When I first looked in to the possibility of starting this business, I sent out a survey to everyone I knew to check the pulse on how they party. It was important to understand what they were missing in a hosting/party experience and to see where I could fill the gap with my knowledge and skill sets. As it became clear that each of the collections would be inspired by an important person in my life, I knew I wanted to do follow up interviews with each of the collection namesakes. Following is the first of four interviews that discuss everything party related. Let me know what other interviews, tips, photography, etc. you would like to see in this space. Enjoy!
Interview took place February 3, 2019 with Alexandra Gekas aka Annie, of the 'Annie Collection'
Stephanie: Tell me about your best party memory.
Annie: My best party memory is the appletini at your 21st birthday. Was it your 21st?
A: I was in college and you were in LA. You had the karaoke machine.
A: I flew to LA for your birthday.
S: It was my 25th.
A: Gross appletinis.
S: My neighbor brought those over.
A: That was my best party memory.
S: What is your celebratory drink of choice. An appletini?
A: My celebratory drink of choice? Club soda. (laughs)
S: No flavor? plain?
A: Club soda with a splash of pomegranate juice.
S: When hosting what is your go to main dish?
A: Tassajara cheese and nut loaf.
S: Oh. Well, that's fancy.
A: It's vegetarian but hardy.
S: Is it just easy to make or what is so go to about it?
A: It's really delicious, it's vegetarian and it's a good entree for sides- so you can have people bring sides- and it's delicious. It's not really summery, it’s more for winter- more comforting.
S: It's comfort food. Gotcha.
S: Dress code aside, what is your ideal party ensemble? You can wear a ballgown. You can wear sweats.
A: Probably leggings. (we both laugh) I don't know, probably jeans and a seasonally appropriate blouse or sweater.
S: What's the best way to share a meal- Coursed? Potluck? Takeout? Appetizers?
A: I like family style, or when the table orders a bunch of things at a restaurant.
S: Games or no games?
A: No games. (Editor's note: this was said emphatically)
S: Music of choice.
A: Cesária Évora.
S: End of the night- I think I know the answer to this one- Clean up the mess or leave it until the next morning?
A: Clean it all up. Everything!
S: Is that something that’s important to you Annie? (both laugh)
A: It’s important to me. It has to be spotless before I go to bed.
S: So no soaking pans?
A: The last couple of dishes I'll leave, but it has to look clean. I can have a couple dishes in the sink, but everything has to be put back. I have to wake up to a home that feels like my home at its best.
S: Okay, fantastic. Alright, what's your idea of the ultimate party- People? Place? Food? Drinks? Entertainment? What is your ideal party?
A: Is this in someone's house?
S: No, it could be anywhere.
A: My favorite thing in the world is six to eight people out to dinner at a restaurant that are interesting and good conversationalists. Different people, different ages, different experiences or different backgrounds. That's my favorite thing, but anything that resembles that, like a house party, where it's a group of people sitting around talking. Sitting around, interesting people, good conversation, shared plates, nice music in the background, but mostly, the conversation.
S: Well, Annie, thank you for your time.