Jul 11th 2019

How to put the wow factor into an event – Confex North

How to put the wow factor into an event – Confex North

TLC’s founder and MD, Liz Taylor, was delighted to be asked to host a fabulous cocktail reception and presentation at Confex North.  Transforming the Luxury Pavilion at Victoria Warehouse into a presentation looking at ‘how to put the wow factor into an event’. Followed by drinks – with a little added TLC style!  Here’s a snapshot of Liz’s presentation, and a few secret ingredients to adding those crucial elements that takes your event from average, to stunning.

It’s that million-dollar question. And sometimes quite literally. How to put the wow factor into an event? With the ever-growing necessity to invest in recognition and motivation, with clients accepting the value of why events are the advertising of today it is essential that your event is bespoke – it has the wow factor to stand alone.   Everyone has their own perception of the wow factor …. Today I would like to share mine. It may not be gospel and you may not agree, but it has served TLC well over the last twenty-five years!

How to put the WOIW factor into an event

So, how to put the wow factor into an event. There are three vital ingredients that contribute, and here they are:

Imagination

It is never how much you spend but how you spend it. Its allowing someone to think out of the box and take a concept and create magic. So, when I was asked some years back to create a circus theme for a twenty first birthday, I ditched the predictable red and yellow and designed a revolving vintage carousel. With a skilled design team, I poured over Victorian carousel images, and in a modern touch we built the turntable into the floor of a marquee. Guests slowly circled around the carousel picking up their goldfish in a plastic bag filled with vodka and tonic, and a popcorn cocktail served in a popcorn carton.

How to put the WOIW factor into an event How to put the WOIW factor into an event

event agencies manchester

 

Individuality

Individual interpretation … The clients favourite show was ‘Wicked’, so we were tasked with bringing it to life off the stage. My most inspiring moments are honestly on my treadmill every morning … with my desert island discs on full blast music takes me into a most creative corner where I find the impossible. A 10-foot witch greeted guests – and I mean greeted them. A custom-built animated statue guided them into a Wicked inspired set – and then at the appropriate time, the entire wall dropped and there was the yellow brick road. The detail in the room and on the tables was insane with Perspex tables resting on large red shoes. The entertainment … Diana Ross. Now that’s wow.

The moment least expected

Is the greatest wow factor of the event. A wall drops on a drum roll. Pyrotechnics burst into the room to announce employee of the year. A ceiling drops hundreds of hidden petals when they say I do. The key to this is to choreograph the visual feast accordingly. So, you will know where the guests will be looking, and it’s the perfect time to capture the moment. There’s no point in a surprise where they can’t absorb the magic!

Some moments just happen. They evolve and I’d like to take all the credit, but by having an experienced producer throughout the event last minute decisions can change the entire direction of the night. When a CEO makes an impromptu announcement and you jump on an appropriate piece of music. When Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is escorted into an MUFC Christmas party as the new manager with one moment’s notice, the band strikes up the glories. I often have certain tables at events reinforced, so that artists can jump on the tables and perform during dinner – a lesson learned when I hadn’t had them reinforced and they jumped on them anyway!

Imagination, individuality and least expected …..

Key messages to consider in every event. Whether you are the producer or whether you work with an events team – two heads are always better than one.

All well and good you might say. These sound like unlimited budgets … but my mantra .. It’s never how much you spend but how you spend it.  You have £500 to throw into a reception – don’t invest it in an inexperienced and underrated musical act. Invest it in a ten foot vase filled with an abundance of flower heads that takes the breath away. Or a bar full of cocktails, served in a milk bottle that oozes dry ice and sustainable branded straws!

RELATED TOPIC: Planning the Perfect Awards Event

How do we at TLC deliver the imaginative, individual, least expected moments ……..

The infrastructure at TLC is simple. We are a team of 5 and we are surrounded by a loyal band of suppliers who have supported my journey for thirty years. This enables the team to play on individual strengths. My bag is the wow … my background is creative. From the age of four years I studied music and played the piano to grade 8 and GCSE level at 16. Then after A levels, I pursued a career in fashion retail until the age of 29. It was then that I fell into the industry.  Creating the wow is my strength. I have the most ridiculously bonkers Pisces inspired ideas, that I can make happen. I believe that this sets TLC apart from the competition.

 

If you went to invest in something special, you would look for advice from an expert – someone who could support you in your vision. Whether it be a product or something intangible, perhaps for your home. I have endeavoured over the years to provide that support to a discerning corporate and private client portfolio – pushing the boundaries and delivering the impossible. And that’s what makes it and us wow ……

So, to summarise …. how to put the wow factor into an event.  Imaginative. Individual. The moment least expected … they are the three to remember!

Continue reading  
 Jun 19th 2019

Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties

Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties

Warmer weather is the season for enjoying TLC’s open-air celebrations and stylish outdoor parties. But when your guests have seasonal allergies such as hayfever, the thought of spending time outside can bring visions of sneezing and wheezing rather than having fun! If you’re hosting an outdoor party this summer, our Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties can help to ensure a good time is had by everyone, even those with summer allergies:

Timing is Everything

Pollen counts are highest in the morning (5am-10am), so plan your party for later in the day or evening. Or go a step further and try to hold your celebration on a day that should have a low pollen count. Most summer weather forecasts detail this, but to plan further ahead, check out the Met Office forecast.

Knowledge is Wisdom

Allergy medications are more effective when you take them before you have symptoms, Telling your guests in advance that your party is outdoors gives them the opportunity to take their allergy medication before they arrive. It also serves as a reminder for them to bring any emergency medication with them.

Location, Location

Sea breezes blow pollen inland, so choosing a more coastal location for your party can help hayfever and summer allergy sufferers. Beach front venues, or the beach itself, can provide an inspiration backdrop and enhances the ‘endless summer’ vibe of any outdoor party.

Super Shady

Third on our list of top Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties is both practical and stylish. Wearing sunglasses can help reduce, but not totally prevent, pollen from getting into your eyes and making them water and itch. Embrace this with bespoke sunglasses for your event. These can be given as a gift or used as a place marker on tables – a little tag attached does the trick.

Trim and Tidy

Remove weeds and prune borders, where triggers can lurk, well ahead of the party. Mow a day or two before, and not the day of. And use any garden blowers well before the party, as can stir up dust and mouldy leaves. Think about the placement of the event too. Are their surrounding fields with high allergens such as rape seed plants?

Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties

Inside Out

Choose a high-quality marquee, Yurts or gazebo structure (preferably air-conditioned) to provide shade from the sun, but also offer an indoor space where guests bothered by pollen can go. Going indoors will be important for anyone who develops an allergy attack despite their, and your, best efforts. Once an attack has begun, an air-conditioned environment is best, as this filters out any pollen; so have an indoor chill-out space at the ready.

Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties

Floral Fabulousness

When choosing the floral design for your party, opt for flowers that produce little to no pollen. Daffodils, lilies, pansies, petunias, roses, snapdragons, and tulips for example are all less likely to aggravate allergies. Beware of summer standbys like sunflowers, daisies and chrysanthemums that are in the ragweed family and can trigger pollen allergies.

Private Parties organisers Decor tlc limited

 

Related Topic: Top 5 Summer Cocktails

 

Foodie Fun

People with seasonal allergies can experience a tingling of the mouth or itchy throat from oral allergy syndrome. There is evidence that this happens after eating certain fruits, vegetables, and tree nuts. As a party host, it will be important to know what the guest’s specific allergy is, and ensure a meal is prepared that minimises any reactions. Not forgetting other allergies and intolerances, such as dairy, wheat and gluten. All of which, with TLC’s team of creative chefs, need not be a problem. Modern catering allows for an innovative menu to suit all guests – it just needs careful planning and some theatrical presentation. Allergy UK have some excellent advice on their website.

Private Parties Caterers in Manchester

Last, but not Least

So regardless of your summer allergies, there is no reason for you to miss out on the summer fun. A great host will have soft tissues to hand (branded for a wedding or special party of course), large sun hats and a ‘standby’ box with anti-allergy creams and something to soothe stings. It is also though that a splash of water on the face will dislodge any pollen, so offer facial spritz as a table gift. Ladies may be reluctant at first – make up considered – but we love this Vichy Thermal Mineralising Spa Water…and your guest will too. Always be prepared!

 

I hope our Tips to Beat Summer Allergies at Outdoor Parties has helped with your planning!

Continue reading  
 May 28th 2019

Five unique wedding favour ideas

Five unique wedding favour ideas

Wedding favours provide the perfect opportunity to show your guests how much you appreciate their part in your big day. With our five unique wedding favour ideas you won’t be short of inspiration.

The tradition of giving a gift (bomboniera) to guests on special occasions dates back hundreds of years. Almonds became the gift of choice, because sugar was at that time an expensive luxury.  In the Middle Ages, the European aristocracy and upper classes would give guests five sugared almonds to represent health, wealth, fertility, happiness and longevity. Today, the choice of wedding favours is much more diverse. However the sentiments are the same. And what better way to show your gratitude than with a personalised gift to recognise the contribution each guest has made to your life as a couple and will continue to do in the future.

Here are five unique wedding favours ideas to get you started:

Rustic charm

Place name settings offer the perfect opportunity to integrate personalised unique wedding favours into your day. This will help to streamline your table décor and keeping it clutter free.

Depending on the style and theme of your wedding there are lots of different handmade place-settings to choose from in a variety of materials. For a rural theme we love these hand-sanded wooden coasters from Esty. These can be individually laser-engraved with a guest’s name. Other ideas include a small potted bay tree, wrapped with a hessian bow and individual tag. Individual vintage tin cups with embossed names and filled with treats. Or miniature jars of homemade preserves or local honey.

Warm the heart

If you want your guests to remember your big day with warmth, nothing warms inside and out like a steaming mug of hot chocolate. At the end of the evening, you can either pour out a hot beverage in a personally engraved cuppa. Or else add a sachet of hot chocolate with a small pouch of marshmallows and hand-made cookies for them to enjoy when they get home. There are lots of different types of mugs to choose from. Or, for a truly elegant feel go for a tall hot-chocolate glass engraved with a special, message personalised to present a unique wedding favour to each guest.

For the adults, why not choose their favourite liqueur presented in individual antique medicine bottles. They are popular!  Or offer guests a liqueur from a table side mixologist instead of a favour.  A lovely treat and not many refusals!!

wedding planners based in Manchester TLC LTD

Festive cheer

Third on our list of five unique wedding favour ideas is perfect for Christmas. Winter weddings are magical for many reasons. When it comes to unique wedding favours, use this to your advantage by giving guests gifts they can reuse year after year. For this, any kind of Christmas decoration works well. For personalisation you will need space for engraving, therefore baubles or snow-globes are perfect. These stunning wedding favours will mean that your day is remembered with fondness for years to come.

You could also choose festive spiced gingerbread, iced with names. Or bars of luxury chocolate with a bespoke wedding day wrapper. And for the bigger budgets, individual wrapped gifts that act as place marker and wedding favour.

Five unique wedding favours ideas

Related Topic: If our five unique wedding favours ideas are not enough, here’s some more: More Wedding Favour Ideas

Sweet smell of romance

Don’t forget the importance of fragrance in helping to create atmosphere. Many companies are now offering brides personalised scents for their big day. For a truly luxurious gift, you can capture those memories in a scent and share with guests as scented candles held in beautifully engraved jars.

Jo Malone offers an engraving and monogramming service to allows you to personalise your gifts. For summer the company has some wonderfully evocative fragrances as English Pear & Freesia or Orange Blossom. As well as personalised scents for unique wedding favours.

Five unique wedding favours ideas

Bee-ing kind

While many associate St Valentine with our public day of love, fewer know he is also the patron saint of beekeepers. Personalised wildflower seed-packets help spread the beauty of your love beyond your wedding day. As well as protecting our environment and benefiting future generations. These favours will encourage guests to plant seeds which help bees and other pollinating insects.

Needless to say, ideas are endless when it comes to creating wedding favours. Tie the gift into the design of your big day. Keep it simple and stylish – and you won’t go wrong.

And don’t forget the kids. Colouring packs, personalised rubber ducks, individual boxes of Lego and a jar of coloured smarties.  All make ideal wedding favours.

Continue reading  
 May 14th 2019

Future of Event Design

As we look back to the 10th Anniversary of the CHS Show in Leeds, our MD Liz Taylor wanted to share the highlights of her presentation, The Future of Event Design, delivered to a packed audience in the Leeds First Direct Arena.

Focussing around the Future of Event Design, Liz shared stories, anecdotes and advice to newly appointed event planners, and the more established event professionals who attended the event.

Entertaining. Inspiring. Motivational. The three essential ingredients to any successful event.

 

The transformation of Victoria Warehouse into a wedding overflowing with canopies of floral fabulousness and a sea of candle lit warmth. Credit: www.thelastword.tv

As you can see from the video clip, TLC work at a breakneck pace with a team of trusted suppliers to deliver productions that fulfil these three key elements…… and more. Creating the biggest showcases for a company brand or private individual , the TLC team work tirelessly to design and produce the very best. From large to small, the input of ideas and passion are the same. And the devil is very much in the detail. Let me explain…..

As MD of the Taylor Lynn Corporation I have been planning and producing corporate and private events for over 30 years – during which time the industry has obviously changed significantly! In the next 10 minutes I will give you the whistle stop tour of where I feel we have seen the biggest developments, and what to expect for the future of event design.

The TLC approach to event design is, in a word, holistic. When it comes to design plans, we look at the whole event and how individual aspects can work in synergy together. We see every individual element as an opportunity to reflect our uniquely creative design touch. Every detail, no matter how small, is thoughtfully crafted to reflect the theme and goal of the party. Venue to entertainment. Catering to décor. Each element being an integral part of the guest’s journey into our imagination. This combined with theatrical production and a keen eye for detail. From brand launch, to private celebration, a well curated design can reflect a business or personal message in a unique and, more importantly, eclectic way. Its what we do. And with an 85% repeat business rate and an order book stretching into 2025, I feel we do well.

But this is my time to share some of that experience and knowledge, which I hope you will find helpful in planning your events. For the sake of time today, let’s break this down a little and focus on just three of the key elements in designing an event; theming, entertainment and catering. And look at how this has evolved and what the future holds…….

Raise the Curtain

30 years ago, party décor was more literal. We took our inspiration and made incredible designs completely reflective of the idea. It was more, obvious, in its interpretation perhaps. Now, it’s is subtler and more styled. We focus less on themes and more on creating a stylish ‘journey’ for guests. Immersing them in the experience of the event; whether it be influenced by a corporate brand or lifestyle. And this is set to continue.

Let me Entertain You

From the DJ of the 70s, tribute acts of the 80s, Pop Idol contestants of the 90s to party bands of the 00s, the future certainly holds a more diverse range of entertainment. Artists immersed within the audience. Surprise elements that place the spotlight on talented artists of all kinds. Bespoke bands that blend international artists and musicians; for one night only.

Tempting the Taste Buds

The trend for less formal catering forges ahead. Catering is merging with theatre. Over the next few years, planners will be finding new ways to make food and drink more than just aspect of the design for your event – it delivers a creative message with drama and WOW factor. An example is:

There is one underpinning factor for all these elements, and indeed the future of event design; delivering a feeling of excited anticipation. If you take one thing home from my message today, remember this…. the future of event design will very much be focussed on delivering the unexpected.

Tales of the Unexpected

As an event planner, when you hear those gasps of excitement and mumblings of ‘wow – look at that’…. you know you have achieved something special. This is about generating a sense of engagement with the attendees from the beginning, to curtain call. Creating an eagerness to attend. And an excited anticipation of what is to come. Fulfilling their expectations on the night…. yet, leaving them contently wanting more.

Bespoke invitations that give a hint to the event design is akin to the opening chapter of a book. Room dressing. Lighting, Catering. Drinks. Entertainment. All elements to delivering a unique experience. And at the end of the event, a branded paper bag with carb filled savouries, fish and chips or kebab vans in situ in the car park to soak up the night.

Catering, entertainment and décor will certainly embrace the next 20 years and all it offers, but it is in this sense of anticipation that I can see the biggest development. Planners will be turning the cogs to develop bigger and bolder ideas to whet the appetite of delegates and revellers. As for TLC, well we are already working with the latest technology to look at holographic walls that separate reception and party – ready to explode as the band strikes up – yes, it’s not just in Star Trek!

After 30 years I get up event morning, decide what diet I am on that day, and then embrace the madness. I love it. And if you are in any doubt, the party is most definitely not over

For more TLC event inspiration, take a look at this ‘high octane’ idea!

Continue reading  
 May 7th 2019

Five of the Best English Wines

Five of the Best English Wines

Food to feast on, the best in live entertainment and innovative drinks are at the heart of a successful TLC party. Theatrical, imaginative presentation of your party cocktails and wines is a hallmark of our events. But what is in the glass certainly counts too. For those looking for a more sustainable event drinks idea, a smaller dinner with wine buffs in attendance or to honour the English summer, we have some great wine advice with five of the best English wines.

So, just in time to celebrate English wine week (25 May – 1 June), the TLC team has chosen their favourite five of the best English wines for you to try. Glasses at the ready …..

Winbirri Bacchus

First of all in our selection, and dubbed the Sauvignon Blanc of England, is the Bacchus grape. This has caught the imagination of wine connoisseurs across the globe. The Winbirri Bacchus became a much sought-after still white wine when the family-run vineyard in Norfolk won the Platinum Decanter Award ‘Best in Show: Best White Single-Varietal Wine in the World’ 2017, ahead of more than 17,200 entries.

The longer, drier summers in East Anglia have consequently made for excellent growing conditions for this 34-acre country winery in Surlingham. Made from 100% Bacchus grapes this wine has an elegant nose of grapefruit, passion fruit and floral characters. On the palate the wine gives the subtle flavours of ripe tropical fruits backed with a clean crisp finish.

The 2018 vintage is now available to pre-order. Interest is expected to be high, as it is expected to be among the best English wines.

Cost: £19.50

Five of the Best English Wines

Hattingley Valley’s 2014 Rosé

Hattingley Valley is a family-run business which has been working 60 acres of vineyard to produce premium English sparkling wines in Hampshire for just over a decade. It’s first wines were released in 2013 and have since won numerous awards.

Its 2014 Rosé is clearly among the best English wines having won no fewer than 8 awards. This includes a Gold Medal in 2018 from the Independent English Wine Awards. It is produced from hand-picked Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier grapes,. These were gently pressed before fermentation in white Burgundy barrels. The wine then spent at least 2 years ageing on lees in the bottle, and a further 2 months ageing on cork before release.

And so the result is a subtle and delicate Rosé with an abundance of redcurrant and strawberry aromas. This is supported by fine toasty notes. Winemaker Will Perkins recommends enjoying this Rosé with Cherrystone Clam Chowder served with freshly baked bread.

Cost: £36.00 bottle

Related Topic: Five Gorgeous Cocktails with a Romantic Twist

Late Harvest 2017

Late Harvest 2017 is a rare, sweet wine produced by Astley Vineyard in Worcestershire. The vineyard is one of the oldest in England, established by the Bache family in 1971. Since then its founders have retired. New owners, the Haywood family, have maintained its boutique focus, producing approximately 9,000 bottles of high-quality a year. Alongside the vineyards Old Vine Kerner and Vintage Sparkling Kerner, Astley’s Late Harvest is one of its most celebrated wines.

Late Harvest is a deliciously light, aromatic and refreshing wine. It offers flavours of candied orange, fig, and a touch of Seville orange marmalade. Its relatively light body and medium low acidity, therefore makes it an unusually palatable desert wine, that isn’t overwhelmingly sweet.

At dinner it is an excellent choice to accompany cheeseboards.

Cost: £19.50

Five of the Best English Wines

Balfour Blanc de Blancs 2014

A gold medallist at the International Wine Challenge in 2017, Balfour Blanc de Blanc 2014, produced at the Hush Heath Estate in Kent, is one to savour, with an ageing potential of 8 years plus.

The deep Wealden clay soil which underlies the 50-acre vineyard is unique to this corner of Ken and provides the dense structure for the wines’ vibrant, lively acidity.

The Chardonnay grapes for this Cuvée came entirely from Hush Heath’s Old 8 Acre Vineyard, and were hand-harvested in October 2014, before being fermented in specially designed stainless-steel tanks kept at a cool 16°C to ensure clean, pure characters and complexity. Secondary fermentation in bottle, followed by a minimum 30 months ageing on the lees.

The result is a brilliant white gold colour wine with a vibrant, dry taste, and fine mousse, citrus, and mineral characters. It is an excellent choice to accompany seafood or chicken dishes.

Cost: £45.00 bottle

Sharpham whole berry rosé

Lastly on our list of the five of the best English wines is a true taste of English summer. Look no further than this off-dry, fruity rosé, which bursts with the delicate flavours of strawberries and rhubarb. This 2017 vintage is produced from Pinor Noir/Dornfelder grapes handpicked on the thousand-year-old South Devon farm. The estate, owned by the Sharpham Trust. It is made up of 500 acres of land on sheltered slopes above the River Dart, just two miles downstream of the ancient market town of Totnes.

Sharpham has been producing some of the best English wines for almost 25 years. They combine traditional and modern-day techniques to produce wines offering intense fruit flavours and aromas.

Our choice of whole berry rose has been aged 6 months under controlled conditions in stainless steel. Furthermore, it won the trophy for the best Rose at the South West Vineyards Association 2017. For that reason, the wine is an excellent choice to complement summer salads, cold meats or slightly spicy food.

Cost: £17.50 bottle

Try one of these fabulous wines from our collection of five of the best English wines available, and start the English summer off in style!

Continue reading  
 May 3rd 2019

Five ideas for a football inspired party

Five ideas for a football inspired party

Whether you are heading to Wembley on 18 May or watching on TV, the Emirates FA Cup final is always a good excuse for a party. This year Manchester City and Watford will battle it out to bring home the iconic silverware. To get you in the mood, here are our favourite five ideas for a football inspired party.

1. Play with your hero

For true fans, if you can’t see your team win the FA Cup the next best thing is playing on a pitch side-by-side with your sporting heroes. During May and June many Premiership stadiums offers access to their pitches for people looking for an extra special birthday or corporate football inspired party. Play with a Legend. It offers three-hour party packages that include playing time and socialising with the footballing icon after the match. The birthday party package includes full kit hire, a qualified referee, and a footballing legend to play in your game of 7 or 11 a-side. They will also join you for post-match drinks in the bar to share stories from their career. Footballers available for hire include Ian Rush, Emile Heskey and Teddy Sheringham.

2. Soccer Superstars

For the little football lovers in your life there are lots of indoor and outdoor pitches you can hire by the hour and set up your own mini-tournament. Some sessions are run by professional coaches and can include a wide variety of football inspired party games. Think keepie-up competitions and shoot-outs. For youngsters, a winner’s trophy is a nice touch to have, and medals for every competitor to take away as party favours. After all that activity, the young sportsmen and women and their parents will no doubt have worked-up an appetite. Find a pitch that offers an adjacent party room for hire. Decorate it with a football pitch dancefloor. Tables suspended on giant floral footballs. Linens in the colours of your favourite teams. A cascade of flowers blooming for football boots as creative table displays. Ideas are endless.

Five ideas for a football inspired party Five ideas for a football inspired party Five ideas for a football inspired party

Related Topic: See our Penny Dreadful Inspired Party

3. FIFA champions

Third on our list of five ideas for a football inspired party, set up your own championship experience. Use technology such as X Box FIFA 19 for a football inspired game party. Unlike individual video game play, a party experience heightens the drama as players compete against each other in the same space. You can choose whatever the prize will be – even having knock-out rounds to take home your own party silverware. The best bit is that players can choose their own team, so no matter who you support there is a chance of seeing your colours in the final.

4. Penalty Shoot-Out

Nothing beats the drama of a final penalty shoot-out. And you can recreate the excitement by hiring an inflatable penalty shoot-out for your football inspired party. There are inflatable goals with either Velcro target areas or a series of holes to shoot through with a backdrop to collect the balls. They work well for outdoor parties or in a large indoor space and appeal to both young and old footie fans alike. Simple but fun for a smaller venue….add a Sabbuteo football table and watch grown men battle it out on the pitch! Let the tournament begin!

5. Hear from the best

Last on our collection of five ideas for a football inspired party is for a larger celebration. If you’re planning a more formal football inspired party such as a sportsman’s dinner, as well as football themed décor and entertainment, nothing beats the authenticity of hearing from one of the sport’s well-known greats. Combine with a dinner of match day foods – posh pie and peas, bottled beers chilled to arctic temperatures, piping hot cones of fish and chips and maybe a decadent Mars Bar (the staple of the terraces) inspired dessert. Footballing after dinner speakers for hire include Andy Cole, Ron Atkinson, Michael Owen, Kevin Keegan, John Barnes and Bryan Robson.

Engagement events by the Taylor Lynn Corporation

Continue reading  
 Apr 17th 2019

Destination Guide: Enjoy Luxury in Leeds

Destination Guide: Enjoy Luxury in Leeds

This month our MD, Liz Taylor is speaking on the ‘Future of Event Design’ at the 10th anniversary Conference and Hospitality Show, Leeds First Direct Arena (30 April). If you’re going along, check out some of our favourite spots in this vibrant northern city, and enjoy luxury in Leeds. Here’s our suggestions:

Best hotel: The Queens Hotel

If you’re looking for luxury in Leeds, look no further than the regally named The Queens Hotel in City Square. Built in 1937 this stunning Grade II listed Art Deco venue has an unrivalled position for access to the city. It offers direct access to Leeds train station via a private entrance from the station concourse. If you are travelling by car, the hotel also provides valet parking for a fee. Now part of Q Hotels, there is a dedicated floor for suites where guests can enjoy an exclusive QClub level experience. This includes a private lounge and rooftop terrace.

Best venue for a corporate event: First Direct Arena

First Direct Arena is equipped to host all level of events. From comedy clubs to music mega stars like Cher and Rita Ora; sporting events such as Europe’s Strongest Man to major conferences such as the Conference and Hospitality Show. And let’s face it, if you’re going to invite the event planner industry in for a conference you’ve got to be good, because you’re sure to hear about it if you’re not.

The stand-out feature for large conferences is the venue’s unique ‘super theatre’. This holds 12,000 people with all seats facing the stage. Depending on the size of event, the Arena also offers more intimate spaces for numbers as small as 10. Choose from classroom style facilities, boardrooms and exhibition space.

Best rooftop bar: Angelica

Spring is here. As the weather warms up there is no better way to experience a new city than rising above it to get a full panoramic view. Angelica is a perfect spot to relax and enjoy luxury in Leeds. Located on the sixth floor of the Trinity Leeds Shopping Centre, the rooftop bar has a wraparound planted terrace for unrivalled city views. Every Saturday night the roof bounces the vibes of resident DJ club night Razamataz. The restaurant and terrace are also available for exclusive hire and can host between 20 and 160 guests.

Best lunch spot to wow a client: Arnolds

At Arnold’s the Yorkshire experience is central. This independent restaurant, on Wade Lane in Leeds Arena Quarter, prides itself on serving locally sourced, seasonal produce, showcasing the very best of Yorkshire and British ingredients.

The restaurant is available for full exclusive hire. There is also private dining available for up to 26 guests, with business facilities such as high-speed internet, hidden digital screen and full audio-visual equipment.

Destination Guide: Enjoy Luxury in Leeds

We also couldn’t leave out one of our favourite dining spots; The Ivy Victoria Quarter.  

We love their casual menus with unique interior and impeccable service. Popular with celebrities and social movers, The Ivy never fails to impress.

A ‘hidden gem’: Leventhorpe Vineyard

You don’t have to journey far from Leeds to feel as if you are a world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Leventhorpe Vineyard in Woodlesford is accessible by car, bus or train. Plus it is open most days for sales. Founded by George and Janet Bowden in 1985 the vineyard was the first to re-introduce commercial wine growing back into Yorkshire. The couple, who are members of the English Wine Producers, produce a range of award-winning wines. White, red and sparkling, both white and pink. All of which are made from grapes grown on site within their five-acre vineyard and produced in their purpose-built winery.

If our destination guide has helped, you should check out our Ten UK Cities Popular With Event Organisers

Continue reading  
 Apr 2nd 2019

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

With the countdown on to the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Monaco at the end of May, it’s time to bring the glamour and thrill of the racetrack to your party plans. Always a winning design, motorsports décor works equally well for a birthday celebration or corporate event. Here is a selection of ideas to get your plans motoring, with our five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party:

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

1. The wow-factor arrival

For the ultimate wow-factor at a motor-racing themed party you can’t beat having a championship race car parked in the driveway. It’s the ultimate selfie magnet and Instagram winner. Some companies hire out Formula 1 show cars that they will fully customise with your chosen branding. Other companies rent out actual championship cars such as the BENETTON FORD B190B driven by three times F1 world champion Nelson Piquet.

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party      

2. A racetrack entrance

Switching the red carpet for a black and white chequered or race-track runner is a great way to set the scene. Add to the atmosphere by playing the new Formula 1 super-hero style theme-tune as a background soundtrack and everyone will be revving-up to get the party started.

Once inside, stick with the chequered theme with flashes of red for the décor. And mix the theme up using tyres for plant arrangements, a chequered dance floor and large trophies as wine coolers.

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

3. The thrill of the race

It’s every motor-racing fan’s dream to hit the track in a Formula 1 car. And dreams can come true at your party if you hire a racing car simulator. There are different styles and sizes, some coming as huge outdoor structures with attached awning. Based on real-life Formula 1 race circuits, your guests will get to sit in a race-car seat and take part in simulated race challenges with other guests. Some racing simulators allow for up to 8 guests to race at once. It is a fantastic choice of entertainment for large events and can be used by anyone aged 7 and upwards.

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

 

Related Topic: Creative Ways to Serve Your Party Catering

4. Scalextric championship

Fourth on our list of five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party, is an entertainment gem. Hiring a Scalextric race track and cars is a great way to get guests interacting. With a wide range of cars to choose you can go for the Formula 1 racers or the old British Rally classics. Depending on your event there are also options to add bespoke branding to both the track and cars. Up to 8 cars can run simultaneously.
In addition, if you want to up the racing stakes, why not add a fun prize and hire a winners’ podium with chequered backdrop. Outside the racing, this can also be used as a selfie opportunity. And to add to the fun, provide guests with a choice of motor-racing hero card-masks as part of a selfie-prop kit, to liven-up the pics. Social media gold!

5. Refuelling station

The wonderful thing about a Grand Prix theme is there are so many brilliant opportunities to build the idea into all aspects of the party to make for a high-octane wheelie good night. So, your buffet tables or food stations become pit stops and refuelling stations. Drinks can be served from petrol-pump style dispensers. Dishes served from racing helmet shaped food stations. Guests handed steering-wheel designed plates. For quirky food choices we love oil-change, cola jellies and traffic-light fruit skewers. And for the full Formula 1 effect, don’t forget the champagne!

 

Continue reading  
 Mar 27th 2019

From catwalk to party inspiration from London Fashion week

From catwalk to party inspiration from London Fashion week

It’s not just High Street retailers who look at inspiration from London Fashion week for pointers towards the next big thing. As event organisers we also have our eyes on the catwalk. This way our work stays fresh, reflecting the latest stylish ideas and trends. Here’s some of the trends to expect to go from catwalk to party in 2019, with our guide to the best party inspiration from London Fashion week:

Drama and imagination

There is always a hint of drama to the catwalk but this year there was a definite move towards show-stopping statement dresses. The models didn’t wear these, rather it was the dresses that wore the models. Some of the voluminous taffeta and tulle creations on display hint towards an Elizabethan extravagance. While at the same time, stretching into the realm of fantasy. Such dramatic statements were seen in the beauty look too. Large painted tears, eye-lashes and a move away from the natural. On the party scene to go over-sized. Expect drama and fantasy to become key concepts, particularly in impactful décor and imaginative plays with scale and shape.

https://www.tlc-ltd.co.uk/penny-dreadful-inspired-party/

Bold colours

Bright passionate red was the colour of choice for many designers this season. Expect flashes of flame red to accentuate and add vibrancy to party décor. And this is not just the red carpet. We’ll see red in flower choices, such as the striking and exotic anthurium andraeanum, sometimes called the tail or flamingo flower. Along with more use of tropical flowers we can expect to see a more colourful, tropical vibe coming through. These tropical influences were also seen on the catwalk in the yellows, greens, pinks and purples of Molly Goddard’s colourful tulle designs.

https://www.tlc-ltd.co.uk/penny-dreadful-inspired-party/

Vintage florals

The vintage party inspiration from London Fashion week will be big. The floral look has been around for a while now and is already well and truly absorbed into all aspects of party planning. Particularly popular for tea parties, it is a trend that can influence events at all levels. From table décor, to food, lighting to music. It has both a feminine and a retro feel. The current catwalk trend for florals hint towards a chintz feel in décor that would stretch beyond inspiration of afternoon soirees to pretty, period balls.

party inspiration from London Fashion week
Back to the 1980s

The appeal of the 1980s is still strong. We’ve seen this on the cat walk with the plume skirt. You can expect this to come through to events in the type of entertainment being requested.  Also in a mash-up of styles for themes and décor. In many ways it was the decade that taste forgot, but it as also the decade where fashions were dictated by musical tastes. For an event organiser this give a wealth of ideas to mine. Think too about returning to popular TV programmes, board games and the earliest computer games for inspiration.

party inspiration from London Fashion week

Feathers

The sight of a plume of colourful feathers always screams look at me. There were plenty of these moments on the London catwalk last month. Feathers, whether real or created from taffeta and wool, are fantastic choices to add a fun, attention-grabbing glamour to an event. See them used as table décor and archway entrances. As well as inspiring the more elegant bird-cage themed bars, food stations, and table planners.

party inspiration from London Fashion week
Glitter and glamour

Lastly, for real party inspiration from London Fashion week – think two words that are made to go with party. Glitz and glamour. Last month the London catwalk had both aplenty. Showing a range of faux furs covering shimmering, sparkly and crystal embellished gowns. Expect to see this sense of glamour to influence a move to Hollywood-style cocktail parties, crystal table wear, sparkling entrances, and glittering lights.

party inspiration from London Fashion week

For more party inspiration, take a look at this Penny Dreadful Party!

Continue reading  
 Mar 19th 2019

Birthday celebrations at The Ivy

Birthday celebrations at The Ivy

For the team at TLC, there doesn’t need to be an excuse to gather friends together.  And for Liz Taylor, a recent birthday was all the reason that she needed to plan birthday celebrations at The Ivy.  As the leading party planner in Manchester, TLC’s team of event organisers had a raft of creative and fun ideas for the day…but this was purely a personal occasion, and all about our MD, Liz.  And so here’s how she chose to celebrate.

The private Geisha Room at The Ivy, Spinningfields was the gorgeous venue.  22 of Liz’s friends enjoyed a Champagne lunch and entertainment.  They laughed. They danced. And all agreed – every Sunday should be this good!  Here’s a peek at Liz’s birthday celebrations at The Ivy:

Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy  Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy  Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy

Happy Birthday Liz!

Continue reading