Spring is in the air and Wings is thrilled to shine the spotlight on one of our fabulous Event Engineers!
Loved having a moment away from making events happen to highlight Kim, our decorator extraordinaire!
How did you get started?
My mom had a garden and a natural knack for making something beautiful out of whatever was around so I have always had an appreciation for beautiful and creative things. In my early hospitality days, I worked at a 5-star property called The Point in Saranac Lake. It was a rather remote place in the Adirondack Mountains and one day the florist couldn’t do the flowers for all of the guest rooms and dining rooms so they asked me to help out. The boss thought my stuff looked better than the florist so I became the in-house florist so to speak. That led to me starting my own floral design company when we moved back to Florida, and then to a 15 year career as in house Event Designer at The Breakers in Palm Beach. Wings was one of my early corporate clients at the Breakers and we always maintained a great relationship over the years. When I decided to leave the Breakers, I joined up with Wings travelling all over the country with them creating some really remarkable events.
What do you love about what you do?
The people. The challenge. The travel. The creative process and always doing something new. I love seeing a blank room or venue on a site visit and then totally transforming the place. I love all of the partners we work with. We are a band of gypsy road dogs and are always happy to see each other at load in! Everyone is so supportive and wants the best possible outcome for our client.
What was your most challenging project/installation?
A private group event in Cabo Mexico. It was on a remote hot beach with no facilities at all. We were there for ten days and had zero support from our client. (This was not a Wings job by the way!)
We created multiple events over 5 days that were gorgeous and my crew and I never worked harder in our lives! We were so happy when it was over we had way too much tequila on the beach which resulted in one of the most hilarious days ever. We all cringe and laugh at the same time every time anyone ever mentions this job.
What is your creative process when beginning a project?
Listening is always the first step. Getting a good handle on what the client wants, what they have done in the past, and where they want to go with this event. Then, I sit at my computer and start pulling images onto a mood board. I sketch out ideas. I tweak and tweak and tweak, and then I reach out to some great creative collaborators and vendors to throw out my ideas and ask how we can make it even better. The collaborative process always sparks greater ideas and gets me thinking out of my own head. I get the ideas onto a mood board and then put the wheels in motion to execute. One of my favorite projects was penciled out on a scrap piece of wood in my prop builder’s studio. We had such fun and were so excited as our vision was being born on this sketch on the wood. And the end result he built for a 20’ tall structure of stacked cubes in a tornado formation was mind blowing inside a clear tent in Chicago. You are only as good as the people you surround yourself with, and Wings has given me the opportunity to work with so many crazy talented and kind people.
We shouldn’t ask this but…what is your favorite flower and why?
Lilly of the Valley. It grew on the side garden at my childhood home in Ohio. My mom always asked me to pick bunches of it for her and she would put them in antique cream pitchers and set them around the house. I love the memory, the scent, and the delicate beauty of them.