We are more than halfway through 2016 and before we ended the year, I wanted to take a stab at one of my lofty goals.  I want to create a space where like-minded people can gather and have unique experiences. Who knew that after a little over a year of The Chicagolite, the opportunity would present itself with “A Field of Roses”

In order to turn this vision into a reality, I knew I had to seek out one of the biggest platforms for creatives so I sought out the incredibly talented Melissa Kimble; the founder and visionary behind #Blkcreatives.  Weekly I would tune into my Twitter feed and absorb all the knowledge and information spewed across my timeline. We would discuss everything from setting goals, dealing with stress, and seeking out mentorship.

While #Blkcreatives didn’t have a physical location, it’s almost as if hundreds of people are meeting in my living room to discuss issues and topics that related to me.

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Melissa and I thought it would be great to create a live space for creatives and entrepreneurs that extended past online interactions. With her ability to bring people together and my passion towards creating experiences, Melissa Kimble and I were a match made in heaven. After gathering some Instagram inspiration and several phone calls later “A Field of Roses” was born.

The Beginning

For our first collaborative event, we wanted to bring together women creatives and entrepreneurs for an afternoon of intentional connectivity and the celebration womanhood. We selected the title “A Field of Roses” because each attendee would represent a rose in a field in the creative world that we all inhabit. Plus, roses fit perfectly with the activity for the afternoon. We had set up a  floral arrangement class lead by the insanely talented florist and event designer Nkemdi Thompson. We carefully selected about 10 attendees that spanned across various industries from artists, writers, and communications professionals. One thing we all had in common was that we all sprinkle dashes of creativity throughout our everyday lives.

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One of the most important aspects of an event, arguably THE most important is the space. What space could be more fitting for a fine group of women creatives and entrepreneurs than the phenomenal Woman Made Gallery.

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Since 1992, Woman Made Gallery has created a safe space and venue for women artists and creatives a platform to showcase their work. The gallery features works of art ranging from paintings, videos, to performance art.

For “A Field of Roses”, the exhibition that was on display was “Code/Switch” and “Code Mix” This exhibit was about the merging of the worlds of technology and art. The installation ranged from homemade games, neon signs, and homages to the social media age.

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A Field of Roses would allow our guests to explore the creations of the artists featured in the exhibition. However, guests were able to tap into their own creativity with the intricate art of floral arranging.

Mix & Mingle

Before the class, we thought it would be best if guests got to know one another before partaking in this colorful and interactive class. Since one of the themes was intentional connectivity, we thought it best that all aspects of the event highlight a woman creative. We selected the delicious cupcakes of Pam Rosen of Swirlz Cupcake. These miniature sweet confections were a divine addition to the event.

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While guests perused the gallery, we left them with the question “What makes them feel beautiful?”. Guests had a diverse range of answers such as love, family, and creating art.

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Once everyone introduced themselves, it was then time to create our own beautiful works of art with gorgeous floral bouquets.

Making Memories

Our florist Nkemdi provided a wide array of flowers and plants ranging from roses, carnations and bundles of baby’s breath.  There were flowers galore! Let’s just say no one left with a skimpy looking bouquet.

Field of Roses Photo 15However, the most beautiful moment came when we all came together and shared our stories of triumph and tribulation.  Half way through the year we shared our hopes, dreams, and goals. To cement this memory into our minds, guests selected powerful quotes from some of the world’s most influential black women. There was a quote for all interests ranging from everyone from Nikki Giovanni to Erykah Badu.

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Overall it was a lovely afternoon of empowerment and inspiration and everyone enjoyed gallivanting among the field of roses. Plus, I’m pretty sure we have a few future floral designers in our midst.

Special thanks to Woman Made Gallery, Nkemdi Thompson, and Swirlz Cupcakes for sponsoring this event. And a very special thanks to Orel Chollette for documenting this event so beautifully.

Hope to see you at the next one!

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Check out the video below to get a peek at all the action!