Kristin Banta Events, CA
Designer/Creative Director of the Year
As principle designer and producer of Kristin Banta Events, I strive to provide a new point of view for wedding and event design – something different, something unique and less formulaic. I have taken many risks along the way in order to develop a business that is aligned with who I am as a designer and an artist. I am proud of my ability to create events reflective of our clients and have branded my business on designing weddings and events that push the limits of imagination. I enjoy challenging traditions, transcending trends, and articulating individuality in an effort to encourage my clients to think outside of the box in order to create something original, exciting and memorable.
I have consistently been a major advocate for equal rights and have made tremendous efforts to raise awareness and acceptance of marriage equality. Additionally, I have endeavored domestically recognized media opportunities in an effort to shift thinking on a larger scale towards abandonment of formula and limitations within the realm of wedding design.
Event Showcase one
Clean, modern, sleek and chic in textured white, cream and champagne with brushed gold accents – a marriage of hard and soft, masculine and feminine. Inspired by vintage Coco Chanel & Gucci blended with a James Bond style polished sophistication.
As guests arrived at the Montage Beverly Hills, they made their way through a hedge-lined path to the courtyard and were visually drawn into a uniquely inviting ceremony scene. Guests were greeted by the sound of acoustic rock played by the ceremony duo while servers offered tray-passed Cava and ushers offered yarmulkes from a gold tray. Guests were seated theatre-style on modern white infinity chairs facing a dramatic chuppah structure, upholstered in a textured, corded vanilla fabric. A backdrop “wall” set behind the chuppah became a dramatic focal point with panels of modern monochromatic textured wallpaper layered with strands white orchid blooms. A trio of beautiful crystal chandelier spheres were suspended overhead within the structure.
The midpoint of the processional aisle was embellished with a dramatic arch, also upholstered in textured, corded vanilla fabrics and featuring a suspended chandelier sphere. The entire length of the processional aisle was lined on either side with a mass of candlelight and borders of white orchid blooms, gradiating down the aisle from few to many going towards the chuppah.
Following the ceremony, guests made their way to the Marquesa Foyer where they were met with tray-passed Old Fashioneds and sparkling water with lime and were able to mingle with a cocktail and soak in the scene, to the accompaniment of a jazz trio performing classic rock. A sleek fabric-covered u-shaped bar was the focal point in the space, set with a beautiful floral arrangement, candlelight, and inspired still-life, such as metal clock cogs, inspired by the Groom’s personal collection. High cocktail tables were dressed in luxe-patterned linens and set with candlelight. A banquette lounge area offered inviting seating, composed of a chic banquette sofa, a mahogany and bronze coffee table, ottoman poufs, and thematic pillows. Escort cards shaped like miniature clocks were displayed on the existing credenza, styled with candlelight and metal cogs.
After the cocktail hour, guests were welcomed into the ballroom where they entered a dramatic scene that was warm and intimate, chic and residential. The perimeter of the room was draped in luxe vanilla fabric with a metallic wheat border along the bottom, paired with cream carpeting throughout. An engaging layout of round and square tables and one long table gave the room a rich, textured aesthetic. Each table was placed with a clock displaying a specific time, indicating where each guest was to be seated based upon the “time” they were supplied on their escort card. Tables were all dressed in luxe linens and set with dramatic tablescapes of lush florals composed in inspired footed crystal, hammered gold, and warm mercury glass vessels, illuminated by the warm, romantic glow of candlelight. Tabletops additionally offered cream napkins, gold burst and glass-rimmed chargers and custom letterpress menus. Guests were seated on gold Fanfare Chameleon chairs with cream bengaline cushions. Along the banquette, gold benches with custom upholstered cushions offered unique seating while a series of gold drum chandeliers hung above creating dimension and interest. A glass tabletop set on a gold-wire pedestal served as the couple’s table, surrounded by upholstered ottomans and set with a love seat for the newlyweds to lounge in style.
The band performed from a stage beneath the existing chandeliers, the face of which was surfaced with a gold-mirrored finish. A series of three “wall panels,” with textured wallpaper and sections of hanging gold rain chain created a dramatic backsplash. On the opposite side of the room, two large, inviting lounge vignettes consisting of gold fabric sofas, ottomans, and mahogany and bronze coffee tables were set in the ballroom, styled with candlelight and décor, offering an additional cozy seating alternative. A long destination bar fabricated in a smoked-bronze mirror was set in the space along with a backbar consisting of a series of “wall panels,” in gold chain patterned paper, along with “floating “ glass shelves. The bar and backbar were both styled with candlelight and décor and placed with two high double love seat-styled bar stools. A pair of specialty stations was set within the alcoves of the room – one for whiskey and one for desserts. Each vignette offered a textured backdrop including tall bronze shelf units and a chic gold bar cart. A stunning cake designed with a cream tone-on-tone presentation of the various textiles featured in the décor was placed on the bar cart within the dessert station. Soft, romantic low lighting set the stage for a chic, memorable evening with guests dancing throughout the night to the sounds of the Rhythm Collective from a central brushed-gold dance floor.
Event Showcase two
Heaven & Hell
Theme reflective of the creativity, whimsy and unique qualities of the couple. A narrative telling the story of a man’s ascension from hell into heaven, transitioning from space to space exploring concepts inspired by Dante, Tolkien, and The Odyssey. The colors of blood red, black and crimson were explored, segueing into rich textured earth tones, later contrasted by soft romantic white and ivory designed in gothic high society style. The wedding day was memorable and creative yet sophisticated, chic and tasteful, grounded by residential qualities, with just a touch of cheekiness.
The guests entered the ceremony, representing heaven on one side and hell on the other, and were greeted by a shirtless angel wearing giant angel wings offering white cotton candy on one side and a sinister dark angel offering and smoking tray of dark muddled cocktails on the other side. Through golden gates on one side and black iron gates on the other, guests found their seats from ottomans on either side of the “runway” aisle. White ottomans within a “white cloud cover “ created by white tulle and an aisle lined with shepard’s hooks holding angel wings, white florals, golden urns, doves, and harps. And on the other side black ottomans covered with black tulle to evoke the idea of burning coals placed a dark ground cover next to an aisle lined with fallen angel wings and pitch forks, crows and coals, dripping in amaranthus. The altar was a raised stage with a gate on each side matching the front and set with coliseum-style columns, with the light and dark merging in the middle, under which a gold chair and a black chair were set, marking the spot where vows were exchanged.
After the ceremony, guests recessed past a gate armed by a creature on stilts who assisted them in finding their escort cards from a gold gate. Guests then passed through 2 large gates flanked by dark angels into the depths of “purgatory.” The cocktail reception was beguiling and seductively, dark and dramatic in a palette of smoky black and singed red; décor elements spoke to the peculiarities, oddities, and fetishes one might imagine in the Underworld. Tray passed delicacies and custom drinks were offered by servers in caged headgear as they moved through the mysterious landscape. The custom bars were styled to look as though they’d been shredded by demons with black bar backs displaying mysterious elixirs and inspired décor along with dark vintage lounges and provocative entertainment all around, including a contortionist within a black cage, a snake handler, a fire eater and a trio of dark angels. An abundance of decadent cuisine was offered at every turn by dark angels including a live sushi station and a cauldron of paella. The guests basked in the light of the sun sitting over the city and indulged in entertainment and a selection of delicious offerings, all while the DJ played music to set the scene. At dusk, guests were collected by the stilt walker and escorted to dinner in the interior chamber.
Dramatically long wooden feasting tables provided the canvas for a dinner in a hedonistic “middle earth” detailed with upholstered fur tops and set with stacked Limoges china, mother-of-pearl flatware, cut crystal with antiquities and lush inspired décor. In rich earth tones, luscious textures, and dripping in gold and decadence, lush florals, ripe fruit, and lavish furs dressed the tables, accompanied by gold chameleon chairs and benches. Those were the feasting tables on which guests enjoyed a 5 course meal of the finest fare, served by butlers in tuxedos and tails. The room was highlighted by warm lighting all around and flanked by a collection of taxidermy along with majestic draped walls and classic paintings of angels. As guests dined, the horned stilt creature traversed the space feeding grapes to guests while the DJ spun from within adjoining library.
Following dinner, all guests were led to an exterior pool area transformed into a heavenly ethereal world. A DJ performed from a center white stage with white backdrop, from under cloud chandeliers. As the guests entered, angels greeted, offering an array of tray-passed desserts and custom cocktails. Guests were given the opportunity to lounge amongst modern white lounge vignettes with gold accents while watching an acrobat perform from within a clear orb on the pool. Guests were served custom cocktails from a custom white ethereal bar placed with a clear back bar display placed with gold accoutrements and faux clouds. They also marveled at the four “floating” cakes within the space, one of which was cut ceremoniously by the couple after which angels served guests from a gold cart throughout the evening. Another trio of angels lounged under a golden ladder, one of which climbed up on command to pick marshmallows for guests from a candy cloud suspended high in the air. In addition to the try pass, guests were able to wander into a room entirely filled with desserts, place on acrylic console tables and gold baroque credenzas, along with a central white fountain of chocolate placed on table boasting a voluminous tufted white linen..the space dripping in decadence and heavenly splendor. For an additional surprise, a molecular caramel corn station was discovered by guests throughout their time spent in “heaven”. For an extra mystical touch, the pool was filled with dry ice all around to give an effect of clouds all around.
For late nighters, the party continued as the DJ spun from within the interior chamber now transformed into an exotic dance party and lounge, complete with a full bar and an array of performers including a gymnasts performing on poles, a snake wrangler and a contortionist.
All throughout the night a mysterious “Lady in Mourning” wandered each space silently, adding to the drama and mystique of the celebration.
Event Showcase three
Breakfast for Dinner
Spirited, whimsical and dramatic – celebrating the couple’s individuality.
On a cool winter evening, guests entered the warm dimly lit urban space at sundown (6pm). They valeted their cars before walking under a video playing on the upper wall through the dimly lit lower level lobby towards the elevators where a sign was placed directing guests to the 11th floor. As they exited the elevators, event staff from a black podium checked them in where they were then handed a black card with a white shape to retain until further notice. As they entered the pre-function room, they were met with tray passed cocktails and black water along with savory bites from within a minimalist white room dramatically lit and featured only collection of high black cocktail tables. A wall of indigo phones, which were hung at multiple levels, spanned one wall, and it also served as an interactive spot for guests to take photos via this customized “photo booth.”
The rising sounds of Blur’s “Tender” were heard as curtains opened to reveal a dimly lit ceremony space. An aisle was peppered with whimsical bright indigo bark flowers and mood moss twisted, knotted vines leading to the alter. After guests found their seats while Antony and the Johnsons’ “Hope There’s Someone” played, the lights faded to black followed by a video slide slow behind the alter area showed photos of the bride and groom from childhood to present, which continued throughout the music cues of Jimmy Eat World’s “Table for Glasses” and then “Buried” Alkaline Trio. The slideshow concluded as the Alkaline Trio song faded and the New Amsterdams’ accordion interlude played during which Michael took his place mid-way down the dark aisle where he waited for Sarah. As the New Amsterdams interlude faded out, Dave Matthew’s “Lie in Our Graves” rose. Thirty seconds into the music cue after the music dramatically crashed, a spot rose over Michael then a spot rose on Wyatt and Sarah in a black Vera Wang ball gown with full long black leather gloves along with a young Wyatt in a black tuxedo and Chucks waiting at the entry to the aisle. The aisle lights and chandelier lights rose as Sarah and Wyatt walked down the aisle where they met Michael and all proceeded to the alter hand in hand with Wyatt in the middle, towards an altar illuminated with a dramatic display of multiple hanging bare bulbs.
Following the ceremony, Sarah and Michael walked back down the aisle to the pounding sounds of Green Day’s “Holiday” via a live video on the screen behind the alter as the lights followed their steps down the aisle. As they exited, the lights faded to black as video continued to play and guests began to get up from their seats to exit. As the music faded, the lights rose and the guests exited.
Guests were held in the pre-function space before the reveal on the next space was presented. A spot was illuminated in front of the draped entry into the next room as the lights dimmed on the pre-function space, the drapes opened and the lights and music rose in the dance area. As they entered the reception space, guests were greeted by cocktails and tray passed desserts as the DJ spun the couple’s favorite songs. Guests lounged amongst collections of black and white lounge vignettes or were able sit at long white bar tables with black bar stools, accented with whimsical organic inspired décor. Lounges and tables were surround a concrete dance floor outlined in blue painter’s tape with a floor sign saying “Dance Here”, dramatically illuminated by shafts of white light. From the corner a collection of hanging black birdcages of all sizes revealed a mass of indigo cranes flying from the doors into the center of the airspace overhead. Guests were additionally able to serve themselves from a gourmet cheese bar featuring 7 distinctive selections. Sarah and Michael entered the reception space to Damien Rice’s “Eskimo” and went directly into their first dance under a dramatic pool of light on the dance floor. As the opera solo within the song began, the light faded on the couple and rose on an opera singer singing live to the song from the back of the room.
Upon night fall, the lights dimmed in the dance area and drapes leading to the dining space opened to reveal butlers standing by with mimosas and bloody marys along with one long clear table set for 105. The table was accented by black chargers, which featured a white second charger defining where guests were to be seated based on the card that they were given upon arrival. The table additionally featured 30 sets of black antlers on stands all placed under a dramatic graduation of hanging bare bulbs from one end of the table to the other. It is here that guests were seated for a 3 course plated breakfast. Running along side of the table, 2 blue kites were suspended and illuminated in the air.
After meal service guests were able to continue dancing, to take photos or to lounge until the early morning…as guests departed they were handed an invitation to the next day’s brunch and exited through the lower lobby as Green Day’s “Good Riddance” live video played on the overhead wall.
Letters of recommendation
||California Wedding Day||Montage Beverly Hills