this was all when I was around 12. But if you had told me when I was 15 that I was going to own a makeup studio I would have been like “Yeah right! I don’t even wear makeup! That’s gross!” I was so natural I didn’t want to look fake ever. So I always have that in mind when we do makeup on our girls.

    I61studio: How did you stay motivated while building your business from the ground up?
    Carina: I just really didn’t think I was going to fail. That just wasn’t an option. And if you are working hard, there’s no way you can’t succeed. People would constantly say negative things, but I think those negatives made me more motivated to be successful.

    I61studio: Who was your biggest influence or inspiration?
    Carina: Well I have always looked up to Madonna. Hers was the first record I got when I was a kid – “Like a Virgin”. After watching her movie, I just related to her. She would really just say “Screw all of you” and be true to herself – to her heart – no matter what anyone around her said.

    Flawless Faces Costa Mesa CAt
    I61studio: Do you have a favorite makeup artist?
    Carina: I really like Donald Simrock. He is an artist I worked with for five years. And Lottie Stannard. I’ve never met her but I am obsessed with her work. She’s just really talented and creative and amazing.

    I61studio: What do you like to do in your free time?
    Carina: I’ve been working seven days a week for quite some time now because I get really booked. But I started riding horses and I love to travel. Whenever I can get some time off, I get on a plane and I go to Europe – I go to visit family in Sweden. I just recently went to Italy and Spain and I came back and got booked on a wedding in Fiji, so I went to Fiji for eight days.

    I61studio: What do you love most about doing what you do?
    Carina: I love that it’s different every day, I love that it’s not mundane, I love that I’m always able to be creative. And I really like my clients. It’s interesting meeting all these new people and hearing their stories.

    Flawless Faces Costa Mesa CAt
    Company Name: Flawless Faces
    Services: Makeup lessons, bridal and event makeup, facials, microdermabrasion, chemical peels, spray tanning
    Address: 124 Broadway, Suite D, Costa Mesa, Ca 92627
    Phone Number: (949) 742-4211
    Website: http://flawlessfacesinc.com/
    Email: info@flawlessfacesinc.com

  • May23rd

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    Cindy is owner of Floral Elements and an experienced floral designer within the wedding industry for the past decade.

    Cindy of Floral Elements

    I61studio: How would you describe your signature style?
    Cindy: I like everything – I like traditional and classical, but also modern and simple. I also really like the romantic girly style, so it’s hard to pinpoint, but I really like clean, simple lines.

    I61studio: What caused you to become interested in floral design?
    Cindy: I’ve always liked flowers and thought it would be nice to do something in this industry. I wanted to do something fun and creative, even though there’s a lot of hard work behind doing flowers.

    I61studio: Do you remember the first professional event you ever did on your own?
    Cindy: I’m trying to remember…it was more for friends and family when I first started out, but it was still nerve racking because I was on my own and not working for someone else.

    Cindy of Floral Elements

    I61studio: Who is your biggest inspiration or influence?
    Cindy: There are a lot of different designers out there, but I would say Preston Bailey and Jeff Leatham. You can see their hard work and where it’s brought them and they enjoy it – it’s their passion.

    I61studio: What is your favorite flower?
    Cindy: I would say my favorite flower is the peony.

    I61studio: What inspires you right now?
    Cindy: I think anything and everything. Even art, nature, other designers – not necessarily flowers, but even architecture and people. A lot of different things.

    Cindy of Floral Elements
    Photo credits: Evonne Darren Photography, Connie M. Chung Photography, Adrienne Gunde Photography

    I61studio: What do you like to do in your free time?
    Cindy: I like to shop, I like being outdoors, I like to read… and I’m also addicted to TV reality shows like Top Chef!

    I61studio: What do you love most about doing what you do?
    Cindy: What I really love doing is being able to create and re-interpret the client’s vision – Bringing everything together, the colors, textures, different elements… and seeing it all come together.

    Name: Floral Elements
    Services: Floral design for weddings and events
    Phone Number: (949) 275-5692
    Website: http://www.floralelements.com/
    Email: info@floralelements.com

  • May16th

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    Mindy is the owner of Jaclyn’s Bridal, a boutique just across the street from South Coast Plaza that has been in business since 1978. Mindy took what was then a dying business in a run-down state over from the original owner Jaclyn in the 90s, and has since lovingly renovated, restored, and grown it into the trusted bridal gown resource it is now.

    Jaclyn's Bridal costa mesa
    I61studio: How long have you been in the bridal fashion business?
    Mindy: I have been in bridal fashion for almost 30 years. Between myself and my seamstress we have probably 65 years of combined experience in bridal alteration and design.

    I61studio: How would you describe Jaclyn Bridal’s signature style?
    Mindy: I think most people say we are a comfortable store. We’re kind of like the Target of the bridal dress world. So we have really good quality dresses at a reasonable price.

    I61studio: Do you come from a fashion background?
    Mindy: Not fashion per se, but I’ve always had an interest in fashion and always made my own clothes. I grew up in Louisiana but in the 70s there were no Asian markets, so in order to get rice, we’d have it shipped from California in 100 pound bags. Those bags were made out of thick cotton with Korean or Chinese writing and I was really intrigued by that. I would save the bags and make clothing out of it. I got discovered by a talent agent who liked my clothes so I started designing for her.

    Jaclyn's Bridal costa mesa
    I61studio: Do you have a degree in fashion design?
    Mindy: No. I majored in Marketing, which actually worked out for me. Designing, you kind of have it or you don’t, but business sense you need to learn.

    I61studio: How did you come to own Jaclyn’s Bridal?
    Mindy: It just kind of fell into my lap by accident, actually. I’ve always worked in the fashion side, but my passion was actually caring for the elderly. I wanted to own a nursing home. So I was looking for about two, three years and my broker told me: “I found the perfect business for you” and I said: “It’s not a nursing home.” But as soon as I walked in, I felt like I was home.

    I61studio: Were there telltale signs in your childhood that you’d grow up to own a boutique?
    Mindy: No. I always thought I’d either become a housewife with six kids or work a corporate job. And I did work in corporate and went all the way to VP but I found the business world not to be enticing for me. It was too “business-y”. I like the personal touch of having my own boutique.

    Jaclyn's Bridal costa mesa
    I61studio: Who was your biggest inspiration?
    Mindy: I had quite a few very strong willed women in my life. Earlier in my high school and college years I was fortunate enough to come across a couple of ladies who both happened to be my childhood boyfriends’ mothers. They both really gave me good insight and would tell me “You are very smart, you can do anything you want, don’t let men guide you, you guide them.”

    I61studio: Do you like to travel?
    Mindy: If I was going to die tomorrow or in a month, I wouldn’t go anywhere. I would just be with my friends and family. But this job takes me to Europe, to New York, and Chicago – I have to go and buy these dresses. I’m going to Spain in May.

    I61studio: What do you like to do in your free time?
    Mindy: You know the most important thing in life is family and friends. I don’t have a lot of free time because I love being at work, but any free time that I have I keep in touch with my friends. Something I’ve learned at this age is that that you don’t need a lot of friends, just the few good friends.

    Jaclyn's Bridal costa mesa

    Company Name: Jaclyn’s Bridal
    Services: Wedding dresses, bridesmaid dresses, debutante dresses
    Phone Number: 714) 549-1493
    Address: 3930 S. Bristol St., Suite 204, Santa Ana, CA 92704
    Hours: Mon-Fri 11am-7pm, Sat 10am-5pm, Closed: Tuesdays and Sundays
    Website: http://www.jaclynsbridal.com

  • May2nd

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    Jeff is co-owner and executive chef behind Jeff the Silent Chef catering and is a third generation chef who graduated from the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco after receiving a bachelor’s degree in Nutrition. Jeff the Silent Chef catering was recently placed on the 2011 Orange County Hotlist for Best Catering.

    Jeff the Silent Chef Catering, san clemente
    I61studio: How would you describe your signature style?
    Jeff: We’re creative, extraordinary and unique in our cuisines. When someone comes to someone’s party or wedding, they’re going to see things that they’ve never seen before.

    I61studio: How long have you been interested in cooking in general?
    Jeff: Ever since I was maybe four, I was learning from my grandfather about culinary cuisine. I’ve always had a passion for food.

    Jeff the Silent Chef Catering, san clemente
    I61studio: Did you always know you wanted to be a chef growing up?
    Jeff: I’ve always known that I loved food, and had a passion for food. But I never thought I could actually turn it into a career until I was a senior in highschool and my grandmother said “Why don’t you go to culinary school and become a chef?” Once she said that it clicked.

    I61studio: What were you doing before running your own business?
    Jeff: Before running my own business I was a private chef to celebrities in LA. My middle agent would send me off to different places and sometimes it would be Tyra Banks or John Travolta or someone different and I would be like: “Oh my gosh, I know you!” It was really fun.

    Jeff the Silent Chef Catering, san clemente
    I61studio: Who is your biggest inspiration?
    Jeff: My biggest inspiration was my grandfather. He did not get to see me start the business, but he did get to see me go to culinary school with the passion that he had.

    I61studio: What is your favorite food?
    Jeff: I like fusion cuisine. I love doing fusion cuisine – taking bits and parts of cultures and fusing them together to come up with something unique and different.

    Jeff the Silent Chef Catering, san clemente
    I61studio: Do fusion cuisines work well for multicultural weddings?
    Jeff: Yes. We just did one a little while ago where it was Polynesian and Peruvian. So they had two cultures and we had to sit down and figure out how to incorporate both cultures into their meal.

    I61studio: What do you like to do in your free time?
    Jeff: Cook. It’s kind of funny – I can do a party and work 16 hours for four days in a row and then on my day off the first thing I’m thinking about is who’s going to come over to my house so we can cook and have fun. So I’m pretty much always cooking. It’s fun cooking.

    Jeff the Silent Chef Catering, san clemente
    I61studio: What do you love most about doing what you do?
    Jeff: I really love the friendship that comes out of doing weddings. I love meeting people and keeping in touch with them. And also I just love seeing the reaction on people’s faces. Weddings are very important events, so when we’re able to make their vision a reality and make it everything they ever wanted it to be, it’s a great feeling.

    Name: Jeff the Silent Chef
    Services: Catering for weddings, corporate and social events, cooking classes
    Phone Number: 949-218-2320
    Website: http://www.silentchefjeff.com
    Showroom: 1020 Calle Cordillera, Suite 101, San Clemente, CA 92673-6233
    Catering manager email: eddie@jeffthesilentchef.com

  • April25th

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    Janet is a floral designer with a studio in Tustin filled with an extensive array of fresh and silk flower arrangements, a small sampling of the arrangement work she regularly does for clients who order arrangements for window fronts, hotels, and corporate buildings, projects she does in addition to her flesh wedding and event floral arrangements.

    Bloompia Flower Tustin CA
    I61studio: How long have you been doing floral design?
    Janet: It’s been six years now with my own business. Including other professional experiences and doing it as a side hobby… around 15 years.

    I61studio: What were you doing before owning your own business?
    Janet: Before owning my own business I worked as a floral designer and floral design instructor for La Premier originally in Beverly Hills, under the celebrity florist Kevin Lee. We did floral design for very large scale events like celebrity weddings, movie premiers, and academy awards.

    I61studio: Were you always a floral designer by profession?
    Janet: No. I graduated college with a Visual Communication Design major and then went on to work as a graphic designer for one of the largest design companies in Korea. But for me, I love doing things that involve activity, and just sitting in front of a desk all day meeting project deadlines was very stressful. So I just started floral design as a side hobby, taking floral design classes in my spare time.

    Bloompia Flower Tustin CA
    I61studio: How did that hobby turn into a profession?
    Janet: Well originally for me, what I wanted to be was a stylist, and at that time felt like learning floral design would help me to build a career as a stylist. So that’s why I started learning floral design, but once I did, there were so many different designs and it was so enjoyable I started to feel like: “I really want to get into this.”

    I61studio: How would you describe Bloompia’s style?
    Janet: Our original style can be described as clean yet couture –luxurious, contemporary, elegant and sophisticated.

    I61studio: Where do you get inspiration for new floral designs?
    Janet: I like looking at all types of magazines, from fashion to lifestyle to interior design, not just flower related ones. That’s how I identify trends. I feel with floral design, the trend is very much intertwined with everything else going on and that definitely includes fashion and interiors.

    Bloompia Flower Tustin CA
    I61studio: Were you always interested in art and design?
    Janet: I’ve always loved magazines and looking at pictures in books, ever since I was young. I grew up in Korea, but even in Korea I’d always go to the foreign books section to look at lifestyle and interior-related magazines.

    I61studio: Who was your biggest influence?
    Janet: My mother. I received a lot of my design aesthetic and business ethic from her. She’s just never idle. Even now, she’s still very active, emailing with friends and running her own blog. Every season she changes the furniture around in the house. She also taught me the importance of not giving up. I believe as she did that the people who don’t give up but stick with their efforts are the ones who in the end will reach their goals.

    I61studio: What is your favorite flower?
    Janet: I really like orchids. I use a lot of Cymbidium orchids in my arrangements.

    Bloompia Flower Tustin CA
    I61studio: What is your design process for weddings?
    Janet: First I’ll try to understand what the client’s preferences are, and then start the sampling process. We always create samples of the centerpieces, to the exact scale of the event, all with fresh flowers so clients have an exact idea of what their flowers are going to look like on their wedding day.

    I61studio: What do you love most about doing what you do?
    Janet: I think seeing brides and guests so happy to see the flower arrangements is what I love the most. Weddings are so important – girls start dreaming of their ideal weddings from a very young age, and as a floral designer, I’m helping them to fulfill that dream.

    Name: Bloompia
    Services: Silk flower arrangements and fresh floral design for wedding and events, floral design classes
    Address: 2640 Walnut Ave # K, Tustin, CA 92780-7035
    Phone Number: (714) 508-9399 ‎
    Website: http://www.bloompia.com/
    Email: info@bloompia.com