Updated: Aug 26
Written by: Rachel Kimball
You're probably wondering - what the heck is happening?!? Or even better - where the heck have you been?!? Both are valid questions, both have long stories that involve me getting stuck in the mundane, starting a new "big girl job" and still not being completely fulfilled. We all have an escape, a sanctuary, a safe place. For me, books are the stress relief, the joy, the fantasy, and how I step away from reality.
To answer a few questions right off the back:
Yes - I am still always interested in planning and executing weddings, but it is no longer my sole focus for my brand. And let's me real, it's 2023 people are a brand now and my brand is still me. It's still the feisty, loves the color pink, redhead; but now, it's better, its expanding. It's now the start of a great joke, when a blonde and a redhead walk into a bar...it's not just me, now it's the daring, delighted by flowers, blonde.
No - I am not quitting my full time job, but yes Andre is considering doing so. I love my job and the work that I get to do, the impact that I have on so many students lives, Andre does not. I have opportunities like no other and really do love my work and community that I have, but the limitless creativity is missing.
Yes - I now get to use my creative skills to the fullest of my capabilities and plan experiences for anyone to attend and events that no one else is doing.
I fell in love with reading when I was lost in all my own dramas and needed to escape, and have since forced Andre to read some of my favorites. Now, I am going to create a true escape from reality through unique event experiences - starting with the Starball.
I am beyond excited to expand my brand with my best friend - Andre Ujcich - to go on this new business endeavor together and launch this new era of unique speciality events in the Dallas area. We both have big dreams and with our drive, innovation and creativity we are going to make them a reality - we are going to throw events like no others.
There will be entire blogs and stories dedicated to the why's and how's, the what we are readings, the dreams that we are having, and most importantly the realities that we are creating. But the most important thing to note is that we are using our skills, knowledge and resources to now throw a one of a kind black tie ball in the heart of Dallas.
I'm the kind of girly-girl who loves to wear a fancy ball gown, cover myself in jewels, test the limits of my hair, and put a stellar crown on top of my head and let the inner princess shine on the outside. The issue, there aren't really all that many black tie events that aren't weddings or charity galas happening here. Certainly not events that are so niche specific that they are about bringing together those with similar loves whether it is the fellow book lovers, the people who want a unique dining experience, those who want to escape the current reality, or those who simply just want to put on a beautiful dress and dance the night away. Or, you can be like me, and say yes to all of the above.
So fair ladies and gentlemen, get ready to mark your calendars for a one of a kind event this coming season! My years of experience in the events industry, all my vendor friends, my family, it's all been stewing for this launch - this new chapter of who I am as an Event Planner, who I now am as a business partner, and who you all are as loyal fans, friends and family.
The first event of this era will take place this Fall and it will be a night that you will not want to miss. The dreams that I am making a reality are not small. When Andre had the same dream that I did we didn't think, we jumped straight into the feasibility of making it reality. Within 10 minutes, I wrote a rough estimated budget, developed a mental marketing strategy, and cried when I realized that I can make this happen. Vision, attention to detail, coordination and execution - skills that I excel in are going to be tried and tested as we take on the new adventure of A & R Corporate.
No longer am I merely taking my clients dreams and making them a reality, but now it goes so much further, it is designing, developing, creating, and selling all of you on your wildest fantasies from the pages of some of your favorite books and turning it into an event like no other. And the series launching it all, A Court of Thorns and Roses, it was given to me at a time when I was lost in who I was and wanted to be. I was trying to shove myself into the career that I thought would make me happy, but didn't. ACOTAR is the first book that I can remember reading and enjoying for no other than purpose than to try to escape and find joy. What I found was so much more; the world building, the depth of the stories, the character development, the twists, a love for morally grey men, a new understanding of what love can mean, and most importantly my own pure joy. I read the entire series in the week following that the first book given to me. Then in the next year I read over 70 books. And here I am now, still a true book queen, with more books read in the last 2 years than my entire life prior to picking up ACOTAR.
You might have started reading this post seriously questioning what the heck is happening, and you might still have those questions and thoughts, or you might have found the underlying message within this rambling post. For those who didn't here it is: your wildest dreams can become a reality, the things you think no one will like or support can win, and yes, a good book can not only bring you out of your despair, but it can also enlighten you in ways you never expected or thought possible. I used to say that I planned events for my mental health, but then the pressure from the weddings became too much and the creativity became too small, reading became that saving grace for me, and now here I am, full circle, bringing a love for events and planning together with a love for reading.
Here is what you can expect to see from us in this coming chapter - the Starball, dining experiences like no other, a gathering fit for a queen that will be the talk of the ton, or maybe it's all a secret that I'll never tell, a truth that can't be spilled, a fight for the throne, or placement amongst the houses. There will be ample opportunities for fashionable society, the blackest of ties, and wildest of themes to wonder the streets of the greater Dallas area, to live, to dance, to laugh and create joyful memories.
Welcome to our Era.
Rachel + Andre
P.S. Interested in buying tickets? Now available!