Category Archives: creative

  Stephen M. Tokar Closing Up Shop & Moving to Europe

You guys! Do I have a SALE for you!

Like to throw parties? Always in need of extra seating, table cloths, candle holders and floor-to-ceiling painted, mid-century-inspired backdrops? (HA!) You MUST attend the decor sale-of-the-century hosted by Stephen Tokar of Tokar Events.

Stephens career has spanned over 40 years here in Cleveland. From a young, flower-shop helper to designing events for influencers like Martha Stewart and Gloria Vanderbilt. Tokar was the official event designer of the Republican National Convention and he also regularly partners with the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Cleveland Indians for many events needs.

I had the opportunity to walk through his warehouse of amazing things and to say I was “WOWED” is an understatement. From floor to ceiling there are gorgeous urns, candlesticks, chandeliers, pillows, and artwork that could be integrated into your next party or forever in your home. Don’t even get me started on the mid-century tables or faux boxwood hedge walls (I’m trying to find a reason I “need” one!) everything looks like it could have come from a gorgeous design magazine.

Why is Stephen liquidating, you might ask? Well, he is truly doing something we’ve all dreamed of…packing up and heading abroad to start something new and fresh. Having Hungarian roots, Stephen has decided to move to Budapest with plans to open a boutique, clicks-and-mortar business that sells international religious accessories, relics, and collectibles. Best of luck Stephen, you will be missed by the Cleveland events and party scene but we all admire you for following your “second life” dreams!

The sale takes place at Stephens midtown Cleveland studio at 7029 Euclid Avenue from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 30-31 and June 1, 2019. Prices range from $5 for designer pillows and candlesticks to $2,500 for Italianate room-sized garden pergolas and gorgeous Grecian statuary.

Thanks for sharing a bit of behind the scenes of your collection with me Stephen. Cleveland you MUST get to the sale as soon as it opens…there are so many treasures you won’t want to miss! Happy treasure hunting…and even better, happy new adventures to all!

HOSTED POST : Thank you to Tokar Events Design for inviting me to explore their incredible pre-auction. Cleveland, thanks for supporting this business at it changes and grows, while allowing me to create special content like this for iheartcleveland!

  3 tips for a great Alt Summit experience!

Hey Cleveland, happy Tuesday! A few of you have reached out to let me know that you too are attending Alt Summit; a creative conference for influencers, entrepreneurs and anyone who loves a good creative winter escape. I am so excited to have so many Clevelanders represented in Palm Springs, California. If you are attending, shoot me a note on Instagram, I’d love to meet up.

As someone who has attended this conference before, I thought it would be fun to put together 3 tips for first-time attendees. I hope they are helpful, enjoy!

Tip #1 : Fashion forward!
I don’t know about you, but I’ve pulled out my suitcase and am already planning my approach for packing. From the moment you hop off the plane in Palm Springs you will be smothered in bold hues and sunny skies, it truly is magical. Soak in every terra-cotta tone and Regency-styled pattern and plan to stretch your wild fashion styles in every best possible way. If you are a person who loves to wear dark colors, get uncomfortable and throw in a few bold scarfs or wraps for the nighttime; remember that once the sun sets behind the mountains the temp drops drastically.

The conference comes with many opportunities to stretch your body, mind and social skills. After reviewing the agenda I plan to try my best to hit up the daily yoga classes hosted by Alaska Airlines at The Parker. Nows the time to bust out all my wild patterned workout clothes that I typically would hesitate to wear to my local Y! Then it’s time to change for a day of talks, roundtables, and networking, think comfortable but fun. Dress in layers to stay warm in the AC conference rooms but remember there will be plenty of time to go outside and get your dose of vitamin D. I love a bright color romper or maxi sundress paired with a bedazzled cardigan for the daytime…so good. For the evening parties and events, it’s time to pull out your best vintage, bold and bright numbers.

If it is something you love but have never had the guts to wear at home, trust me, this is the place to bust out your caftans, muumuu’s, sequins and anything with bubbly sleeves and sparkly shine. If you have an inner fashionista just waiting to shine, now is her time, The brighter and bolder the better reigns true at Alt!

Tip #2 : Prep to mix & mingle
With over 2,000 attendees expected at this year’s conference, be prepared to meet some of the most creative, energized women of your life. Try not to be overwhelmed and intimidated when meeting the mega-influencers and keep your cool if you happen to run into Joanna Gaines or Joy Cho in the restroom…that was basically a reminder for me, ha! Honestly though, while at Alt everyone is there to have a good time, learn, make connections and even make a new friend or two.

Remember to bring plenty of contact cards, a few back up computer and phone chargers, a notebook and even a few snacks. While the conference provides many opportunities for dining and snacks, I always love to have some of my at-home staples (almonds, granola bars, etc) on hand. Remember this conference spans almost an entire week and if you are like me, you actually might get tired of eating out for every meal…hence the snacks.

When I attend a conference like this I honestly try to connect with 2 people each day. I mean really connect. Find out about them, what they do, what they are trying to do, etc. I realize that might sound like a lot of work, but give yourself a little pack on the back and know that it IS weird to walk up to a stranger and connect, but everyone is there to meet people, I promise. At the end of the week, if I have had meaningful connections with 8-10 new people, that makes me feel like the conference has really brought me a larger sense of joy. While I love all of the technical and inspirational learning I plan to get form the week, though the power of social media, these connections will last for years to come…and this is really cool.

Tip #3 : Make time to soak it in.
There will be programming literally offered from 6 am to midnight on most days. Make sure to set aside time for yourself to take a break and let your brain rest. I know we want to attend ALL the parties but perhaps set one night aside to stay in, add a good face mask and reflect on the days’ events. I like to journal, answer emails from back home and indulge in room service at least once during a conference of this length. Recharge! Go to bed at a decent hour…note I didn’t say early. Enjoy the quiet after a day of go, go go! I promise if you do this, you will start the new day rested and ready for the fun that lies ahead.

Until next week! Hope to see you in Palm Springs!
Let me know if you have any other questions and I am happy to help.

  CLE in Cali @ CAMP

Happy Friday everybody. Looks like it’s gonna be another wonderful weekend in Northeast Ohio. Lots of fun stuff to do around town, from those great (food themed) road races, to checking out the Cleveland flea, to perhaps some friend time and maybe even a bit of beach time depending if the weather warms up a bit.

For me, I am currently in Big Bear CA attending a creative conference/CAMP experience. My Seattle-sister and I thought this years annual meet-up needed a bit more than cocktails and shopping (gasp!) so we decided to gain some business and social media insight with a touch of archery, tie-dyeing and camp dances.

The theme for the long weekend is “Cultivate Ambition, Map Possibilities,” I can’t wait to come back to CLE with all sorts of ideas of how to enhance our design client project work, give back creative ideas to my community, perhaps have a few new camp pals on my twitter feed (including photographer & camp workshop instructor Bonnie Tsang nd textile designer, Erin Dollar also a camp instructor) and maybe even perfect my rope climbing skills.

While I am sleeping in a cabin, parent trap-style I hope everyone has a wonderful June weekend. Looking forward to connecting next week as for now I have NO cell reception…dying slightly inside but trying to find the beauty in the quiet!

XO from CLE in Cali, peace

  Cocktail time!

Hey friends, happy sunny Monday to you! Did everyone have a nice weekend? Did you shower the Mom’s in your life with lots of love and special somethings?

It was a busy weekend for me including drinks at Luxe followed by a late showing of Gatsby, a trip to PA to hit up IKEA  and purchasing gobs of tile for our home remodel project, yoga at the new uptown Cleveland Yoga and to top off the night a smidgen of menchies! 

On the way to IKEA I was lucky enough to be a passenger and get through a stack of magazines that were on my weekend to-do list. I love tearing out reference, inspiration, things to buy…you know like old fashioned pinterest! One of the things that caught my eye was the Cleveland Independents Bartender Competition…while I may have missed the first one I am gonna try my darndest to get out, support these local celebrity’s and “sample” a few of their best creations.  Check out who is actually competing here.

Enjoy the sunshine and get psyched as it looks like the summer temps will be back later this week. Peace out!

  Chillin’

Hey guys, did you know it’s supposed to reach almost 74 degree’s today? Crazy nice summer weather but it might just be time to click on that AC to keep your home and ride chill…

This is another shot from by cruise down Superior Ave the other evening, the hand lettering and bold colors pulled me in. Made me wonder about who designed that sign and the Clevelanders who painted it…because it’s awesome. As a designer I tend to gravitate towards modern, clean and simple signs and such. However with this sign the retro charm, the funky type and the no fuss design is super impressive, i heart it. Next time you need an expert air conditioning service, you should totally take a ride Brunkow’s…if nothing else than to check out the sign! Keep cool Cleveland, and GO TRIBE!